Why did Nintendo start going back to 2D platformers recently?

#1iKhan88Posted 9/29/2013 9:08:09 PM
Yes, I know Nintendo had a ton of 2D platformers pre N64, but I really started with the N64, and I've always preferred 3D gameplay to 2D in nearly all mediums. But from the N64 days to the early days of the Wii U, Nintendo wasn't churning out the massive numbers of 2D platformers they've been making in recent years. We got an occasional Yoshi or Wario game, and 2D Mario and 2D Donkey Kong had pretty much been shelved. The only real consistent source of Nintendo 2D platformers was Kirby, which is amazing because it's always reinventing itself.

I know I'm gonna get a lot of hate for this, but I love Nintendo for their 3D games, and I'm really not a fan of 2D platformers in the slightest, so I'm curious why Nintendo's started going back.
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#2FuzzyJelloPosted 9/29/2013 9:13:56 PM
It could probably be as simple as "We haven't done this in a while, it has brand power, let's bring it back!". New Super Mario Brothers was an idea that happened to sell gangbusters on DS, a Wii version was a no-brainer and paid off; that series isn't stopping until it ceases to sell gangbusters. U might be that stopper.

Donkey Kong Country Returns was probably the same thing; the nostalgia was strong with it, Nintendo needed new Wii content, and again, it worked. 10 million copies, was it?

Kirby's been 2D from birth, and if Nintendo didn't force it on him on the N64, they're not doing it.

So two were revivals that paid off insanely well, and the third is 2D in the blood. Seems easy to follow to me; Mario is the only 3D superstar among those, anyway, and we're still getting that.
#3FlyinTonitePosted 9/29/2013 9:17:04 PM
They are safe games. People will buy them in droves and they are usually fun enough to keep most people entertained.
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#4IokuaPosted 9/29/2013 9:18:31 PM
They're cheaper and easier to make than fully 3D games for one. For another nearly all of their long term staff have experience designing them. Plus the original New Super Mario Bros sold around 30,000,000 copies. That's an attach rate of 20%, not even GTAV will hit an attach rate that high.
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#5The13DoctorsPosted 9/29/2013 9:41:11 PM
Because we've been starved of them and that's their specialty. as such they saw the demand and tested the waters with NSMB for DS, after the massive success of that they brought it back in full force. Kirby, DKC, Mario, next Yoshi.

People love them. I love them. Don't ruin my fun, they still make 3D platformers. Here's hoping for a 3D DK platformer by Retro.
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#6AkaneJonesPosted 9/29/2013 9:44:53 PM
Well games like Super Mario Sunshine didn't do that well overall. Then with the DS they had no more classic 2D Mario games to port to it they decided to try New Super Mario Bros.. That game sold like gang buster. It was help in part by DSs surprise success, Japan's move to handheld, and the fact there had not been a new 2D Mario in over 10 years.

At which point with the Wii the Wii they wanted to emulate that by trying another 2D Mario with multiplayer. The results met similar success, which was in part due to lots of people who weren't gamers knowing about Mario in his 2D form, so they were willing to try that especially with the co-op helping hand. The point is at this point it had become clear that 2D platformers weren't dead like the industry had thought. Nintendo they decided to resurrect Donkey Kong to his former glory, especially since I was clear more "hardcore" gamers actually wanted a harder platformer.

Now Kirby on the other hand was always going to be a 2D platformer, because Hal hasn't made a main Kirby that isn't. It just took all gen to convert the game from it's GameCube root. I won't tend to understand where Epic Yarn came from, but Wario Land: Shake It, was a Wario Land game, not a sequel to Wario Worlds, because well Wario Worlds never had the kind of popularity of Wario Land.

It's at this point we got 3D Land it seems the masses take better to sales of games with clear goals, versus the true 3D Marios. My guess is sales is the primary reasons 3D World is being made, instead of anything close to Collect-a-thon. Collect-a-thons are currently in the Darkages that 2D Platformers were in during the transition between PS1/N64 era and through out the PS2/NGC era. The main difference is you don't have handhelds giving you a retro fix. 2D platformers were easier to develop on GBC/GBA hardware so they still had a home.

Collect-a-thons don't rely on more primitive hardware its a design choice only. They weren't that way because the hardware couldn't handle something grander. Basic collect-a-thons were just a genre available, and weirdly alot of the audience is over playing 3D Action/Shooter games with Achievements to get their fix. Either way a lack of gang buster sales has cut back most companies from producing any collect-a-thon despite respectable sales similar to other genres that exist.

Too many companies chasing those crazy 2D Mario, Mario Kart, CoD, GTA sales numbers. They just need to budget their games from 1m sales. And they need stop feeding those people who only buy used, on budget sales, and think most games drop in price after 6 months. If it isn't yearly sports roster change games, they shouldn't have that sort of market. If it actually cost the amount of games like Tomb Raider one would think it would hold it's value for 2 years. Obviously if the games crap it isn't worth it, but that something else. Probably should have been a budget game from the get go. Anyway enough of a side rant about the industry being at fault for no collect-a-thons.
#7iKhan88(Topic Creator)Posted 9/29/2013 9:49:52 PM
The13Doctors posted...
Because we've been starved of them and that's their specialty. as such they saw the demand and tested the waters with NSMB for DS, after the massive success of that they brought it back in full force. Kirby, DKC, Mario, next Yoshi.

People love them. I love them. Don't ruin my fun, they still make 3D platformers. Here's hoping for a 3D DK platformer by Retro.


Nintendo did fine without their so called "specialty" from the N64 to the early years of the Wii. I think Nintendo has a wider variety of talent than just 2D platformers.

I'd be okay if we got one 2D Platformer every 2 years, excluding Kirby, which is made by Hal, and is almost completely unique from Nintendo's other platformers. The problem is that they are releasing 2+ per year, and the style of those 2D Platformers is bleeding into 3D games like Mario 3D World.

Another issue is that 2D platformers are very hard to differentiate. Where as Action and Adventure genres, which tend to bleed into most 3D game designs, have a lot of ways to be unique. 2D platformers are usually very similar within and between series. That's why I love Kirby so much, because every other game seems to be an experiment, and even standard gameplay is remarkably inventive. It's the exception to that rule.
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#8manmousePosted 9/29/2013 9:56:23 PM
iKhan88 posted...
but I really started with the N64,


then it'll be hard to explain to you the validity of the 2D format.

it's not nostalgia, the fact is there's a lot of design principles that can only exist in 2D. both 3D and 2D are valuable, but each can offer things that the other can't.

fact is, there's a lot more you can do in 2D when it comes to asking for nimble reactions and more precise and rhythmic movements and dodging projectiles and traversing gaps and such. in 3D, there's an issue of depth perception equivalent to viewing reality with one eye closed. a 3D game, without true 3D technology, can never show you true depth of distance and such, and your movements by nature have to be designed a bit slower and ask for less precision than that which could be asked with 2D gameplay.
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#9iKhan88(Topic Creator)Posted 9/29/2013 10:01:00 PM
manmouse posted...
iKhan88 posted...
but I really started with the N64,


then it'll be hard to explain to you the validity of the 2D format.

it's not nostalgia, the fact is there's a lot of design principles that can only exist in 2D. both 3D and 2D are valuable, but each can offer things that the other can't.

fact is, there's a lot more you can do in 2D when it comes to asking for nimble reactions and more precise and rhythmic movements and dodging projectiles and traversing gaps and such. in 3D, there's an issue of depth perception equivalent to viewing reality with one eye closed. a 3D game, without true 3D technology, can never show you true depth of distance and such, and your movements by nature have to be designed a bit slower and ask for less precision than that which could be asked with 2D gameplay.


I've played 2D games before, and I understand that validity. It's just not my personal preference. I far prefer the freedom of 3D to the restriction of 2D. Also, I am really bad... I mean REALLY bad at 2D platformers. I die in Kirby games, and it took me for every to get past the 1st world in New Super Mario Bros.
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#10ElectricMolePosted 9/29/2013 10:11:25 PM
Because theyre cheap to make.
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