EDGE

STEEL DIVER

Developer Vitei, Nintendo EAD Publisher Nintendo Format 3DS Release 2011

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After Doshin, I started working on Theta, which was a DS game. At that point in time, we had four people at Vitei. The company was slowly getting bigger, and we were doing lots of prototypes with Nintendo for stuff that wasn’t released. We’d done maybe five or six of those before getting to Steel Diver.

We finished [WiiWare rock-climbing sim] Rock N’ Roll Climber and then [Nintendo developer Tadashi Sugiyama] showed us a very old prototype for a DS demo that they showed at some trade show and said, “Could you turn this into an actual game?” I loved the fact that all the dials are on the screen, you can touch them and move them in very small increments – it really felt like one of those old mechanical games you’d have as a kid.

We did the prototype demo on the DS Lite, I think, and Nintendo loved it. The original idea was it was going to be a DSiWare game, one of the downloadab­le games, but they thought the demo that we produced was too good for DSiWare. I think they had a very low opinion of the whole ‘download’ part of the DS at that point, so if Nintendo saw a potential big seller, they’d always make it into a packaged game instead. So we did that, and then it got extended by another year because they wanted a proper, full, packaged version. Halfway through that, the 3DS came out, so we made it for that instead of the DS. We had three years of this continuous upgrading of the game.

They gave us these big 3DS devkits that were just basically a massive PC board with two screens. We had no idea that the top screen was 3D, and they didn’t tell us – so we spent six months making the game on this devkit without knowing. Then they suddenly say, “By the way, if you poke this number into this bit here, the top screen will become 3D” – which was quite mind-blowing.

“WITH STEEL DIVER WE HAD THREE YEARS OF THIS CONTINUOUS UPGRADING OF THE GAME”

 ?? ?? Vitei released Tank Troopers for 3DS in 2016 and has a good relationsh­ip with Nintendo to this day, although Goddard feels that the company’s focus has shifted more towards triple-A games since the loss of former president Satoru Iwata in 2015
Vitei released Tank Troopers for 3DS in 2016 and has a good relationsh­ip with Nintendo to this day, although Goddard feels that the company’s focus has shifted more towards triple-A games since the loss of former president Satoru Iwata in 2015
 ?? ?? Steel Diver began life as a DS tech demo, shown off alongside other fun diversions, including one allowing you to carve wood on a lathe, during E3 in 2004
Steel Diver began life as a DS tech demo, shown off alongside other fun diversions, including one allowing you to carve wood on a lathe, during E3 in 2004

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