1. Hayama Akito

    Hayama Akito
    Member OP

    I know this is old news, but I resurrect this topic because good old Shmuplations has released a very interesting interview with Yuji Naka and I'm surprised by his insistence at the time.

    Just look at these quotes:

    This is kinda heartbreaking for most hardcore Sega fanboys lol.

    I cannot deny I have a profound curiosity in this "what if Yuji Naka made games at Nintendo" timeline.

    (PD - before your rant: this is not a company wars thread. Don't get me wrong, I love Sega).
  2. dlauv


    They probably wouldn't put up with his attitude.
  3. Why didn't he just get on the phone with Miyamoto or even Iwata? He's been known to be good friends with Miyamoto IIRC so I have little doubt he could've easily gotten in if he made some calls. Kind of odd how Arzest became uber close to Nintendo rather than Prope outside of a few Mii Plaza games.
  4. Frecklestein


    This is really funny from a 90s console war perspective. THE guy wanted to jump ship! lol. Kinda crazy though, no doubt that even after Sonic, Sega wouldn't have been the same without him, really. But at the end of the day, I still don't think he would be a fit at Nintendo, back then, anyways.
  5. WestEgg


    I have to imagine most Japanese game developers at some point wanted to work at Nintendo. The IPs are so iconic that taking a whack at them gives you a real chance to shape gaming history in a way few other developers can offer.

    I'm curious how Naka would have fit in. He has a reputation for being headstrong and not always agreeing with management, but his level design is great.
  6. meppi64

    Self-Requested Ban Member

    Not at all. The only thing that's heartbreaking is that it should have happened after the Dreamcast died.

    I wouldn't want to trade NiGHTS, Burning Rangers and Chu Chu Rocket for anything in the world, but after the Dreamcast years, he should have gotten a call from Nintendo and continue to make his dream games.
  7. PlayBee


    Hard to feel bad for the guy if he was just sitting around hoping Nintendo would call and ask him to work there.
  8. DocSeuss


    It's kinda weird he didn't make a call himself.
  9. IronicSonic


    Top developer wants to work in a gameplay first, quality proof videogame company. Who knows!

    Seriously though, probably Naka's temperament is well know in the industry. The guy is a genious but it seems is not easy to work with him
  10. RomanceDawn


    You can't just sit around wishing for it to be a better day, speak up be heard if you don't say word everything will stay the same way.

    What is Naka up to these days? I remember Rodea the Sky Soldier? Is that right? I did hear about an attitude problem he may have had that could have kept him off of Nintendo's radar.

    Still had he been working at Nintendo all this time I bet you an amazing Sonic title would have been made by now. Not that he would have had full control but he probably would have had started the initial talks of a non-olympics collaborative effort and the Nintendo employees would have given the game all the time it needed to succeed.
  11. I too am waiting for a call from Nintendo, any day now... :/
  12. Would have been more suited for Capcom or something. Their games and philosophy are more in line with his, IMO.
  13. koutoru


    I don't know what Nintendo's application process was back then but I wonder why he just didn't send them one if he wanted to work for them.

    Or try to officially contact them in some manner.
  14. Molto


    Can't say I blame him. From what I understand Sega as a company was a complete mess throughout the 90's, despite making excellent games.
  15. And yet he ended up at Square Enix
  16. justiceiro


    Well, who doesn't?

    But guy got scared of a security guard "look" and waited for a call instead of going after them. "Really want" is anything but this. Guy sound more sad because Nintendo didn't give his ego a massage.
  17. Black Mantis

    Black Mantis

    Is this a cultural thing? Just seems weird to me that he wouldn't initiate contact.
  18. Mr-Joker


    He's at Square Enix.
  19. This is both kinda cute and stupid.

    Mostly stupid.
  20. Dreamwriter


    I could be wrong, but I believe in those days to get a job at a big corporation in Japan, you basically had to be recruited (they often recruited straight from college), or you had to have contacts within the company that could arrange a meeting with someone in charge. There was no official application process at most Japanese corporations. So it’s not as easy as “Why didn’t he call them” or “Why didn’t he just apply?”

    And Nintendo was picky - Nasir, one of the most important early Squaresoft employees who programmed games like Rad Racer and the early Final Fantasy games (and then Secret of Mana), first approached Nintendo (he had a contact who introduced him), and Nintendo thought he had potential but didn’t want him, so introduced him to Squaresoft.
  21. sir_crocodile


    Wasn't Naka known as a bit of a troublemaker at the time? I seem to remember stories about him going off on one when another dev team within sega used his engine or something.
  22. petran79

    Banned Member

    Same thing would have happened if Sonic visited the Mushroom Kingdom
  23. He didn't want Sega Technical Institute (Sega's US team he founded with Mark Cerny) to use the Nights' engine for Sonic X-treme.
  24. Lord of Ostia

    Lord of Ostia

    Most likely, at least at some level.
  25. The main reason most early Japanese games have everybody putting cute nicknames in the credits is because companies wouldn’t let them put their names out there for fear of staff getting poached. So it definitely happened.
  26. Damn.
  27. Sub Boss

    Sub Boss
    Banned Member

    His resume was rejected
  28. sir_crocodile


    Yeah, that was it, thanks. Wonder if that story was widely known back then within the Japanese dev community.
  29. He also got into a fight with Peter Moore, who then told him to fuck off lol
  30. I mean, Miyamoto does like Nights quite a bit, but then again...

    Yeah lmao.
  31. srtrestre


    Sega. Yeah, that's your grandad. Used to be cool, but even he can't remember why anymore.
  32. Mr-Joker


    Honestly given that Naka was known to be difficult to work with he also hasn't really produced high quality games while at Sega, I mean for god stake he thought making a Sonic shooter was a good idea, and after leaving Sega.

    Don't also forget that the man left and abandoned his team while they were developing Sonic 06 while taking a few team members with him, not really a sign of someone you would call reliable or a team player.
  33. Segafreak


    Shameful, Nintendo showed more honor by not asking to join them.

    Also, Nintendo knew even then Sonic is Sega's worst franchise.
  34. Celine


    Yuji Naka always had a sense of inferiority for Nintendo (with the meaning that he always aspired to create games with the same polish and innovation of Nintendo games).

  35. Celine


    Actually Naka stance on guns was way different when Sonic Team was a top development team in the '90s.

    Naka: Because the TV screen is a flat, two-dimensional screen, we reasoned, you can’t really get the sense of depth and perspective in it that a 3D game would require. How would you be able to discern between objects that were close-up and those far away? We just didn’t think we’d be able to create interesting gameplay in a completely 3D environment.

    I’d seen a lot of “3D” games before, but very few of them made me feel like I was really playing in three dimensions. And what were you usually doing in those games? Shooting. But the targetting cursor always had computer-assisted aiming, so basically you weren’t playing the game, the computer was. Even the good 3D games were like that. But one of our design principles at Sonic Team was that we didn’t want to include guns and shooting mechanics. If you do that it ultimately just turns into a STG game. On the other hand, making a difficult platformer without weapons, one where you just make difficult jumps and such—that also wouldn’t appeal to the average person.

  36. Aaron


    It’s kind of amazing how annualized Sonic was (Sonic 1 in 1991, Sonic 2 in 1992, Sonic CD in 1993, Sonic 3 & Knuckles in 1994) and yet able to rival Mario in so many ways.

    Too bad Naka was such a diva about Sonic Xtreme using NiGHTS’ engine, though it’s very possible that game still could have turned out to be garbage. Probably better that Adventure was the first true jump to 3D, even if it doesn’t hold up it was at least a respectable effort at the time.
  37. carlosrox


    He didn't even try? That's really sad.

    I feel him. Been there myself.
  38. RagnarokX


    I appreciate Naka for his coding skills making Sonic, but his attitude and becoming director destroyed Sonic. He's a brilliant coder but he shouldn't have gotten full control of game development. That's not his wheelhouse. I wish Yasuhara had become the head of Sonic Team, but Naka drove him to quit Sega. If Naka went to Nintendo I doubt they would put him in that kind of role.
  39. I can relate, security guards have driven me away from impulse prospects more than once
  40. Slam Tilt

    Slam Tilt

    I suspect it's not limited to Japanese developers, too.
  41. OrakioRob


    This is very interesting. Thanks, OP!
  42. Dooble


    Programmers back then often became producers, because they were involved in every aspect of the game. It is a natural fit and Nintendo has done it too

    Either way, Naka would have never been able to flex his creative muscles at Nintendo like he did at Sega.
    New IP and ideas come from very few senior people at the top at Nintendo that also have been groomed. Naka would have not been welcome in that structure.
  43. Aters


    This also reminds me, what is this guy doing at SE?
  44. vala


    This happened after the development of Sonic 1.
  45. I wouldn't call Shintaro Sato a very few senior people at the top of Nintendo
  46. RedDevil


    Yeah, imagine if this had been known back then.

    It makes me wonder what would've happened if Nintendo had tried to get him before he quit SEGA.
  47. Dooble


    Splatoon and ARMS have been recent. Before, most new IP came through Miyamoto (if it involved EAD)
  48. Peter Moore's Yuji Naka story is probably my favorite video game related story period
  49. BasilZero


    Miyamoto still has grudge against anything Sonic l0l.
  50. The security guard scared away me and my friend when we stopped by Nintendo while in Japan a few years ago...some things never change I guess lol