New Super Mario Bros. producer Takashi Tezuka was asked about which recent 2D platformer impresses him. Tezuka revealed that he was very impressed by Retro Studios’ Donkey Kong Country Returns for Wii. New Super Mario Bros. Wii and Donkey Kong Country Returns were being developed at the same time and when Tezuka saw the latter while it was in development, he thought “the graphics were so pretty.” Tezuka said that Donkey Kong Country Returns had a positive impact on him.
There has been a 2D platforming renaissance as of late, with games like Braid, Super Meat Boy, and Kirby’s Epic Yarn. Is there any game that influenced you or that you’re particularly impressed with?
“The Donkey Kong game that we just had out on Wii, Donkey Kong Country Returns–I actually got a glimpse of a ROM while they were still in development. The graphics were so pretty that I thought, wow, that looks really nice. We were working on New Super Mario Bros. Wii at the time, and that really became an impetus. That really kicked us in the butts. I don’t know if “influence” is the right word, but it had an impact.”