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StarFox Developer Says Miyamoto Removed “What Was Cool” About The Original Game


Dylan Cuthbert, founder of Q Games, has discussed his experience of working with Nintendo and Shigeru Miyamoto on StarFox. Cuthbert says that Miyamoto would suddenly add and remove ideas and it really felt as if the development team weren’t getting anywhere. In fact Cuthbert was ready to say “No, screw that” to Miyamoto as he believed that he was “removing what was cool”. Thankfully, we all know things turned out well in the end. Here’s what Cuthbert had to say about the experience.

“We were very cocky British programmers, thrown into this Japanese environment,” Cuthbert explained. “We were in awe and in shock at the same time about their process, as we went in intending to make a full 3D shooting game inspired by Starglider 2. But in the process I learned from Miyamoto that ‘No idea must go into a game, even if they are good ideas.’”

“This was very confusing for us, because at the time British games were full of good ideas,” he continued. ”We were at the forefront of 3D, even with isometric games back in ’83, but what we did in Britain was just stuff all these ideas in and then sell it. It’d sell, but people would find, like, half a game. Most of the games I bought in the 80s I would never finish.”

“So Starglider 2 was initially what we were trying to make: a 3D roaming game. For our first months of working with Nintendo, Miyamoto would add ideas, and then remove them. And it felt like we weren’t really getting anywhere.”

Miyamoto returned to the team with a “big grin” claiming to have solved their problems. “He said, ‘we’re going to limit it. It’s going to be on rails, and it’s going to be fun and playable and a Nintendo game.’”

“If we had been in Britain we would have been like ‘no, screw that.’”

“In our Starglider concept, you couldn’t really see lasers coming from behind you and it could be very hard to find where the enemies were in 3D space. It was a very difficult process for the player,” explained Cuthbert. “[the change] allowed us to make much better boss battles; you were always flying forward and you could always see the boss.”

“At the time all British 3D games were first-person to be more immersive, but the change allowed us to make it fun to manoeuvre between buildings, and allowed the barrel roll to be visible and intuitive.”

“With Starglider, the 3D roaming feature was such a big thing in our mind as British programmers we never considered other ways to do it,” he concluded. “It was Miyamoto and Nintendo who came up with these ideas because they didn’t have this background in 3D development.”

58 thoughts on “StarFox Developer Says Miyamoto Removed “What Was Cool” About The Original Game”

  1. Retro better hurry with this and Metroid. Also, weren’t salba and sickr choosing two new bloggers? Im interested to see who they will pick. Hopefully they can cover other things like top 10’s or game reviews and other fun things that communicate with the people here.

      1. Not anymore. He told me he didnt have the time anymore. But im sure therell be others who want it more

      1. No :( but we can hope, right? Also, I never s aid my friend might get the job xS just that he was going to joing but alas he didnt. But I know someone else who would be perfect for the job. Hopefully he gets picked by today.

      2. My word is confirmation lol. Plus Retros 2 statements in the past. “We are making something they want us to make.” Meaning the fans. and “There will be barrel rolling.”

        1. You would think that limits what they could be working on, but not really lol. Could be starfox, could be donkey kong, pretty sure there were barrels (more or less) in earthbound lol. barrels roll in a 6 shooter gun, so maybe a fps? So many possibilities and with Retro on it any would be great lol.

          1. I absolutely love Retro. But I would not like to have a FPS (most of western developers only work on it…).

            By the way, having Team Ninja on next Metroid game would be a dream…

          2. But Retro’s main purpose is to revive Nintendo’s games that have fallen off the wagon. 1st was Metroid, then was Donkey Kong, Now is Starfox, whats next? F-Zero of course!

        2. That’s true… But I really don’t understand why Retro and Nintendo are so secretive concerning their projects…

          1. You want to know why Nintendo is so secretive? Iwata even said it before. They wont reveal everything they are working on cause they dont want their competitors to just make a copy of it and spit it out in a years time. Meaning its Nintendos defense against Sony being a copycat lol.

  2. So basically theres no excuse now for a copy an paste Star Fox 64 sequel.

    BIG changes need to happen to Star Fox.
    Saying “no its fine” is basically bias hypocrasy when people trash COD, and Halo m, and other IP’s for doing nothing new (dont disagree with that, they dont do anything new and its boring), but Star Fox, Zelda, Metroid equelly need big change.

    Just because the games dont come out often, doesnt mean it isnt need.

    1. I actually liked Assault because it changed things up with ground missions
      Granted, they were mediocre but they tried to change things
      If Retro or any other Ninty devs can fix up the ground missions, I’d say we have a contender for the best game on the Wii U

      1. Yeah, that’s how i felt, it was a good step in the right direction, but the execution was poor, and it just needed a little bit more.

        You give it to a developer that know what theyre doing and it’ll work.

    2. Depends how you look at it I guess. Even just adding some new features can help with them, or reinvent the games like with metroid prime from super metroid. I don’t honestly thing there is anything wrong with the foundation of Zelda, with Zelda it’s about the story and immersion. No idea where they can really go with starfox, but will look forward to it if it’s announced. I love pretty much every Metroid game, even Other M (seem to be the only person on this forum that does though). I would love a new Eternal Darkness from Retro.

      1. I liked Other M, too. Actually, I said elsewhere in this post that I would love another Metroid by Team Ninja.

  3. The funny thing is, what they had originally planned for Starwing was used in the unreleased Star Fox 2 and then in other games which were released later on.

      1. Or “refined development for starfox” lol. He (and his team I’m sure) solved an issue that loads of games still have, trying to do too much which ends up taking away from the game.

  4. the title doesn’t really match with the article, but it will do. Miyamoto didnt remove what was good, he just simply removed ideas and made it simple.

  5. The guy is actually saying that Nintendo saved the game. Their idea sounds like it wouldn’t work well. It certainly doesn’t sound as fun as Star Fox. Leave luck to heaven.

  6. Sounds like he caused them to focus more on a few ideas so that they could be properly fleshed out as opposed to jamming it so full of ideas that everything feels bloated and not properly thought out.

    Its a good thing.

  7. he seems to like doing that these days he strip paper mario sticker star down to man he needs to retire quick

    1. Riiiiight. Cause starfox was just made…
      The real issue is that sticker star was marketed as a paper mario rpg, as opposed to what it really is. A mario adventure game in a different landscape. I think a new Earthbound NEEDS to be made.

  8. Personality, I don’t like how Miyamoto try to simple/limit a game, it makes it feel dull sometimes. That’s what they did to Paper Mario SS, and some others and lots of people didn’t like it. :/

    Some simples are nice but not all the time, tbh.. Although Star Fox for SNES and N64 was pretty good though, so I probably won’t complain about them.. Then again, idk.. But if star glider version would of made it, lots of people would of liked it that way too.

    Hearing miyamoto make free roaming into non-free roaming just bcause of some hard find eneimies really upset me. The original wouldn’t ruin the game, it’s just a little harder. Although I did love star fox, so I’m kind of happy a bit and upset. It’s just I don’t believe miyamoto’s idea about that good idea thing is the only thing good, since Miyamoto can be wrong sometimes, due to games that were made and not controlled by miyamoto or something.

    1. That last sentence isn’t making much sense there. Actually most of this doesn’t make sense. Especially the claim that he changed Paper Mario when he didn’t even work on that…Intelligent Systems did….

      1. Miyamoto was the one who didn’t want IS to add new people or much story. (The big effect was story). Yeah IS chose not to add one, but I think they were told not to by miyamoto. I wasn’t sure if it was an order for sure, maybe it was a suggestion. Besides, I don’t think it was just that game.

        And what I was saying is that I didn’t like how he tried to limit ideas, like as if it’s bad to add a lot of new ideas as if Miyamoto way was the only way good. And the last part, I was talking about that both directions were good.. Like if they made the game very structured (Turned into Starfox) it became it’s own type of game. But if they didn’t, that would too. But people would like them both. And that I didn’t like how Miyamoto forced it to remove free roaming, even thought Star fox was good too.. Why I said I was happy and sad. xD I think that’s what I meant.

        Sorry, it’s sort of hard to explain..

        Miyamoto is great, just that I think not everything is to be honest, but he is awesome still, since he is the Nintendo and made it fun sometimes. :P

  9. It’d be nice if they, you know, made a new Star Fox game. Closer to the N64 game but keeping it fresh. It’s definitely an underutilized but excellent Nintendo property. Even something like Assault where they added a lot but kept many familiar aspects (and tipping the hat to the original where it’s due – such as the awesome orchestra rendiditon of Star Wolf) would be cool. But please, just give us a Star Fox game.

  10. The biggest thing Star Fox needs to do is kill off some characters. Bring it back down to the original 4 pilots. I mean, who really gives a fuck about Slippy’s girlfriend for instance? It’s dumb.

  11. Misleading title. They said Miyamoto removed what “they” thought was cool since they were having problems doing it the way they had learned. It doesn’t say that what got removed was actually cool.

  12. God damn, stop with the misleading titles, it’s like the third time this week. Are you doing this for hits or because you genuinely don’t understand your sources?

  13. Honestly, Star Fox A was great.. If you don’t like it, then don’t play it.. And honestly if people don’t like the added characters they could ignore them, some poeple like it.

    The thing I do want them to make again is the Star Fox SNES or N64 feel. I would really love that.

  14. StarFox 2 unreleased>StarFox SNES>StarFox Assault=StarFox 64>>>StarFox Adventures>>>>>StarFox 643d>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>StarFox Command. IT IS FACT

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