Liam Robertson from Unseen64 has revealed on a recent podcast that he is under the impression that Retro Studios could be hard at work on an original IP that they proposed to Nintendo. We know that they finished work on Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze back in late 2013 and have since been pitching projects to Nintendo. The new game was apparently green-lit by NCL in 2014.
“I don’t actually know what the project is, exactly, but I know that it is something that Retro themselves pitched. … They came off of Tropical Freeze in very late 2013, I think it was, and they continued throughout 2014 pitching new projects. … And then they eventually pitched a project that went through, and NCL greenlit, and I assume that’s what they’re doing now—by all accounts, it is.”
“I don’t think Retro wants to do [Metroid Prime 4]. … I’d be surprised if Retro themselves pitched [that]. I think they’ve had their fill of Metroid. … And if it is Metroid, then it will be something different—like maybe a 2D one, or something—different from Prime.”
“I think they have the potential to work on multiple projects, but I feel like the money isn’t there. People don’t realize it, but Retro is one of the priciest studios for [Nintendo] to maintain, and I can’t see them letting them do two projects at once. As far as I know, they have one NCL producer with them right now, and I couldn’t see this person overseeing both of them; I think this person would be doing one.
… And you were saying, ‘could it be an original property?’ I think, actually, the time is now for Retro to do an original property. They’ve done two established Nintendo franchises, they’ve done Metroid and Donkey Kong, and I think now is the time to let them take hold of the reins a bit more for themselves and do that. And I think if it is something that they pitched themselves, then that does make it more likely that they pitched something original.”