Seaman creator Yoot Saito recently participated in a panel at this year’s Reboot Develop 2018. It’s a great way of finding out new and informative things from developers and this year is no exception. Saito explained his friendship with the late Nintendo president Satoru Iwata and Nintendo game designer Shigeru Miyamoto. He also shared that he had been working on a project for them titled Mario Motors which saw players create and sculpt a number of engines. Here’s what was said at the event via Destructoid.
“During one meeting, Iwata-san asked me a question: ‘Saito-san, what have you been interested in lately?’ I immediately understood what he was getting at, so I answered ‘sculpting chunk.’ Miyamoto-san said ‘huh?!'” (To help explain to the audience what he was referring to, Saito talked a bit about how things like watches, camera frames, and MacBooks are made. Sculpting objects out of metal chunks spoke to him and it was an idea he “really wanted” to make into a game.)
This kind of sculpting is really appealing to a middle-aged guy like me,” Saito said.
“I explained this crazy idea to them and they really listened to me very carefully in complete silence, and finally said ‘that sounds interesting, let’s give it a try.'”
Saito summed it up as “shaving and sculpting out of a chunk of metal to make a cylinder [which then] decides the ability of your engines.” For part of the game he wanted to teach players how acceleration works in an interesting way and thought about having them blow into the DS microphone. “I scrapped this idea because this would cause children to get out of breath,” he explained.
Reflecting back on his meetings with Iwata and Miyamoto, Saito said “I really understand just how much they respected each other, and how they formed the two wheels that pulled Nintendo’s game business forward. They paid attention to me because they were always hungry for something new.”
As for why Mario Motors never moved ahead, Saito said “I can’t tell you why, but please guess.”