Bill Trinen

There is certainly a lot to look forward to as a Zelda fan. With a remake, sequel and a brand new game, there’s something for everyone with The Wind Waker HD, A Link to the Past 2 and the untitled Wii U instalment. But how on Earth does Nintendo manage all three games simultaneously?

Nintendo of America translator Bill Trinen offered us some insight into the development process when talking to Kotaku, and it’s pretty interesting.

“They kind of shuffle people in and out, so they’ll sort of have their core group, but then they’re bringing new people in and out, so that helps bring in fresh ideas. Each of the different games will have their main lead director, or maybe depending on the game, they may have two…Generally the way that the Zelda team operates is they may have one or two people who carry over or take the lead, but they do a lot of kind of jumping in and out in terms of moving from handheld to console, or vice-versa.”

This is a clever approach, as it undoubtedly keeps employees mentally active when switching between titles. It also allows for new inspiration and ideas on a regular basis with new people constantly being introduced to the projects and encouraged to provide their own ideas. It seems Nintendo’s headquarters are as organised and unique as ever, and all three games are in good hands.

Source: Kotaku (via Nintendo Everything)
  • RPH1

    Well. they are busy now. We will be busy in 7 months.

    Look at the wallpaper behind Bill.

    Bing's picture of the day looks kind of like the top og this page.

  • Chad

    The problem with cycling people in and out is too many ideas are bad for games when you have too many ideas a game looks cluttered and unorganized or has one or more bad ideas that never should have found there way into a game. I feel like Nintendo is starting to blur the line between franchises and that is starting to worry me. Skyward sword for one while it was well done and had many parts that I felt were well thought out the design of the dragons and the addition of Robots and machinery set in the past of a game already at the beginning of a timeline made me cringe. I'm aware that many of you may not agree with me but Skyward sword did not leave me with the same feel that prior games had. Instead it had a feel that was VERY similar to Mario Galaxy 1 and 2. This is just what I think feel free to down vote me as much as possible I'm not criticizing the game to make it look bad or say that I hated it I just feel that certain aspects of the series are headed in the wrong direction. Other's such as the Motion Control, and the beautiful art style, I felt, were GREAT additions to the game. This post just makes it more clear where the problems I personally found with the game most likely came from.

    • Alex

      For someone complaining about organization, you sure do have a lot of run on sentences.

      • Peter

        Wow, did you really miss his point?

      • Frank


    • kkk

      I HATE Skyward Sword for a lot of reasons… but the Robots were definitely not one, from the start of the game it's -clear- that there WAS a past before Link. SS Link was just the first (or was it second?) incarnation.
      The robot monkeys showed that, long before they were shoved into the sky, there was a thriving and advanced community that was crushed for "some reason" and how the landscape changed.

      I also disagree with how you're viewing this. When they say "cycle" they don't mean they're completely replacing the individuals or that they're even cycling new people IN it means that the producers and developers aren't always working on the same project every week. For instance, Aonuma will work on Wii U Zelda for a week then he'll "cycle" over to 3DS Zelda for a week etc and they do that with all the major players. Anyone "new" will just be on to make models, textures and such- but the direction and what actually makes it into the game is still all on Aonuma's hands. Nothing that goes on will fall under his radar.

  • shon

    instead of making 3 games at once can we get 1 game with voice acting?

    • MikeL

      Eh… no, no and NO!

      • bill

        Man its a pain in the azz keep reading that wall of gibberish text that's impossible to pronounce all the made up things people play games to melt their brain at least in America we do just like with tv if you want to read go get a novel

        • MikeL

          At least they use proper sentence structure and punctuation…
          Are you saying americans are too stupid and incompetent to read a text? And pronunciation? Do you really need to read out loud when you read along with a text?
          The last thing I would ever want is for characters in a Zelda game to speak english (or japanese for that matter). They speak hylian, and if Nintendo invents that language and have the characters speak it we would still need subtitles. It's best to leave it up to every players imagination to make up their own idea of how hylian sounds like.

        • bill

          walls of text worked well when games had were ghetto and companies lack the funds to do it, now in 2013 almost every game out there has voice acting and abandoned the wall of boring text and most people skip cutscenes cuz they want to play games not read a novel Nintendo rewrites every five or so years, Zelda game only focus on puzzle solving and not much else even boss battles are one big puzzle making the bosses laughably weak once you know the sequence of how to solve the puzzle. most americans hate to read, its boring and waste your time and yes most of americans are dumbazz but that's mainly the young'in. most old heads know what theyre doing cuz they don't waste their time with video games.

          • MikeL

            So what if you americans hate to read? I don't care, Nintendo doesn't care, nobody cares.
            If Link and Zelda suddenly starts to speak audible english me and a lot of other fans will be massively disappointed.

    • Mickii

      Voice acting… good one! XDDD Remember what happened the last time someone made a zelda game with voice acting..?

    • kkk

      Why do people ask for this..? There are hundreds of games with dedicated voice acting and Zelda is one of the few that doesn't do it.
      Yeah no thanks, that's like asking to turn Zelda into a shooter why don't you just go play one of the million shooters instead. Thanks, bye.

    • MikeL

      Btw, you already have 3 'Zelda' games with voice acting: The Feces of Evil, The Wand of Gamelon and Zelda's Adventure. Enjoy

      • Pickles

        can't tell if "feces" was intended or not

        • kkk

          It's not exactly close to A on the keyboard.

          • bill

            it is if your blind

  • orange lover

    I love oranges but what is with the dude starring at an orange? Seriously, it is like he never has seen an orange in his life. Or he is autistic.

    • bill

      nah man he hungry mimtendo doesn't allow employees to take lunch as it cuts down on productivity and you know they need to get those slackers to start doing some work, whole reason to do remakes: polish the same turd over and over to rake in easy profit. pure genius man

  • touma

    what is with nintendo and staring at fruits. its like they got a weird fetish or something.

    • Rikki

      The fruit thing probably has more to do with whoever wrote this article deciding to use that particular photo of Bill Trinen over the hundreds of other photos of him than anything related to the article itself, the interview, or anything involving a fruit fetish. I'm sure in the original context for the photo there's a legitimate reason he's staring at the fruit, like say he's using it as a metaphor, but we wouldn't know because it's now out of context. The bigger question is Reece picked that photo.

      • RPH1

        It is simply an inside joke that several people at Nintendo have done in videos. They stare at a fruit in hand when they first come on screen, then look at the camera and start their segment of the video.

        • bill

          Maybe its means they' re all fruitcakes over there

  • kkkk

    I hope they don't let the creators of the DS Zelda on the game…

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