And this time, you can control your kart by tilting the Nintendo 3DS system. It has gyro controls .
Yes. First, Konno-san asked if we could use the gyro sensor20 for something. By chance, the programmer who had worked on the wheel controls for Mario Kart Wii joined the team about that time, so we decided to try to do controls using the gyro sensor.
For Mario Kart Wii, the accelerometer21 in the Wii Remote controller detects how fast you turn the wheel. 20 Gyro sensor: A measurement device. Its uses include calculating angle, rotation speed, and also controlling position. 21 Accelerometer: An electrical circuit element that can detect changes in speed. The accelerometer in the Wii Remote controller can detect the rate of acceleration in three dimensions.
According to the programmer, gyroscopic controls are more precise. A programmer who really loves cars worked on it, so he paid a lot of attention as he made adjustments.
That’s right. And while we were making adjustments, we put in the first camera from the driver’s perspective that has ever appeared in Mario Kart.
Come to think of it, it is the first time in the Mario Kart series that we have shown the game from the driver’s perspective.
At first, it was the usual view in which you can see everything, but we made it so that if you tilt the console, you turn the wheel. But it didn’t feel right, so we thought, “Well, how about changing the camera perspective?” Of course, the design team asked if it was really alright to do that.
Did they say, “That isn’t Mario Kart!”?
Yeah. (laughs) If you switch to the driver’s point of view, then you can’t see the character you’re playing. And suddenly the image of the wheel is up close. They said, “We didn’t make the image of the handle with that in mind!”
They modelled it without any idea it would be enlarged.
They said, “It’ll take some time to make a highly-detailed one. Is that alright?” By the way, in replay mode, you can change the camera, so you can use the normal camera when you race and then switch to the driver’s view just for the replay.
If you’re driving with it set to the driver’s viewpoint, is it hard to tell when you hit another kart?
No, it’s alright. But there was a problem of not knowing what happened when a shell hit you.
How did you solve that?
We decided to pull the camera back when you get hit. Then it switches right back to the driver’s viewpoint.
And when you go over a banana, you spin. When that happens from the driver’s point of view, you might get dizzy, so the camera pulls back and just the kart spins.
I see. I think the players will get along with it just fine, but whether you contrive it like that or not makes quite a difference. It’s important, but it’s the kind of thing that’s easy to overlook.
At first, we didn’t think twice about having the screen spin. But after one race, we got dizzy (laughs), so we adjusted it.
We didn’t plan on using the gyro sensor at first, but people who are accustomed to Mario Kart say it is new and refreshing. I really hope people will enjoy the new perspective.
Also, when you battle online, you can tell when your opponent is playing from the driver’s perspective - like how the wheel mark appeared for Mario Kart Wii - so please, check that out.
You’ve made something challenging and fun!
© 2021 Nintendo.