This time, you dedicated yourself to recreating several songs that Kondo-san had made over 10 years ago.
Yeah. But I also put in a song recorded with an orchestra. Only one, though.
As Nintendo’s head man in charge of orchestral music, you just couldn’t hold yourself back?
Yeah…you got me. (laughs) You’ll have to play the game to find out which song it is, though.
You have the job every game fan can dream of! (laughs)
Yeah, thankfully! (laughs) The orchestra sounds great on the Nintendo 3DS system, so I want people to hear it.
I was actually involved with the hardware design for the Nintendo 3DS system’s speakers and amps.
Oh, that’s right. Sound team members participated in figuring out how to achieve the best sound quality within the size constraints of the Nintendo 3DS system.
We listened to various sizes in figuring out how many centimetres the speakers should be.
A difference of one millimetre in the diameter of the speakers can make a dramatic difference in how they sound.
That’s right. And we also made adjustments so the orchestral music would sound good.
Oh, you did? You chose speakers and adjusted the amps with orchestral sound in mind?
And we put special programming into the Nintendo 3DS system to improve the quality of the surround sound.
So even though the speakers are fixed in the system, it feels like the sound is coming from around your ears.
Once you hear that expansiveness, you’ll feel like something is missing without it.
Yes. For example, there are lots of Cuccos at Lon Lon Ranch in Ocarina of Time 3D, and there’s a minigame called the Super Cucco Game in which you have to catch three Super Cuccos . When you play it with the surround sound, it sounds like the clucking is coming from all around you. The effect is outstanding.
So you recommend playing with the sound coming out through the speakers to enjoy the surround sound.
Yeah. If possible, I want people to play with the sound high.
But you don’t just rave about Ocarina of Time because of the sound, right?
Of course not!
Fans all over the world say that Ocarina of Time is special. I wonder why so many people love this game? As a representative of such fans, what do you say, Yokota-san?
Until Ocarina of Time came out, the Legend of Zelda series was always in 2D. When Nintendo announced that the next game was going to be 3D, I was sorely disappointed.
Until Ocarina of Time came out, you always looked at the game field from above.
Right. I thought, “Why would they do that to such an awesome game?” I was shocked that you were going to destroy my idea of what The Legend of Zelda was supposed to be like. But it wouldn’t have been right as a Nintendo fan if I complained without buying the game, so I thought, “All right, I’ll buy it.”
You decided to give it a shot.
Yeah. Besides, it was Shigeru Miyamoto-san’s latest creation in the Legend of Zelda series, so I thought, “Well, I should take a look at it,” as if I were one to judge! (laughs)
I bought it and played it and (looking happy) was pleased that I didn’t have to jump.
It has auto jump.
You jump without even pressing a button, and there was Z-targeting12. 12Z-targeting: When Link faced an enemy and the player pressed the Z button, a yellow target would appear, allowing you to swing your sword or attack with an item in that direction. Ocarina of Time 3D uses the L Button to target an enemy (L-targeting).
That’s right! (laughs)
I found out in Kokiri Forest on the very first stage that even though it was in 3D, you could play it like it was in 2D, and after that, I couldn’t complain. I realised that as a 3D game, it was more than I had imagined. My prejudice against 3D action games was wiped out in about the first five minutes. And you can’t ever stop playing this game! The more you play it, the more tasks it presents you with. They’re like personal challenges. And all the puzzles in the dungeons were so well-made. I wanted to go around telling people about them! I’d say, “I figured it out, but what about you?” as if I were the only one who’d solved them.
The sound it makes when you solve a puzzle in The Legend of Zelda really makes you feel smart!
Like, “Am I the only person in the whole world who figured this out?!” That can’t be true…but still. (laughs)
Yeah. (laughs) I played it through to the end. It has so much volume. I enjoyed going to various places and seeing the whole game world.
Ocarina of Time was the first game that made my legs get weak when I stood someplace high and looked down.
You feel a thrill when you look out from a high place. That’s something to pay attention to in the Nintendo 3DS version, too. You can climb a ladder in Kakariko Village. The view when you look out from there is superb!
Ocarina of Time has always had a lot of great landscapes. I imagine that’s also enjoyable in stereoscopy with the Nintendo 3DS version.
I think it is.
So, Yokota-san, this time you paid attention to how the sound aspects of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - the game that occupies a special place in the hearts of long-time players of the series - would change when remade with today’s technology.
It was thoroughly enjoyable.
It was work, though, so it was hard. For example, when I see a game someone else has made, sometimes I think, “Oh, I wish they would have handled the sound here a little differently.” Well, this time I could focus on such places and give them my all, so I’m very satisfied.
Kondo-san, from the point of view of someone who made the original game, how does it feel to hear Yokota-san talk so passionately about it?
Well, it’s harder than it seems to transport a game to a new platform. Unless you have the deep consideration for video games that Yokota-san does, you wouldn’t do so much fine-tuning.
In that respect, he was the perfect man for the job.
I think so.
Oh my… I’m glad I came today! (laughs)
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