Sometimes we get just a little more than beta footage or screenshots. Sometimes we even get information pertaining to a game’s alpha stage, or even pre-alpha and the whole swirl of conceptualization through art, music, storyboards and the like - and things like that are particularly interesting. You get to have a window into how a game was, to see if it’s still the same for better or worse, to hear of features that didn’t make the cut or ones that sprung up overnight and fit in so perfectly with the game that no one could ever possibly imagine to see the game without it. Well, we happen to have some excerpts from an interview from GamaSutra with Dreamrift Studios, the spritemasters who are working on Epic Mickey: The Power of Illusion, and in it they talk about how the idea to make an Epic Mickey game for the 3DS truly came to fruition.
See, after they had finished they work with the Nintendo DS game Monster Tale(a gorgeous DS game in its own right), the co-founder of Dreamrift Peter Ong and his Technical Director Ryan Pijai started to draft ideas about a video game where you could draw things into the bottom screen and make them appear on the top screen, like a more artistic interpretation of Scribblenauts. Finding the base idea good enough, they began to ‘shop’ the concept itself around to various publishers, one of which happened to be Disney Interactive. They got in contact with Dreamrift and revealed that they had been planning to make an Epic Mickey game on the Nintendo 3DS, and what do you know - that little concept idea of theirs as far as Disney saw it would work perfectly for the Paint/Thinner system of an Epic Mickey game.
Subsequent work with Warren Spector ended up pegging the game fully as the spiritual successor to Castle of Illusion, with just a little more than an homage - even some enemies and the antagonist herself are returning from that game! “Being huge fans ourselves of Castle of Illusion, we hope that everyone who plays our 3DS game will find some measure of what made us love the original game so much,” Peter Ong says, truly hoping that anyone who sees or plays Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion will find an enjoyable experience or pull back good memories of the old Genesis game to the forefront of their thoughts.