WayForward Talks About Developing Making Mighty Switch Force! Hyper Drive Edition

By Spencer . November 30, 2012 . 5:52pm


WayForward joined the Wii U launch with Mighty Switch Force! Hyper Drive Edition, a HD remake of their Nintendo 3DS puzzle game. In this game, you play as Patricia Wagon who has to capture Space Hooligans that escaped custody. The screenshot shows Patricia with a Mega Buster-like pellet gun, but her greatest tool is the siren on her head which makes objects pop in and out of the background.


You can use this ability to make platforms appear and walls disappear. In later levels, you shoot Patricia from a purple rocket block and as she’s flying you have to catch her in another block. If you’re looking for a platform game with puzzle elements, Mighty Switch Force! is for you. On the Nintendo 3DS, Mighty Switch Force! uses 3D effects to highlight foreground objects. The Wii U version doesn’t have those, but has pretty 1080p graphics instead.


"Basically, we had to make new model sheets because the sprite characters are great, but you can’t use them as a model sheet for high resolution animation," Sara Pocock, Art Director at WayForward, explained to Siliconera. "What we did is took the old pixel art and used a combination of that and the interstitial illustrations that were scattered through the old game and used that as a base. The in-game models are like a chibi version of the illustrations. Once we drew those all of the new animation was based on that."


"It was more work than we thought," Voldi Way, "Tyrannical Overlord" of WayForward said. "We thought we would just redraw everything HD, but then again we added double the number of levels like the Hyper Drive bonus levels and that took that a long time."




Mighty Switch Force! Hyper Drive Edition has 21 stages which were from the 3DS version plus hard mode versions of all of them. "We did so much testing back and forth between me and the director, Austin, who were doing the new levels. We would constantly push each other to make this like this and meld our ideas altogether until we have a final product. Then we pass it to Voldi to try out," WayForward level designer Chris Schroder commented.


"If I can pass this, we can let it go through! I’m the low end tester," Way ribbed.


WayForward expanded the 3DS version of Mighty Switch Force! through a free update that added five bonus levels. I asked Way if they plan to release any more levels for Hyper Drive Edition either as an update or paid downloadable content.




"You know it’s hard to say just yet. I mean we don’t have any plans, I should say that. Then again, we didn’t have any plans to add new levels for the first one. If it does well and people like it then yeah we’ll keep adding stuff," Way replied.


"We can keep on adding levels if you guys want." Schroder chimed in.


While WayForward has original IPs like Shantae and the Mighty series, most of their revenue comes from being a developer. "We just take it one day at a time," Way said when I asked him if they were going to release more original WayForward games. "Because still, as of last year, 93% of our business was with other publishers like Adventure Time, Silent Hill or any of those."

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  • d19xx

    I wish Wayforward wouldn’t keep their original IPs exclusive to Nintendo’s platform. They’re one of my favorite develops this gen. Their games are more refined compared to most western developers. I wish them success.

    • I hope WayForward does keep their original IPs exclusive to Nintendo’s platforms. Nintendo needs all the help it can get from third parties.

      • d19xx

        Nintendo has all the biggest third party games in their side. From Dragon Quest to MH. Don’t forge to mention that their first party games are monster sellers as well. They have mountains of help already.

        • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

          There is never enough help lol.^_^ But, if you like their games, why don’t you get a 3DS? It has many good upcoming game and the machine is also not so expensive anymore.

          • Yohann Piga

            Many good upcoming games? Can you name a few? The good games seems to remain exclusive to Japan on 3ds….

        • That simply isn’t true. Look at any video game sales chart for the last five years and you will see that a great majority of third-party titles are on all the non-Nintendo platforms.

          • ringwaldhaze

            Sales don’t necessarily relate to quality. Though I’d also argue that if the only games you’re interested in are both JP and 3DS exclusive you likely aren’t particularly open-minded.

            edit: Scratch the first point. I thought Excel was replying to Yohann…

          • I was saying that Nintendo doesn’t have “mountains of help” as a large number of third-party games that make significant sales numbers are not on Nintendo platforms, especially in the downloadable market. This is starting to change on the 3DS, but it’s ultimately the set-top console market that will determine their success with their third-party policy long-term.

        • AuraGuyChris

          Where were you in the Wii era? Nintendo needed the third-party support so badly.

    • SirTeffy

      They ported Mighty Flip Champs to PSN, it, uh… it didn’t do well, let’s put it that way.

      • Elvick

        That’s because it was a Mini… if it were redone as a game that was actually made for the PS3, and not PSP at the lowest, it would have probably done better.

        I realize not everyone can do that, so no need to point that out. I’m just saying. Minis isn’t exactly the platform to go with on PSN.

  • psycho_bandaid

    I like pretty much everything this dev puts out including this interview. Candid stuff.

  • Zonic505

    It was also neat of them to add an additional bonus of having an alt. costume for Patricia once you beat the game (I think including the par times beaten as well, plus the 5 bonus stages). I asked about a reward for beating the par times for the hyper stages, & the director said “they ran out of time, but maybe in an update”.


    In any case, it’s neat to see the game hit another console with HD graphics & become a bigger hit with a wider audience. Hopefully, sales will continue to go well for them.

  • MrJechgo

    I really hope that WayForward keeps going in that direction, because they’re bringing back the 2d platformer and 2d beat-em-up back to life, two genres that got shunted in this generation of consoles. I consider these two genres to be the bulk of the Golden Age of video games.
    Ok, maybe that they won’t do 2D HD everytime, but I hope that they keep it 2D. They can technically take any IP available and turn it into a platformer or a beat-em-up.

  • I hope they do something like this with Shantae.

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