Sakurai: "Players don't know how hard we work"

Smash Bros. designer Masahiro Sakurai adds that the pain of the "life-changing struggle" of development goes away with time.

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Smash Bros. lead designer Masahiro Sakurai believes gamers don't fully understand how much time and effort is invested into a project like Nintendo's iconic fighting game series.

"The players don't know about how hard we work. That's not a problem because that's the case for any product, but it's important to remember that you can't take anything for granted," Sakurai said in his latest Famitsu post, translated by Nintendo Life.

His comments came as part of a columna regarding the development process for the Smash Bros. series, specifically the amount of work that goes into creating each game's roster. Sakurai has spoken of this challenge before, saying in June that choosing the roster is stressful "almost to the brink of death."

In his Famitsu post this week, Sakurai said much the same thing, but explained any pain he feels during development is eased over time.

"Projects take a while, and you run into difficult and painful times," Sakurai said. "Some people have to bow out of it. To be honest, I've sometimes thought about what I'm earning for myself, going through all this life-changing struggle. But the pain I feel at the time goes away over time, and yet the game itself always remains. Players talk about the fun and so forth behind the game for years to come, and they still play it."

Sakurai added that he is often asked by media if he feels pressure to deliver when creating a high-profile project like the new Smash Bros. game for Wii U and 3DS.

"Like I've written before, on a personal level, I don't feel anything like pressure. It's really fun work," Sakurai said. "Sometimes you have to resign yourself to the fact that things will work out the way they're meant to work out. But you need to funnel your regrets to the next project and work as hard as you can on that. The pain goes away, but your work always remains."

Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and Super Smash Bros. for 3DS are expected to launch in 2014. There will be no cross-platform play between the two.

Earlier this week, Nintendo confirmed Luigi as a playable character for the game. He joins previously announced characters Pikmin & Olimar, Villager, Mario, Donkey Kong, Mega Man, Wii Fit Trainer, Link, Samus, Kirby, Fox, Pikachu, Bowser, and Pit.

For more on the new Smash Bros. game, check out GameSpot's interview with Sakurai.

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