Those of us who enjoyed last year's Donkey Kong Country Returns for the Nintendo Wii as developed by Nintendo and Retro Studios will have to make the experience last as long as possible because there are no immediate plans to crank out a sequel. As part of the discussion at this week's Game Developers Conference, Nintendo producer Kensuke Tanabe went on record about the company's current disinterest in producing a sequel. Game Informer has the news. Here's the relevant portion:
“I wasn’t even thinking about doing a sequel for Metroid Prime until Retro showed me the last scene in the game, which was near the end of development. I wouldn’t say we won’t do a sequel [for Donkey Kong Country Returns], but we don’t have anything planned at this time.”
Maybe that's for the best. As much as I loved Returns, I'm alright with Nintendo and Retro choosing to focus on other projects right now. My take on last year's title is that it is as if I was very hungry, ate a very satisfying meal, and am now full. I need time to digest what I experienced before I'm ready for a second helping. As for Retro, while it's very easy to wonder what the company could do with another dusty Nintendo franchise (Wario Land? F-Zero? Yoshi's Island?), I think the time has come for them to come up with an original creation. Metroid and Donkey Kong are solid franchises and have certainly helped Retro build up some clout, but let's see what happens when the talented team members over there is free to let their imaginations run wild. Surely they have a character or concept that's been waiting in the garage for just the right moment.