Nintendo and Team Ninja’s previous work together had a lot to do with that.
Nintendo has made it a habit to solicit some surprising exclusives for their platform, from Bayonetta to Shin Megami Tensei. But the announcement of Marvel’s Ultimate Alliance 3 was probably among the biggest surprises of them all—the fact that a) the game exists at all, b) is coming to the Switch, and only to the Switch, c) that Marvel is working with Nintendo, and d) that Team Ninja is developing the game. How did something like that end up happening?
Speaking to IGN, Nintendo of America’s President Reggie Fils-Aime shed light on at least some of that. He pointed out that thanks to Nintendo’s familiarity with Team Ninja, the two companies were comfortable working together on this project.
“What happens in the world of development is you have companies who have positive experiences in working together, coupled with franchises being available, and the franchise owner wanting to do something with a particular franchise,” Fils-Aime told IGN. “And in this case, those three elements came together in order to create the opportunity for that game.”
“And we love that,” he added. “And we’re constantly looking for those types of opportunities. It’s the Team Ninja portion of Koei Tecmo that’s working on this. They’ve got a lot of skills, and it really helped paint a picture of what that game is going to be. We’re tremendously excited about it.”
Previously, Team Ninja and Nintendo have collaborated on Metroid: Other M, Fire Emblem Warriors, and Hyrule Warriors. While Metroid was almost a franchise killing title, Fire Emblem Warriors and Hyrule Warriors both turned out alright, and though Team Ninja wasn’t the lead developer on either of them, they were certainly involved with both projects. So hopefully Ultimate Alliance 3 turns out more like that and less like the former. At the very least, it would suck for Nintendo to end up with an exclusive Marvel game that’s a lemon after their competition got one that did so well.