In addition to making the music on Hyrule Field interactive, what was difficult in recreating the music for The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D for the Nintendo 3DS system?
In the first place, it was really difficult recreating the sound of a home console like the Nintendo 64 system on a handheld like the Nintendo 3DS system.
Different hardware doesn’t make the same sounds.
Right. I have remade other games, but I was surprised how difficult it was this time.
How so exactly?
Like recreating distinctive sounds.
Take, for example, the song for the Forest Temple . You can hear this odd sound like “hooit-hooit-hooit-hooit”…
I wanted to recreate that distinctive sound as closely as possible, but it just wouldn’t sound the same as on the Nintendo 64 system. But I retuned it over and over for the Nintendo 3DS system’s speakers, and in the end it turned out close to how I imagined it.
Yeah. You recreated that song with a great deal of precision. The sound quality may be a little better, though.
Yeah. I upped the quality a bit.
It gets the Kondo seal of approval? (laughs)
Phew! (laughs) He did put in some requests, though. When I made the title background music , he wanted me to make some adjustments.
The title background music plays during the very first images when Link is trotting around Hyrule Field on Epona, right?
Yeah. It’s a really mellow song featuring an ocarina melody and piano accompaniment. Kondo-san said the volume of the ocarina was too high. I thought I had followed the original, so I thought, “Huh? How’s it any different?” I had him listen to it over and over, and he said, “Ah, there’s no reverb.”
Oh, that’s right.
Reverb is that echo-like effect you get in a concert hall. There wasn’t any of that in the song for Ocarina of Time 3D, so the ocarina really stood out.
You could hear the ocarina too clearly.
I had the idea of the sound coming from far away. I wanted to create the atmosphere in the title BGM of someone you can’t see in the forest playing an ocarina. When I heard the music Yokota-san had made, he had faithfully recreated the length of the notes, but it didn’t sound like it was coming from somewhere off in the distance.
That’s right. I almost gave up. There was a fear that putting reverb into the Nintendo 3DS music would make the game too heavy and it wouldn’t run right.
Is adding reverb really that heavy?
Yes. But Kondo-san had told me to faithfully recreate the sound of the Nintendo 64 system, so I somehow managed to make it sound like it was coming from inside a forest. And, like we discussed earlier, we made the music on Hyrule Field interactive, so we ended up assigning a lot more of the CPU to sound than we usually would.
In other words, you used more of the CPU for sound than in any other Nintendo 3DS game.
That’s right. It’s probably heavier in sound than any other game. I think we’ve pushed the capacity of the Nintendo 3DS system as much to the limit as is possible today - we are using lots of power. When it comes to the music on Hyrule Field, the music shifts seamlessly depending on the scene. And I think we were able to make the title BGM sound as if an ocarina is coming from inside the forest.
I think so, too.
Also, I think it’s really important in faithfully recreating the sound of the Nintendo 64 version to generate the same sense of tempo as with the Nintendo 64 ROM cartridge. For example, when collecting the Gold Skulltulas .
You have to collect 100 spiders hidden within the world.
Right. When you find a Gold Skulltula hidden in a dark spot and defeat it, a token appears that you can pull to you with the Hookshot. The flow of the sound when you pull it in is really satisfying. The tempo as it goes “shwi-wi-wi-whip” and then ends with a fanfare is great!
But if we didn’t adjust it just right, the tempo would break up.
Exactly. The play speed would be out of sync. And the frame rates of the Nintendo 64 and Nintendo 3DS systems - the number of times the image is refreshed over the course of one second - are different.
For the Nintendo 64 system, the frame rate was about 20, while it’s 30 for the Nintendo 3DS system.
Yes. That throws off the timing of sound effects and other sounds. When the frame rates are different, how you handle the sound is different, so we adjusted each one until they were just right.
So it will feel just right even to people who played the Nintendo 64 version.
I think so. With regard to that, something really memorable happened. Early in the year, I went to Nintendo World 201111. 11Nintendo World 2011: An event held at Makuhari Messe in Japan for three days starting January 8, 2011. Presentations of Nintendo 3DS software and live performances were held on stage.
You performed on stage.
Yeah! I played music from The Legend of Zelda on the piano. We exhibited Ocarina of Time 3D in the hall, and later I got to see the responses from those who had tried it out. Someone said they were happy that the music was the same as in the Nintendo 64 version!
The fans must have been happy that the sound in the Nintendo 3DS version hadn’t changed from the Nintendo 64 version. It calls up memories of playing it back in the day.
Yes. Reading that comment encouraged me. With the technology for transplanting games today, like emulation, many people think it’s only a matter of course that games turn out the same.
But this time, you put your nose to the grindstone making adjustments in order to recreate the Nintendo 64 original for the Nintendo 3DS version.
Yes. So when I read that comment about how the music was the same, I felt like my hard work had paid off. I was also glad I hadn’t done anything dumb like arrange new songs!
So the upending of the tea table was a good thing? (laughs)
I have to say it was! (laughs)
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