When Mario Golf: Super Rush launched back in June, we found it to be a solid entry in the series, albeit one that lacked that little bit of pizazz and creativity needed to make it something truly worth your time. One new feature that did shake things up a bit, however, was Speed Golf – a mode that has you seamlessly running around each course from hole to hole in between shots.
In a recent interview with Japanese magazine Nintendo Dream, Camelot’s Hiroyuki Takahashi (producer) and Shugo Takahashi (director) explain that the new mode encouraged the team to create courses where all 18 holes are actually connected on the same map, rather than have loading screens that create the illusion that you’re still playing in the same area.
In translations shared by Nintendo Everything, we see that the team aimed to create a map as large as The Legend of Zelda’s Hyrule Field, and even had assistance from Nintendo’s Zelda: Breath of the Wild team to help work on that goal:
S. Takahashi: The courses are huge, too. We got technical support from Nintendo for this game.
H. Takahashi: The fields of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild were incredible, weren’t they? With the Speed Golf concept being a focus for this game, something we considered for a long time was putting all 18 holes on one course. (laughs)
In past games the screen had to be changed every hole, but the transitions between the holes in this game are much smoother.
S. Takahashi: I’ll admit I always wanted to do this, but technology at the time of each previous entry never allowed for it. Especially in the Mario Golf 64 era (laughs).
We only show it in a small part of the game, but we really wanted to make a game where you hit the ball anywhere on the vast courses. A game where if you hit the ball as far as the next hole, you’d have to go and hit it all the way back. A map the size of Hyrule Field was our goal, and the Zelda team at Nintendo shared ideas with us as to how we could get there.
H. Takahashi: Thanks to their help, Mario Golf was able to evolve. I think it’s specifically because of the maps that we were able to rework the shot system.
In a separately-posted translation covering the same Nintendo Dream interview, it has also been revealed that the team were originally considering the name ‘Mario Golf Aces’ for the title, following on from Mario Tennis Aces‘ success. It was eventually decided that Super Rush would be more fitting, however, in order to “highlight the spirit and speed of Speed Golf.”