Mario & Luigi: Dream Team was in development for three years, according to the latest Iwata Asks. This was due in part to studio AlphaDream choosing to render the game characters in 2D pixel art.
According to Nintendo producer Akira Otani, the characters were then shaded in 3D, and the backgrounds created in 3D.
“We worked out special ways of drawing and using color to make them look three-dimensional,” he said. “The work load was tremendous, but thanks to that, it has the sort of smooth polish distinctive of AlphaDream.”
It took the team around a year and a half to build the Alpha version; another year to create the beta, and yet another year to create the gamma version.
AlphaDream also had to render animations for Mario and Luigi moving in 16 directions, and it wasn’t an option to “mirror the data for each movement,” according to Polygon due to the “L” on Luigi’s hat.
You can read more on its development through the link.
Mario & Luigi: Dream Team hits retail and the eShop July 12 in Europe and August 11 in North America.