Shipping on the Nintendo Switch: Making Something Definitive
It’s here! It’s finally arrived. After tons of hard work, RWBY: Grimm Eclipse — Definitive Edition has been released to the public and we’re so proud of what we’ve accomplished.
This expanded version of RWBY: Grimm Eclipse launched on the Nintendo Switch on May 13, 2021, and is available right now for purchase in the Nintendo eShop. And there’s so much to celebrate and cheer above and beyond the game’s release.
The team here at FarBridge is so proud of this game project for a multitude of reasons.
Not only were we able to return to Remnant and keep expanding a game we’ve worked on before, we also got to partner with Rooster Teeth and Aspyr, two incredible companies also based here in Austin, TX. From planning through development to launch, we worked hand-in-hand with the Rooster Teeth and Aspyr teams to make an awesome Switch game every RWBY fan can love. It’s not often that a game can claim to be a completely Austin-run project, and this is an achievement we’re glad to mark off our bucket list. We look forward to many more to come!
This port to the Switch really let us stretch our legs on artistic, technical, and design levels. We’re incredibly excited to watch fans react to the RWBY girls’ brand new power suit armor. The FarBridge art team had the honor of pitching, designing, and modeling these all-new costumes with Rooster Teeth’s approval, and put a lot of effort into the little details to ensure they stayed true to the characters.
On the technical side of things, we’ve wanted to add couch co-op to the game for years. The Switch was the perfect opportunity to make it a reality. We did some early experiments, and after some R&D by our awesome engineers, we confirmed it as not just possible, but also really fun! Our team knocked it out of the park implementing this new feature.
Admittedly, it was a lofty goal to aim for, but our engineers and designers, in partnership with Aspyr’s QA team, were dedicated to turning an already amazing online multiplayer game into a local multiplayer experience.
As we researched couch co-op mode, this also opened the opportunity for us to design additional features. These additions include target lock-on and, if the situation ever turns bleak for our heroes during couch co-op, Player 2 can teleport to Player 1’s side at a moment’s notice. With the addition of these features, we put tons of effort and care into adapting the game’s controls and designing the UI for the Nintendo Switch’s many possible controller configurations — single Joy-Con, dual Joy-Cons, and Pro Controllers.
We are incredibly proud of the new local multiplayer mode and features, and we love seeing players’ reactions as they try them out for the first time.
But no matter how well we implemented local multiplayer, it wouldn’t matter if the game didn’t look good and run smoothly on the Nintendo Switch. We had to dig deep to optimize the game’s framerate, load times, and memory footprint to provide the best player experience possible on the Switch. This was no easy feat to achieve to say the very least, and we learned a ton not only about Nintendo’s tools, but also new deep dark corners of the Unity game engine.
As we worked closely with the Aspyr QA team to pinpoint issues — it seemed like every time we squashed one bug, there was a new one popping up in its place. At times, it felt a little hairy, but we took it one step at a time and, when we felt like we were hitting a brick wall, we leaned on each other. Our team members over-communicated, we asked questions, and we worked together to tackle the problems.
RWBY: Grimm Eclipse — Definitive Edition wouldn’t have launched if it were not for our amazing FarBridge team members. This past year has not been easy to say the very least, and working from home has had its own issues to overcome. However, the fact that we were able to ship our first Nintendo Switch game in the midst of a year of turmoil is a testament to FarBridge’s company beliefs, culture, goals, and dedication.
Throughout this project, we worked hard to ensure each team member had work-life balance, that their needs in life and health were being met, and also meeting our development deadlines in a timely manner. We care a great deal about our team, and we know they care deeply about making great games, and that shows through the quality of their work.
We are so stoked for the release of RWBY: Grimm Eclipse — Definitive Edition. A huge “thank you!” to our team, our partners, Rooster Teeth and Aspyr, and to everyone who supported us throughout this entire project! We couldn’t have done it without you!
Emma “Vox” Rausch is a producer at FarBridge, where she led the production of RWBY Grimm Eclipse — Definitive Edition. Emma has a passion for helping creatives be creative, researching, and Gantt charts. Emma received her MS in Game Design and Production from Indiana University, where she taught Introduction to Narrative Design and led the creation of The Astro Parcel Service.