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Retro Studios

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Retro Studios
Retro Studios logo.png
Founded: 1998
Founder: N/A
President: N/A
Parent company / owner: Nintendo
Divisions / subsidiaries: N/A

Retro Studios, Inc. is a Nintendo first party game development studio based in Austin, Texas. Founded in 1998 as an alliance between Nintendo and Jeff Spangenberg, the studio was initially founded to produce games targeted for an older demographic for the Nintendo GameCube.

In 2002, Nintendo purchased $1 million in stock at Retro and reclassified them as a first-party developer. After the purchase, Spangenberg stepped down as president and was replaced by Steve Barcia. Later in 2003, Barcia was replaced with Michael Kelbaugh, who remains the current president of Retro.

The first games to be developed and released by Retro were the Metroid Prime trilogy of games. Afterward, they were placed in charge of the Donkey Kong Country series, rebooting it with the release of Donkey Kong Country Returns. Most of Retro's works have been co-produced with Nintendo SDP Group No. 3, which aids developers outside Japan.

Games produced[edit]

Game Year Console
Metroid Prime 2001 Nintendo GameCube
Metroid Prime 2: Echoes 2004 Nintendo GameCube
Metroid Prime 3: Corruption 2007 Wii
Metroid Prime: Trilogy 2009 Wii
Donkey Kong Country Returns 2010 Wii
Mario Kart 7* 2011 Nintendo 3DS
Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D** 2013 Nintendo 3DS
Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze** 2014 Wii U
Metroid Prime 4[1] N/A Nintendo Switch

* - Co-developed with Nintendo EAD.
** - Co-developed with Monster Games.


In a 2014 interview, Retro Studios president Michael Kelbaugh stated that the studio was working on a new game, in development since the completion of Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze.[2]

External links[edit]


  1. Development Update on Metroid Prime 4 for Nintendo Switch. Nintendo (YouTube; January 25, 2019). Retrieved January 25, 2019.
  2. Wii U is a 'Powerhouse,' Says Donkey Kong Country Developer. IGN (February 28, 2014). Retrieved January 24, 2016.

Nintendo logo.png

Internal divisions
Owned / Affiliated Seattle Mariners* • The Pokémon Company • Warpstar Inc.
* – Former / Defunct

8-4 • AlphaDream* • Ambrella* • Argonaut Games* • Arika • Artoon* • Arzest • AS Tokyo Studios • Bandai Namco • Capcom • Camelot • Cing* • Creatures Inc. • DeNA • DigitalScape • Eighting • Flagship* • Fuse Games* • Game Freak • Ganbarion • Genius Sonority • Good-Feel • Grezzo • HAL Laboratory • Hatena • Hudson Soft* • indieszero • iNiS • Intelligent Systems • Jamsworks • Jupiter • Koei Tecmo • Kuju • Left Field Productions* • Level-5 • Marigul Management* • Mistwalker • Monster Games • Noise • Paon • PlatinumGames • Q-Games • Rare* • Red Entertainment • Sega (Atlus) • Sora Ltd. • skip • Softnica • Square Enix • St.GIGA* • Syn Sophia • TOSE • Treasure • Vanpool • Vitei
* – Former / Defunct

Managers, etc. Internal
  • NNSD: Yusuke Beppu
  • Monolith Soft: Hirohide Sugiura, Tetsuya Takahashi
  • 1-Up Studio: Gen Kadoi
  • ND Cube: Hidetoshi Endo
  • Retro: Michael Kelbaugh
  • NERD: Alexandre Delattre