Nina Freeman has had quite a year. After joining Gone Home developer The Fullbright Company in 2015 as a level designer to work on their upcoming game Tacoma, she also released Cibele, her semi-autobiographical game about a girl who meets a young man in an online role-playing game. In January, Freeman was named as part of Forbes' annual 30 Under 30 in Games list.
We caught up with Freeman during this year's Game Developers Conference, where Cibele won the Independent Game Festival Nuovo Award, and asked her to create a Super Mario Maker stage for our Devs Make Mario series. The resulting stage is called "Mario & Boo's Mall Date," a level she says is partially inspired by a Mario Maker stage she discovered last year called "Mario Goes Shoe Shopping," which Freeman named in her personal Top 10 Games of 2015 list for Giant Bomb.
Above, watch Freeman walk us through her level design process, playtested by Cibele collaborator Emmett Butler, who Freeman says also helps playtest her Mario Maker stages at home. If you'd like to play "Mario & Boo's Mall Date" for yourself, the course ID is 45A8-0000-023B-9DB5, and you can add the level to your in-game bookmarks on Nintendo's Mario Maker bookmark site.
Have a game developer you'd like to see try their hand at Mario Maker? Let us know in the comments and they may appear in a future episode!