Sunday, August 14, 2011

Trying To Save Nintendo

According to sources close to investors, they are pushing Nintendo to try and form a partnership with Apple in order to keep the company an active competitor in the gaming field.

Satoru Iwata has said no way. Fund manager Masamitsu Ohki has recommended that Nintendo peruse the smartphone gaming industry as a move forward for Nintendo. Ohki believes that either buying into the smartphone platform or creating their own would be a great way for Nintendo to get returns on their losses from the 3DS.

The article degenerates after the previous point. But what I wanted to bring up is my applause for Iwata for wanting to keep the Nintendo brand as an in-house product and not outsource it to multiple platforms. I'm not saying this is what they've always done, but it's a great way to get people to buy your stuff. You want to play a Super Mario game? Ok. You have to buy a Nintendo system because it won't be anywhere else. It's a model that has worked for them for quite a while and has built up a strong fan-base. The downside is that they are becoming like Linux and alienating newcomers. "I can get this game on 4 other platforms, so why should I spend more money to get this one game on this one system that I may not enjoy playing?"

Nintendo is having a reality check this year with the 3DS. I've ragged on it in the past, but after having a little time playing with it, it's a nifty system. Original price, not so good. New price, it's a considered purchased. Marketing system? Not so happy, but creative. Game launches? Pretty lame. Other then a few die-hard Nintendo fans, they didn't line this system up to be a big sales winner.

There is a definite need to make changes in order for Nintendo to be considered competitive again. But I don't believe that they have to move to smartphones to do it. Just some small changes to their pre-existing hardware could make a difference.

For example, online play with all of their systems. You "sort-of" have it with Mario Kart Wii and Mario Kart DS. Everything else for the Wii is whomever you can get into your living room. For the DS it's local online play only. Such a horrible idea. A lot of the games I play most of my friends with a DS do not play. The same applies to the Wii. Nintendo needs to drop this local online play or local living room play and make everything online. Worldwide. A great example of this would be the Wii Sports franchise. Can you imagine how much more fun it would be if you could play online with anyone around the world and chat with them? That would give me a reason to turn on my Wii system. Knowing that I could get a work-out while having fun in a friendly, competitive environment, with anyone in the world.

The biggest disappointment I've had with the Wii was the release of Goldeneye. No online play. Seriously? Why? Do you have any idea how many MORE copies you could have sold if the game were online? That was the one thing you couldn't do back in the 64 days. If they had put in that extra effort to make it an online game, it would have been a winner. In fact, I'd probably be playing it right now.

I understand that Nintendo's stance on the Wii system was to get families to play together. And they've done that. Now they need to get the world to play together if they want to continue having a strong foothold in the industry.


Post a Comment

Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment.

We ask that you please do not include any offensive, sexist, or derogatory language - otherwise your comment will be removed.