• Register
  • TOS
  • Privacy
  • @NeoGAF

Tathanen
Get Inside Her!
(06-19-2013, 03:35 AM)
Tathanen's Avatar
Please read the OP if you'd like to post. I know it's super-long, but I really don't want this to devolve into a series of drive by quips.

So over the last few weeks, but realistically over the last decade (or two), people have been making a lot of comments in the vein of "why doesn't Nintendo do This and That so they can properly compete?" Genuine confusion begets scores of frustrated gamers who are privy to seemingly obvious solutions for Nintendo's problems, and yet Nintendo shows no signs of nor interest in implementing them. So what's the deal? Are they as out of touch as they seem? Just a stoic and immovable relic that refuses to adapt to the modern world? I hardly think they're running a flawless business by any definition, but I think there is a lot to discuss about how they actually choose to run their company, and why. So let's discuss it!

Differentiation

Originally Posted by Iwata

We just don't care too much about what other companies are doing or are trying to do. Our primary focus is to think about and actually carry out something which other company's hardware can never realize. We are trying to provide consumers gaming experiences that can only be available on Nintendo platforms.

Originally Posted by Iwata

I think the essence of the entertainment business is that you cannot expect big results if you do the same things as your competitors or follow what they have already done.

http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/13/tech/g...html?hpt=te_t1

http://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/en/libr...0612qa/02.html

Virtually everything that Nintendo does, and everything people give them shit for, can be boiled down to these quotes. I recently said that Nintendo "doesn't try to compete" with Sony or Microsoft, but that's not really accurate. They are certainly aware of what they do, at at least a high level, but their method of competition is to ignore them. History has proven that the market cannot reasonably support three platforms. The Wii's "blue ocean" approach was based in this very concept, that matching their competitors blow for blow provided far less opportunity than changing the game and targeting a different type of consumer entirely. And so, the Wii thrived. Motion control and casual games are old-hat now, though, and the blue ocean is red. So the Wii U is an attempt to adapt yet again, approaching the market with ideas like asymmetric gameplay, off-screen play, and Miiverse.

Nintendo will traditionally identify a need, and then come up with an approach to meet that need from scratch. Sometimes this yields some very interesting ideas, like Miiverse and StreetPass. Sometimes it yields some shitty ones, like friend codes and system-tied game purchases. It's rare that they'll just take an industry-proven approach and slap it into their offerings as-is. We get a lot of "Nintendo-esque" experiences this way, where everything is just a little game-ey in cute and fun ways. But at the same time, many of them are lacking in feature-completeness or user expectation. That's the Nintendo way, though. Experiences that may not be what we expect them to be, but that exist to serve needs we didn't know we had.

This isn't just some golden ticket to success, as the Wii U has made perfectly clear. If you bank on a new idea that doesn't end up being embraced by the marketplace, or if you can't properly convey the value or differentiation of your product even if it's there, you're going to flounder. Nintendo has certainly made some missteps here, but their hand is still steady. The plan is to just get some friggin games out already, and attempt to better convey that value.

This is where a lot of arguments crop up, with suggestions that are patently un-Nintendo. "Sell a version without the GamePad." "Give up, relaunch with a more powerful machine." "Go multiplatform and/or make mobile games." Let's look at each of those in turn.

No GamePad: Nintendo's business philosophy is built on differentiation. Without the GamePad, the Wii U loses almost the only thing that defines it as a platform. Without it, it's a mid-generation console that can't quite match its competitors in any technical way. Surely there are other things that differentiate Nintendo's hardware by virtue of it being Nintendo's hardware, which I'll touch on in a bit, but the GamePad IS the Wii U. It's true that they haven't properly communicated to the masses what the value of the GamePad is, via either marketing or actual games, but that's their challenge now. I think it's a bit premature to paint this issue as insurmountable.

Relaunch with more power: I'll go ahead and skip over the "relaunch" part, since it should be clear to anyone how much the Nintendo brand and consumer trust would be damaged by abandoning a platform this early on. But as for the Wii U's power:

Originally Posted by Miyamoto

From my perspective, with regard to the more powerful hardware systems, to me what still remains incredibly important is the developers maintaining a focus on creating unique games because if all that everyone does is uses the enhanced power to create more and more games that look and feel the same, then all that it becomes is a competition about the power of the hardware rather than the uniqueness of the experience. That, to me, is where developers should be devoting their effort.

http://techland.time.com/2013/06/18/...d=tl-main-lead

Now obviously there are gameplay uses for more power, and Miyamoto's quote here vastly simplifies the whole issue, but it speaks to Nintendo's focus, and part of why they make the decisions they do. System price is a huge factor here as well, and a big part of Nintendo's differentiation strategy is based in using money to focus on other aspects of the hardware. Higher specs would imply either a higher price, or the removal of the GamePad, which contributes significantly to the system cost already. And each of those are huge factors in how the Wii U differentiates.

It's true that the system's power may be negatively affecting the amount of third-party support it receives, but third-party support is another topic entirely, that I'll get to later.

Third party and/or mobile: Nintendo's greatest commodity, and perhaps their greatest differentiator, is their stable of franchises. All manner of hardware innovations can be copied, but you can't get Nintendo franchises anywhere else. If Nintendo wants to survive as a hardware business (let's just accept that this is a good idea for now, as the damage to their freedom, structure, and staff if they went software-only should be clear), they need their franchises there, and only there. This argument isn't even really for GAF, we're all pretty much on the same page here. Even hardware that people find virtually no value in (like many think of the Wii U) remains tempting due to being the only home for these franchises.

The franchise argument that is for GAF is that Nintendo pushes these franchises as hard as they do, going so far as to wrap them around new game structures in lieu of new IPs, is that they are their number one differentiator. Imagine a Nintendo without these franchises. Even if they continued to make amazing games, would they see even a fracture of their current success? Surely they can be overused or get stale, this is a problem that arises when the value of your business is so tied to these identifiable characters. I won't argue that there isn't room for new IP nor that the existing ones aren't maybe being overused, but we can probably see WHY they push them as hard as they do, yeah?

Third parties

Originally Posted by Iwata

We will release a succession of Nintendo titles from the latter half of this year to enable the Wii U platform to regain sales momentum. This momentum will create business opportunities for software developers, so I think that the support from them will change in due course.

...

If software developers decide not to support a platform when, in fact, it has momentum and other software developers have experienced good results, people will definitely question their decision.

Nintendo doesn't approach third parties the same way as Sony or Microsoft. While their competitors basically build their machines for third parties, sometimes in great ways (more RAM more RAM more RAM), sometimes in awful ways (everything about Xbox One), Nintendo builds their machine almost entirely for themselves, and to facilitate the kind of games they want to make.

It's easy to say that Nintendo just "doesn't care" about third parties, but it's certainly not the case. Huge Japanese series like Monster Hunter and Dragon Quest are largely Nintendo-exclusive at this point, and Nintendo publishes a vast array of titles that are developed in collaboration with third parties, be it smaller ones (Genius Sonority, Good Feel, Grezzo) or larger ones (SEGA, Platinum Games). It's definitely a unique approach, though. If Nintendo has a specific project in mind they'll do a collaboration, but their more general stance is "sell it and they will come." If they can move enough hardware, the system should attract game-makers. It's why Monster Hunter and Dragon Quest are there, and it's why the poorly-selling Wii U is getting such poor support.

The Wii U's hardware strength is surely a huge factor in its lacking third-party presence, though. With Frostbite 3 simply not being compatible with the hardware, a vast array of EA games will just never show up. There are plenty of examples of high-spec engines not properly scaling to Nintendo's hardware. But to a point, Nintendo just.. isn't particularly interested in this issue. If they had made a higher-spec machine, they would have had to sacrifice either on price or differentiation (the GamePad), which puts them squarely in direct-competition mode, which is a battle they simply cannot win. This software differentiation, though, is why so many people say things like "I'm going PS4U this generation." The Wii U is almost a given, a companion console, since its offerings are so distinct.

Even if the hardware power was there, though, third-parties have a long list of reasons to not develop for Nintendo machines. Surely many of these are defeated when a platform has an enormous userbase (like the Wii did), but when the system is struggling, they become much more compelling. The Wii and the Wii U each have the same issue, "we have to make the game different there." It seems like a no-brainer to port the various current-gen games that are still releasing to the Wii U, but the fact is that proper support of the Wii U GamePad, and thus the ability to actually offer a version of a game that slots into Nintendo's primary differentiator and reason to sell, requires additional work. Not just programmers, but game designers, information designers, artists, etc. Some studios have the bandwidth to manage it, others don't. But another common third-party complaint, "third-party games don't sell on Nintendo hardware," is true enough that the effort isn't usually made to even look into it.

I guess what I'm suggesting here is just that we shouldn't really expect much to change here, unless the Wii U starts to sell so much that certain third-parties can't affort to ignore it. But Nintendo's probably okay with it, as their modus operandi simply doesn't involve actively courting third-party multiplatform games, due to their emphasis on differentiating with their exclusive software (be it first-party or third-party collaborations). It's probably time that we all come to terms with this, rather than feeling disappointed every time it happens.

Finances and focus

Originally Posted by Miyamoto

Because of the waves in the entertainment industry and the way the cycles move, personally I feel that aiming for a specific numerical goal is almost silly, and instead our focus should be on doing our best to create something that's new and unique.

So all of this talk of "Oh is Nintendo going to hit its numbers? Is Mr. Iwata responsible?" and all these discussions I think are just silly ones to have because Mr. Iwata is managing our company and I don't think there's anyone better to manage it than him.

Originally Posted by Iwata

We're competing with each other in terms of who's creating the most fun games. Unfortunately, however, as I saw the reports dispatched from E3 this year, they're pretty much occupied by talk about which machine is more friendly to used games, or which machine is $100 cheaper than the other. I’m sorry that we're missing the most important discussion – about video games.

http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...nings-is-silly

http://ca.ign.com/articles/2013/06/1...ople-wont-sell

Nintendo likes to act like a privately-held company, despite certainly not being one. Shareholders are probably pretty frustrated by it, but it's yet another part of their DNA. Their focus is on making games they think people will like, and they get frustrated when people place the focus on other things.

Originally Posted by Iwata

It is up to consumers to ultimately make judgments about our entertainment business. Therefore, before we launch new products, it is difficult to accurately predict which ones will do well or how long it will take until they spread explosively. We work hard to lower the impact that this unpredictability has on our business by launching various titles throughout the year. Nonetheless, it is still possible that we will experience times when, for example, the demand for a hardware system is significantly lower than the number of units manufactured, or we have to make a substantial investment in marketing. In such an unstable business environment, I think that we are only able to take risks because we have a strong cash position.

I think the essence of the entertainment business is that you cannot expect big results if you do the same things as your competitors or follow what they have already done. Therefore, I think that the significance of holding a strong cash position is to enable us to take risks and achieve good results.

http://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/en/libr...0612qa/02.html

Nintendo maintains their cash so they can operate the way that they do--trying new things, differentiating in a risky fashion. Certainly I'm not going to defend the Wii U's current performance, there were enough missteps there to be worth chastising. But when I see so many people call for Iwata's head, I have to wonder what they think a different CEO would be able to change. Iwata is to me probably the most rational and well-spoken industry figure I'm aware of, and the problems facing Nintendo I think are endemic to Nintendo as a company, due to the way they've functioned for ages, and not so much tied to one man. When we have a system launch with very little software and stay that way for months it's obviously a huge problem, but Nintendo has basically been working on GameCube-level hardware for over a dozen years, and training their teams to be able to function and quickly produce on significantly different and more powerful hardware, literally their first-ever foray into the HD era, is a transition that is going to be a mess no matter who's in charge. Probably more difficult now, after their long years of optimizing for and getting used to lower-powered hardware, than it would have been had they made the attempt back in 2006.

But to return to the point, they have a very tight public focus, and it's always on games. With their system launches, their demos, they always say the same thing: "you have to play it to understand." They've been saying this for years. They don't like armchair analysts, they don't like conclusions based only on media impression (and have actively taken control of their public image via Nintendo Direct and Iwata Asks), and want gamers to come to their own conclusions. They destroyed their official forums, and created Miiverse, a place that exists exclusively to talk about games that people are playing. Their executives have a public presence like no others in the industry, appearing in Luigi hats, posing around franchise paraphernalia, and acting like total goofballs in Nintendo Directs. Nintendo is the chocolate factory, and they're all Willy Wonka.

So what?

It's idyllic and silly to think people will only talk about Nintendo's games and never their financials, but the goal here is just to try and understand Nintendo, and why they do the things they do. I see so many posts and threads where people say "what is WRONG with Nintendo" and suggest this or that "obvious" thing that they should be doing, and express frustration and bafflement at their every move. I really don't think it's that mysterious, though. I'm absolutely not suggesting that Nintendo shouldn't be critiqued, or held responsible for many of their actually-boneheaded moves, but I think they need to be approached from the correct context. They are not trying to be Sony or Microsoft, and every thread that talks about how another third party game isn't getting a Wii U port shouldn't be met with the kind of shock and "way to fucking go Nintendo" sentiment that it gets. I don't think ANYONE should be shocked by these things. Their message has been remarkably consistent for years, via all of their PR mouthpieces, and while it's perfectly fine to not like it, it's disingenuous to be surprised by it after all this time. And that's all I'm trying to do here: paint a picture of Nintendo as they are, so if you're gonna be disappointed, it's about and for the right things. The "why" to go with Nintendo's "what" is never the mystery that it seems.
Last edited by Tathanen; 06-19-2013 at 06:43 AM.
MoeB
so vintage
such math
power levl=1080
(06-19-2013, 03:36 AM)
MoeB's Avatar
Nintendo needs to shift their focus to the handheld market.
That's the only thing they've been successful with in the last decade. I'm talking about successes that weren't rooted in blind luck (see Nintendo Wii, Wii Fit).
/thread
Last edited by MoeB; 06-19-2013 at 03:40 AM.
StreetsAhead
Member
(06-19-2013, 03:42 AM)
StreetsAhead's Avatar
Nice post, OP.

Originally Posted by MoeB

Nintendo needs to shift their focus to the handheld market.
That's the only thing they've been successful with in the last decade. I'm talking about successes that weren't rooted in blind luck (see Nintendo Wii, Wii Fit).
/thread

Why is Wii Fit the result of blind luck but Nintendogs & Brain Training not?
Snowden's Secret
Banned
(06-19-2013, 03:43 AM)
Re: third parties

Nintendo places a really high value on having games on their platforms that you can't have elsewhere. This explains away a lot of the less obvious things they do:

-DS instead of a Gameboy successor
-Wii instead of traditional console
-Glassesless 3D
-Gamepad
-Staunchly refusing to release even a single NES game on mobile
-100% funding certain 3rd party exclusives but not throwing money at "necessary" multiplats

Nintendo is likely less concerned about whether they are getting CoD Ghosts than they are about losing Rayman Legends, for example.
Htown
STOP SHITTING ON MY MOTHER'S HEADSTONE
(06-19-2013, 03:49 AM)
Htown's Avatar

Originally Posted by MoeB

Nintendo needs to shift their focus to the handheld market.
That's the only thing they've been successful with in the last decade. I'm talking about successes that weren't rooted in blind luck (see Nintendo Wii, Wii Fit).
/thread

1. Don't /thread your own posts. Makes you look dumb.

2. "If you ignore their successes, they weren't successful." Good argument.

3. "Blind luck" doesn't sell you upwards of 90 million consoles. You might have a point if people only bought Wii Sports or something, but there are multiple Wii games that sold upwards of 20 million units.

Attributing Nintendo's success to "luck" only means that you lack the imagination to wrap your head around why some people might like things you aren't interested in.
Currygan
Banned
(06-19-2013, 03:50 AM)
excellent analysis, OP, and completely true. The Nintendo Difference means that, among other things
MoeB
so vintage
such math
power levl=1080
(06-19-2013, 03:50 AM)
MoeB's Avatar

Originally Posted by StreetsAhead

Nice post, OP.



Why is Wii Fit the result of blind luck but Nintendogs & Brain Training not?

1) It's not a game
2) I don't think they had any idea it would be the #1 selling game/sku.
bomblord
Banned
(06-19-2013, 03:52 AM)
Op you hit the nail on the head I really don't have much to say other than congratulations on your rational and very well thought out analysis.
Snowden's Secret
Banned
(06-19-2013, 03:53 AM)

Originally Posted by MoeB

1) It's not a game
2) I don't think they had any idea it would be the #1 selling game/sku.

What makes Wii Fit not a game, but does The Walking Dead?
Mario
Sidhe / PikPok
(06-19-2013, 03:53 AM)
Mario's Avatar

Originally Posted by Tathanen

Third party and/or mobile: ... (let's just accept that this is a good idea for now, as the damage to their freedom, structure, and staff if they went software-only should be clear) ...

Just responding to this point, I don't agree that a move away from hardware would be necessarily damaging as you suggest.

Letting lose the burden of supporting hardware and gaining the access and freedom to explore other platforms could be both creatively and financially liberating.
MoeB
so vintage
such math
power levl=1080
(06-19-2013, 03:54 AM)
MoeB's Avatar

Originally Posted by Snowden's Secret

What makes Wii Fit not a game, but does The Walking Dead?

Wii Fit is a glorified FITBIT. The Walking Dead is an adventure game.
Snowden's Secret
Banned
(06-19-2013, 03:55 AM)

Originally Posted by MoeB

Wii Fit is a glorified FITBIT.

Not sure what that is, but sure, I'll take your word for it. But why isn't it a game?
Tathanen
Get Inside Her!
(06-19-2013, 03:56 AM)
Tathanen's Avatar

Originally Posted by StreetsAhead

Nice post, OP.

Originally Posted by Currygan

excellent analysis, OP, and completely true. The Nintendo Difference means that, among other things

Originally Posted by bomblord

Op you hit the nail on the head I really don't have much to say other than congratulations on your rational and very well thought out analysis.

Thanks!

Originally Posted by Snowden's Secret

Re: third parties

Nintendo places a really high value on having games on their platforms that you can't have elsewhere. This explains away a lot of the less obvious things they do:

-DS instead of a Gameboy successor
-Wii instead of traditional console
-Glassesless 3D
-Gamepad
-Staunchly refusing to release even a single NES game on mobile
-100% funding certain 3rd party exclusives but not throwing money at "necessary" multiplats

Nintendo is likely less concerned about whether they are getting CoD Ghosts than they are about losing Rayman Legends, for example.

Yep, absolutely. I think it's a salient point that there's a big difference between "third-party support" and "exclusive third party support." Multiplatform games are probably the least relevant thing in the world for Nintendo, as they are the very embodiment of direct competition. Some they may feel obligated to get from time to time, but it's really all about the exclusives, games built around Nintendo's unique systems, that can stand alongside their own franchises as "experiences you can only get with Nintendo." Ports of games on other systems (especially games that came out years ago) don't sell as well because, well.. why would they?

Originally Posted by Mario

Just responding to this point, I don't agree that a move away from hardware would be necessarily damaging as you suggest.

Letting lose the burden of supporting hardware and gaining the access and freedom to explore other platforms could be both creatively and financially liberating.

There may be a degree of that, sure. Though I'd really be worried about the culture shock. Literally no-one in a position of power at Nintendo has ever developed for a system that wasn't developed in-house. And there are probably a ton of hardware and R&D guys at Nintendo that would certainly end up losing their jobs during the transition.
bomblord
Banned
(06-19-2013, 03:56 AM)

Originally Posted by Mario

Just responding to this point, I don't agree that a move away from hardware would be necessarily damaging as you suggest.

Letting lose the burden of supporting hardware and gaining the access and freedom to explore other platforms could be both creatively and financially liberating.

Creatively it restricts their vision as the OP said Nintendo platforms are made for Nintendo. Other platforms are not.

Financially they lose money there is no way they cannot lose money by going third party. Games go from 100% profit per sold to whatever the main console decides is the cut they get. They lost money on dev kits sold as well as having to supply all their studios with dev kits for other platforms. They lose the cut they get from third party software. etc etc
vareon
Member
(06-19-2013, 03:56 AM)
vareon's Avatar

Originally Posted by MoeB

1) It's not a game
2) I don't think they had any idea it would be the #1 selling game/sku.

You think Nintendo invested in the Balance Board, an $80 peripheral that is hardly used in any other game, hoping for a blind luck? Wii Fit is a calculated success. They do have luck about that, but it's not "blind luck".
StreetsAhead
Member
(06-19-2013, 03:57 AM)
StreetsAhead's Avatar
Another thing with Nintendo going third party is that they would become more conservative with the franchises used in their software releases and not less. They would probably focus down on Pokemon, Mario, Mario Kart, Zelda, Smash Bros. & Mario Party games.

Originally Posted by MoeB

1) It's not a game
2) I don't think they had any idea it would be the #1 selling game/sku.

1) You don't get to decide what constitutes a "game". I've seen it argued that Nintendogs or Brain Training are not "games" either.
2) I don't think they expected that with Nintendogs or Brain Training either.

I'll repeat, why is Wii Fit dumb luck, while Nintendogs and Brain Training (which were the DS's Wii Fit, in some ways) were not?
MoeB
so vintage
such math
power levl=1080
(06-19-2013, 03:57 AM)
MoeB's Avatar

Originally Posted by Snowden's Secret

Not sure what that is, but sure, I'll take your word for it. But why isn't it a game?

Because it's an exercise simulation program.
Interceptor
Member
(06-19-2013, 03:58 AM)
Interceptor's Avatar
Nice Thread. You all should watch Iwatas 2001 E3 speach. It's all there.
jres80
Member
(06-19-2013, 03:58 AM)
jres80's Avatar
1. Make great games
2. Make hardware that fits their development process

Under Iwata their 3rd party outreach efforts have increased manyfold. He's a smart guy and I'm sure he'll continue to refine his approaches and the company's overall tech strategy.
HoJu
Member
(06-19-2013, 03:59 AM)
HoJu's Avatar

Originally Posted by MoeB

1) It's not a game
2) I don't think they had any idea it would be the #1 selling game/sku.

so is a real success one where you can predict that you will be number one?
didn't people laugh at the DS when it was first announced and released?
BlackJace
Member
(06-19-2013, 03:59 AM)
BlackJace's Avatar

Originally Posted by MoeB

Because it's an exercise simulation program.

And Team Fortress 2 is a murder-based hat simulator.

It's still a damned good game.
Shaanyboi
Member
(06-19-2013, 03:59 AM)
Shaanyboi's Avatar
One helluva post, OP
MoeB
so vintage
such math
power levl=1080
(06-19-2013, 04:00 AM)
MoeB's Avatar

Originally Posted by StreetsAhead

Another thing with Nintendo going third party is that they would become more conservative with the franchises used in their software releases and not less. They would probably focus down on Pokemon, Mario, Mario Kart, Zelda, Smash Bros. & Mario Party games.



1) You don't get to decide what constitutes a "game". I've seen it argued that Nintendogs or Brain Training are not "games" either.
2) I don't think they expected that with Nintendogs or Brain Training either.

I'll repeat, why is Wii Fit dumb luck, while Nintendogs and Brain Training (which were the DS's Wii Fit, in some ways) were not?

It's my opinion. You're free to disagree. I appreciate your enthusiasm, however.
Oersted
Junior Member
(06-19-2013, 04:01 AM)
Oersted's Avatar
OP, like you pointed out, Nintendo tries to different because they have to and they can. The bi problem for them are the traditional publishers. They are used to appeal to a certain demographic which isnīt really on Nintendo consoles anymore.
TreIII
Member
(06-19-2013, 04:02 AM)
TreIII's Avatar

Originally Posted by Tathanen

Nintendo likes to act like a privately-held company, despite certainly not being one. Shareholders are probably pretty frustrated by it, but it's yet another part of their DNA. Their focus is on making games they think people will like, and they get frustrated when people place the focus on other things.

And this is honestly one of the parts that I hope Nintendo never changes about themselves. Because if they ever start "caving" into the demands of shareholders, they'll likely start doing such things like devaluing their retro catalog in a similar manner that Sega has done.

Some iteration of Sonic the Hedgehog 1 is available on practically every modern platform known to man. The amount of places you can (legally) get Super Mario Bros. is still entirely localized to Nintendo hardware. That says something.
Htown
STOP SHITTING ON MY MOTHER'S HEADSTONE
(06-19-2013, 04:02 AM)
Htown's Avatar

Originally Posted by MoeB

1) It's not a game
2) I don't think they had any idea it would be the #1 selling game/sku.

1. Sure it is.

2. It wasn't. the best-selling non-bundled game was Mario Kart at 34 million copies.
Pyrokai
Member
(06-19-2013, 04:03 AM)
Pyrokai's Avatar
The places this thread will go.

Wouldn't it be nice if the industry were large enough for a platform like Wii U to exist and people not be completely confounded in it? One can dream. Growing the market is one of Nintendo's key strategies. Wish every company could do this by differentiating themselves from the competition. Outside of Nintendo, everything is "me too" in my eyes.
MoeB
so vintage
such math
power levl=1080
(06-19-2013, 04:03 AM)
MoeB's Avatar

Originally Posted by HoJu

so is a real success one where you can predict that you will be number one?
didn't people laugh at the DS when it was first announced and released?

I bought a DS on day 1. Then its hinge broke. I went ahead and bought another one and had it till this christmas but then I lent it to my friend Wiseguy. Loved it. Best Nintendo platform imo.

Originally Posted by BlackJace

And Team Fortress 2 is a murder-based hat simulator.

It's still a damned good game.

I didn't say Wii Fit is a bad experience :)
Mario
Sidhe / PikPok
(06-19-2013, 04:05 AM)
Mario's Avatar

Originally Posted by bomblord

Creatively it restricts their vision as the OP said Nintendo platforms are made for Nintendo. Other platforms are not.

But on the flip side, they'd have the creative freedom to explore platforms that allow for experiences they can't currently express being restrained to a small proprietary set of hardware.


Financially they lose money there is no way they cannot lose money by going third party. Games go from 100% profit per sold to whatever the main console decides is the cut they get. They lost money on dev kits sold as well as having to supply all their studios with dev kits for other platforms. They lose the cut they get from third party software. etc etc

They'd also lose the R&D,manufacturing, infrastructure, and support costs associated with those royalty based revenue streams.

And in opening up to third party platforms, they'd have the opportunity to reach consumers in demographics and markets well beyond those they are currently accessing.
SonicMegaDrive
(06-19-2013, 04:05 AM)
SonicMegaDrive's Avatar

Originally Posted by MoeB

Wii Fit is a glorified FITBIT. The Walking Dead is an adventure game.

Wii Fit is a fitness game.
Crisium
Member
(06-19-2013, 04:06 AM)
Crisium's Avatar

Originally Posted by MoeB

Nintendo needs to shift their focus to the handheld market.
That's the only thing they've been successful with in the last decade. I'm talking about successes that weren't rooted in blind luck (see Nintendo Wii, Wii Fit).
/thread

I think they need to to go to handheld only. If not on the 3DS, then on the next.
plufim
Member
(06-19-2013, 04:10 AM)

Originally Posted by MoeB

Because it's an exercise simulation program.

A game is still a game regardless of the goals.

Or do you object to it being a simulation, in which case, is Gran Turismo not a game?
Last edited by plufim; 06-19-2013 at 04:14 AM.
Chaos17
Member
(06-19-2013, 04:13 AM)
Chaos17's Avatar
Sales data : hardware & software
Worldwide Consolidated Sales Units of Hardware and Software

Wii U (2012) : Hardware: 3.45 miilion units / Software: 13.42 million units
3DS : Hardware: 31.09 miilion units / Software: 95.03 miilion units

Source : http://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/en/sale...oft/index.html


Sales data : : top selling software sales units
Top Selling Nintendo Software Sales Units of Wii U, Nintendo 3DS, Wii and Nintendo DS on a Consolidated Basis

Nintendo Land (Wii U) : 2.60 million units
SUPER MARIO 3D LAND : 8.29 million pcs.

Source : http://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/en/sale...are/index.html


Why again we have the nintendo trainer as new character in Super smash brawl ?
Because Wii fit (22.67 million pcs.) + Wit fit plus (20.86 million pcs.) = 43,53 million pcs.

Source : http://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/en/sales/software/wii.html
Kai Dracon
Writing a dinosaur space opera symphony
(06-19-2013, 04:15 AM)
Kai Dracon's Avatar
If Nintendo "goes handheld" after Wii U, I think it won't be quite so much because they are big stupids who cannot make a game console anymore... as the game console market left them behind. What Nintendo wants to do, and be.

Meanwhile, it seems the dedicated handheld space still contains a modestly large number of potential customers who want not just the kind of games Nintendo makes, but the kind of games Nintendo platforms end up hosting. Especially what would be seen by many as "non-westernized" Japanese games. In short, what used to be Nintendo's console audience sure does appear to have survived in the handheld space. At some point Nintendo may be forced to go to that audience, if those people won't come to consoles. (This could be a major factor in Japan.)

Imagine, for example, that Nintendo makes a follow-up to Wii U which is a hybrid handheld-console and it's at least as powerful as Wii U. But it sells as least as well as the 3DS. Think what what an audience that might provide for Japanese developers like Platinum.
Yes Boss!
Member
(06-19-2013, 04:16 AM)
Yes Boss!'s Avatar

Originally Posted by MoeB

Nintendo needs to shift their focus to the handheld market.
That's the only thing they've been successful with in the last decade. I'm talking about successes that weren't rooted in blind luck (see Nintendo Wii, Wii Fit).
/thread

Good lord that is a bunch of shit. Most of the top selling games of the current generation were Wii games.
knkng
Member
(06-19-2013, 04:17 AM)

Originally Posted by MoeB

Nintendo needs to shift their focus to the handheld market.
That's the only thing they've been successful with in the last decade. I'm talking about successes that weren't rooted in blind luck (see Nintendo Wii, Wii Fit).
/thread

I don't mind if you don't think Wii Fit is a real game (there is at least some merit to that argument), but calling the Wii and Wii Fit blind luck? Come on now. Blind luck is walking down the street and finding a $20 bill. Spending years developing hardware, software, and an expensive game-specific peripheral, not to mention the amount of market research and advertising that was behind it all, is just about the farthest thing from blind luck. At least give Nintendo credit where it's due.
peace in palestine
Member
(06-19-2013, 04:17 AM)
peace in palestine's Avatar
i'm a huge nintendo fan, and have been since i learned a lot about them during the gamecube days. and speaking as someone that's played every mario/metroid/zelda. i just don't see the point of the wii u.

if it had better battery life and can be taken outside (as a portable) i truly believe the product could have been huge. as it currently stands, it doesn't do anything "new" or "different", it's too underpowered to receive modern ports and it's too much of a outdated idea to try to promote and sell to the casuals.

i can safely say my casual friends (older, more successful adults) were turned off knowing you have to be in certain range of the wii u console to play with the off-tv thing.

i mean, that bloody touch screen isn't even capable of multitouch! i'm not sure of ANY touch screen that's in the market now that is not capable of multi touch. and don't tell me it's not needed, because it's an even stupider idea to have to use a stylus for the wii u pad. this is not the DS where you can comfortable hold it one handed (even like a book!) and use the pen at the same time.

i truly feel nintendo fucked up big time by not simply continuing off the insane success of the original wii remote. you have to be a complete fool to not follow up on your most successful product ever!

TL; DR: the wii u is not a product that the market wants, as is it now.
speculawyer
clairvoyancy is no excuse for trollin'
(06-19-2013, 04:20 AM)
speculawyer's Avatar
I think they are stuck in the 90's. They were very successful. But the industry has moved on.

Nintendo has long been king of the handheld gaming market. But that sector has been wiped out by iPhones, iPads, Android phones, Android tablets, etc. (And it is not just them, Sony is doing even worse with handhelds.)

The gamecube was not a strong console for Nintendo but the Wii was a break-out hit with the Wiimote waggle. But it is hard to get lightning to strike twice. People eventually moved on. And the WiiU has not set the world on fire. They better start getting their best IP out on it because it is bordering on failed console status.

Sometimes you are the car flying down the road. And sometimes you are the bug that hits windshield.
RedSwirl
Junior Member
(06-19-2013, 04:21 AM)
RedSwirl's Avatar
On third parties, I think the important thing to look at is the kinds of games Nintendo wants to make:

Originally Posted by Tathanen

Nintendo doesn't approach third parties the same way as Sony or Microsoft. While their competitors basically build their machines for third parties, sometimes in great ways (more RAM more RAM more RAM), sometimes in awful ways (everything about Xbox One), Nintendo builds their machine almost entirely for themselves, and to facilitate the kind of games they want to make.

It's easy to say that Nintendo just "doesn't care" about third parties, but it's certainly not the case. Huge Japanese series like Monster Hunter and Dragon Quest are largely Nintendo-exclusive at this point, and Nintendo publishes a vast array of titles that are developed in collaboration with third parties, be it smaller ones (Genius Sonority, Good Feel, Grezzo) or larger ones (SEGA, Platinum Games). It's definitely a unique approach, though. If Nintendo has a specific project in mind they'll do a collaboration, but their more general stance is "sell it and they will come." If they can move enough hardware, the system should attract game-makers. It's why Monster Hunter and Dragon Quest are there, and it's why the poorly-selling Wii U is getting such poor support.

The reason the Wii U isn't getting support from the big western third parties is because none of them makes the kinds of games that Nintendo wants to make (other than perhaps Ubisoft). I think this has been true ever since the PlayStation era began.

Ever since then companies like Sony and big third parties have been selling the idea of AAA games as events akin to film, in many cases emphasizing that aspect more than actual gameplay. I think it's precisely these kinds of games that Nintendo doesn't give a shit about, and they don't want to build a platform for these kinds of games. From an ideological perspective they essentially want to keep making games the way they were made during the NES and SNES eras.

This shows not only through the games Nintendo makes, but the third party games they support the most. Monster Hunter, Dragon Quest, Bayonetta, etc. are all very gamey experiences that aren't trying to be blockbuster experiences only for the 16-35 male demographic. These kinds of games rarely, if ever come out of EA, Activision, or Take-Two, and only come from Ubisoft slightly more often. This also explains a bit why you don't see many Square Enix or Konami games on Nintendo hardware anymore. On the flipside, you have developers from the PC school like Bethesda, Irrational, and Epic who are completely unknown to Nintendo.

This is why I keep saying Nintendo should probably go harder after smaller developers and indies, who are probably more compatible with Nintendo's vision. Hell, if they'd done that many of the mid-tier developers who went down this past console generation might still be around. You have to admit that the blockbuster AAA path has been quite destructive for the industry. If that whole side of the industry does "crash" like GAF apparently wants it to, or at least seriously contracts, then on some level Nintendo will have been vindicated.
Last edited by RedSwirl; 06-19-2013 at 04:25 AM.
plufim
Member
(06-19-2013, 04:22 AM)

Originally Posted by speculawyer

I think they are stuck in the 90's. They were very successful. But the industry has moved on.

Nintendo has long been king of the handheld gaming market. But that sector has been wiped out by iPhones, iPads, Android phones, Android tablets, etc. (And it is not just them, Sony is doing even worse with handhelds.)

I see this said ALL THE TIME, but the 3DS is doing great guns for them. So.... what gives?
prag16
Member
(06-19-2013, 04:23 AM)
prag16's Avatar
Good OP, and I agree on the vast majority. But let's not keep spreading this "Frostbite isn't compatible because weak" bullshit. Stronger hardware wouldn't have hurt, but who here actually thinks EA would be porting most of those games regardless. Same goes for most other alleged compatibility issues. Where there's a will there's a way. Right now there's no will.

But good thread and good discussion.
Fewr
Member
(06-19-2013, 04:24 AM)
Fewr's Avatar
In regards to the finances and focus part, I think this is relevant:

http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/3/f00ac...#axzz2Wd1yaA1d

June 13, 2013.
Nintendo: not so smartphone
Could Japanese gaming group be a takeover target?
Congratulations to Sony: the only Tokyo large-cap still up 100 per cent year to date and helped this week by buzz surrounding its new games console. Brickbats then to Nintendo, its gaming rival languishing near the other end of the Topix 100 with a mere 3 per cent gain. One of the reasons for Nintendo going nowhere is a fear that Super Mario, Donkey Kong, Princess Zelda and the Pokemon crew are not either as it ignores smartphone gaming. Does that make its stock mispriced or management misguided? Or – deep breath here – is it a takeover target?

Take out Nintendo’s Y900bn ($9bn) net cash pile and you have a gamer with an enterprise value of Y332bn ($3.5bn). Then look at the success of smartphone-focused games makers and wonder what might happen if Nintendo allowed Mario and friends out of its closed system. Take GungHo, whose profits doubled last quarter on the back of in-game purchases from one hit, Puzzle & Dragons. The bull case for Nintendo as is, is that it could yet put some of its games on smartphones. But unfortunately for the bulls, the other side of that argument was laid out this week by Satoru Iwata, Nintendo’s president, who dismissed smartphones as a short-term gaming money-spinner that would destroy long-term value. Nintendo’s sales are split three-fifths hardware, two-fifths software. Understandably it wants its games to push hardware sales. But the smartphone market, and related gaming, is only going to grow.
Nintendo shares are held about one-third in Japan, including a tenth by Hiroshi Yamauchi, its former president, making a bid tough. But a further two-fifths appear to be in the hands of big US investors. Sure, corporate Japan is littered with the corpses of outsiders who have tried to change Japanese companies. But if there were a reasonably-sized company with valuable assets worth a tilt, it would be Nintendo.

(also, it's something that gaming "analysts" failed to catch, this is what pachter should have stated ages ago).
RedSwirl
Junior Member
(06-19-2013, 04:25 AM)
RedSwirl's Avatar

Originally Posted by speculawyer

I think they are stuck in the 90's. They were very successful. But the industry has moved on.

Nintendo has long been king of the handheld gaming market. But that sector has been wiped out by iPhones, iPads, Android phones, Android tablets, etc. (And it is not just them, Sony is doing even worse with handhelds.)

The gamecube was not a strong console for Nintendo but the Wii was a break-out hit with the Wiimote waggle. But it is hard to get lightning to strike twice. People eventually moved on. And the WiiU has not set the world on fire. They better start getting their best IP out on it because it is bordering on failed console status.

Sometimes you are the car flying down the road. And sometimes you are the bug that hits windshield.

I think they are willingly stuck in the 90's in terms of the kinds of games they want to make. More specifically, they're willing stuck in the way gaming was before PlayStation introduced cut scenes and pretty cinematic blockbusters. In my opinion it's an admirable stance to take if they can be successful business-wise. The reason they've been continually successful in the handheld market is because nobody wants flashy blockbuster experiences on a handheld. iOS is doing what it is to that market now because in a way, Apple has out-Nintendo'd Nintendo.
Tathanen
Get Inside Her!
(06-19-2013, 04:26 AM)
Tathanen's Avatar

Originally Posted by peace in palestine

if it had better battery life and can be taken outside (as a portable) i truly believe the product could have been huge. as it currently stands, it doesn't do anything "new" or "different", it's too underpowered to receive modern ports and it's too much of a outdated idea to try to promote and sell to the casuals.

Well as I mentioned in the OP and other post, I don't think there's much value in multiplatform ports on a Nintendo system in general, it's just not what the target audience is looking for, and puts Nintendo in direct-compete mode, which isn't what they're looking for. They also aren't targeting the casual market in as squarely a fashion, since that market has moved en-mass to phone gaming, and it will be very difficult to attract them with any console offering any more.

i mean, that bloody touch screen isn't even capable of multitouch! i'm not sure of ANY touch screen that's in the market now that is not capable of multi touch. and don't tell me it's not needed, because it's an even stupider idea to have to use a stylus for the wii u pad. this is not the DS where you can comfortable hold it one handed (even like a book!) and use the pen at the same time.

It's not really needed, but you also don't need to use a stylus. It's exceedingly rare that I pull the thing out, it's really only if I want to draw something on Miiverse. Other than that, most games that use the touchscreen expect you to navigate via thumb taps while still holding the pad with both hands, or interact with large touch-targets with your index finger. A resistive screen certainly doesn't mean that you have to use a stylus, and a multi-touch one is more valuable when you're actually using a free hand, and the GamePad's touchscreen is designed to be used mainly while you're still holding it with both hands.

i truly feel nintendo fucked up big time by not simply continuing off the insane success of the original wii remote. you have to be a complete fool to not follow up on your most successful product ever!

Well, they're still using the remote in a lot of games! There's no need to abandon it, it's an extremely unique input method that can't just be replaced by a touchscreen controller. But the Wii is old news, and Nintendo can only really function if they're pursuing something new.
Htown
STOP SHITTING ON MY MOTHER'S HEADSTONE
(06-19-2013, 04:26 AM)
Htown's Avatar

Originally Posted by Fewr

In regards to the finances and focus part, I think this is relevant:

http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/3/f00ac...#axzz2Wd1yaA1d

(also, it's something that gaming "analysts" failed to catch, this is what pachter should have stated ages ago).

Any analysis that starts out with, "Let's ignore that Nintendo has $9 billion in cash" is dumb shit not worth listening to.
RedSwirl
Junior Member
(06-19-2013, 04:28 AM)
RedSwirl's Avatar

Originally Posted by Htown

Any analysis that starts out with, "Let's ignore that Nintendo has $9 billion in cash" is dumb shit not worth listening to.

The takeover threat is probably one of the reasons WHY Nintendo keeps all that cash instead of spending it, and why they never go for a razor & blade strategy with their hardware. I imagine any company that managed to take over Nintendo would likely destroy it the way Sega was destroyed.
Vice
Member
(06-19-2013, 04:28 AM)
Vice's Avatar

Originally Posted by MoeB

Nintendo needs to shift their focus to the handheld market.
That's the only thing they've been successful with in the last decade. I'm talking about successes that weren't rooted in blind luck (see Nintendo Wii, Wii Fit).
/thread

The Wii wasn't really luck though. It, like the DS, was based on creating an original experience no one else could provide at the time. They made the decision to market the Wii to markets that were under served by Sony and Microsoft at the time with games like Wii Sports and Wii Fit. They got the market that is now pumping millions (billions?) into the Apple app store and Android marketplaces before anyone else wised up.
Fewr
Member
(06-19-2013, 04:28 AM)
Fewr's Avatar

Originally Posted by Htown

Any analysis that starts out with, "Let's ignore that Nintendo has $9 billion in cash" is dumb shit not worth listening to.

They take out the cash to see if it's worth buying.
DBPlayer
Banned
(06-19-2013, 04:29 AM)
Just wanted to say great post, OP.
KojiKnight
Member
(06-19-2013, 04:30 AM)
KojiKnight's Avatar

Originally Posted by Snowden's Secret

Re: third parties

Nintendo places a really high value on having games on their platforms that you can't have elsewhere. This explains away a lot of the less obvious things they do:

-DS instead of a Gameboy successor

-Wii instead of traditional console
-Glassesless 3D
-Gamepad
-Staunchly refusing to release even a single NES game on mobile
-100% funding certain 3rd party exclusives but not throwing money at "necessary" multiplats

Nintendo is likely less concerned about whether they are getting CoD Ghosts than they are about losing Rayman Legends, for example.

Let's be clear... DS was a gamble. It was a gamble that Nintendo hedged AGAINST themselves (the so called "third pillar" Console, gameboy, and DS lines all being seperate). Nintendo was already developing the GBA2 behind the scenes when they released the DS and it just so happened that the DS paid off in the end.

Thread Tools