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Activision wanted to team up with Nintendo for Skylanders

Feb 17, 2012
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It sure seems a lot less risky that making the GamePad the default controller for the Wii U.
And?

Because they took a risk with the Gamepad means they should have taken every risk presented to them?

From a personal perspective, as an adult who likes to play video games but doesn't like to buy or collect toys, I can certainly appreciate that the fact that they made the Gamepad a lot more than I would theoretically appreciate Nintendo owning Skylanders. Not that that had anything to do with their finances.
 

Toxi

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May 29, 2013
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http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showpost.php?p=25893255&postcount=117

A few people in the original announcement thread correctly surmised that this would be big. It wasn't hard to see if you understood the 6-12 year old market for toys. They were already buying $20 actions figures that don't do anything. Why not sell $20 actions figures that you can insert into your video game?
"Action figure" requires articulation though.

Skylanders toys are more like statues from what I can tell.
 

zhorkat

Member
Jun 25, 2013
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Why would they have had to moneyhat anything? Activison came to them because they were nervous that it wouldn't work. They weren't looking for some moneyhat from them. They wanted to use their IP's because they knew how strong their characters were.
Without a moneyhat, what reason is there for Activision not to make every game after the first one multiplatform?
 

ugoo18

Member
May 22, 2011
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I assume they are eluding to a fully fledged Pokemon game on console. Nintendo were averse to that idea long before Skylanders turned up.
Gamefreak is against the idea of a fully fledged Pokemon game on a home console. Considering the ownership tango that is the Pokemon IP i doubt Nintendo would press the issue.
 

Ridley327

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Feb 7, 2005
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Wow. Kotick pulled a Miyamoto. Who'd a thunk it.
He was right, of course. Getting into the toy business, especially the sector that's as fiercely competitive as the 6-12 age group for boys, is a brutal, bloody endeavor, and one that dies quickly if you don't have a good game plan. That extra year no doubt was spent on making sure they were ready for anything.
 

MisterHero

Super Member
Jul 24, 2007
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I'm happy that Activision was successful, but Nintendo could and has made games that succeeded without all the extra work of making NFC figures. It might've been a big hit when Pokemon was new, but hey, kids bought those toys and cards anyways.
 
Feb 17, 2012
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Yea that explains why the only consoles SE released a MMO on are Wii and Wii U. Makes perfect sense.

You're crazy if you don't think they forked over a ton of cash for Dragon Quest.
Well... it kind of does explain it, seeing as how the Wii was by far the best selling home console of last gen.
 

Riki

Member
Jun 13, 2013
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I love how everyone can armchair WBC this one with the benefit of 20/20 hindsight.

Also I hate interviews like this because they don't tell you who at Nintendo they were working with. Was it an actual decision maker? What was Activision asking from Nintendo.

Yeah it is easy to look back and say man what a missed opportunity but we are not privy to but a smidge of the details. It does suck for Nintendo, and you have to wonder if the person making the decision had all the info and foresight, but this happens all the time.

The Exec who passed on the Beatles and said they wouldn't make it in the US was damn near right and still had a massively successful career.


And like others have said the real issue is that Nintendo has moved slowly and poorly to get in on the NFC gaming trend. Seriously a legit Pokemon game would crush with collectible toys. As would almost any kind of Nintendo IP crossover game.
Thread over
 

impact

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Aug 14, 2011
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Well... it kind of does explain it, seeing as how the Wii was by far the best selling home console of last gen.
And by far last place when considering consoles connected to the internet, which kinda matters when the game is an MMO. And you're ignoring the Wii U, but I bet Square just ported the game to Wii U out of the kindness of their hearts, right?

You can try to convince yourself with any justification you want, but that doesn't change the fact that they paid for Dragon Quest (and Monster Hunter)

They like to play it safe, as if you couldn't tell with their first party lineup.
 

Cipherr

Member
Dec 15, 2007
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Are people still wondering about Nintendo and their relations with third parties?
I think everyone at this point worries about both their relations with third parties as well as their ability to recognize and identify a winner when it presents itself to them.

I don't know if their decision makers are just old, or what, but they seem to have completely lost the ability to foresee anything in regards to the gaming industry.
 

Lumyst

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Jun 18, 2013
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I do wonder, if a third party wants to create a new children's property, would they still come to Nintendo? I would be immeasurably disappointed with Nintendo's leadership if their decisions lead to Nintendo's decline in clout among the children's demographic.
 

pvpness

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Mar 27, 2007
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I doubt they're kicking themselves. They got to reap massive benefits from the games selling best on their platforms, without having to put anything up in the beginning. Plus they've got that Pokémon NFC game, and another on the way.
 

SolidSnakex

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Jun 7, 2004
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Without a moneyhat, what reason is there for Activision not to make every game after the first one multiplatform?
Wouldn't Activision have been far more worried about Nintendo taking off and making a game on their own after it became a success? It would've been their character IP's that would've been driving the success. That's why i'm sure both would've made a contract that they would continue working together on it if it became a success.
 

MisterHero

Super Member
Jul 24, 2007
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And Nintendo still has not released a Pokemon figurine game. Idiots.


IIRC you can unlock the characters without the toys.

They also had the Kid Icarus AR Card game.

It sounds nice, but why does Pokemon NEED an NFC game? You can pretty much accomplish anything in X/Y without owning some figures.
 

boyshine

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Sep 15, 2005
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I would love to know exactly what they showed Nintendo. I have a feeling it wasn't the "Skylanders" like we know it now. Ever since we first learned about the game originally being pitched as a Wii exclusive I've had a feeling that the pitch was for Pokémon characters. It's too obvious a match for the concept for them not to have considered it.

On the other side, I'm glad Skylanders turned multiplatform. The game would never have become the huge phenomenon it is if it was single SKU. Also, part of the reason for its international success is that its localized to almost every language. Nintendo games are usually just english/french/german/spanish/italian, and that would've hurt the game.
 
Dec 24, 2013
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Frankly, I think their relationship with third parties is a consequence of managerial focus.

Nintendo has a long history of focusing on devices and peripherals with unique features. But lately, it feels like the gimmicky hardware comes second to everything else. They have this 'Field of Dreams' mentality - that if they build it the ecosystem will flourish. But instead of something accessible like Baseball fields (or a typical console) they're building convoluted, ill explained devices with limited/narrow applications and trying to charge a premium price for them.

I don't know if their game makers are tired, or if they really think they need off-the-wall, proprietary, dog food hardware features to take their games further. I can see where this would have been a great idea for Nintendo. I'm not surprised they turned it down.

I gave up on Nintendo after the Wii. I still look at their limited selection of exclusive and first-party titles with envy. But it's just not worth the rest.
 

JasonUresti

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Dec 3, 2007
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Just think though, by passing on dirty Western fare like Minecraft and Skylanders, Nintendo had millions in the bank to try to force Dragon Quest US success one more time, and fund glorious Japanese made exclusives (destined to sell at 10k copies) like Bayonetta 2, Wonderful 101, and X!
 

MisterHero

Super Member
Jul 24, 2007
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Just think though, by passing on dirty Western fare like Minecraft and Skylanders, Nintendo had millions in the bank to try to force Dragon Quest US success one more time, and fund glorious Japanese made exclusives (destined to sell at 10k copies) like Bayonetta 2, Wonderful 101, and X!
Almost starred Nintendo characters.

"But Nintendo relies on their IPs too much!"
 

theWB27

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Feb 6, 2014
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Seems to me like they do a lot of joint production with third parties, be it original games, crossovers, or third parties developing using Nintendo IP. Naming a bunch would get a bit List Wars, though.
So Ninty's 3rd party situation/partnerships are just fine?
 

Ricky 7

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Jul 27, 2012
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Yea that explains why the only consoles SE released a MMO on are Wii and Wii U. Makes perfect sense.

You're crazy if you don't think they forked over a ton of cash for Dragon Quest.
I was referring to DQ IX and the DS, forgot DQ X even existed. Not sure about that game since it was announced around the same time as DQ IX so yeah maybe it was possible to go in hand with the MH3 deal.
 

suppadoopa

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Jan 3, 2013
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Why are people twisting this in favor of Nintendo?

I wouldnt doubt it, Nintendo has so sort of "thing" for Enix (though they are merged now), Square convincing them to come with them to a competitor is one of the main reason for the Nintendo-Square feud
The "feud" happened because ninty was so hesitant to keep pushing for carts.
the "feud" ended when square got nintendo bribery money to make FFCC
 

zhorkat

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Jun 25, 2013
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Wouldn't Activision have been far more worried about Nintendo taking off and making a game on their own after it became a success? It would've been their character IP's that would've been driving the success. That's why i'm sure both would've made a contract that they would continue working together on it if it became a success.
I imagine that Activision would have accepted the risk of Nintendo competing with them on the Wii/3DS for the promise of all the toys they could sell to owners of a 360 or PS3.
 

Pathos

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Feb 18, 2014
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Man they fucked up. When will Nintendo learn? Look at what has happened in the past... That's their problem. They won't change.
 

MisterHero

Super Member
Jul 24, 2007
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Tbh, I thought Skylanders was gonna tank, UDraw style...

lol
It still could. Skylanders could meet the fate of so many music games and Tony Hawk.

Peripherals have been a big thing for Activision for a while now. Maybe they've learned something.
 
Oct 25, 2012
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Everyone thought Skylanders was going to be a huge failure, so it's easy now to say how stupid Nintendo was to pass on it, but you would have passed on it too a few years ago.
 

Nibiru

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Nov 24, 2012
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Skylanders being available on multiple platforms is what got it the attention and slaes it needed. I don't see how making it a Nintendo exclusive would have translated into a big coup for Nintendo. If it did happen who knows maybe it wouldn't have sold as many and failed.
 

fernoca

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Sep 17, 2006
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Nintendo has worked with Activision closely before with Guitar Hero DS and Call of Duty on Wii. Is not like they're against it. This was way riskier and Activision/Kotick recognized that it would be a success only if money was spent on it.

Disney jumped on this because of the success of Skylanders, so the comment about it was weird as otherwise there wouldn't be a Disney Infinity (or there would be but probably as an app fpr tablets).
 
Oct 25, 2012
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Tbh, I thought Skylanders was gonna tank, UDraw style...

lol
Udraw was mildly successful when it released on the Wii in 2010. I remember it being sold out everywhere online and in my area when it released. I tried to find some to flip on ebay but didn't have any luck.

Udraw bombed after they failed to secure any good games after its first year. Then they doubled down and released it on other consoles. Oh THQ. haha
 

Shantom

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Oct 20, 2011
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And by far last place when considering consoles connected to the internet, which kinda matters when the game is an MMO. And you're ignoring the Wii U, but I bet Square just ported the game to Wii U out of the kindness of their hearts, right?

You can try to convince yourself with any justification you want, but that doesn't change the fact that they paid for Dragon Quest (and Monster Hunter)

They like to play it safe, as if you couldn't tell with their first party lineup.
What's your source on the internet connectivity? The best I could find at a quick glance was this, which shows that in America in April 2010 there were 15 million Wii consoles on the internet, compared to 9 million PS3s.

As for the Wii U port, that made sense because it was easy to upgrade to for those who were already playing on the Wii and probably didn't cost too much money (it was hardly a full HD remake), though I wouldn't be surprised if Nintendo did actually give some big incentives to Square for the Wii U port specifically.

As for your final point, Nintendo like to play it safe so they paid for a subscription based MMO. Yeah, sure.
 

ArcaneFreeze

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Mar 27, 2013
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Funny thing is if Nintendo did go through with this deal and it failed horribly people would still be saying Nintendo is incompetent and made a bad business decision and that Nintendo is just wasting money on another "gimmick." It was a risky proposal at the time, no one would have known it would have been a success and if it kept to Nintendo exclusively there's no saying it would have been. The 360 market share for Skylanders is a pretty big portion too, would Skylanders have been as big without it? It worked out well for Activision in the end and it was probably better for the industry that it did because every console gets to experience it now.

Edit: lol man GAF just loves to jump on Ninty every chance they get. Will you people honestly tell me if you were faced with that option years ago you had the hindsight to say "okay this will be successful" especially when this was coming off the heels of THQs UDraw tablet?
 
Feb 3, 2013
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Nintendo doesn't care about third party exclusives unless they're being developed by Japanese companies. I love the damage controlling about how "risky" this partnership would have been, even though all successful businesses have to take risks at some point. Iwata is cancerous and needs to be forcibly removed from the company as soon as humanly possible.
 

ArcaneFreeze

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Mar 27, 2013
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Nintendo doesn't care about third party exclusives unless they're being developed by Japanese companies. I love the damage controlling about how "risky" this partnership would have been, even though all successful businesses have to take risks at some point. Iwata is cancerous and needs to be forcibly removed from the company as soon as humanly possible.
Yes because the Wii and DS weren't risks at all under Iwatas tenure. You could only strike gold so many times. They took another risk with WiiU and that didn't pan out as they planned which could have easily happened with Skylanders.