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The Trouble with Nintendo. A TL;DR topic.


Transient Curse
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Nintendo try to shut down one of the last bastions of their support from the gaming community.

With this and the Youtube thing, they just really don't understand how all this Internet stuff can be beneficial, and are obsessed with controlling everything for fear that it might be used in a way they don't like.

Following news yesterday that Nintendo of America wanted stop the livestream of Super Smash Bros. Melee from this weekend's Evo 2013 fighting game championships, according to Evo co-founder Joey "Mr Wizard" Cuellar in an interview with OneMoreGameTV, the company had also tried to shut down Evo's Smash event.

"They were not only trying to shut down the stream, they were trying to shut down the event; the Smash portion of the event," Cuellar said, who explained that he had originally spoken with people from Nintendo who "didn't see a problem" with the event.

"It's their IP, they can do whatever they want, and they didn't present us with any options to keep it open, they were just 'Hey, we want to shut you down.'" Cuellar said when asked what Nintendo's basis was for wanting to shut down the event. "And we kinda wigwammed our way through it and they were fine with just shutting down the streaming portion of the event. And that was that. And we were not going to press any further. Its their IP, we respect Nintendo's decision to protect their IP, and we were going to comply with the legal department completely. So at that point it was over."

Cuellar said that the event's organizers didn't do anything to reverse Nintendo's decision and that "it had to have been the bad PR they were getting, in conjunction with the power of the internet and seeing their Smash fans saying 'We want to see this event? Can you please let us see it?'"

Evo co-founder Tom "inkblot" Cannon announced on Shoryuken.com yesterday that Nintendo of America denied the tournament organizers permission to broadcast the game online. A short time later, Cannon revealed Nintendo eventually decided to allow the Melee stream from Evo 2013 to proceed, restoring the original stream and tournament schedules.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Another nail in the coffin.

http://www.computerandvideogames.com/421340/asda-suspends-wii-u-stock/

Retail giant Asda is no longer stocking Wii U consoles across its 555 retail outlets, dealing a new blow to Nintendo's bid to reverse the console's fortunes.

The grocer, Britain's second-largest, has suspended stock on all Wii U games, consoles and accessories across its stores, though eight products (all released during the Wii U's November 2012 launch) remain available on the Asda Direct website.

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What a bloody shame. I think I basically realised the Wii U might have been basically doomed when i was talking about what a brilliantly strong Xmas lineup Nintendo have, before being told that most of the game si'd mentioned are missing the entire Xmas period and coming out some time the year after instead.

Surely someone high up needs to fall on their sword for such a complete fuckup, underestimating HD development timescales so badly is moronic is it not?

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I blame those dreadful adverts on with the TDF - a 'typical' family playing on a console - fat and slightly thick Dad one side, attractive over enthusiastic mum on the other, both waving wii remotes, with slightly bored kid wedged in between not looking at the TV but doing something different with the gamepad but of course nobody could see or tell what!

I'm not sure the wii u should even be advertised as a family console - surely the gamepad is at its best for single player games anyway?

Wrong console aimed at the wrong market and being advertised wrong

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WiiU was too confusing - it sounds like another version of the same console. People didn't realise it was something new, and associated with a years old product. They didn't get a "lift" from brand recognition - they were weighed down by it.

Same as the Nintendo 3DS. Coming after the DS Lite and the DSi you can see why people thought it was just another revision.

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Nintendo are basically the Apple of the Computer Games. t's just they are currently Apple when Apple was getting it's face kicked off.

People criticise them because they don't do things the way the other players do. They don't pump out titles. They don't embrace cutting edge technology. They don't make new IPs*.

They don't engage with cutting edge tech because their tact was going downhill all the way up to the Gamecube (with each machine selling less than the last since the NES), and the Wii was a bold attempt to combat that through casualising their products and making everything more accessible.

They don't innovate with IP* they innovate with mechanics and design. Whether it is refining design (like the 2D marios) or exploring game mechanics, the theme of a game is just to make it presentable to the audience. The games where they don't do this are always to please fans (e.g. Twilight Princess) they are always the games least well remembered.

Doesn't matter for shit. Others do it without the comparitive advantages that Nintendo developers had (i.e. less financial pressure, building games to spec for a system designed for themselves etc.), and even if the results aren't necessarily as 'tight' as Nintendo's, their attempts are arguably more exciting in having to deal with both the creative and commercial pressures all the time.

They don't sell via violence. Now, I love shooting the head off things that currently have heads as much as the next guy, but I'm so glad that there exists a company that doesn't do that. There was barely a gun in nintendo's E3 showing. I like that.

When making games you have a choice of:

  • Frequently released
  • Good games
  • Polished games

But you only get to pick two. When there exist two carbon copied organisations that have put out two carbon copied consoles - where the biggest differentiator is the DRM between them, I can't get my head around people wanting Nintendo to be more like them.

Nobody necessarily "wants" Nintendo to necessarily be exactly like Sony and MS, it's just that everybody (else) knows that it's unreasonable for hardcore Nintendo fans to expect them to remain in a fantasy bubble of untouchable True Innovation™ and not have to adjust to a changing world. So when the Wii came out, it hit incredibly lucky and essentially became the starting point of accessible gaming that later massively expanded to cheap and plentiful shit/not-shit games on the modern trend of Smartphones. And now that market has fled consoles, they can't ask those people to come back because there's no real reason for them to do so.

On another note, Nintendo could probably knock out some good stuff at a decent rate if they were to get a bit more creative. Remember Zelda: Four Swords on the Gamecube? The whole thing was done on some re-appropriated engine with a novel mix of old and new graphical features, later doing a similar thing with Wario Ware on the Wii, with a short 60fps touched-up version of the original Star Fox. They could have shipped out these engines and asked for third parties to knock out a few on the cheap to fill up a small catalogue, but instead there's half-year long announcements for a DLC pack for NSMBU, which will definitely be a lot more resource intensive and a lot less profitable.

The irony is that Nintendo are trying to do what these people want. Thats why the graphic style of NSMB hasn't changed. They want to get it out the door quicker. But by bending to people's demands then they are damaging their brand (as they would if they expanded to new studios who would inevitably release sub-par nintendo games).

The attach rate of games to a console in its lifetime is about 9 games. Nintendo put a dozen great games out over the life of a console. They don't go down in price. They don't get resold. They get remembered for generations. No one else does that.

If Nintendo based its business decisions on its most hardcore deluded fans, they'd have sunk long before the current Wii U mess; instead of the Wii, it'd have been the Gamecube Plus!, like some monsterous Ship of Theseus device with chunks sticking out from all over it. The idea of NSMBU being "what these people want" is severly undermined by the fact that the recent Sonic kart racing game sold better than it in Europe (using only Wii U sales), incidentally another game that is "remembered for generations" (someone else did that!). The fucking hubris, pull your head out of your arse already.

They are never going to produce enough content to satisfy someone who posts on a game forum, just as Pixar won't singlehandly satisfy a movie fan. But as long as they are making that content who cares? The real question is can Pixar justify it's own-brand movie player hardware. That's the crux of the issue.

* what a horrible, souless, artless term that is.

The crux of the issue is that people like you both want and don't want the rules of Capitalism to apply to a corporation, at times that are most convenient. Funny you should say that about the IP thing, given that Nintendo pretty much pioneered the sorry practice.

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WiiU was too confusing - it sounds like another version of the same console. People didn't realise it was something new, and associated with a years old product. They didn't get a "lift" from brand recognition - they were weighed down by it.

Same as the Nintendo 3DS. Coming after the DS Lite and the DSi you can see why people thought it was just another revision.

Yeah. They should have gone with something like 'Nintendo HD'. Really sell the fact that the difference this time around is that all Nintendo's games are in HD and look amazing. Plus it immediately differentiates from the Wii which, these days, people associate with having shit graphics.

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I'll make it easy. The WiiU is shit. The 3DS isn't.

Nintendo had the jump on Sony and Microsoft but haven't capitalized at all, turns out (to the surprise of no one outside of Nintendo), the huge new market they attracted with the Wii aren't interested in the WiiU. I would go as far as to suggest, the perception of the WiiU is a console that has been released at the end a generation, rather than marking the start of a new one. If you can't generate good sales when there's no (new) competition, you're screwed.

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Nintendo emailed me a survey about my thoughts on the Wii U today. Up until now I've staunchly defended it, but now I've had the chance to give them proper feedback about the console I said I felt disappointed that the promises of third party games at release have turned to nothing. I know we're stuck in a cycle of 'console not selling due to no games > games not being made because console isn't selling' but it feels like Nintendo didn't even try to market it properly. Not that the Wii U being a massive success would guarantee loads of quality games, as we saw with the Wii, but at least we'd have a chance to get some third party titles. I have a 360, so it's not like I'm missing out on a lot of other games, but if I had a choice I'd prefer to buy every third party game for my Wii U.

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3rd party support really wouldn't be much better had the WiiU flown off the shelves...

and I can't understand how anyone can use a WiiU, play Nintendoland, Pikmin 3, Lego City, NSMBU, Monster Hunter, interact with MiiVerse and think that it's boring? Wonderful 101 looks like the complete opposite of 'boring'.

but hey ho.. Nintendo consoles are for babies and stuff...

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The dreamcast led to Sega leaving the hardware business altogether. That's not going to happen with Nintendo. The WiiU may just be a Gamecube like blip in its history. It'll be host to some amazing games (already is) and Zelda is likely going to be amazing. There'll be some interesting new IP... and then in a few years time we'll see something else that shakes things up again.

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