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Nintendo: Going Software-Only Multiplatform Would Be Shortsighted

Jonathan Lester
Nintendo, Wii U

Nintendo: Going Software-Only Multiplatform Would Be Shortsighted

Numerous industry figures (including Eidos lifetime president Ian Livingstone) have suggested that Nintendo are well-placed to release their games on other consoles and mobile devices. However, Ninty CEO Satoru Iwata is having none of it.

Speaking to CVG, Iwata blasted the notion as shortsighted and detrimental to Nintendo's working practices. "If I was to take responsibility for the company for just the next one or two years, and if I was not concerned about the long-term future of Nintendo at all, it might make sense for us to provide our important franchises for other platforms, and then we might be able to gain some short-term profit," he said.

“However, I’m really responsible for the long-term future of Nintendo as well, so I would never think about providing our precious resources for other platforms at all.”

Iwata continued by suggesting that Nintendo's hardware and software are inextricably linked. "What I believe is that Nintendo is a very unique company, because it does its business by designing and introducing people to hardware and software - by integrating them, we can be unique. And because we have hardware and software developers in the same building, they stimulate each other."

"And those kinds of conditions have enabled us to create something that no other companies can create," he concluded. "Those kinds of backgrounds are there behind the fact that such a number of great Nintendo franchises exist, and those great franchises always shine for people around the world."

Many publishers and pundits (not to mention gamers) are worried about woeful Q1 sales figures for the Wii U, which only managed to flog 10,000 units in the entire PAL territory. [Insert weekly rant about the lack of killer apps, system-sellers and pathetic hard drive space here.]

Interestingly, Nintendo did release a Pokedex app on iOS - and we reckon that the companion app route could serve them well. As viral advertising if nothing else.

Add a comment3 comments
Late  Aug. 8, 2013 at 11:43

Yes, banish those shortsighted ideas, Iwata-san.

Continue to bring out underpowered consoles. With virtually no exclusive titles. And let the product falter while you take a few years to bring out your main first party games.

It's been said an uncountable number of times already, but it's so pertinent it's worth saying again: How the hell can a company that so closely integrates it's hardware and software be so far behind on it's first party software?! Did the software department not get the memo that there's a new console coming out? Did their dev kits get lost in the short trip from hardware r&d to software development?
If third parties have managed to get titles out, there's no excuse for Ninty not to get their own games out. They probably had a much longer development time, plus they've got so much more invested in it. Third parties can take their time, but Nintendo really need to get top titles on the shelf as quickly as possible. Not a year and a half after the console's release...

chieftex  Aug. 8, 2013 at 12:20

I think it would be fair to assume that people who read (and write) Dealspwn are more than casual gamers. This is perhaps why we don't understand Nintendo's marketing or choice of products.

However, we are most likely in the minority when it comes to the actual target of the WiiU and 3DS. Casual gamers (who don't care as much about killer first party apps, hard drive space etc) make up a bigger market for them, and they have quite a market share of it. 3DS is unstoppable in this regard.

I would be most interested to see how this kind of news is received in the casual gaming media. My prediction - apathy.

phil16  Aug. 8, 2013 at 13:42

Seems to work well enough for Sega...

Anyway if they did release on other platforms they would at least make some money from me unlike the zero they currently get.

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