In an interview with Gamasutra, Nintendo's Reggie Fils-Aime has put to bed some of the wilder conspiracies following Satoru Iwata controversial keynote speech at GDC, by saying that Nintendo has no interest in working with 'garage developers', instead preferring to make a distinction between committed artists in it for the long haul, and part time hobbyists.
'I would separate out the true independent developer vs. the hobbyist,' says NOA's boss. 'We are absolutely reaching out to the independent developer. … Where we've drawn the line is we are not looking to do business today with the garage developer. In our view, that’s not a business we want to pursue'.
He then goes on to follow up on Iwata's points about small developers undervaluing their games:
'When we talk about the value of software, it could be a great $1 piece of content or a $50 piece of content,' he says. 'The point is: Does it maintain its value over time or is it such disposable content that the value quickly goes to zero? … We want consumers to see value in the software, whatever that appropriate value is. And we want to see that value maintained over time.'
Iwata's keynote speech at GDC appeared to not necessarily attack smaller games and the rise of the App Store, but rather raised concerns about the shelf life of these games, with the low price points and massive amounts of increased competition making financial return somewhat unreliable, with Fils-Aime echoing a number of these points in his interview.
A slap in the face or a rigidly drawn line in the sand to allow for quality control? We'll see, although anyone who has faced a towering wall of Wii shovelware in the high-street might suggest that the net has developed some holes in recent years. Ironically, many of Nintendo's concerns regarding low-level indie development might be applied to smaller third party developers for the Wii.
Fils-Aime's also quashed rumours regarding the Wii 2 emerging any time soon, though he did possibly hint at a price cut for the current model: 'the Wii has a long life in front of it. We're still sitting at $199. There are a variety of marketing tools at our disposal.'