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Nintendo Wii

Nintendo Trying To Win Back Core Gamers With Wii U 223

Speaking at a shareholder meeting yesterday, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata discussed the company's goals for the Wii's successor, which aims to pick up the subset of gamers turned off by imprecise motion control. He said, "Wii was not accepted by core gamers because they did not want to abandon their preferred control approach. Additionally, Wii did not use HD because HD cost/performance at the time was low. Wii U makes it easier to use conventional controls. Also, the Wii U controller is not as big or heavy as it looks." Earlier comments from Shigeru Miyamoto indicate the new console will have more to offer in terms of online capabilities, but Nintendo isn't going to focus too heavily on that.
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Nintendo Trying To Win Back Core Gamers With Wii U

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  • "Core gamers" flock to the console with the best games. The reason gamers like me abandoned Nintendo was because even the first party titles were pretty crap. The third party titles were largely unmitigated crap even when they were, bad, ports of PS/XBOX games.

    Nintendo used to have a reputation for quality games, which they abandoned with the Wii.

    You reap what you sow.

    • Many of Nintendos games were good quality, however most third party titles lacked any quality whatsoever.
      Good quality titles like Disaster Day of Crisis were drowned in the usual shovelware.

      • EVERY popular platform drowns in shovelware. Every console generation that I can remember had tons of shovelware on whatever happens to be the most popular system(s).

        If the PS3 were in the lead, you'd see all the shovelware there (like in the previous 2 generations), and we'd be complaining about Sony instead.

    • by Xest ( 935314 )

      I dunno, I think the controller was part of it too. Really, when I come home from work after a stressful day I just kinda want to veg on the couch and blow some stuff to peices. The last thing I want to do is jump around like a retard with reminders about how I should take a break getting in my way every 5 minutes

      Even on a weekend though I didn't find it particularly great for deep immersive experiences, partly because well, the Wii just didn't have any, but partly because it's easier to mindlessly use a co

      • I'm with you on the controller sentiment. I put off buying a Wii until last November, I just didn't really want one, the controller being the chief reason. The New Super Mario Brothers being more or less classic in it's use of controls motivated me to get the red system. My kid loves it all the way around, I play NSMB and Mario Kart Wii, both of which could be confused as games using a decidedly non-Wii like control scheme.

        On that note my DS games make little to no use of the touch-screen/stylus.

        • This is the problem with the Wii. Since it had motion control, everybody thought they just had to use motion control in some aspect, or their game would fail. The worse example I can think of this is Fallout. It make you shake the controller to jump. This was fine until you had to make a precise jump to get on top of something. The combined action of shaking the wiimote, and moving forward was something I found quite difficult. They could have easily mapped jump to a button, but they made it so you had
      • by ifrag ( 984323 )

        Now they come forward with "Oh we don't care about the internet too much" or whatever it was they said and it sounds like they're being half arsed on that too.

        And that statement right there shows just how serious Nintendo is about getting the "Core Gamers" back, which is not at all. A couple generations back with the PS2 and Xbox1 was the time when not caring about the internet was actually moderately acceptable. Things didn't really work too well, and the PS2 required special additional hardware, and add that to the fact there was only a handful of games actually worth playing online on either console, it wasn't a platform killer to not focus on it. In fact,

      • My favorite wii games didn't make much use of the motion sensors. But the pointer is an extremely useful UI element. With controller + pointer + nunchuck you still have plenty of UI elements for most games. 4 Buttons, 1 stick + pointer. + 8 more buttons (Dpad, 1, 2, +, -) in less accessible positions.
    • "Core gamers" is a small market, but I think they are chasing it because that's the market that is willing to pay $50 for a game. I really don't understand the reluctance by Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo to drastically lower prices. If new games were $20 instead of $50 or $60, I'm pretty certain my game library would be more than 3x as big.

      I've been burned by too many crappy $50+ games that I'm very reluctant to buy any more. I've been pretty happy picking up bargains on Steam and playing games on my phone.

      • I hate game prices as much as anyone and think they should be cheaper, but you have to remmeber a game has to generate income for the developer, for the developers failed games(for every success their are generally at least one or more games that lose money), the distributer, the retailer and the console maker. console makers generally have very large investments and depend on the game licensing revenue to fund the hardware. for games to be $20 you would probably be looking at significantly more upfront cos
        • Valve has shown that lowering prices increases revenues [].

          If the problem is that you can't sell for less because there are too many middlemen to pay, then it's obvious what your problem is.

          • Valve has shown that lowering prices increases revenues [].

            For one thing, this is true in the case of urban gamers, who have access to with triple digit GB/mo transfer allowances. Gamers in rural areas depend on cartridges or discs because all they can get for Internet access is satellite or 3G, whose cap generally isn't high enough for a dual-layer DVD's worth of data in a whole month. Production of cartridges and discs adds a fixed overhead to the price of each copy.

            For another, some games are based on a work of authorship or setting licensed from another part

          • Yes, it may increase revenues but increasing revenues doesn't mean squat if they don't get the same profit margin. The games are where the biggest profit margin is when it comes to consoles so unless that $20 dollar title has a larger margin than the $50 title you'll never see new games being sold at that cost.

            • That doesn't make any sense. The marginal cost of another copy of a video game is very close to zero. Increasing revenues is really what it is all about.

      • "Core gamers" is anything but a small market. Call of Duty: Black Ops was the most successful entertainment product of 2010 - not just the most successful game - and while I don't regard it as a particularly good game, it is anything but a casual title. And a lot of the people who bought Black Ops (and probably more besides) will be buying either Modern Warfare 3 or Battlefield 3 - or probably both - later this year.
        • It's only small relatively speaking. The mobile games market is now larger than the console market and the momentum is solidly behind mobile at the moment. There are a lot of reasons for that, price being one of them.

          Did you see the recent interview with the former Sony chief who launched the original Playstation in '96? In it, he projected that unless something changes, Apple devices will be *the* video game market in the relatively near future. It's killing everything else.

        • That's assuming that CoD players are the core gaming market and not just that non-core gamers play CoD as well. I know plenty of people that only have a handful of games, and CoD is one of them.
      • by Tridus ( 79566 )

        Because your gaming catalog would still be bringing in the same amount of revenue to them, and people who won't buy triple the number of games would result in less money? And because AAA games are a lot more expensive to make then dinky little iPhone apps?

        • That's what publishers are afraid of. So far, I think all pricing experiments have shown the reverse to be true.

          AAA games are like blockbuster movies. Formulaic, expensive, risky, and usually money losers. All the innovation is happening in mobile right now with some notable exceptions (like Kinect). It's easy to take chances trying something new on a game that will sell for a few dollars. If you need to charge $50 for it, you end up going the safe route with Hockey 2012 which is almost the same as Hockey 2

          • All the innovation is happening in mobile right now

            Let me know when innovative mobile games from smaller studios can use a D-pad. And let me know when innovative mobile games from smaller studios can run on a device that doesn't cost $70 per month to operate, which a lot of especially younger gamers can't afford.

            • by h4rr4r ( 612664 )

              What is with your focus on everything being for everyone?
              Not every product fits every market, and that is not a problem. I own devices made by companies most have never heard of, heck they may never had heard of the type of device either, but the company still turns a profit. Go ask normal folks what digikey is, they will not know. Yet, digikey in its target market is huge.

              • What is with your focus on everything being for everyone?

                Tepples has Aspergers and IIRC used to babysit to make money before he got some job placement assistance.

              • by tepples ( 727027 )

                What is with your focus on everything being for everyone?

                Because I've discovered that there happens to be nothing for people like myself and other people in my family.

                Not every product fits every market, and that is not a problem.

                No device happens to fit my needs, and that is a problem for me.

          • All the innovation is happening in mobile right now

            Yeah lame ports of console and PC games and the vast amounts of solitaire clones, etc really shows a lot of "innovation".

      • Exactly, I would consider purchasing a console if the games where not as ridiculously priced as they are.
        Games are throw away products and they are priced like they are some sort of investment.

        Back when the WII first came out I was very close to purchasing one but it had two issues:
        1) No DVD-Video support
        2) Games are too expensive (issue of all consoles)

        So I stayed a PC gamer who rather drops 200 Euro on a Video card then a console with shackles.

        • Your problem isn't that the games are actually expensive...the problem is you live in Europe. So you get VAT, import duties, and exchange rate issues.. Not to mention the costs of translation to all the different languages.

          And even after you buy that 200Euro video card, you still have to buy games, right?

      • If new games were $20 instead of $50 or $60, I'm pretty certain my game library would be more than 3x as big.

        And how is that attractive to them when they will either make the same or less profit?

      • If new games were $20 instead of $50 or $60, I'm pretty certain my game library would be more than 3x as big.

        New games are $20 or $30, if you wait for the Greatest Hits or Game of the Year release.

        And right now you can get Assassin's Creed II for $9.99 on PSN.

    • He's very right. The Wii's big problem was gimmicky games. I've seen very few solid titles for it. Most of them are silly gimmicks that are designed around messing with the motion controller. Also, it gets in the way of some of what should be good titles. They focus on doing silly things with the controller that makes it harder to play the game.

      A good example of this is looking at the top selling Wii games. You exclude the sports games that come with the Wii (since people didn't really buy those, they got t

      • by DavidTC ( 10147 )

        I know a lot of people who own Wiis, I know exceedingly few, none in fact, that game on them regularly. Those that do game regularly also own another console (or both other consoles) or a computer and game on them.

        The thing that baffles me is how this is supposed to be a problem for Nintendo.

        Yes, we know serious gamers don't play on the Wii. This is because Nintendo, instead, decided to sell to casual gamers, and went out went and sold the Wii to something like three times the entire console market. At

        • But that doesn't mean it is a good system for gamers. The argument Wii fans seem to trot out is "The Wii sold the most, therefore it is the best game console." That isn't the case. The Wii is a gadget that lots of people wanted. That's wonderful, but doesn't make it a good game console (doesn't preclude it form being a good one, just doesn't mean it is one).

          Also Nintendo may well realize that a lot of what drove Wii sales was novelty and gimmick factor. That is wonderful, money in the bank, however that kin

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Seumas ( 6865 )

      As someone who buys a lot of games every year and owns every console and over 400 games on Steam and has shelves of old game boxes, let me say what most disappointed me about Nintendo's future via their E3 press conference:

      + They announced a Mario game.
      + Another Mario game.
      + Another Mario game.
      + Another Mario game.
      + Another Zelda game.
      + Another Zelda game.
      + Another Zelda remake.
      + A pokemon game.

      After thirty years, I think it's time to start doing new things instead of rolling out another iteration (or worse

      • The sad thing is that for people who love Mario and Zelda games, actually Nintendo fails in this regard.

        Mario 64 was the killer launch title of N64. They promised a sequel that generation and it never happened. They promised a proper sequel during the Gamecube era, and it never happened.

        The Gamecube version of Zelda became the Wii version of Zelda, because they pretty much missed the Gamecube lifespan.

        Nintendo is pretty good about having a few good first-party titles at launch. The rest of the console's lif

        • My N64 gathered dust. My Gamecube gathered dust. My Wii gathered dust. Why repeat the process?

          Absolutely. Look at Metacritic's game releases by score by year [] for the Wii, for 2011, and you can see what the problem is. Count up the number of "green" games, and total by year.

          2007: 19.
          2008: 42.
          2009: 64.
          2010: 44.
          2011: a miserable 10, if the current rate continues.

          In comparison, the PS3 has had more good games than the Wii every single year, and its lead has increased every year.

          So the Wii had three years where there were a decent number of good games. And a lot of those were ports of older games. And ev

  • The one big advantage the Wii had (motion control, and all the party-friendly games that came with it) has been trumped by both the 360 and PS3. The smaller advantage it has is price -- that can be a good thing to compete on, but the 360 is closing that gap as well (I'm convinced the only reason the base 360 still costs more is because they know it's worth more and people are glad to pay for it).

    That was boss Satoru Iwata's response when asked by a shareholder today whether the hardcore will accept Nintendo's next home console.

    "Wii was not accepted by core gamers because they did not want to abandon their preferred control approach," he said, as reported by Andriasang.

    Yea, the motion controls were a little stupid for "hardcore" games, but I don't think any new controller (their

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Jurramonga ( 1922438 )
      Bingo. The first console I bought this generation was the Wii. When I had friends over it was a lot of fun, but everyone else owned a 360. I ended up buying one myself just so I could play with them online, and my Wii stopped seeing use altogether for years until we got Netflix (now that's the only thing it's used for). The other problem Nintendo is going to have is getting back the market share that Microsoft and Sony already have. Are you going to buy Call of Duty 9 for the Wii U, the Xbox 720, or the Pl
      • by lpp ( 115405 )

        I'm surprised you kept using the Wii even for Netflix given you had a 360 (unless you were unwilling to get the higher tiered Xbox Live account needed for Netflix access on that platform). I had a Wii and a 360 and set up Netflix on both machines, first the Wii and then later on the 360. I switched to the 360 because with the Wii I consistently saw stuttering and pausing and the video quality wasn't great. When I switched to the 360 for Netflix, I saw a lot less mid-stream pausing and it seemed to me that t

      • When in the last 10 years has nintendo HAD the hardcore gamers? First it was PS2, then Xbox, then Xbox360/PS3....

        What Nintendo does and has been doing is to aim at the larger crowds, and all their sales figures over the last several years indicate they do that really really well.

    • .. with reality because you don't seem to know what you are talking about and think the Wii U is just a controller.

      The Wii U is not a Wii with a new controller. It is a totally new gaming system with hardware that is supposed to be far in advance of the 360 or PS3. The statement that Zelda HD could not run on a 360 or PS3 is totally factual. And whether or not you think the Wii had toy graphics is irrelevant because Wii U is not a Wii.

      It amazes me the amount of flack Nintendo is getting over this console ba

      • I really think Sony is making a mistake not updating the PS3. I really think people might be willing to shell out for a new version that had new unheard of features like backwards compatibility with PS2 games, maybe a couple of extra USB ports, and maybe even memory card readers.

        • I really think Sony is making a mistake not updating the PS3.

          No, Sony's big mistake was updating the PS3. The removal of Other OS from the original model led directly to the high-profile intrusions.

          • Which is why the PS4, XBox 720 or any other $CONSOLE++ will never have anything even remotely Other OS like.

            So here's to you, Mr. Temper-tantrum man(s).

            • by tepples ( 727027 )

              Which is why the PS4, XBox 720 or any other $CONSOLE++ will never have anything even remotely Other OS like.

              Good for them. I'll choose to stick to the PC and avoid this lockdown nonsense.

        • by h4rr4r ( 612664 )

          They could even have add a mode to run a more conventional OS on the console. I am sure a linux or BSD could be ported to it. They could call that mode AlternateOS.

        • (hoping you werent being facetious) PS2 backwards compatibility wasnt an unheard of feature and neither are the USB ports. The original version of the PS3 had both of those things. Later versions trimmed both down.

        • There have been at least four versions of the PS3 that had a subset of features (other than hard drive space) that would cause consumers to differentiate between them:

          1.) Original - had essentially a PS2 inside of it (emotion engine chip, etc) for full hardware compatibility of PS2 games. 4 USB ports.

          2.) Update - had software emulation for PS2 games. 4 USB ports.

          3.) Update 2 - no capability to play PS2 games (can still play PS1 games), 2 USB ports, no media card reader.

          4.) Slim - no capability for PS2 gam

      • I didn't actually mention the Wii U or any of its new features, least of all the stupid new Dreamcast Tablet controller. Everything I said was about the Wii. Why? Really because, there's not much to talk about yet. The only thing they've shown that looks complete at all is the new controller. All the videos I've seen show acceptable graphics, but they're all just tech demos and thus not representative of anything but carefully prepared cutscenes.

        The only interesting thing we know about the hardware is

  • yeah let's go from motion control to using a tablet with buttons, that's really what we wanted
    I think nintendo will really fuck up this time with the wii u, having more power than ps3 and 360 right now it's useless, we have seen this with pc gaming for years, developers won't make better games for one platform, and when the new playstation and xbox will come out the wii u hardware will be already obsolete, also if the games are mostly the same of pc/ps3/360 why whould I buy it, just to play with that half
    • That is the correct assessment but I'll disagree about the PC + PS3 choice.

      While I'm not a big Halo fan (I finished the first and 2nd Halo campaigns I think), you have to admit that multiplayer Halo is like a religion to many people and is not to be dismissed lightly.

      And yes, Uncharted and God of War brought me a lot of joy but the online experience on the PS3 sucks compared to Xbox Live.

      Personally, I want to play street fighter online and the Xbox is the best platform to do so. PC + 360 ain't cutting it.


    • yeah let's go from motion control to using a tablet with buttons, that's really what we wanted
      I think nintendo will really fuck up this time with the wii u

      Just want to point out that this was exactly the attitude of most of the media and forum pundits when details on the Wii came out (even fun was had at the expense of the name), and the Wii then went on to slaughter the other 2 consoles in sales for several years afterwards. For quite some time the Wii had more sales than the Xbox360 and PS3 combined.

  • I almost bought a Wii - but when the excitement of the Wii controllers wore off i'd played a couple of Wii games. I realised that im not interested in most of the "cutesy" games. Im not interested in Mario, Zelda, Sonic and all that jazz I never was when i was a kid. I also find the music for Nintendo games to be very annoying - mostly sound like crappy midi scores to me. Im pretty certain if i were to buy a Wii - I would rapidly bore of it and it would gather dust under the bed. I guess im just not the tar

  • And that I played with my Wii.

    I got funny looks.


  • a HUGE chunk of core gamers want a good online multiplayer system. if you are not going to put much focus on making your online capabilities very good or popular then you are just ignoring what the core gamers want.

    then again, maybe if they offered the console in a few more colors...

  • by Rogerborg ( 306625 ) on Thursday June 30, 2011 @06:40AM (#36620604) Homepage

    Hands up everybody who just posted that.

    Now, put your hand down if you said exactly the same about the Wii.

    Anyone still got their hand up? Didn't think so.

    Sure, you might be right this time, but Nintendo's massive gold swimming pool chock full of million Yen bills, hookers and blow says otherwise.

    • This article pertains to hardcore gamers, which is not included in the original and probably not even the Wii U's demographic. Sure, it had the best sales and made a lot of money, but we're referring to the "hardcore gamers". In this regard, the Wii did not sell well.
      • by Qzukk ( 229616 )

        If they want hardcore gamers, they're going to have to bring the hardcore games.

        Anyone with any interest at all in RPGs has a PS3. Anyone with any interest at all in shooters has an xbox. Only people with an interest in party games, cooking mama, golf, or old school nintendo gaming have the Wii.

        • by Toonol ( 1057698 )
          I honestly enjoyed Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn more than any other game on any console this gen, and it's a Wii Tactical RPG.

          Of course, according to their rating system, it may be the most 'hardcore' game published on the Wii.
      • Hardcore gamers werent the Gamecubes demographic either, nor the Wii's. Nintendo seems to not really care what a niche of gamers think.

    • Actually, a lot of hands would still be raised. You'll note that many of the harshest comments above reference bad experiences with Wiis that they purchased. I'm not sure where this "everyone said the Wii would suck" meme came from--the Wii sold well, but it was nowhere near as amazing as a lot of us thought it would be. Many of us were excited by the concept of motion controllers. It was only after we started playing that we saw that imprecise Wii motion controls were only good for exercise and party g
      • Is that high sales are not the same as being great. Yep, the Wii sold a lot. That doesn't mean it is a great gaming system, that means it is a gadget people decided they wanted. Now it could also be a great gaming system but that it sold tons doesn't mean anything.

        My favourite example along those lines is always exercise equipment. It sells very well, yet it is not used by most people who buy it. They get it, hoping it will motivate them to exercise but since the problem is motivation and not access, it jus

    • I'm not sure where you see the contradiction or being right vs being wrong, since it's different issues. Making money does not automatically equal quality or anything.

      E.g., there's a billion dollar industry selling homeopathic pills that do nothing, or quantum chi crystal-power pendants that do nothing, or magical/wishful thinking "self-help" books that don't and can't work like that in the real world, etc. Or exercise machines which then sit idle in a corner and collect dust.

      Now repeat business might be a

    • by elrous0 ( 869638 ) *

      Actually, the Wii did suck. And I say that as someone who owns one myself. Sure, it's great for kids and parties. And it's got some appeal to the casual market. But for the hardcore gamer (or even moderate gamer) it's pretty much just a toy. Mine has mostly stayed in the closet since I bought it. I played it some at first, and still occasionally break it out for visitors, but I never really considered it a good console. It looks like crap on my big HDTV, any gaming session of any length leaves me with a sor

  • I think a good new Zelda game could do the trick :)

  • If Nintendo really want to increase appeal to hardcore gamers - they can start by putting a stop to crap like this ... []


  • .... is just a DS, where the top screen is your TV. Although the resolution seems respectable, the hand-held display is single-touch only, which only further makes it seem like the bottom half of a DS to me.

    Also... from what I've heard... the console can't have more than one of these special controllers connected to it at any time, so it doesn't even open up any new multiplayer potential.

    On another note, I can find absolutely no indication that Nintendo might be finally loading their upcoming console with a respectable amount of internal memory, which if they repeat the maneuver that they did with the Wii in that department, and don't have at least a comparable amount of general purpose and video memory that can be found on competing consoles, they are probably just going to end up frustrating 3rd party console game developers trying to develop sophisticated stuff for it to the point that they simply won't bother... and will just do stuff for nintendo's competition.

    • Also... from what I've heard... the console can't have more than one of these special controllers connected to it at any time, so it doesn't even open up any new multiplayer potential.

      this is the single biggest fuckup. supposedly you can still use ye olde wiimote (hopefully with motionplus... maybe even required) so they're not throwing anything away. But they only permit one tablet. This is idiotic at best. Imagine a run and gun with a sniper mode on your tablet... or how Nintendo could just take sports games and run off with them with everyone having their own screen for play selection et cetera. Dungeon crawlers with map and inventory in your hands. They could get the price per unit d

      • by mark-t ( 151149 )
        Of course... but imagining the play possibilities that could have been is rather moot as far as Nintendo is concerned. Regardless of what the device could have been, the Wii U will only support one controller with a screen at any one time, and it cannot even theoretically support more than one in the future... at least not without a significant redesign that would likely end up being a whole new console. The reason for this limitation, from what I have heard, is because the wireless connectivity they are u
  • I had a SNES as a teenager, and I loved it. It had Final Fantasy IV, Final Fantasy VI, Chrono Trigger, Axelay, Cybernator, Megaman X, Shin Megami Tensei, Wizardy V: Heart of the Maelstrom, Secret of Mana, Secret of Evermore, Super Mario RPG, Super Metroid, Castlevania IV, A Link to the Past, etc.

    I skipped the N64 because the only RPG available was Quest 64, and I didn't give a shit about Ocarina of Time.

    I bought a GameCube, but the only games worth playing were Metroid Prime, Metroid Prime 2, Eternal Darkness, Tales of Symphonia, and Viewtiful Joe.

    I bought a Wii, and it collects dust unless I feel like replaying Trauma Team, No More Heroes, or Muramasa: the Demon Blade.

    I'm not buying a Wii U. Since Nintendo of America has no intention of releasing games like Xenoblade, The Last Story and Pandora’s Tower in the US, I have no further use for Nintendo.

  • by hansamurai ( 907719 ) <> on Thursday June 30, 2011 @11:07AM (#36623028) Homepage Journal

    Nintendo of America just announced they will not be localizing Last Story, Xenoblade, or Pandora's Tower to the Wii, even though there was a huge campaign to bring them over. []

    This is pretty much the opposite of catering to the "hardcore" gamer crowd, though I guess they probably think that means people who play Call of Duty.

  • Three strikes against Nintendo for things that turned out very poorly for the Wii. I should add $60-$80 per controller to the mix, but they've already struck out.

    The Virtual Console was the selling point for the Wii for me, but where are the games? I read somewhere that Japanese gamers have access to a much wider library of games to purchase for their Virtual Console than US gamers like myself. Where's the love, Nintendo of America?

    Every online-enabled game I have is so bad that I don't even want to us

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from a rigged demo.