Nintendo's Future Now All About The Games

Steve Anderson : End Game
Steve Anderson
The Video Store Guy
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Nintendo's Future Now All About The Games

No matter what you may have to say about Nintendo--and there's certainly plenty that could be said in any direction--but it must be said that Nintendo is rapidly getting a handle on what it's going to need to survive. And thanks to two clear points--that can really be distilled down into one--Nintendo's ultimate direction for survival is now clearer than it's ever been.

A recent shareholders' meeting was the venue from which Satoru Iwata, Nintendo's president, made it perfectly clear that Nintendo's survival, at least as far as the Wii U was concerned, came from two key points that were actually just one key point in the end: games. More specifically, Iwata underscored the importance of not only getting the first party games in play, but also developing the third party gaming pool as well.

Thankfully, Nintendo has made some moves in this direction already. A combination of Unity support and the Nintendo Web Framework system are poised to open some very big doors for indie developers, and considering the success of indie titles like "Minecraft," "Angry Birds," and the more recent zombie shooter titan "State of Decay," well, it's clear that getting indie skin in the game, so to speak, is the way to go.

Yet Iwata knows that it won't just be indie games that get Nintendo fully back into the larger game of consoles, so to speak. Nintendo needs to draw the third party developers, and it has some greater plans to do that by using first party games to draw the crowds. Basically, Nintendo is banking on names like Pikmin 3 to sell Wii U systems, which in turn means more players in the field, and that means a more attractive overall prospect for third party game makers to enter in on. Just to top it off, Nintendo also wants big name third party games to prove to other third parties that developing for the Wii U is not an exercise in futility, but rather a path to significant gaming success.

Indeed, Nintendo seems more aware than it's been in some time that it's games that sell the systems, not the other way around. The system is nothing more than a pricey paperweight without the games on hand, and though the games don't amount to much without a system on which to play them, no one's going to buy a system without games to play. There are, however, several major games in the pipe for Wii U, from "Deus Ex: Human Revolution Director's Cut" to "Batman: Arkham Origins" and several others from major studios. But will this development be enough?

Only time will tell if Nintendo can rally enough big names to its side to make the Wii U a valuable prospect, but if Nintendo can't pull it off, it's going to be at a huge disadvantage in the next phase of the console wars...if it even gets there.
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