Nintendo won't go cross platform with IP


Active Member
Jul 30, 2013
I admit, like the president of Eidos, I often wondered if Nintendo would be better off just stopping the hardware race and focus on their best-selling software. Like Sega and others, it may be best just to be a publisher and developer for the IP that lots of people usually buy a Nintendo console just to play.

However, Mr. Iwata has directly addressed that and squashed that notion, citing "it would only be a short-term fix." Despite Nintendo pioneering in innovation with hardware, I'm not convinced it would be, but what do you think?

I agree it would be a bad idea. For pretty much all the reasons he has stated here and before. Nintendo builds hardware specifically for their software, so they wouldn't be able to achieve the same level of creativity if they went cross platform. It would also decrease brand value, and their portables would take a hit as well.
Of course it would just be a short-term fix. One of the major pulls for Nintendo is that they hold many of the most iconic IPs under their thumb. People love those games - as anyone who has ever been to a convention can tell you (so many Zelda cosplayers). Why would they give that away just because one system didn't quite work out. It isn't like they haven't had a system stall on them before - honestly I wish folks would stop trying to see them dead.
Nintendo is not in so precarious situation as it might look. They have been extremely successful with the 3DS, not only in Japan but in international markets as well. So, I guess they won't have to resort to that short term fix Iwata has been referring to just as yet. But if Wii U doesn't starts performing well soon, I guess we will see Nintendo going multi-platform in near future.
Probably for the best. Nintendo has always been known for unique games, and because Nintendo consoles are all so varied, it would be very difficult to port those games to different platforms, so it just makes sense to have individual and unique games for each platform, rather than have half assed ports that don't really work. It's also a customer service statement, other companies wouldn't hesitate , and they would just churn out more content but Nintendo pride themselves on their high quality and I really appreciate it.
It would be the absolute worst idea if Nintendo were to start to develop for other platforms and/or stop making their own hardware. There's no need for that, for one, and, it'll hurt them far worse in the long run if they do. Luckily, Nintendo is smart enough to know that. So that's good.

I know that there is a small group out there, tho they are highly vocal, who want them to go cross-platform and forgo any more hardware. However, the silent majority know better. Nintendo makes their games around their systems, and their systems around their games. They put heart and soul into their products. They constantly push the industry forward. They are the leading innovators in the video game industry. Without Nintendo both making games and hardware, and keeping them separate from their competitors, this industry would go stale. Especially with Sony and Microsoft as the competitors. If Sega was still in the hardware business, then that would probably be a different story, as they were more closer to a Nintendo style video game company than Sony or Microsoft. Nintendo and Sega "got it", when it came to games and the hardware to support them. Sega to a lesser extent.

The only thing that Sony and Microsoft consistently show that they care about is just power and graphics. That's it. There's heart and soul in them. It's just raw power and numbers. That's it. They focus on the here and now, for the most part. They might go as far as a few years in the future. But Nintendo thinks longevity in what they do. That's why they are where they are now, and will continue to be there far into the future. The 3rd parties, on the other hand, are another variable in the equation. However, Nintendo has proven that they don't actually need 3rd parties nearly as much as Sony or Microsoft. Nintendo has so many beloved franchises on their own that they could make a "Nintendo-Only" console, and it'll still keep them afloat. The 3rd party games are just icing on the cake to them. Sony and Microsoft, on the other hand, only have a handful of true first party games each. They need 3rd parties far more to succeed.

But even then, Nintendo still puts out some of the best quality games. Nintendo is the best video game company in terms of that. They do high quality work, and they put their heart and soul into what they are doing. I'm not saying that other companies don't, however, there are some who clearly don't. I'm looking at you, EA. If EA isn't careful, they will not only get the "Worst Company in America" for a record, 3 times in a row, but, they could eventually go the way of THQ. Especially if they keep lazily re-skin and repackage older games and call them "new". Anyways, Nintendo knows that this business is all about the games. It's all about the quality games, not the quantity. They don't focus on the money, they focus on the product. Which I highly respect them for. Lots of video game companies will release a game unfinished just to get the holiday sales, and then try to patch up the game to try and fix it after they've gotten the holiday sales. Nintendo, on the other hand, has no problem pushing the game back to March if need be, in order to completely finish the game properly, and release it as best as they could, because they actually care about their product, as well as their customers.

For instance, take the Wii U launch. Pikmin 3 and ZombiU were both scheduled to be launch titles. Nintendo released that Pikmin 3 wasn't going to be perfect at launch, so they didn't hesitate to push it back several months in order to properly complete the game, instead of releasing an incomplete product. Ubisoft, on the other hand, prided themselves on having the "first must have blockbuster" on the Wii U. They boasted about it several times. It was even in their ad campaigns. However, the game released incomplete. The game was originally going to be an alien invasion game, but during development got changed to being a zombie game instead. Changing everything from aliens to zombies wasted precious time on the project. But instead of holding the game back, like Nintendo did their game, to make sure that the game could be the best that they could be, Ubisoft instead chose to keep the launch date, release the game incomplete, and have the stuff that they didn't have time to put into the game be added to the sequel. Things like the online multiplayer, or more melee weapons, and things like that. Things where they said in interviews, after the game launched, where they said that they just didn't have time to finish it, so they omitted it so that they could release the game at launch. They didn't care about their game enough to actually finish it. Instead, they cared more about 'being first', by having the "first must have Wii U title" on the system (something that they claimed a lot leading up to the launch), and then planned on adding in what they didn't have time for into the sequel. However, 2 things screwed them. One, was them themselves, for gimping their own game for the sake of early sales, as they cared more about the money than their own game. And 2, the self professed "hardcore gamers" didn't like that it wasn't like Call of Duty: Zombies. ZombiU was more like a Resident Evil 2-style game. But a lot of the Call of Duty: Zombies players didn't like that it was more like Resident Evil 2 and less like Call of Duty, so they bashed it. And it didn't help that some of it's key features were missing, for the sake of being "first". So what happened.. ZombiU sold terrible, and thus caused 2 things to happen. It cancelled ZombiU 2, which is a shame, as I still enjoyed the incomplete ZombiU. It could of been better, but for what it was, I enjoyed it still. However, not only did it cancel the sequel, which is a real shame. It also made the Wii U lose an exclusive title. Rayman Legends. The poor sales of ZombiU caused Ubisoft to port Rayman Legends over to the other systems, and make it no longer a Wii U exclusive. All of that, and it had nothing to do with Nintendo, or Nintendo's system. It was Ubisoft's doing.

And that's the real key, right there. Nintendo puts some real effort into their games and consoles, along with lots of heart and soul. Then, you have companies, like EA, for example, who will port a previous game but call it "new", and then complain when it doesn't sell. You can't gimp your own game and then complain that it's because of the system that it's on. That's just ludicrous. The real issue with Nintendo's consoles is not the system itself, but how the 3rd parties treat them. Nintendo always makes great games on their own consoles. Some 3rd party companies do too. But then, there are some 3rd party companies who care more about money or the 'easy route', then they do about their own products or the customers. Some companies will make crappy shovelware and then say "see, we tried, it didn't sell", which is just a terrible thing to do to begin with. But then, some companies like to gimp down their games, rush them out, or put their "B" and "C" teams on them, to pump them out on the cheap, just to try and make a quick buck. Leaving their "A" teams to focus on the bigger budget titles. Nothing wrong with that. But they should at least quality control their own games before releasing them. Some games by 3rd parties on any console feel like they didn't even attempt to quality control the game. Other games, again, on any platform, feel like they purposely released the game early for the sales, and planned on updating or patching them later on. Some, in fact, it seems that they release games early, see which games sell better, and then "fix" those games, not even touching the other games.

But that's not to say that 3rd parties don't make great games, as there are lots of great 3rd party games out there too. It's just that some companies don't seem to manage themselves very well. As THQ has shown us. Among others. Sony and Microsoft don't care about the games themselves. They care about power. Pure, raw, unadulterated, power. Oh, and shooters. There is a lot of vocal displeasure about Nintendo, when it comes to the other gaming companies. But Nintendo is the balance that the gaming industry needs. It's the driving force behind the gaming industry. Without Nintendo, the gaming industry grow stale, fast. Sony and Microsoft's new systems already feel like a "been there, done that" system, and they haven't even released yet. But looking at their lineups, it already feels like more of the same. It does. That's why I'm glad that Nintendo is doing what they are doing, and going in the direction that they are going.

As I said in a previous thread, Nintendo is the trend setter of the gaming industry. They popularized the d-pad with the NES. Now Standard. They popularized the shoulder buttons with the SNES. Now standard. They popularized the rumble feature with the N64. Now Standard. They popularized analog sticks with the N64. Now standard. They popularized the trigger button with the N64. Now standard. They popularized motion controls with the Wii. Still going, and becoming standard. They popularized the second screen with the Wii U, which Sony and Microsoft decided to do themselves after hearing about it. Microsoft with the Smartglass, which just looks terrible. It looks like a glorified remote control. Who wants to jump back and forth between a smartphone/tablet and a controller. Stupid. Nintendo did it right with adding the tablet into the controller. Sony, on the other hand, now says that their Vita is their second screen to the PS4. But that's more of a glorified GBA/Gamecube connection with more power behind it. And that's all Sony and Microsoft do. They just add more power behind what Nintendo does. They just make it "bigger" and "more powerful". And that's it.

If Nintendo stopped making hardware, Sony and Microsoft would continue to pound their chests and just try to "one-up" each other, by just adding more power to their machines. They'll still pump out the same games over and over, only with more power. The industry will grow stale, and eventually a "gaming crash" would soon follow. So I'm glad that Nintendo decides not to add their products to cross platforms. Sony and Microsoft will only be in the industry for so long, at the rate that they keep managing themselves. Nintendo, on the other hand, will be around for quite some time. They understand the business. They understand their customers. They understand their products. Not everybody likes what they are doing. But they are the balance that the video game industry needs, and the single biggest innovator that drives this industry forward. The industry, like it or not, would be far, far worse, without Nintendo. And putting Nintendo games on cellphones or competitors platforms is the absolute worst idea, and a giant leap in the wrong direction. Even if it helps to spur sales in the short term, in the long term, it will have devastating effects on the industry as a whole. And thankfully, Nintendo understands that, and stays away from what Sony and Microsoft are doing.

Don't get me wrong, I like Sony and Microsoft. I'm not against them. They are the other half of the balance. Sony used to make my favorite consoles, in the PSX and PS2. But they've gone downhill for me since. But both Sony and Microsoft help to push the power aspect of the industry. Tho, it could be argued that they push it too far, at times, making it more expensive than it needs to be. However, that's all that they care about. They only care about the power of their machines and the money that could potentially pour in because of it. They don't care for their product or customers nearly as much as Nintendo cares for theirs. That much is clear. But the industry needs both. Now we just need to get some of the 3rd parties to care more for their products and customers, and less about the money. Stop making shoddy products or releasing them early, for the sake of money, and stop making gimp products. Then we could have another golden age.

Another Golden Age would be nice. Honestly, even tho the sales for the Wii U haven't been stellar, to say the least, I'm more worried about Sony and Microsoft than I am Nintendo. Nintendo will be fine. Sony and/or Microsoft have more potential to end up going 3rd party first, by getting out of the hardware business. And they'll end up doing it to themselves. Just going bigger and bigger, more powerful and powerful, and more expensive and expensive, with "more of the same" stuff behind it, only, making games more expensive to make. If that trend keeps happening, more and more companies could be going the THQ route if they don't manage themselves right. Nintendo doesn't have to worry about that happening to them anytime soon. Not with their business model, and financial situation (as a whole, not just current sales). Like it or not, Nintendo is the single greatest thing to ever happen to the gaming industry, and continues to be so, even if people don't see it. But at the rate that they are going, Sony or Microsoft may bow out of the "race" sooner or later, first. Which actually may not be that bad of a thing, to be honest. It may be good, actually. Actually, what would be good is if they combined and joined forces (which will never happen. Especially when Microsoft joined the race specifically to try and take Sony out of it, to begin with). But they are similar systems anyways. Having one of those systems, along with NIntendo's system, could be good for both. Having only 2 consoles worked during the Nintendo / Sega days. Even during the Sega Saturn days, it felt like a Nintendo / Sony battle, with Sega in the distant background. The industry couldn't support 4 at the same time, which is why Sega went away. 3 works, but so does 2. But, knowing the industry, and seeing how each company works, it's clear that Nintendo is fine exactly where they are, and should never move their products to their competitors. That would be the absolute worst thing to happen to the gaming industry as a whole. It really would be. It might "help" in the short term. But in in the long term, it'll be seen as the single worst decision to happen to the industry. Thankfully, Nintendo recognizes that. Hopefully more will start to see it soon too. But most people seem to be looking at it in the short term, and not the long term.
People have been "predicting" that Nintendo will go multi-platform for over a decade. Ever since Sega pulled out of making hardware, the haters have been wishing the same fate upon Nintendo, but it hasn't happened yet. Even if the Wii U turns out to be a flop (which I believe it's not, because it's still ahead of the other 2 consoles), Nintendo will figure out a way and come up with something fresh. I truly believe Nintendo will be around for as long as consoles are around.
Nintendo will definitely be around for a long while. They can flop their next several systems, and still be fine. Nintendo isn't going anywhere. Sony and Microsoft both can't afford to flop on any of their systems. But Nintendo can. And, dominating on the handheld market helps them out a lot too. Plus, their franchises will stand the test of time. Most already have, and will continue to do so. However, like I said before, Nintendo could make a system with just their first party games on it, and it'll still keep them going all by itself. Some may consider it a "flop", but it'll keep them going strong. I don't think a lot of people realize that.

And I don't see the Wii U as a flop. In fact, it's my favorite system, currently. And, I like the Wii U so much that I have zero desire to rush out and get the PS4 or XO. But there are tons of games that have still yet to release on the Wii U that I want to get. Also, the DS didn't have a perfect start, but came to dominate. The 3DS didn't have a perfect start, and is dominating now. And the Wii U didn't have a perfect start, but is already starting to turn onto the upswing. I look at the Wii U and see mounds and mounds of potential. And then I look at the types of games on the DS and 3DS, and I see all kinds of possibilities for the Wii U. The Wii U can be the best of both worlds.. the console and handheld worlds.. all rolled up into one. There are some DS and 3DS style games that would be absolutely wonderful on the Wii U. And the moment companies begin see this and realize this, that it just going to open up the world of possibilities on the Wii U. The Wii U may have had a slow start (mostly due to a lot of big titles being pushed back several months, or not being ready for a full year later to begin with), but it has so much going for it. It has a truly, truly bright future ahead of it. I see more potential out of the Wii U than I do the PS4 or XO. I see the the PS4 and XO as becoming less and less of a video game machine, and more and more of a multipurpose computer. But I already have a computer that I could hook up to my tv if I so desired. So the PS4 and XO are becoming less and less appealing, as my computer is more powerful than the PS4 and XO, and, has a lot of the same games (most of which are done better on the PC). So, so far, the Wii U is my gaming platform of choice. As even it is already seeing more crossplatform games coming to it too. Not all of them, but it feels like it's already getting more than the Wii did. Which is a good thing.

Also, the indie market seems to absolutely love the Wii U. I'm constantly reading about how much the indies love the Wii U and how more and more are gravitating towards the Wii U. And, they are going to make some really unique and fun games that will not only be a Wii U exclusive, but also, will end up being the spark that shows the bigger companies what types of new and unique and fun games will be possible on the Wii U. And then that will cause them to make new games. So that's a good thing. The PS4 and XO are pretty much the same as the before, only more powerful. Not a bad thing, but 'more of the same", and it shows in a lot of the games that they have shown off already. It all feels like a "been there, done that", sort of thing. I'm not saying that they won't sell, but cause they will. I'm just saying that I like the direction that Nintendo is going in, and what they are doing. Even if the Wii U does end up flopping, which I don't see happening, again, Nintendo can afford it, and will just produce something new, sooner or later. But even then, they'll continue to support this by adding their first party games on it, and.. they will sell, and get reviewed great. Which, again, will keep them going.

Nintendo is in a unique situation like that, where they are pretty much self contained, and can afford a bunch of risks. Which is why they do a bunch of random stuff a lot. The other companies can't afford that, and that's why they like to "play it safe" a lot, and continue to do a lot of the same things. They find something that does well, and then boom, everybody jumps on board with it, until it wears itself out, and then boom, they find something else, and all jump on that. They go with what will make easy money. That's not a bad thing. It just won't always have the lasting appeal as other things will. Most companies in the gaming industry look at things in the short term. Once they have something that works, then they look at them in the near future way. But not Nintendo. They tend to constantly look at things in the long term. So they get a lot of "here and now" flak over this and that. But in the end, they'll still be going strong. I have no doubts on that. And that's because, if every single 3rd party jumped into the hardware business, and only put their brand of games onto their own systems, and they all went on the market at the same time. Nintendo would end up on top. A lot of the other companies couldn't survive if they did that. Some might, and some might last for a long while. But if they all did that, at the same time, Nintendo would be the 'last man standing' in the end. And the fact that they could do that, if it ever came down to that, helps them out in the current market system. Even if the vocal ones don't like it.

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