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Nintendo’s Wii U… Formula for Success?
Well, for those of you who have been out of the loop, the Wii’ successor, appropriately named the Nintendo Wii U, is set for release Fall 2012. A question that is bound to be on a number of gamer’s minds is: Why?
Why would Nintendo be releasing a new console you ask? Of course its due to the fact that the Wii has sold incredibly well worldwide and it seems to have won this console generation by a landslide according to vgcharts. It would be safe to assume that a new hardware release would be a good idea. In addition, the Nintendo DS and its derivatives – namely the DSi, DSi XL, 3DS and the newly announced 3DS XL – have proven that the console giant is still king of
the handheld market. To return to the original question: Why?
Why would Nintendo continue to bash the idea into their fans’ minds that a new console is necessary? Because Nintendo, like most businesses in the tech industry, believes in innovation. An approach quite similar to the Apple model of releasing new variants on current products periodically to the same praise year after year. The truth is that this approach works. And, in the case of Nintendo, it has worked quite well. Especially when considering the success of their handhelds. Will it work well with the home console market? I believe it will, however, to a diminished degree.
I say this mostly due to the fact the Wii was an astounding success. If there were an award for a console that adequately bridged the gap from the 6th generation to the 7th, it would be the Wii. Not merely due to sales but, in addition, the simple innovation that Nintendo took a risk in supporting: motion. The addition of the Wii-mote to over 90 million homes worldwide has been an impressive testament to Nintendo’s ability to tap into a market that hasn’t seen the light of day since kids used to crowd around televisions playing Duck Hunt. Yes, the former statement was a direct comparison between the Wii and Duck Hunt.
In and of itself the console giant has provided a platform for developers to innovate – even though it took some time after the console’s release before we began seeing first-party support with titles such as Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess and Super Mario Galaxy – and it is rumored that the Nintendo Wii U will do the very same.
Whether or not the Nintendo Wii U will achieve the same market success that the Wii had, however, is up for grabs. A large multitude of individuals who are not dedicated gamers purchased the Wii and, as of now, there may very well be millions of white boxes nested neatly beneath television stands (under a pile of dust). Whose owners are thinking twice about purchasing another Nintendo relic. Even with this in mind, Nintendo has still chosen to dive head first into the next console generation and whether or not it will be a profitable decision will be left up to the jaws of time.