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Nintendo: Should They Go The Way Of The Segasaur?
E3 has been an exciting one this year. New games and consoles were paraded in full, flexing their imagination and uniqueness to the gaming industry masses. That was describing Sony and Microsoft. The other giant in gaming is Nintendo and where were they? Hiding on their Nintendo Direct presentation with nothing to show that was unique or imaginative. Could Nintendo go the way of Sega, who descended into making purely games for other consoles rather than create their own? Quite possibly.
Here’s the story, Nintendo’s Wii U has been troubled since its announcement. There has been a confusion in what the console actually offers over the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 while Nintendo seems unable to give a real plus point themselves. VGchartz has the total global sales of Nintendo’s Wii U at only 3.12 million and while that number may be off by a slight amount, there is no doubt in anyone’s book that the console is struggling, much like Sony’s PlayStation Vita. There is a difference with the Vita as the handheld will soon have a larger purpose, being used as a sort of second screen for its bigger brother the PlayStation 4. Quite in contrast, the Wii U seems to be doomed to continue with no real purpose further than to churn out identical Mario games and multi-platform games with gimmicky touch features. Which leads us nicely into the games.
Especially difficult to pinpoint is Nintendo’s focus on games. E3 brought us news on the exclusive Bayonetta 2, hardly a killer game for the system, and games that will likely be better and sell better on other platforms such as Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag and Batman: Arkham Origins. While it seems that Wii U has the most exclusives on paper, the reality is far from promising. Mario Kart 8, Wii Fit U, Wii Party U, Super Mario 3D World, New Super Luigi U, Game & Wario, Yarn Yoshi and Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Breeze are far from different from anything we have seen before. Nintendo are floundering, kept alive by the nostalgia of their biggest franchises. Seriously, Call of Duty makes no changes to gameplay, only adding in new guns every time while Nintendo releases identical Mario and Mario variants every year with only different suits setting each one apart. Who gets slaughtered by the media and which continues to be loved by everyone and their mother? I don’t need to tell you the answer to that do I?
Sega dropped out of the console business after poor sales and hefty competition from other sectors of the industry. This is something Nintendo are facing right this very second with their Wii U. Let me interject something, I am not talking about the 3DS as despite the poor start, the console pulled back and is doing wonderfully, the difference here is that the competition in the home console market is getting bigger and better by the week. Could Nintendo pull a Sega and start creating their biggest titles for other companies? I know it is a difficult idea to come to terms with, but if successful, the Japanese company could start seeing some really nice numbers.
Nintendo own some of the biggest selling games in the world. Pokemon, Mario, Zelda and others all sell extremely well in the past and only time will tell whether they will sell systems alone. Nintendo would ship many more copies of each games were they available for other platforms such as the upcoming PlayStation 4 and Xbox One consoles. One particular area that Nintendo would be wise to expand into is the mobile market with Android and Apple waiting. This way, the games that many know and love but are not enough to force them to buy whole hardware for it.
What do you think? Would Nintendo be wise to expand into other consoles and leave their home console division behind them?