Nintendo must adapt or die in changing marketplace

More bad news for Nintendo. After the disappointing flop of its latest console, the Wii U, Nintendo is facing more pressure

More bad news for Nintendo.

After the disappointing flop of its latest console, the Wii U, Nintendo is facing more pressure to get out of the console-making game and stick to the game-making game.

This isn’t the first time that it has been suggested that Nintendo would do better if it stopped building consoles and allowed its characters to be licensed across other platforms.

After Nintendo reported its first ever loss two years ago, the once-powerful video game giant adamantly refused to license its trademark characters like the Mario Brothers, Donkey Kong, Link and Kirby and related games for use on other platforms.

However, it is becoming increasingly apparent that Nintendo may no longer have a choice. Currently, the company is projecting a loss for the end of the current fiscal year and has cut forecasted sales of the Wii U by more than two-thirds.

Nintendo has certainly come a long way from the small company that printed playing cards. At one time, Nintendo was synonymous with video games and made images like Mario’s red hat and blue suspenders familiar even to those who have never touched a joystick or d-pad in their lives.

However, nothing lasts forever and the abysmal sales (or lack thereof) for the Wii U have proved that Nintendo cannot compete with Sony’s PlayStation line or Microsoft’s Xbox line, the current reigning consoles. If it continues on this path, Nintendo will fade away into history much like Atari before it.

There is one way Nintendo could save itself, though it refuses to do it. That is to get out of making consoles themselves and license games and characters for use on other consoles.

I have no doubt that making Nintendo’s content available on other consoles would preserve the company’s existence. See, Nintendo’s problem is this, their games appeal to too narrow of a market.

Nintendo, throughout its lifetime, has done a fantastic job of creating wildly successful child-friendly games enjoyable for the whole family. When Nintendo released the Wii in 2006, it revolutionized the video-game industry and the living room by creating a console the whole family could enjoy together.

Trouble is, the children in those families grow up and the games don’t grow up with them. So, they turn to Microsoft and Sony’s consoles in order to access a more mature catalogue of video games. Those consoles win-out over Nintendo because they cater to children as well as adult gamers.

But, extremely rare is the gamer who has never played one of Nintendo’s consoles and fond are the memories associated with them. While older gamers may not be devoted enough to buy a console solely dedicated to Nintendo’s characters and games, they certainly would buy those games and enjoy them on other consoles, if only for nostalgia’s sake.

Nintendo should urgently reconsider staying in the console building business and how it licenses its intellectual property. Sega (once Nintendo’s fiercest rival) made the move decades ago and hasn’t released a console since the Dreamcast in 1998. While they may not be as recognizable as they were in the hey-day of the Genesis, they are still alive. Nintendo could go on making great games with their well-known characters that would be enjoyed by children and adults alike, but only on different consoles. Or, it could die.

news@lacombeexpress.com

 

Just Posted

Police officers and their dogs undergo training at the RCMP Police Dog Services training centre in Innisfail, Alta., on Wednesday, July 15, 2015. Mounties say they are searching for an armed and dangerous man near a provincial park in northern Alberta who is believed to have shot and killed a service dog during a police chase. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
RCMP search for armed man in northern Alberta after police dog shot and killed

Cpl. Deanna Fontaine says a police service dog named Jago was shot during the pursuit

Alberta now has 2,336 active cases of COVID-19, with 237 people in hospital, including 58 in intensive care. (Black Press file photo)
Red Deer down to 73 active cases of COVID-19, lowest since early November

The Central zone has 253 active cases of the virus

The Sylvan Lake Gulls show off the home jerseys (white) and their way jerseys at the Gulls Media Day on June 17, before the season opener. Following the media day, the team took to the field for their first practise. (Photo by Megan Roth/Sylvan Lake News)
Sylvan Lake Gulls ready to throw first pitch as construction continues

The Gulls inaugural season kicks off June 18 with a game against the Edmonton Prospects

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is seen during a joint news conference following the EU-Canada Summit, in Brussels, Belgium, Tuesday June 15, 2021. Trudeau says Canada is on track now to have 68 million doses delivered by the end of July, which is more than enough to fully vaccinate all 33.2 million Canadians over the age of 12. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Vaccine deliveries enough to fully vaccinate all eligible Canadians by end of July

Three in four eligible Canadians now have their first dose, nearly one in five fully vaccinated.

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam listens to a question during a news conference, in Ottawa, Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases attributed to the highly contagious Delta variant grew in Canada this week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s public health agency reports spike in confirmed cases of Delta variant

More than 2,000 cases of the variant confirmed across all 10 provinces and in one territory

The federal government says it wants to ban most flavoured vaping products in a bid to reduce their appeal to youth. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Craig Mitchelldyer
Health Canada proposes ban on most vaping flavours it says appeal to youth

If implemented, the regulations would restrict all e-cigarette flavours except tobacco, mint and menthol

The Montreal Police logo is seen in Montreal on Wednesday, July 8, 2020. Some Quebec politicians are calling for an investigation after a video was released that appears to show a Montreal police officer with his leg on a young Black man’s neck during an arrest. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Probe called for after video appearing to show Montreal officer’s knee on Black youth’s neck

Politicians call for investigation after clip evokes memories of George Floyd incident

Thousands of protesters make their way through the downtown core during a Black Lives Matter protest in Ottawa, Friday June 5, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
MPs’ study of systemic racism in policing concludes RCMP needs new model

Chair of the House public safety committee says it’s time for a reckoning on ‘quasi-military’ structure

A case filled with packages of boneless chicken breasts is shown in a grocery store Sunday, May 10, 2020, in southeast Denver. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-David Zalubowski
One million chickens euthanized during labour dispute at Quebec slaughterhouse

Premier says waste amounts to 13 per cent of the province’s chicken production thrown in the garbage

A section of the eastern slopes of the Canadian Rockies is seen west of Cochrane, Alta., Thursday, June 17, 2021. A joint federal-provincial review has denied an application for an open-pit coal mine in Alberta’s Rocky Mountains, saying its impacts on the environment and Indigenous rights aren’t worth the economic benefits it would bring. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Panel says Grassy Mountain coal mine in Alberta Rockies not in public interest

Public hearings on the project in southern Alberta’s Crowsnest Pass region were held last fall

Most Read