Keep up the great work.
I have always wondered why Nintendo’s games lack the punch they once did decades ago. Since the question offends the developers, they dismiss it by saying ‘nostalgia’. But there is something different.
Nintendo is all about selling their hardware. In order to sell the hardware, software must be released at certain time points in order to keep momentum. As Iwata says, “This is a momentum based business.”
I suspect Nintendo’s game development is ruled by time limits instead of ‘What game do we want to make?’ It might be why all these Nintendo games feel like we’re playing something similar but with a new hardware feature tossed on top.
But what I find more perplexing is that Nintendo does delay their games… but only the games they choose. Have you ever heard of a 2d Mario game being delayed? Ever? But 3d Mario games get ‘additional development time’. Kid Icarus Upgrising got extra development time. Aonuma Zelda games always get extra development time… and no one cares about them. I suspect Sakamoto’s Other M got extra development time as well.
But did Wii Sports Resort get extra development time? Perhaps an online mode or tennis could have been included? If 2d Mario got extra development time, an online mode could be put in. But that is never the case. We never hear about these games being delayed for more development time. It’s like Nintendo doesn’t care about those games and only cares about certain games… the games that are attached to a big name developer.
I think 2d Mario is one of the most important games for the Wii U. Will it get delayed so it is done right? Of course not. It will be shipped ASAP. But 3d Mario? Oh man. That must be delayed. It must be given another live orchestra! It’s like there is something wrong with Nintendo developers’ hearts. They are passionate about the games no one wants to buy and are bored by the games people do want to buy.
This tells me that Nintendo developers are in another universe separate from most gamers out there. Do the Nintendo developers come across to you as gamers? They come across to me as a type of video game professor. They are very preachy but don’t actually play games like we do. They might have played games like we did decades ago when they were younger. Nintendo developers do not believe in the term: “A game well played is a good game.” This is hinted when people like Aonuma haven’t even finished the original Legend of Zelda. Wouldn’t it be appropriate to put a Zelda gamer in charge of Zelda development? But that is not the Nintendo way it seems. It is baffling and frustrating.
Of course, we might as well be talking to a wall. Nintendo developers believe they have all the answers and know everything. They think every problem is with the audience, never with their ways. Japanese gaming is not in decline because of its developers, oh no, it is the audience who is at fault! I get the impression of rampant arrogance and stubbornness from Nintendo’s creative side.
You mention ‘choice’. I suspect the reason why Nintendo doesn’t give us that choice is because the people at Nintendo cannot understand our predicament. They don’t play games like we do. To them, the game is development. It is how to ‘surprise’ the market. It is how do we get this to ship on time. That is the game they play.
I feel Nintendo and I are on different worlds. With the Wii, I felt like they were finally in my world and making a game console for me. Now, it seems like Nintendo is making something for themselves.