Posted by: seanmalstrom | July 2, 2015

Email: The Cult of Miyamoto is unraveling

http://fortune.com/2015/06/23/shigeru-miyamoto-wii-u/

Interesting interview.  Once again, Miyamoto blames the failure of the Wii U on everything but the GAMES or even themselves.  We customers didn’t “understand” what they were trying to achieve.  Which is funny seeing as they did such a bang up job of unveiling the Wii U that they had to show a picture of the damned console after the fact because people weren’t sure what the Wii U was.  So whose fault is that, Nintendo?
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What I do want to comment on is that in some places I’m seeing this article being linked to, like Gamefaqs, I’m seeing a lot comments that are along the lines “Thank God!”  “He needs to not be involved with the hardware, stick to making games.”  Some are even going further and stating that he’s past his prime and needs to move on.  And those sentiments are not just reserved for him.
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The overall tone on such forums towards Nintendo after their Direct is quite NEGATIVE.  There’s lots of criticism and anger towards Nintendo for the dearth of software and overall just “meh” presentation.  Normally the “hardcore” Nintendo fans would try to shout down and drown out those sentiments.  But it’s not happening this time.  There’s more voices of discontent joining the choir.  And because Nintendo put their developers forth as the face of the company and IPs, they are now bearing the full brunt of responsibility in the eyes of gamers.  The door swings both ways and it’s hitting them in the face.  I think you said that the reason we don’t see Sakamoto anymore is because of how he put himself out there for Other M, that there was no way for him to avoid blame for how disastrously that game turned out.  Team Ninja made sure to point out that all the critical decisions in the game came from him and they followed his orders, despite objecting to them.  There was no way for him to avoid blame for the results.  Maybe this is why we aren’t seeing anymore Iwata Asks interviews.  People are seeing who it is to blame for their games turning out poorly.
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I am curious about him saying he’s “not actively involved” with the development of NX.  Was this planned all along, or is something happening within the company that has him saying this?  This is only a few weeks after their Direct, and there’s no spinning how poorly received that was.  Could the poor reception finally be lighting a fire the company’s ass and have them pushing for some changes in the status quo internally?
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I do agree with your sentiment that it was stupid to put Miyamoto and the other developers out there as the face of the company, because now these people are going to become pinatas for their customers anger for failing to deliver quality games and hardware.  Contrast with the Bethesda unveiling of Fallout 4, and all they do is talk about the game and show it off and all the cool new neat things you can do in the game.  People can’t really attack the spokesman because he isn’t putting himself out as the “face” of Bethesda or Fallout or The Elder Scrolls.  He’s just letting the games speak for themselves.  Nintendo needs to go back to doing this.  Unfortunately, the quality of their games has bombed to the point that the poor reception to their Direct speaks for itself.

 

Here is how things went from what I know.

NES, SNES, and N64 were Yamauchi led. I imagine Miyamoto was a big part of the N64 too by that time.

Gunpei was huge factor behind the Gameboy. I know that Gunpei was a factor behind Virtual Boy, but we know Miyamoto was also a big advocate for Virtual Boy too.

I am not sure where the DS came from. What part did Yamauchi or Iwata have in it? We do know that the DS was deliberately done to check the PSP. Sony beat Nintendo in home consoles, why not in handhelds? It is no doubt that the DS was largely made (third pillar and all) to be a counter to the PSP.

I know Iwata had a big part with Gamecube, and I am sure Miyamoto and the rest did too. Gamecube represents the same ‘faster and better’. NOA also likely had a big factor in the N64 and Gamecube.

We do know that the 3DS hardware design was largely affected by Miyamoto. Investors wanted Miyamoto involved because they keep hearing he is such a genius! The 3DS was a disaster. Its 3d display made the device not likely for younger kids (a large Nintendo market). Miyamoto was also said to be the one who put the ‘slider’ in place of the D-pad.

In the Iwata Asks interviews, I got the impression that Iwata was letting Miyamoto do anything he wanted.

The Wii was never said to be a Miyamoto invention. What was said was that a ‘young person’ came up with the idea of a single handheld controller. But Miyamoto’s ‘idea’ was to be able to connect other devices into it.

Nintendo was very open about the Gamecube disaster. They admitted that it did not work. Iwata, at the time, also blamed lack of third party support on the timing of the Gamecube’s launch. Gamecube launched a year later than PS2. This is why it was deliberately done for the Wii to launch exactly when the PS3 did. It is why Wii U launched earlier than PS4. Iwata thought the third parties would get used to such hardware and stay. Wii U proved him wrong.

I’m mixed about NX’s direction. Getting Miyamoto away from it seems acknowledgement that Miyamoto does not have the Midas touch. However, Miyamoto blaming ‘tablets’ for everyone ‘not getting’ Wii U seems ridiculous. Is this a Nintendo problem or a Miyamoto problem? I’m thinking it is a Miyamoto problem. Nintendo acknowledges the disaster called Virtual Boy even if Miyamoto still thinks the Virtual Boy is awesome.


Above: Hidden video of what goes on at night at the Treehouse

We really have to see what the NX is. We had the Wii-mote controller revealed before the Wii. We have nothing to go on for the NX except the account system plan with DeMa (or whatever its name is).


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