With Super Mario Galaxy 2, Nintendo included an instruction DVD to try to get the 2D gamers. With 3DLand and 3DWorld, they tried to copy NSMB’s generic Mario graphics (of all things) and had a flag pole at the end.
For Mario Switch, the strategy to get those dang 2D gamers to play real Mario will likely be to rely on Mario Run. This is one of the few things we can predict about Nintendo’s software strategy.
Mario Run will probably be Nintendo’s second biggest mobile banned, after Pokémon Go (or biggest, if you consider them separate). Either way, the best case scenario of Nintendo’s IP funnel strategy will be made clear from the sales of Pokémon Sun and Moon.
We’ve already seen a bump in 3DS sales. considering how big PoGo was, I would set Nintendo’s top benchmark at 30 million sales within a year, combining both versions, worldwide. this is more than the record holding Red and Blue
by a lot, on account of population growth and the sending success of PoGo. This is also despite releasing to a much smaller install base, though I doubt that matters: Pokémon was for gamers 10 and under at the time which many Gameboy owners weren’t, but can now reach anyone under 30.
If we see that kind of huge success, then Nintendo might believe they can get something similar done with Mario Run and Mario Switch.
This is what Nintendo’s strategy seems to be:
“We want to make the games WE want to make. This means…
“Cell shaded Zelda with PUZZLES, lots of puzzles! OMG, puzzles!
“Maternal Instincts Metroid! Metroid must appeal to ladies! And butt shots for the men. LOL WE ARE GENIUSES!!!!11!!!”
“More 3d Mario! If gamers do not understand the genius of 3d Mario, WE WILL MAKE THEM UNDERSTAND.”
“If we keep making Pikmin games, one of them will surely take off into a hit. Remember, WE ARE GENIUSES.”
“How you like that Starfox Zero? Oh yeah! And that Starfox Command! Yeah, we are soooo awesome. Despite low sales, we will keep making more.”
“No! You cannot have any more classic Metroid or 2d Mario! No! No! No! We made those games before, we do not want to make them again. But we have no problems remaking 3d Mario or Pikmin or Aonuma Zelda again and again and again. But those classic games? No!!! No! No!”
The reason why the Wii ultimately petered out was because Nintendo’s strategy was not to make gaming for the masses. If Nintendo’s strategy was to make gaming for the masses, they would not be making more 3d Mario and Pikmin. Nintendo is lying to your face, and Miyamoto lies all the time. He is a very selfish bitter old man. He is bitter because no one likes his stupid 3d Mario, and it is because no one sees him as a GOD anymore. When people start treating you like a GOD, you become arrogant and get a swelled head. Note how Iwata wasn’t treated as a GOD until well after the DS/Wii, and Iwata did amazing work. But once Iwata thought he was some sort of genius, then we got the 3DS and Wii U which almost destroyed the company. Before Wii was released, Iwata said: “Nintendo must not become arrogant.” Yet, these game companies always become arrogant with success. It is incredible.
The Wii was not a rejection of the Gamecube as the hardcore gamers thought. The Wii was a marketing and game outreach program to the Gamecube. The purpose of the Wii was not to get more people playing video games, but to get more people playing Gamecube-esque games. 2d Mario didn’t exist to be played by itself. The mission of 2d Mario was to funnel people to 3d Mario. All the Wii ‘casual games’, at least the Nintendo side, was to get new gamers for Gamecube styled games. Sakamoto thought Other M would be successful because they ‘kept the controls simple’ to just the Wii-mote. This is how they think, folks.
There was no conversion from the disastrous N64 and Gamecube philosophy.
After the DS and Wii success, Nintendo thought they could keep making N64s and Gamecubes so long as they had a mass market marketing campaign, brand, and mass market games. The 3DS was doing what the Virtual Boy was trying to do. The Wii U was doing what the Gamecube was trying to do with the Gameboy-Advance Connectivity built in.
The market punished Nintendo for this arrogance. Everyone saw through their Wii style marketing. Everyone saw through the games Nintendo did not want to make.
Starfox Zero seems like some sort of Miyamoto Vanity Project because he got butthurt that people declared how Wii U wasn’t using the Gamepad’s ‘innovation’ at all.
If the pattern holds true, then the Switch will feature nothing but more of the same Gamecube-esque or N64 esque gaming. The ‘outreach’ program will be the mobile games. Instead of the mobile games being on the console transmitted through Funky Controller, it is just left on the phones.
If this is the strategy, the Switch will definitely fail. A gaming philosophy conversion must be made within Nintendo. They cannot keep forcing these Gamecube styled games on us and expect to stay in business. Nintendo seems in absolute denial about their software situation.
If the Wii U software is so good, then why did the Wii U hardware sell so badly? It is because the software was never actually that good. The Nintendo Cult will say anything is good. But it isn’t.
“What about the Turbografx 16, Malstrom? That console failed, but you think the games are good!” It didn’t fail in Japan. And there were SERIOUS marketing problems with that console as the Japanese didn’t understand how to sell to Americans (bundling in Keith Courage in Alpha Zones is like bundling in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde for the NES).
Nintendo needs conversion on what video games actually are. And what are they? They have arcade roots. Wii Sports was successful not because of its motion controls but because of a core arcade gameplay that is very well done. This core arcade gameplay is why 2d mario is so much fun while 3d Mario feels meh, why classic Zelda feels great while Aonuma Zelda feel ugh, why 2d Metroid is awesome while Other M is blah.
What is scary is that Nintendo doesn’t even see this gameplay anymore. When they look at 2d Mario, they only see ‘level design’.
I would like to force Miyamoto to play through the PC-Engine classics. That console relies entirely on arcade gameplay. Unlike SNES or Genesis, there are no 3d games and no desire to become 3d. There is no virtual reality. Just cold, core, classic arcade gameplay. Like what Mario, Zelda, and Metroid used to have. Like what Wii Sports and Wii Fit have, trapped in its sportiness. But instead, we get ‘puzzles’ in Zelda, and ‘OMG, I can’t believe that is 3d!’ skits in 3d Mario.
It is still too early to say what Nintendo’s software strategy is. We can tell this:
Zelda: Breath of the Wild – GOOD MOVE (though still unknown how it truly plays in the end)
Mario Switch – BAD MOVE
Federation Force – BAD MOVE
Pikmin 4 – BAD MOVE
It is amazing how stupid this company is. They are wasting millions of dollars on franchises that do not sell, and refuse to spend money on franchises that DO sell. Miyamoto is not a plucky fun game designer to me. In my world, Miyamoto is the Darth Vader of video game design. In his Anakin days, he did works of wonder. But now, he keeps trying to make the Death Star of Virtual Reality powered by ‘OMG 3d!’. For his Clone Army, we have endless 3d Marios, Aonuma Zeldas, ‘How-Lame-Can-We-Get’ Starfoxes, and Metroid Soap Operas.
This is the Nintendo of today.
Now excuse me while I go play more of my Turbografx 16. I prefer playing FUN games, not Crazy Miyamoto Laboratory Experiments.