Nintendo CEO: Nobody Rides For Free

 Pages 1 2 NEXT
 

Nintendo CEO: Nobody Rides For Free

image

Regardless of what others are doing in the free-to-play market, Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata says his company is simply not interested in offering games at no charge.

You hear a lot of game company executives these days talk about the benefits of a free-to-play pricing model. One person you won't hear such talk from, however, is Nintendo boss Satoru Iwata, who reiterated his concerns about the impact of cheap and free games on the videogame industry in a new interview with AllThingsD.

"I'm not interested in offering software for free of charge. That's because I myself am one of the game developers, who in the future wants to make efforts so the value of the software will be appreciated by the consumers," Iwata said.

"If we are going to destroy the value of the game software - once we have done so, it's a difficult job to recover from that situation," he continued. "There are great examples of advertising and doing the microtransactions, and several companies who have come up with that kind of system. But on the other hand, if you ask me, is this the system that can be sustained for the long time? I don't know the answer. And, my point is that I'm not willing to go that direction, as well."

Rather than simply following the pack into "freemium" territory, Iwata said Nintendo wants to pursue its own vision to create something "unique and unprecedented." What that might be is a mystery, but it's definitely not super-cheap mobile and social games.

"If you say mobile and social games, why don't you do the same, I say because they are already doing it and we aren't doing the same," he said. "If you say freemium is somewhere you can spur new revenue, once again, the answer is the same. Just because many other people are thinking that way, we aren't thinking that way."

Permalink

I really don't know how to feel about this. Good for them I guess? More money for them?

Not every company needs to chase the newest trends in business. Sometimes there's room for the old and new.

After all, I'd hate to see all games follow the free-to-play MMO route. Wouldn't that be just weird and disappointing?

Good for Nintendo.

Facebook games aren't games at all, at least on the level of games in this decade or the last two. All it's done is degraded progression of graphics, physics, and other technology for simpleminded bunk.

I honestly thought Nintendo was going that route with it's last 2 game systems being child-like in nature and far behind the other generations, but then with the Wii-U, it looks like their finally pulling their heads out of their arse and moving forward far infront of the competition.

What about Excitebike 3D and the upcoming Four Swords on 3DS?

Quiet Stranger:
I really don't know how to feel about this. Good for them I guess? More money for them?

Sort of in the same boat.

You don't want to follow the market, good for you...but you also don't want to follow the market...

Gah...If everyone is running off a cliff then it's a bad idea to join in, but if they're going to get a free bag of money - it's quite a good idea.

He is right in that if you get something for free, you value it less.

As for everything else, let's just see how it works out for them.

Yeah, Nintendo doesn't want to follow the pack, it wants to create something "unique and unprecedented", like... Another Super Mario game!

Seriously, Nintendo is the only company that makes Sony look like a charity organization.

"Ok, so you're not going free-to-play.......so what ARE you going to do?" - my thoughts on this.
Plus, considering they're offering some free games, it's nice to see they won't be completely avoiding free stuff.

Yay!

Now go make a new M-rated IP. I know you can do it, Nintendo, you can make a really good mature game! I think...

Or at least a new IP of some sort.

On the one hand, they are trying to make their own future.

On the other hand, they are fighting against the trends, as explained in that Extra Credit's episode.

believer258:
Yay!

Now go make a new M-rated IP. I know you can do it, Nintendo, you can make a really good mature game! I think...

Or at least a new IP of some sort.

My thoughts exactly on the matter, which is also the biggest reason I completely avoided paying for the Wii this generation.

Deathfish15:
Good for Nintendo.

Facebook games aren't games at all, at least on the level of games in this decade or the last two. All it's done is degraded progression of graphics, physics, and other technology for simpleminded bunk.

I honestly thought Nintendo was going that route with it's last 2 game systems being child-like in nature and far behind the other generations, but then with the Wii-U, it looks like their finally pulling their heads out of their arse and moving forward far infront of the competition.

Because graphics and physics make games great? Here I thought fun gameplay was the cornerstone of a great gaming experience.

Zulnam:
Yeah, Nintendo doesn't want to follow the pack, it wants to create something "unique and unprecedented", like... Another Super Mario game!

Seriously, Nintendo is the only company that makes Sony look like a charity organization.

How is Sony any less money-grabbing than Nintendo? They both charge for console, games, controllers, add-ons etc...

OT: Good for Nintendo, I have yet to find a free-to-play game that comes anywhere near the quality of a retail game, I have no qualms about paying a reasonable sum of money in exchange for a good complete game.

Awesome. Once you start lowering the price, the only way you can go from there is even lower. If developers/publishers start losing money from the low prices, they can't just bump them back up to a regular price without massive consumer backlash.

Jumwa:
Not every company needs to chase the newest trends in business. Sometimes there's room for the old and new.

After all, I'd hate to see all games follow the free-to-play MMO route. Wouldn't that be just weird and disappointing?

If you ask me, the only games that should the the F2P route are the F2P MMOs. Though Im still confused about what Nintendo's plan is.

With a rabid an loyal fanbase you really don't haveto give anything for free, in fact you can sell them shovel-ware at very high prices.

So, for Iwata, where the money is coming from, and the effort and quality of work that produced the money, is what's important. That is...amazing, actually. And it's not like most in-house Nintendo titles aren't extremely well done. Even Wii Music, for all it's dirty casual appeal to the consistent, gaming-lifestyle kind of gamer, it was still really well done. In conjunction with the news of the Wii U, as silly a name as that is, it really reminds me that they are again here for that 'hardcore' gamer, not the social site 10-minutes-per-day audience. Nothing wrong with that audience, of course, but since it's not their focus, they don't have to hook them up. Fascinating.

I'm really starting to like Nintendo less and less. I can't quite put my finger on it, but the way they've been acting towards garage game makers and the way they're treating their new system just seem kinda weird to me.

Deathfish15:
Good for Nintendo.

Facebook games aren't games at all, at least on the level of games in this decade or the last two. All it's done is degraded progression of graphics, physics, and other technology for simpleminded bunk.

I honestly thought Nintendo was going that route with it's last 2 game systems being child-like in nature and far behind the other generations, but then with the Wii-U, it looks like their finally pulling their heads out of their arse and moving forward far infront of the competition.

Funny calling the wii behind the other generations when both the xbox and ps3 recently released a copy of their motion controls. Not to mention the fact that they have done far better then both of their competitors this generation. Besides graphics have very little to do with a game being good or bad.

Well uh...damn, I kind of agree. As much as I love the F2P model and believe it's a mutually-beneficial system, everything taking that route could make things very difficult for the industry if it doesn't turn out to be sustainable in the long term.

Personally, I like the suggestions made on Cracked. Multiplayer-heavy games are free to buy, but charge a subscription, single-player games are a lump sum like a DVD (the normal method), mini-game styled games (apps, etc) are a cheaper lump sum. It would help to keep developer's focussed on what kind of experience they want to make and what community to address without having to tack on features to widen the appeal.

Ahh, but I digress. His decision works against me, but it does seem to be the smart choice for the long-term survival of the industry.

That's always the gamble when it comes to big business. Do you go along with what everyone else is doing like a Lemming and hope to hell that they're not all headed for a cliff, or do you forge your own path and hope to hell it doesn't crumble under your feet.

I haven't bought a Nintendo product since the Gamecube. I never thought that was particularly amazing anyway.

Unlike a lot of gamers, I didn't grow up with Nintendo so I don't really have any nostalgia interlinked with the company. Not that I'm saying Nintendo fans are only fans because of Nostalgia. I'm sure there is plenty of reasons to be a Nintendo fan, I just don't get any of them.

Snowy Rainbow:

Deathfish15:
Good for Nintendo.

Facebook games aren't games at all, at least on the level of games in this decade or the last two. All it's done is degraded progression of graphics, physics, and other technology for simpleminded bunk.

I honestly thought Nintendo was going that route with it's last 2 game systems being child-like in nature and far behind the other generations, but then with the Wii-U, it looks like their finally pulling their heads out of their arse and moving forward far infront of the competition.

Because graphics and physics make games great? Here I thought fun gameplay was the cornerstone of a great gaming experience.

Yes, it is, such as Minecraft is a great example of crappy graphics and great gameplay. However, there's a point to what I'm saying where the game (example of Farmville) is entirely "click water, click land, crop grows". Almost no animation whatsoever and barely any real "game" play.

Games and the genre hasn't progressed much at all. Anyone remember Armed and Dangerous? There was a gun that allowed the player to literally turn the world upside down. And a Landshark gun that went through the ground. Ya, we had those physics back in 2003 on the first Xbox.

Now days for shooters, it's almost always some version of the AK47 and the M16. For the graphics, it's what shade of gray and brown goes on the walls and floor of the next dirt village. So, it's either total interaction with lack of creativity, or minimal to no interaction with lack of brain power. There's no more hidden treasures that are between the two.

"Unique and Unprecedented" . . Riiiiiiight. Nintendo is the king of regurgitating content over and over between their consoles. Each console will have a mario game, each one will have a mario kart, Smash Bros, Metroid, etc. Nintendo is either unwilling or unable to develop anything that would classify as "unique" content these days. Maybe this mysterious project will be another Zelda game cause ya know those are fresh and interesting. . . .

Nintendo is stagnant when it comes to software and simply inept in the hardware department. Honestly if Nintendo would have abandoned video games all together after the SNES and focused their efforts instead on custom yard geese outfits the gaming industry would be better off for it. Fuck Nintendo!

Fine with me, free to play games generally suck all ass anyways. I'd rather pay for a quality game where you get the whole game, not some gimped bullshit piece of a game.

Deathfish15:

Now days for shooters, it's almost always some version of the AK47 and the M16. For the graphics, it's what shade of gray and brown goes on the walls and floor of the next dirt village. So, it's either total interaction with lack of creativity, or minimal to no interaction with lack of brain power. There's no more hidden treasures that are between the two.

Well, that's because the trend today is realistic shooters with gritty settings (which apparently translates to brown and grey). Look at Bulletstorm. The game may be immature and stupid (at least to me, it doesn't hold my interest whatsoever) but the weapons and gameplay are creative and a few of the screenshots I've seen had brightly colored plants (that just happened to have large spikes to kick enemies onto), but as I haven't played the game I'm not sure how common that is. So while not all shooters are like that, it is the trend, so the companies make what sells.

PhunkyPhazon:
What about Excitebike 3D and the upcoming Four Swords on 3DS?

I believe excitebike 3d is only free temporarily, to celebrate the opening of the 3ds store.

Deathfish15:
Good for Nintendo.

Facebook games aren't games at all, at least on the level of games in this decade or the last two. All it's done is degraded progression of graphics, physics, and other technology for simpleminded bunk.

I honestly thought Nintendo was going that route with it's last 2 game systems being child-like in nature and far behind the other generations, but then with the Wii-U, it looks like their finally pulling their heads out of their arse and moving forward far infront of the competition.

I guess. Their graphics capability is slightly above that of a couple systems that are 5 and 6 years old. I fully expect sony and microsoft's next products to blow the Wee-U's hardware out of the water. Not that Nintendo has ever won because their hardware was the most advanced.

I guess the controller is more advanced, but I'm with Yahtzee in saying that I just don't see the useful applications. I don't want to be forced to look down at the controller during a game.

I don't think they're "far and away" in front of the competition. They're a little bit above where the competition was, so I guess they get some credit for that. I'm just glad they didn't re-purpose the Gamecube again.

I'm glad to hear this. Free to play is a fad. Basically, every developer/publisher talks about how great it is, but what they really mean is that a few companies have reaped a lot of financial rewards and they want to as well. There must be some sort of value in a piece of software to garner interest from the consumer. Free newspapers are great occasionally, but the ones everyone wants to read everyday are the ones you have to pay for.

Nintendo seems to treat free games as some sort of marketing and doesn't understand why the concept is so successful especially for PC games.Take League of Legends for instance...There's millions of people playing and let's face it 1/2 of them are probably people who pirate other games.Thing is those pirates might never spend a dime on games but they'd buy a micro transaction for some riot points to buy a skin for their favourite char.

Xanthious:
"Unique and Unprecedented" . . Riiiiiiight. Nintendo is the king of regurgitating content over and over between their consoles. Each console will have a mario game, each one will have a mario kart, Smash Bros, Metroid, etc. Nintendo is either unwilling or unable to develop anything that would classify as "unique" content these days. Maybe this mysterious project will be another Zelda game cause ya know those are fresh and interesting. . . .

Nintendo is stagnant when it comes to software and simply inept in the hardware department. Honestly if Nintendo would have abandoned video games all together after the SNES and focused their efforts instead on custom yard geese outfits the gaming industry would be better off for it. Fuck Nintendo!

Here here! I'll drink to that!

The fact that Nintendo keeps talking shit about casual games when that's what their market has been for the last 5 years baffles me... though I guess all other casual games have been their competition, so I guess it makes sense for them to be upset about it.

So I guess that explains why their published games never drop in price.

believer258:
Or at least a new IP of some sort.

They've made plenty of the new IPs for the Wii and DS.

Oh, you mean a new IP aimed at a more traditional audience? Yeah, those don't sell well, because people only care about new IPs when they're not actually around.

I guess I KIND of understand... Nintendo exclusive makes video games and nothing else, and they want to makes sure that they make money off of those games...

 Pages 1 2 NEXT

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Registered for a free account here