Nintendo Planning to License Its Characters to New Partners

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Nintendo Planning to License Its Characters to New Partners

luigi in smash bros screenshot 3

An experimental new attitude towards IP licensing means that Nintendo characters will be popping up in a lot more non-Nintendo games.

Desperate times call for desperate measures, and although things at Nintendo could be worse, the bigwigs are certainly looking nervous. In addition the massive pay cut the company's executives just received, Nintendo seems to be looking into new financial strategies. One of these new ideas is a radical change to the way the company handles its character IP. While Nintendo characters have traditionally been kept on a short leash, the new strategy will involve a much more flexible approach to licensing IP to fresh partners.

In a strategy Q&A session, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata revealed that Nintendo is already discussing new licensing arrangements with a number of potential partners. Don't expect to see Mario jumping over to the PS4 or Xbox One, though - Iwata made it clear that Nintendo intends to remain competitive, and that means keeping its icons on their home platforms. But crossovers into new genres are fair game; look out for more titles along the lines of Hyrule Warriors, the recently-announced Zelda / Dynasty Warriors Wii U mashup.

None of these prospective partners have been announced as of yet, but this opens the door for a lot of great possibilities. Depending on who ends up making these games, we could be seeing classic Nintendo characters in some interesting new genres. And meanwhile, Nintendo gets some cash from the license. I'd call that a win-win.

Source: Wall Street Journal, via Dual Shockers

Permalink

Remember the last time Nintendo did this?
It didn't end well.

This could work. Remember that many of Nintendo's great games were based on third party members gaining access to Nintendo's franchises (F-Zero GX, Zelda: Minish Cap, Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon, Metroid Prime series, Donkey Kong Country Returns, etc.) As long as Nintendo keeps a close eye on the developers for quality, this will be a way for Nintendo do start pumping out more games

Objectable:
Remember the last time Nintendo did this?
It didn't end well.

That was the exception. People don't realize this but Nintendo has given its licenses to third party members before. Sega was behind F-Zero: GX. Capcom was behind The Minish Cap. Hell, Donkey Kong Country Returns and the Metroid Prime series are technically third party. This can work, IF Nintendo is smart enough to make sure the game is up to quality.

A full-fledged Mario/Sonic crossover, with the style/scope of Super Mario Bros Z (anyone remember that?) would be reason enough for me to get a WiiU or 3DS.

Nope, Iwata wasn't talking about licensing in a GAME sense, but instead in a merchandise and other media sense:

http://www.gonintendo.com/?mode=viewstory&id=221394

So it means we'll see more officially licensed Nintendo merch and whatnot. And if you want Nintendo news, don't go to Dualshockers; they're not exactly objective

xaszatm:
That was the exception. People don't realize this but Nintendo has given its licenses to third party members before. Sega was behind F-Zero: GX. Capcom was behind The Minish Cap. Hell, Donkey Kong Country Returns and the Metroid Prime series are technically third party. This can work, IF Nintendo is smart enough to make sure the game is up to quality.

Actually, Retro Studios, the developer of Metroid Prime and DKC Returns are owned by Nintendo, so they aren't third party. Do agree with the sentiment though, some good stuff has come out of Nintendo licensing their characters, they just need to be really careful about it.

Can I hope that they can give give a franchise over to Square for the Super Mario RPG: LotSS treatment? Or is Square just not deserving of that now?

Aiddon:
Nope, Iwata wasn't talking about licensing in a GAME sense, but instead in a merchandise and other media sense:

http://www.gonintendo.com/?mode=viewstory&id=221394

So it means we'll see more officially licensed Nintendo merch and whatnot. And if you want Nintendo news, don't go to Dualshockers; they're not exactly objective

Makes sense for them to do it that way in terms of a minor business solution plan.

Also jesus christ after taking a gander at Dualshockers for the first time their latest article is this: http://www.dualshockers.com/2014/01/30/watch_dogs-for-wii-u-absent-in-nintendos-list-of-upcoming-games-another-sign-of-cancellation/

Just how far behind the gaming times are they, this article and it's truth was already found out at least a few days ago, most sites have already figured that out but almost an hour ago these guys still haven't?, that's quite shocking in it's own right.

Now Nintendo apologists will have one less excuse. Oh dear.

Objectable:
Remember the last time Nintendo did this?

I don't know, I quite liked the Oracle games.

Zachary Amaranth:
Now Nintendo apologists will have one less excuse. Oh dear.

Objectable:
Remember the last time Nintendo did this?

I don't know, I quite liked the Oracle games.

What excuse? I don't speak for everyone who's a Nintendo fan (btw, wonderful insult...) but I'm actually loving this idea. Nintendo has shown that they can give their IP's to third parties with success. All this means is that not only will Nintendo titles start trickling down faster, but might also show new ideas with these franchises not thought of before (see Hyrule Warriors and FE X SMT)

Nintendo IPs are only worth as much as they are because they make it a point to develop quality games. This could work out though, after other studios cheapen their IPs with haf-assed crap maybe they'll try some good ideas, like releasing official roms of their old catalog on platforms that people are willing to buy.

Oh man this is a good idea. I hope we get an SSX game with Mario in it.

P.S. Thanks

xaszatm:

What excuse?

Have you not read a single one of the Nintendoom/Nintendo should go third party threads lately? Apparently, Nintendo cannot let anyone else touch their IPs ever because it can only possibly end with the aforementioned CD-i games. Which, you know, is contrary to the example I already referenced, so it's unnecessary to point out how untrue it is.

(btw, wonderful insult...)

Perhaps it should have occurred that it wasn't an insult. I'm curious as to why you feel insulted that I used the term "fan." If the goal was to offend, there are actual insults I could have used, or derogatory terms.

Nintendo has shown that they can give their IP's to third parties with success.

So you HAVEN'T read a single Nintendoom/Third party thread.

All this means is that not only will Nintendo titles start trickling down faster, but might also show new ideas with these franchises not thought of before (see Hyrule Warriors and FE X SMT)

I like Zelda. I like Dynasty Warriors. I like the idea of Hyrule Warriors. However, I wouldn't particularly call approaching Koei to do another franchise skinned onto DW anything new in any meaningful sense. It's both a ridiculously safe move (since the Warriors games AND Zelda are huge in Japan) and not exactly terribly creative.

Zachary Amaranth:
snip

The insult was Nintendo Apologist, not fan. While that still isn't technically an insult, it has been used like it and I'm sick of it. Though, to be fair, that might just be due to the fact that I'm over stressed then anything else, so I do apologize if I'm coming on a little more forceful right now.

As for the Hyrule Warriors thing, while not a new idea, it does bring attention, which is what the Wii U needs more than anything else. Plus, this game hopefully means that Nintendo is willing to entrust companies with different approaches to their franchises.

Oh, please turn over the keys to the inevitable Majora's Mask HD rerelease to another developer. I SO want that to happen, Nintendo D:

..pretty please?

Good, now maybe we can get Nintendo characters in a game with some teeth.
You know, interesting deconstructions of the characters and putting them in new situations..
Not just the same thing over and over again with some new wiggle gimmick.

xaszatm:

Objectable:
Remember the last time Nintendo did this?
It didn't end well.

That was the exception. People don't realize this but Nintendo has given its licenses to third party members before. Sega was behind F-Zero: GX. Capcom was behind The Minish Cap. Hell, Donkey Kong Country Returns and the Metroid Prime series are technically third party. This can work, IF Nintendo is smart enough to make sure the game is up to quality.

Yah, Minish Cap was good stuff. And Link in Soul Caliber was cool too.

vagabondwillsmile:
Yah, Minish Cap was good stuff. And Link in Soul Caliber was cool too.

There was also some Metroid stuff in one of the most recent Dead or Alive games, wasn't there?

JediMB:

vagabondwillsmile:
Yah, Minish Cap was good stuff. And Link in Soul Caliber was cool too.

There was also some Metroid stuff in one of the most recent Dead or Alive games, wasn't there?

Hmmm. I just looked around for bit - looks like it was DOA Dimensions. I didn't even know about that one until just now.

A proper Zelda RPG would be most welcome. But really, all Nintendo needs to do for me is announce a new Metroid Prime game.

Nooners:
A full-fledged Mario/Sonic crossover, with the style/scope of Super Mario Bros Z (anyone remember that?) would be reason enough for me to get a WiiU or 3DS.

Yes, I do remember, and it would be damn nice if this happened and Alvin got paid for it.

Captcha: Chuck Norris.

Oooh, irony...

xaszatm:

The insult was Nintendo Apologist, not fan.

My bad, I thought you were saying I said fan was an insult. So now you've chosen to conflate "fan" and "apologist," though there's no need to. And you feel insulted by your own comparison of the two.

The rest of my statement applies. I have demonstrated that there are people who fall into the apologetics camp saying what I claimed and you can go check threads around here yourself for them. And while Objectable didn't reach the level of apologetics, you don't need to leave the thread to see someone ridiculing the idea of Nintendo farming out games because of three games they had almost no input on in the 90s as part of an end-of-partnership deal to get Philips off their back.

xaszatm:

What excuse? I don't speak for everyone who's a Nintendo fan (btw, wonderful insult...) but I'm actually loving this idea. Nintendo has shown that they can give their IP's to third parties with success. All this means is that not only will Nintendo titles start trickling down faster, but might also show new ideas with these franchises not thought of before (see Hyrule Warriors and FE X SMT)

Again, Iwata was NOT talking about games, but other media and merchandise:

http://www.gonintendo.com/?mode=viewstory&id=221394

This means we'll probably get new Nintendo merch or stuff from other media like cartoons or whatnot

Objectable:
Remember the last time Nintendo did this?
It didn't end well.

Well that wasn't entirely their fault. The CD-I situation was a complication of various factors, but basically it was supposed to be an SNES addon. It didn't work out and Nintendo basically couldn't pull the rights from Phillips so they just let it be. Besides it was from the ashes of that debacle we indirectly ended up with the original PlayStation so it wasn't all bad... Ok, yeah those games were horrible and my brain will forever be scarred from actually getting to play them when they came out.

Nooners:
A full-fledged Mario/Sonic crossover, with the style/scope of Super Mario Bros Z (anyone remember that?) would be reason enough for me to get a WiiU or 3DS.

There's a game I'd like to play: A Mario & Luigi RPG-style game with SMBZ's story.

FalloutJack:

Nooners:
A full-fledged Mario/Sonic crossover, with the style/scope of Super Mario Bros Z (anyone remember that?) would be reason enough for me to get a WiiU or 3DS.

Yes, I do remember, and it would be damn nice if this happened and Alvin got paid for it.

Captcha: Chuck Norris.

Oooh, irony...

Amen, man. Especially if Basilix is in it.

GamerMage:

Nooners:
A full-fledged Mario/Sonic crossover, with the style/scope of Super Mario Bros Z (anyone remember that?) would be reason enough for me to get a WiiU or 3DS.

There's a game I'd like to play: A Mario & Luigi RPG-style game with SMBZ's story.

FalloutJack:

Nooners:
A full-fledged Mario/Sonic crossover, with the style/scope of Super Mario Bros Z (anyone remember that?) would be reason enough for me to get a WiiU or 3DS.

Yes, I do remember, and it would be damn nice if this happened and Alvin got paid for it.

Captcha: Chuck Norris.

Oooh, irony...

Amen, man. Especially if Basilix is in it.

The one problem I see aside from the obvious miracle it would take to bring the right people together for that, though, is Funimation royalties. But aside from that "You're sitting on a goldmine, Trebek!".

Isn't Nintendo already starting to do that, with the Hyrule Warriors game?

VG_Addict:
Isn't Nintendo already starting to do that, with the Hyrule Warriors game?

I suspect that "new partners" means companies they had not previously licensed characters to. So Hyrule Warriors wouldn't count since that's the result of licensing to Tecmo Koei to whom Nintendo had previously licensed Metroid to create Other M (Team Ninja is a subsidiary of Tecmo Koei).

Just whatever they do, for the love of God never let Team Ninja near Metroid again.

Objectable:
Remember the last time Nintendo did this?
It didn't end well.

I was just going to comment that I hope it turns out better for them than the Philips CD-I catastrophe.

Genocidicles:
Just whatever they do, for the love of God never let Team Ninja near Metroid again.

Not that I like Team Ninja much, but you do know the awful story and the way Samus acted wasn't because of Team Ninja. Team Ninja made the gameplay, which wasn't the best but it at least functioned, the story was written by the Metroid series creator Yoshio Sakamoto...so yeah Nintendo is partially to blame for that as well...

I think this is a good opportunity for Square Enix to redeem themselves.

I mean, after the bastardisation of the human brain (and wallet) that was All The Bravest, I think they deserve another chance.

Well if they get developers that like the franchises, it can go rather well. However, it can go either way.

Bad examples: Metroid Other M and those Cd-I games.

Good examples: Donkey Kong country returns and Metroid Prime

If I remember correctly..

They are not. -.-
People are blowing it out of proportion. I blame sites like Kotaku.

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