Wii U Won't Get Twitch Streaming Because It's "Not Fun," Says Nintendo

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Wii U Won't Get Twitch Streaming Because It's "Not Fun," Says Nintendo

Reggie Fils-Aime

Nintendo's Reggie Fils-Aime says that "Joe Blow's 30 minute stream" probably isn't going to be very interesting.

I'd like to preface this post by saying that Nintendo is currently enjoying a pretty close relationship with Twitch, and is most definitely not against the concept of streaming. What Reggie Fils-Aime means when he told Polygon that the Wii U won't be getting Twitch streaming because it's "not fun" is that 30 minutes of just straight gameplay from an average player is probably not going to be very interesting.

"Your specific question of just purely streaming gameplay, what we've got to think through is, so what's fun about that? From a consumer standpoint, what's fun about it?" asked Fils-Aime. He went on to say that initiatives like Mario Kart 8's Mario Kart TV where a much better option, as it allows users to upload "highlight reels" of their best moments to YouTube.

"Kart is fun because its a highlight of the race," he said. "You can make some choices as to what parts are going to be shared. We think that makes it interesting, and obviously the meme of the Luigi death stare is wonderful when that comes out of that type of experience. But in the end we've got to make sure that it's fun."

That's not to say Nintendo doesn't want its games streamed at all. Fils-Aime said that high-level competitive streaming is a very good thing that has value. "with the Smash Invitational, we loved that streamed because that's where you are able to see how these players perform, the moves they make, you can learn something," he said. "That has value to us. And you can expect us to do more of that type of activity, highlighting our games and providing a forum for players to learn how to play better."

"That's different than watching Joe Blow's 30 minute stream, which may or may not have something that's all that interesting," he added.

So while we probably won't see Twitch streaming added to the Wii U like the Xbox One or PS4 features, we'll probably see less of the crazy attempts to ban competitive streaming of its games.

Source: Polygon

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This seems to be more an attempt to push their own bespoke streaming than to actually be thinking of the player, but we'll see how it pans out.

I think they'll focus more on inserting media options into specific games than creating an overlay, and while Nintendo doesn't grasp the concept of convenient access very easily, it doesn't make a huge impact on my enjoyment.

If I were being more cynical, I'd point out that most of these features seem designed to convince users to do most of the advertising for the company.

I really don't get how or why Nintendo seems to be so out of touch.

When it comes to online interaction between gamers Nintendo keep pushing against it. In the GameCube days, PS2 and Xbox were pushing on-line Nintendo is like lol no one wants to play online. Wii days oh man people actually like playing online...fine we'll allow it, but here's a stupid system of friend codes. Oh no youtubers are showing our games shut that shit down. Hey our fanbase is playing Smash Bros competitively SHUT IT DOWN. Now tell people that unless they're a well established star they should just piss off?

Seriously Nintendo stop it, you don't understand the gaming fanbase, you think you have your finger on the pulse of the gaming fanbase? Your finger is on a corpse in the graveyard halfway across town.

Rednog:
I really don't get how or why Nintendo seems to be so out of touch.

When it comes to online interaction between gamers Nintendo keep pushing against it. In the GameCube days, PS2 and Xbox were pushing on-line Nintendo is like lol no one wants to play online. Wii days oh man people actually like playing online...fine we'll allow it, but here's a stupid system of friend codes. Oh no youtubers are showing our games shut that shit down. Hey our fanbase is playing Smash Bros competitively SHUT IT DOWN. Now tell people that unless they're a well established star they should just piss off?

Seriously Nintendo stop it, you don't understand the gaming fanbase, you think you have your finger on the pulse of the gaming fanbase? Your finger is on a corpse in the graveyard halfway across town.

It's like Nintendo is becoming Japan during the Sengoku era. Isolationist and prone to infighting.

On one hand, the vast majority of streamers are not all that interesting. I've seen my fair share of "Joe Blow" streams, and they were not "fun." I find myself enjoying highlight reels a lot more than undiluted gameplay. Kind of like Nascar - you go to the race in anticipation of the car wrecks.

Now on the other, taking that option away from the individual kinda blows.

What's good here is that Nintendo is at least trying to push its alternative.

Personally I couldn't give a crap about the Twitch integration on consoles just for the same reason Reggie mentioned, it's not fun to watch.

And besides, anyone that is a regular Twitch streamer with an actual fanbase is probably going to buy the equipment needed to stream any games they want, everyone else, no one cares. Waste of time.

Watching streaming on Twitch isn't for me, its not appealing to me personally but here is the thing its objectively, undeniably obvious that huge numbers of people do find game streaming on Twitch entertaining. They find it "fun", even to the extent that they will pay and subscribe to watch their favourite personality.

As with any media or creative content the quality and appeal of individual streamers varies, some are just bad while others are popular to an astonishing degree. Some streamers attract small/medium niches of dedicated followers that like an approach or attitude that doesn't appeal to a majority but some people do like it. So while some streamers might be bad or put out bad content the concept of streaming itself is obviously appealing and entertaining, I.E fun for huge numbers of people.

Saying its "not fun" is pretty disingenuous, the dishonesty and insincerity of these claims is transparent to anyone with half a brain. Its obvious that Nintendo want their own service, knowing Nintendo they will want it carefully (draconian some might argue) curated like all of their other social and community features as well. Why not work your explanation around that and be honest rather than being disingenuous and dismissive?

EDIT:

CardinalPiggles:
I don't like it/do it therefore its completely useless and no-one should have it!

You don't like streaming? That is fair enough, I don't find it entertaining either but why should our preferences drive everything? What about the new streamers that are starting up and nailing down their approach and beginning to attract fans but don't have equipment yet? What about the ones that have a small group of followers and do it as hobby but cannot really afford or justify the expenditure of the capture devices and other equipment?

From the biggest personalities and the ones that have made huge sums of money to the ones that make a steady and decent income they all had to start somewhere, do you think that they wake up one day and said "I want to a live streamer/lets player" and all the (sometimes expensive) equipment poofed into existence? No they used what was to hand and experimented before finding out they had a talent and where popular and began to get what they needed to improve the production value of their content.

Lowering the barrier to entry gives more people the opportunity to have a go at streaming, maybe some of them will be good at it. A small few may even become so popular they get the kind of influence that will make significant numbers of people rush out and buy your game or system when they are seen using it, Nintendo going out of its way to maintain a higher barrier to entry is short sighted.

Yep I agree.

If for some strange reason I wanted to watch some twat play through a game instead of playing it myself, I'd rather watch it on youtube than have some bullshit streaming service hogging resources on my console.

What is it with Nintendo lately? Who are they to just say it's not fun to the entire gaming community as their only reason with a straight face. I know that some people don't particularly like streams but you only need to look around on Twitch or just the Internet in general to see how popular gaming streams are, regardless of what the actual content of the stream is. At least add an excuse on price or hardware restraints or something.

Still at least it's not their bizarre anti-fun attempt at shutting down competitive Smash Bros because they're not playing the game properly as the creator intended. Dear me.

A lot of let's plays and streams aren't carried by the game, they're carried by the personality(ies) of the player(s).

Nintendon't get to decide what's fun about streams.

CardinalPiggles:
Personally I couldn't give a crap about the Twitch integration on consoles just for the same reason Reggie mentioned, it's not fun to watch.

My thoughts exactly. Games bring enjoyment through play, interaction. Maybe trashing it with friends, but not one part of me feels like i should totally start recording what im playing due to the fact that its utterly fckin depressing.
Though some younger members of thy family like watching youtube gamers, so maybe its a kid thing. A dumb kid thing.

Actually, lets drown out is alright, but its more a humorous intelligent podcast as opposed to a sweaty teen trying to show how much life they wasted getting good at a game.

It's worth noting that the article also says:

"We're looking to do a lot of great things with Twitch," he continued. The Nintendo Treehouse Live at E3 that we're executing through Twitch is doing fantastic numbers.

Reggie even acknowledges that the Treehouse event did well on Twitch.

Whilst i don't like the way reggie said it, I'm not sure he's wrong. Streams are watched a lot for the personality. I regularly watch the League of Legends LCS streams and AGDQ but the few times I watched some person streaming live from his ps4/xbox one. It was a snoozefest and they generally had about 20 viewers at most. The only one that was an exception to that was AngryJoe and that was because I was watching for him and not for the game. I agree that Nintendo has been behind the times recently, and that they have no idea how to keep up with the current gaming culture. I do believe that streaming on consoles is heavily overrated and I'm not sad that the Wiiu doesn't have it.

Man's got a point. Most random Twitch stuff is kinda boring and much of the better stuff has been personality driven content that'd be better on Youtube anyway. At least in my opinion. More options is generally a good thing and it's unfortunate for those who like watching live streams, but all this social media crap that they pushed with the other two consoles costs money and infrastructure, resources I'd rather see spent elsewhere.

In other words;

It is impossible for us to integrate Twitch streaming on the Wii-U and have it work retroactively on our already released games and games already in development. So, here is some bullshit reason why you shouldn't care about us not being able to do it.

Same thing as with cross game party chat on the PS3 last generation; they didn't have enough wiggle-room in the os to implement it properly, but they at least never came out and openly dismissed the function.

Who is even watching people streaming straight off their consoles, anyone worth watching is doing it properly with capture cards for good quality and other options and chat interaction you can't do straight from the console.

How about you let the consumer decide what's fun and what isn't, Nintendo.

Rednog:
I really don't get how or why Nintendo seems to be so out of touch.

When it comes to online interaction between gamers Nintendo keep pushing against it. In the GameCube days, PS2 and Xbox were pushing on-line Nintendo is like lol no one wants to play online. Wii days oh man people actually like playing online...fine we'll allow it, but here's a stupid system of friend codes. Oh no youtubers are showing our games shut that shit down. Hey our fanbase is playing Smash Bros competitively SHUT IT DOWN. Now tell people that unless they're a well established star they should just piss off?

Seriously Nintendo stop it, you don't understand the gaming fanbase, you think you have your finger on the pulse of the gaming fanbase? Your finger is on a corpse in the graveyard halfway across town.

My guess is within their ideology. Nintendo has a core target demographic in kids, yet time and time again, treat their entire customer base as such.

OT: Yea Reggie, it isn't fun for anyone when Joe Blow streams for 30 minutes and has little ability to control, edit, or present the stream. Console integrated streaming is virtually always a dumb idea, unless you're going to give your users matching, if not better tools and control than what's out there for user streamers now. But see if that'll happen any time soon.

Convenience is the base selling point of consoles, but in the case of producing streams, it's no boon.

"Your specific question of just purely streaming gameplay, what we've got to think through is, so what's fun about that? From a consumer standpoint, what's fun about it?"

I gotta agree. Unless it's at the absolute highest level of gameplay, Twitch streams pretty much need interaction between the streamer and viewer to be entertaining at all.

Guess Nintendo couldn't secure all the Twitch revenue featuring Nintendo content like they were able to do with YouTube, I guess?

This doesn't bother me as I'm not really interesting in streaming my successes, or more accurately, failures for all to see.

Thats fine, not like steaming is an important part of gaming. To me, streaming is now an easy way for a person to make money while gaming. It takes no talent and no skill.

This doesn't affect me because I have yet to find a live streamer who isn't just awful to watch and the only time I used twitch was for the Nintendo Treehouse during e3.
But this has to be one of the most retarded explanations ever made. It's not fun? By whose standards? Your? I dislike twitch and it's not fun to me, but I don't have any saying in whether it's fun to someone else and apparently, lots of people like watching bad gamer playing bad games online so more power to them.

Nintendo get your shit together. You just won e3 and you make such a stupid statement. What the fuck?

Well here's my 2 cents on the matter:

For me, personally, I wouldn't need to have built in Twitch integration to stream any console. Before there were 2 main obstacles when it came to streaming. The first, you needed a capture card if you wanted to stream console games; this obstacle is still in the way when it comes to most console games except for the Xbox One, PS4, and PC games for the most part. The second, you had to buy the software that allows you to stream, and in this case that usually meant getting XSplit. However, things have changed a bit, as now Open Broadcaster has become good enough to where it can stream just as well as XSplit, and Open Broadcaster is also a free program. Most other free programs such as StreamEZ tend to bug out a lot, OBS has been fairly stable.

The other issue would be the actual RAM necessary to both stream a game, and not have the console suffer. This is something that the Wii U cannot feasibly do due to the amount of RAM necessary. The other issue is that the Wii U also doesn't have an internal capture card like the PS4 and Xbox One, so even attempting to do it would be stupid.

Now as long as Nintendo doesn't try blocking streams again, or enacting Draconian policies on Twitch like how they've been able to get away with on YouTube, then I'm fine. Hell I plan on streaming Super Mario Sunshine on Saturday because why not, it'd be fun. Which is something I also agree with Reggie on, just streaming the gameplay can be boring. However, it's not boring to everyone so I don't fully agree with him. Now while Reggie and Nintendo of America is fine with streaming, Nintendo of Japan at any time can suddenly sending DMCA claims to streamers for them to stop, without needing to consult the other studios. Nintendo of Japan and SEGA of Japan have done this numerous of times, with the American and European studios trying to see if they could get it reversed (not always successful in the case of SEGA).

My main thing is, Twitch integration for gameplay on the Wii U isn't necessary or feasible. One thing that would be good though is for Twitch and Nintendo to collaborate on an App for the Wii U, as Twitch and the Wii U's browser don't seem to get along too well. :/

P.S: While I half agree with Reggie, the other half of his statement is a stupid excuse, and many people won't like it because it makes Nintendo seem like they are the ones who decide what's fun and what isn't, instead of the person. Still not as bad as Sakurai's excuse for Subspace Emissary in Smash 4 though, that one was a terrible excuse.

I can see where Reggie is coming from, and agree that watching random gameplay with no commentary from some random guy as "not fun", at least for most people. There will always be people that enjoy such things, so I know why some would be displeased with this news.

Personally, it's the personalities of the Streamers that have me coming to see them. And anyone I'm watching personality-wise is a Youtuber who got the tech needed to stream, bypassing the issue with having on-console streaming.

I wouldn't mind having a Twitch streaming app on the Wii U though so I could watch streams without being stuck in front of my computer though, but it really isn't a priority for me.

For me, Games are the main point of buying a console. Everything else is just fluff, as convenient as a browser and Youtube and such are on my Wii U, it's still just fluff when there are Games to be played.

Isn't it great that we have Nintendo to tell us what is and isn't fun?

And whilst there's going to be less attempts to ban youtubers, that's only because they're going to take the Youtuber's money now.

BrotherRool:
Isn't it great that we have Nintendo to tell us what is and isn't fun?

And whilst there's going to be less attempts to ban youtubers, that's only because they're going to take the Youtuber's money now.

They still issue content IDs even for people who don't monetize their videos. Maybe, some of us just don't want ads on our videos, and would like to keep complete control over what happens with the videos on our channels. >.>
Nintendo stops doing that, then I'll bring some of my Game Anyone Nintendo LPs to YouTube, until then they remain on other sites away from YouTube's automated BS algorithm.

The issue i have with this story is that all of the sites are running with the daily mail/fox news style headline rather than one that reflects the whole story (and even more people knee jerk based on reading said headline). Of course the headline comes from polygon, who have been very open with there opinions towards Nintendo, and even made up some interesting pie charts to show rubbish data at one point :P

Reggie is part right here, it isn't fun to watch 30 minutes of just game-play from Joe Bloggs, hell if you look at the viewer numbers on the ps4/xbox one you are looking at numbers in the hundreds for the console broadcasted streams. However the people who do more than just play the game get more views, but they tend to use capture devices and stuff anyway so the in built streaming won't be useful to them.

Basically he says that they want to work with twitch as they can do good things, but do it in a way that is fun (and it wouldn't surprise me if they do something with twitch for Project Guard)

But the headline of "Reggie wants to do more with twitch" would get less clicks :p

It's a shame he didn't continue to spin this towards saying that watching video games is better off of a console. If you want video game footage, go to Youtube where it is still fun.

It's the same as the excuse for why the Wii didn't have DVD playback. Everyone already has a DVD player, so why spend the money and time creating a redundant feature that no one really will use. Twitch on the WiiU is basically the same thing.

Milky1985:
The issue i have with this story is that all of the sites are running with the daily mail/fox news style headline rather than the whole story (and even more people knee jerk based on reading said headline). Of course the headline comes from polygon, who have been very open with there opinions towards Nintendo, and even made up some interesting pie charts to show rubbish data at one point :P

Reggie is part right here, it isn't fun to watch 30 minutes of just game-play from Joe Bloggs, hell if you look at the viewer numbers on the ps4/xbox one you are looking at numbers in the hundreds for the console broadcasted streams. However the people who do viewer interaction and other things via capture cards get views in the thousands.

Basically he says that they want to work with twitch as they can do good things, but do it in a way that is fun (and it wouldn't surprise me if they do something with twitch for Project Guard)

But the headline of "Reggie wants to do more with twitch" would get less clicks :p

Indeed, at least it's not a Kuchera article though; if it were him he'd be saying Nintendo needs to go 3rd party finally on top of it. Of course that was also before Nintendo showed off that avalanche at E3. I think we're going to have the naysayers stay quiet for awhile because to mouth off right now would come off as stupid.

Meinos Kaen:

It's like Nintendo is becoming Japan during the Sengoku era. Isolationist and prone to infighting.

Somewhat bad analogy. The isolation era was the Edo period, and was relatively peaceful.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edo_period
But Nintendo does tend to go off and do their own thing.

Anyway, can't say I'm bothered by this. I suppose it would be a neat feature for those who are into streaming.

Two things, Reggie:

1. If nobody wanted to watch Twitch streams, the service wouldn't be where it is today. When it was young, it was exactly what you're describing; no special events or anything like that, and it was quite popular even then.

2. The point of game streams isn't really pure gaming footage, though. Done right, it involves a microphone (Hey, the Wii U Gamepad has one built in!) or a headset (Hey, those are available for Wii U too!), maybe a camera (Gamepad's got one of those also), and a chatroom. It's about the stream's host interacting with the audience.

Trufacts: I watched a Mario Kart 8 stream for about two hours the other day. Just a regular ol' Joe Blow and a couple of his friends playing, talking, and having a good time. Y'know why I stayed tuned in so long? Because the host of the stream was fun, and because they interacted regularly with the chat. But go ahead and ignore that this is actually succeeding, Reggie, and assume regardless that nobody wants it. Let's see how that works out for ya.

P.S. Thanks

Nintendo is done they just told people what fun is..... fun is what you make it not what you are told to like.....

Rednog:
I really don't get how or why Nintendo seems to be so out of touch.

When it comes to online interaction between gamers Nintendo keep pushing against it. In the GameCube days, PS2 and Xbox were pushing on-line Nintendo is like lol no one wants to play online. Wii days oh man people actually like playing online...fine we'll allow it, but here's a stupid system of friend codes. Oh no youtubers are showing our games shut that shit down. Hey our fanbase is playing Smash Bros competitively SHUT IT DOWN. Now tell people that unless they're a well established star they should just piss off?

Seriously Nintendo stop it, you don't understand the gaming fanbase, you think you have your finger on the pulse of the gaming fanbase? Your finger is on a corpse in the graveyard halfway across town.

I have to agree. Does it really matter if they don't see the use in having Twitch streaming if it's something their gamers want? Of course it doesn't. Streaming is a pretty big thing right now, and even if they're not sure where it's going to go, at least be there when it happens.

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