Nintendo Rep: The Competition Just Doesn’t “Get It”


The Nintendo official coolly chides Sony and Microsoft for their late attempts to mimic the Wii’s success.

In an extensive interview with Wired, George Harrison, the Senior Vice President of Marketing and Corporate Communications for Nintendo, said Microsoft and Sony have belatedly tried to capture the Wii market with only fleeting success.

“So far, they haven’t spent a lot of time focused on us. Now that we’re having some success, they probably will,” Harrison said, referring to the handsome sales volume of Nintendo’s Wii console.

He lectured Nintendo’s competitors with the kind of confidence that comes from achieving broad-spectrum sales performance:

For last year’s E3, at the last minute, Sony rushed out their Sixaxis controller as an effort to respond to the Wii remote. We saw Microsoft roll out Viva Piñata as their killer app for the Pokémon set. And neither of those worked really well. Part of it is, I think it’s not in their DNA. They’re really good at reaching a certain customer, and have a real difficulty understanding how we succeed with the customers that we have.

Not surprisingly, Harrison downplayed the importance of graphics hardware developments – the area in which the Wii is most lacking – saying that the success of Wii and the continued brisk sales of the PlayStation 2 illustrate gamers care more about other factors.

In the past, we’ve always had five- to six-year lifecycles which were sort of forced by someone jumping ahead and using a new piece of technology. And we’re finding out now that the appeal of faster processors and better graphics is really sort of reaching a diminishing point.

Harrison also expounds on several other topics in the interview, including hand-helds, advertising, E3’s lineup and further Sega collaboration.

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