Ninty Admit That Casual Focus Cost Company

A few years ago, Nintendo were storming the beaches of new gaming frontiers, taking on the elusive ‘mainstream’ market, with resounding success.  Casualties, however, were manifold as wounded gamers and long-time Ninty fans felt discarded and overlooked as the company focused on opening up a new market, quite forgetting the hardcore fans who had carried them thus far.

Many of us quietly questioned their tactics, wondering just how long Nintendo could sustain this success and retain the public interest once the novelty factor of their gimmicky hardware and casual games had worn off and the white box had been relegated to stair-cupboards everywhere.  In the meantime, hardcore fans became disenchanted, frustrated, and even angry, and some gave up altogether, but Nintendo pushed on with more casual, family gaming.  Until now.

In a surprising speech to investors, Nintendo President, Satoru Iwata, admitted that the company’s focus on reaching new consumers and the family friendly market may well have placed Nintendo in the more precarious position in which it now finds itself.  As we reported a few days ago, Nintendo recently posted a financial loss for the first time since it gave up on cards and concentrated on console gaming, and it would seem that the company has taken a long, hard look at why that might be.

“We could not adequately create the situation that such new consumers played games frequently or for long, consistent periods. As a result, we could not sustain a good level of profit,” Iwata told investors.  He also acknowledged the effect the firm’s re-directed focus had on their core fans:  “Regrettably, what we prioritised in order to reach out to the new audience was a bit too far from what we prioritised for those who play games as their hobby.  Consequently, we presume some people felt that the Wii was not a game system for them or they were not willing to play with the Wii even though some compelling games had been released.”

That would appear to be the sound of a penny finally dropping… let’s hope that there is still enough fire in the bellies of the wounded Ninty core to care.

Source: MCV

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  1. Leon says:

    Finally. I’m glad to hear this – assuming Nintendo can turn things around and not lose too much stature in the industry. I’d be quite excited to see Nintendo focusing more on the non-casual stuff, as they are capable of making some brilliant games when they want to.

    I just hope they haven’t damaged their future too much – hopefully they can make a success of the Wii U and make some solid games like the good old days.

  2. Victor Victor says:

    Too little, too late. This will be the last generation that I make sure that I have all the consoles. For a long stretch, I only had an Xbox 360. Loved it then. Love it now. Then came a Wii, which has all told been used for probably the same amount of hours that my Xbox was used to complete Mass Effect 1, 2 and 3. Then came the PS3 and I am reminded why I have never liked a Playstation. The controller.

    Going forward, unless something amazing happens with the Wii U, I won’t be getting it. For the same reason that I put off getting a Wii for so long in the first place. Namely, the control pad. I’m an old boy. The Xbox controller is about as much evolution as I need in a control pad. The Wiimotes put me off the first time I saw them and I still don’t like them. The Wii U controller puts reminds me that I still don’t like gaming on my iPhone, because I just don’t enjoy it.

    I’ll keep an open mind, but those guys are certainly not getting my £££’s, unless they do something ASTONISHING!

  3. Rook says:

    With the lack of attention my Wii gets I had no plans on buying the Wii U. Motion gaming isn’t for me and the reason I didn’t get Kinect. The most moving playing a game I get wold probably be some GH/RB games or racing games were I tend to physically lean when cornering. :)

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