By and large, Nintendo is the most successful gaming company that’s ever existed. Over the last few decades, Nintendo has remained a household name across the globe but, recently, they appear to be in a slump.
The Nintendo Wii has dominated the current generation of consoles, and the DS line has done the same with portable systems. Despite this, the recent nosedive in popularity in terms of sales for the Wii, as well as the mild reception for the Nintendo 3DS, has left many of us wondering if even Nintendo knows what it’s doing anymore.
On the surface, it looks like Nintendo is continuously shooting itself in the foot. The Wii U, the successor to the Wii, left many people scratching their heads in confusion when it was announced just months ago. The quick 3DS price drop, in addition to the introduction of a new peripheral – that includes features that some would agree should have been built-in in the first place – are all telltale signs that the king of gaming is, without a doubt, past its peak.
But is Nintendo killing itself, or are we to blame?
As the longest lasting provider of video game software and hardware, we as gamers, especially those of us who have lived through generations of its consoles, seem to be just as confused as Nintendo in regards to what the gaming population wants.
There’s a constant tug-of-war between those that want Nintendo to prioritize its nostalgic franchises and the new generation of gamers who want them to look forward, like its competitors, to newer and fresher ideas.
And it is this that may be causing Nintendo to fail no matter what direction they go.
As they announced that games like Assassin’s Creed and Call of Duty will be released on the Wii U, many others were still begging for a new top-down version of The Legend of Zelda. When Nintendo took a technological leap and released a handheld that utilizes 3D without the need for glasses, some were still hoping for a new Mother/Earthbound game.
The mixed demand for nostalgic resurgence and the need for state-of-the-art technology has left Nintendo at a crossroad. We are no longer living in a world where a developer gives us what we want and we take it without argument. The internet has given the world a voice, and that voice is telling Nintendo to be everything at once, and will reprimand it for achieving anything less.
Sony and Microsoft were both aware of the increase in “casual gaming” and followed Nintendo’s lead into the motion control market, but still continued to stand by what they believe in, making quality games for the more devoted gaming population.
Nintendo, on the other hand, is at a constant crossfire by those who remember them for what they were, and those who see potential in what they can be.
You can please some people, but you can’t please everybody. Unfortunately, it looks like Nintendo is trying to do just that. But who is truly at fault, the supplier or those making the demands?