Nintendo has recently announced their Q3 financial report. Nintendo has been a dominant company in the video game industry for many years, and even survived the video game crash of 1983. The last two years have proved to be tough for the Japanese company, and many people are asking the burning question: can Nintendo make a comeback? To answer this question you need to look at the last few years in Nintendo’s history.
The Nintendo Wii’s release was a direct answer to the very poor sales by the Nintendo Gamecube. The Gamecube is one of the most critically acclaimed consoles in recent memory and had many Nintendo exclusives upon release. The only reason the Gamecube did not do as well as the other consoles of its time was due to its major competitor – The Playstation 2. Nintendo saw these poor sales as a reason to start from scratch and created the Wii.
The Wii was the start of a five-year long gaming gimmick that all three of the major companies capitalized on. The Playstation had the Move, and the Xbox had the Kinect. This was a direct response to the Wii sales, which dominated the seventh generation of gaming. Unfortunately, once everyone got their hands on this motion technology, the Wii became very plain. The Wii, Move, and Kinect competed against each other, and created a reason for people to buy a console that most AAA titles would be released on. Shortly after this boom of motion sensor technology, it became a backwater in gaming technology, and was only used by children and teenagers at parties.
The Wii U made the mistake by keeping motion technology, and didn’t provide an incentive for people to buy it. There were no new Super Smash Bros, Metroid, or Legend of Zelda games at launch. People were wondering whether it was worth it to buy a console that would be like the one they already owned. Also, the Wii U did not live up to a console that was released in 2012. It had very mediocre specifications. Nintendo could have waited a year to release it at the same time of the other Eighth generation consoles in 2013, and used that time to work on the release promotion and creation of the Wii U.
Nintendo should not be competing with the other consoles, but instead they should be collaborating. This is what is done with the computer companies in Silicon Valley, and due to that Microsoft, Google, and Apple run the western computer market. Unfortunately, when it comes to things like this, Nintendo is not the only one suffering. The website Macroaxis predicts that Sony has between a 48%-78% chance of going bankrupt in the next two years, meaning Nintendo would sit at around a 20% chance. The reality is that Sony has become involved in every market possible, and therefore when products don’t sell the company takes a hit. Nintendo should be praised for sticking to the game market, as even though they are struggling now, their licensing and knowledge base is very large compared to other video game giants.
But why does Nintendo have only a 20% chance? This is because of their 3DS sales. The 3DS , 3DS XL, and 2DS have shipped a combined of 42.74 million units. This is phenomenal for any type of console and Nintendo should, and most likely will, put all of their focus to the advancement in the 3DS. They have multiple games that released this year, and are releasing in 2014 to help boost sales, which is what they did not do with the Wii U when it first launched.
People also have the idea in their head that Nintendo should enter the mobile market to make up for the losses. The losses aren’t as large as some of the media is making it up to be, and Nintendo can suffer another screw up before they are in serious trouble. The mobile market should not have any Nintendo ports, as it would be more than a disaster. Nintendo has the most popular handheld device on the market, and it would make no sense for them to put on of their games on a touchscreen device and have it compete against the 3DS. No AAA game that has been ported onto a mobile device has dominated the market, and many doubt it ever will.
The bottom line is that Nintendo has made mistakes in the past and, just like any other company, may make mistakes in the future, but they are on the right track. The CEO of Nintendo, Satoru Iwata just announced that he will be cutting his pay by 50%, and the other executive’s by 20%-30% for five months to help recoup the losses. Another thing to keep in mind is that Nintendo were positive in Q3 of 2013, but will be buying back shares, which will result in a loss of money for the whole fiscal year. Nintendo doesn’t need a new system or a new CEO; they just have to work with what they have. The gaming market is tough to be in, but Nintendo has always brought quality products to the consumer with family and group friendly content.
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