The lights are on
With the Wii U posting anemic sales numbers,
the calls for Nintendo to follow in the footsteps of Sega and leave the
hardware business for multiplatform game development are increasing. However,
Nintendo head Satoru Iwata says that it would be a move done for "short term
In an interview with CVG, Iwata stressed that
developing both hardware and software was fundamental to Nintendo's strength as
"What I believe
is that Nintendo is a very unique company, because it does its business by
designing and introducing people to hardware and software," said Iwata. "By
integrating them, we can be unique. And because we have hardware and software
developers in the same building, they stimulate each other."
While the future of the Wii U is cloudy - especially given its recent sales - but one thing is clear: if
Nintendo exits the home console business, it won't go willingly.
TakeAt this point, I'm very skeptical that the Wii U can recover and become a
successful console. However, I think that Mr. Iwata is correct in many
respects. Although they frustrate me at times, you can't argue with the success
that Nintendo has had over the years, and I think that it's due in no small
part to the fact that they control their own hardware and have consistently
shown the ability to make the best games for their own systems. With the 3DS
selling well, it's possible that the company could survive even a complete
failure of the Wii U and still live to fight another day in the console
business. However, the system after Wii U better not miss. I'm rooting for them
- as strange as some of its decisions seem to me, I can't imagine a
console business without Nintendo. Also, chasing multiplatform dollars has
hardly transformed Sega into a mega-publisher.
Email the author Matt Helgeson, or follow on Twitter, and Game Informer.