Author Topic: Merrick Talks More Revolution  (Read 7159 times)

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Offline WindyMan

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Merrick Talks More Revolution
« on: October 31, 2005, 05:27:19 PM »
It's all good news, except that we're going to need to wait until 2006 to see some games.

MeriStation, a games website based in Spain, got the chance to talk with Nintendo of Europe's Director of Marketing Jim Merrick.  Merrick has given up some good information on Nintendo's next-generation plans lately, and this latest interview is no exception.    


On the Revolution front, the plans for a worldwide launch were further explained.  Nintendo hopes to release the new console in the three major regions—Japan, North America and Europe—all within a 14 week period, about four months altogether.  Nintendo President Satoru Iwata had already mentioned that the Revolution would not launch until Nintendo's next fiscal year, which begins April 1, 2006.  A Japanese debut would likely come first, followed by the American and European launches.    


Disappointingly, Merrick confirmed that Revolution games will not be shown in any form this year.  Games will not be shown off for the first time until they are playable with Nintendo's new freestyle controller, to emphasize that games are about gameplay first.  Because of this, it may be a while into 2006 until we see software, but it was stressed that key third parties do have development hardware, so at least games are probably in the early stages of development.    


The marketing maestro then talked about the Revolution's graphical ability.  He strongly believes that there won't be that much of a difference between how games look on the Revolution compared to "the competition," presumably the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3.  Since we won't be seeing any next-gen Nintendo games until next year, we're going to have to take his word for it as Sony and Microsoft continue touting their respective system's graphical prowess.    


Another interesting and unique feature of the new system was also disclosed in the interview.  Similar to how the Nintendo DS has a Download Play option for playing multiplayer games with only one copy of a title, the Revolution will have a similar feature so multiple consoles in the same area (a la Xbox system link) can all play a multiplayer game together with only a single game disc.  No further details on how exactly this would work were mentioned.  Given the small size of the console and the wireless connectivity the system offers, using this feature may be extremely easy.    


If you'd like to check out the whole interview, check it out at MeriStation.  Be advised that the article is entirely in Spanish, so dust off your Spanish-English dictionaries if you want to read it yourself.

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Offline couchmonkey

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RE:Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #1 on: November 01, 2005, 04:30:47 AM »
Since I don't know Spanish, I'm glad to see another translation of this besides GAFs.  In their article, they assumed that "within 14 weeks" meant the system is launching in February!  I took it to mean the same thing that you've written here - that Australia and Europe will get the system no more than 14 weeks after Japan, but Japan could get it any time next year.  I'm glad to see someone confirm that before I got too excited.

The comments on graphical power are nice to hear, although it sounds like Merrick was still a little wishy-washy.  "There won't be much difference" isn't the same as "It's just as powerful".  Even so, it's nice to know I'm going to get some of those bells and whistles.
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Offline Ian Sane

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2005, 06:19:33 AM »
The multiple console features sounds pretty cool.  I probably would never use it but I still like the fact that the option is there if I want it.  Nintendo traditionally has been really inflexible regarding rarely-used functionality.  It's like if 90% of the userbase won't use it they won't bother to support it.  So it's good to see them including such a feature because a few years ago they would probably never have even considered it.

No games shown until 2006?  Hey Nintendo.  You do realize there's this Xbox 360 thing being released this month that has, you know, games and screenshots and hype and stuff and is like a direct competitor trying to steal customers from you, right?  Ever thought of, I don't know, releasing at least a f*cking screenshot to try to get people to actually know the Rev exists.

I understand that they want people to play the games the first time they see them but the thing is if the games don't look pretty enough to stand on their own in screenshots then they're not going to be able to compete against the X360 or PS3 anyway.  TV and print ads are probably the most common videogame ads and those cannot convey gameplay.  The game has to look good to get people's attention.  That's what draws them to the store demo or convinces them to rent the game.  Why was Donkey Kong Country such a big hit?  Because it had amazing graphics that got people's attention and when they tried the game out the gameplay delivered.  A lot of people say gameplay over graphics but I think gameplay AND graphics are important.  Nintendo wants to attract portions of the general public that don't play games.  How do you get their attention?  Well great visuals usually helps.  Final Fantasy VII's famous commercial didn't show blocky polygons menu fighting.

Offline vudu

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2005, 08:23:14 AM »
Quote

A lot of people say gameplay over graphics but I think gameplay AND graphics are important.
Lucky for you Nintendo is an AND company, not an OR company.  
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Offline KDR_11k

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2005, 09:18:26 AM »
Unfortunately that's just rethoric their head marketdroid is spewing.

OTOH pushing for more powerful but expensive hardware gives diminishing returns, I wouldn't expect much of a performance gap between the PS3 and the Rev, at least GPU-wise. The X360 will be more like the Dreamcast, weaker because it came earlier.

Offline Kairon

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RE:Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #5 on: November 01, 2005, 10:49:12 AM »
The X360 will sell out anyways, so why should Nintendo concern itself when Sony will almost definitely do it's own little spoiler act to MS's launch?

Either way, the Rev will succeed NOT based on how many months before release we saw a still screenshot of a game. Remember, Rev games will need to display actual motion and INTERACTION because of the essential nature of the controller: Rev games are absolutely nothing special UNTIL we see actual controller related gameplay.

The Rev will instead succeed on how deeply the rev gameplay demos, experiences and word-of-mouth penetrates past us limited, selfish and overblown internet hardcore critics and into the general public who see Gamestop and EB and who-knows-what game store everyday but rarely go in.

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Offline Ian Sane

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #6 on: November 01, 2005, 11:05:28 AM »
"Rev games are absolutely nothing special UNTIL we see actual controller related gameplay."

Why?  Why can't a Rev game play great yet also look good in screenshots?  If the games require one to actually play them in order to build interest then the Rev is screwed because trying a game requires effort and the general public won't put in the effort unless something that translates through television or a picture grabs them by the balls first.  There is no reason why Rev games can't wow someone based on screens alone.  No reason aside from any inane Nintendo stubborness anyway.

If the games look like ass but play great then, yeah, waiting until they can demonstrate them fully makes sense.  But there's no good reason WHY the games have to be that way.

Offline Kairon

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RE:Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #7 on: November 01, 2005, 11:34:43 AM »
Because if all the Rev is is something that seems like more of the same, then it'll perform as poorly as the Gamecube.

Call of Duty 2 screenshots would look the same on ALL consoles plus the PC. The Gamecube consistently sold the least of all versions when there was an identical third party port across the PS2, XBox, and GC. If Nintendo wants to be able to stand out and no longer be relegated to an "also ran" they need to show what's so darned special about the revolution other than the fact that it's got the Nintendo brand on it.

Sure, release in-dev non-ready screenshots now against polished XBox 360 games or PS3 gameplay videos and see them be overly picked apart and ultimately turned into a negative thing by Internet Fanboys and just plain ignored by everyone else, unless Gamestop employees take them as proof positive that they can mouth off to every customer that the Rev is underpowered.

OR you can save everything until it can actually be seen as a package, alongside the real reason you're buying games: not the screenshots but the controller: the experience of playing the game. Then, and only then, can the Revolution prove to not just you and me, but also casual joe who wandered into a Gamestop, that it's really something worth considering more than they considered the also-ran Gamecube.

ESPECIALLY with the concerns about the Rev's possibly being underpowered, Nintendo shouldn't rush to release screenshots because of the plain fact that Nintendo games do their polished graphics LAST. Don't forget that Nintendo builds games from the gameplay up, that all they have in the beginning are tech demos, and that they prototype the game design BEFORE they start throwing money at the art department. Nintendo, the company who's the furthest along in terms of gameplay development, is also the company LEAST LIKELY to have public-suitable cleaned up and prettied-up screenshots. Third parties, who've been working on GC kits until recently ALSO shouldn't be showing their screenshots because of the very nature that they've been using GAMECUBE HARDWARE to do their preliminary development.

If Nintendo rushed to release screenshots before they're ready, then you'd either see graphically under-whelming gameplay demos (as opposed to the gameplay-underwhelming million-rubber-duckies that Sony likes), OR Gamecube-era third party games. Is a marketting blunder of that magnitude really what you want Ian?

Or do you want Nintendo to pull a Microsoft and photoshop their screenshots liberally? Or do you want them to show us FMVs like Zelda SpaceWorld 2001 which apparently were NOT based on any gameplay AT ALL?

If you really want screenshots for the sake of seeing screenshots, then that's perfectly fine. But if you think that the public really needs to see Gamecube-developed screenshots of Madden to compare against X360 Madden, or Nintendo wacky 100-poly-link fighting 100-poly skeleton tech demos, then I question whether you've thought this entire situation out in terms of how Nintendo's marketting situation comes out of this.

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Offline Kairon

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RE:Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #8 on: November 01, 2005, 11:37:01 AM »
Quote

Originally posted by: Ian Sane
If the games look like ass but play great then, yeah, waiting until they can demonstrate them fully makes sense.  But there's no good reason WHY the games have to be that way.


Third parties have been using GC dev kits for all their preliminary work, so I'd bet their graphics will be dated until they put in the time to scale them up.

Nintendo works from the gameplay up, meaning that until late in their dev cycle they've probabvly only really got a hodgepodge of ugly gameplay demos.

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Offline 31 Flavas

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RE:Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #9 on: November 01, 2005, 02:07:04 PM »
Quote

Originally posted by: Ian Sane

No games shown until 2006?  Hey Nintendo.  You do realize there's this Xbox 360 thing being released this month that has, you know, games and screenshots and hype and stuff and is like a direct competitor trying to steal customers from you, right?  Ever thought of, I don't know, releasing at least a f*cking screenshot to try to get people to actually know the Rev exists.
Based in your following paragraph is pretty obvious the only reason you want the "f*cking screenshot" is so you can judge the system and reject it. Sorry, but f*ck you.
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Offline Bill Aurion

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #10 on: November 01, 2005, 02:19:34 PM »
Haha, the truth hurts...But seriously, noone needs to see jack from the system considering it won't be out for another 9 months (estimation)...When people can get their hands on the system we can finally get an idea of what the Rev is all about, but complaining about a lack of screenshots when it's not what the system is about is absolutely bogus...And the LAST thing we need is people judging Ninty's new gameplay styles through screenshots...
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Offline mantidor

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #11 on: November 01, 2005, 02:37:04 PM »
but that could be cool, maybe. Lets say for instance Nintendo decides to release a video of Metroid Prime 3 where Samus is doing movements that not even shooters with mouse+keyboard can do, it could be really great, of course, it should be video, not screenshots.
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Offline Kairon

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RE:Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #12 on: November 01, 2005, 03:07:55 PM »
Quote

Originally posted by: mantidor
but that could be cool, maybe. Lets say for instance Nintendo decides to release a video of Metroid Prime 3 where Samus is doing movements that not even shooters with mouse+keyboard can do, it could be really great, of course, it should be video, not screenshots.


And to show video you need gameplay. And to show gameplay you need time. And to get time....you need to wait until 2006?

Or do you mean that Nintendo just throw together some FMV completely unrelated to the gameplay and show that?

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Offline Karl Castaneda #2

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #13 on: November 01, 2005, 03:32:39 PM »
What I wish Nintendo would start doing would just be short, 30-second promos on TV. Picture this:

A slow, orchestral song starts playing as we see a montage of significant, revolutionary social events throughout history. Then, the images on-screen fade out to black. The silence is broken by the cool part of American Woman (or any kickass song, really). Then the words, "2006 - Nintendo sparks a Revolution" come up on-screen.

This requires zero game footage but still does a great job of keeping "Nintendo" and "Revolution" in peoples' minds. If they started doing it now, by the time they launched, the hype would already be there, and it would require minimal effort. It's probably wishful thinking, but I really think it'd work.
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Offline wandering

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RE:Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #14 on: November 01, 2005, 03:42:11 PM »
I guess we know why they decided to show the controller without games....if they had waited to show everything as a package, as they said they would, it would have been too late.

edit I assume their doing this because the games aren't ready. If this is the case, releasing screenshots/video now would be absolute suicide. The graphics need to look great because they'll be compared to 360 and ps3....and considering the fact that Nintendo won't show fmvs - which is all Sony has shown as of yet, BTW - it's understandable that the games won't be show quality by the end of this year. /edit

Quote

What I wish Nintendo would start doing would just be short, 30-second promos on TV. Picture this: ...

I actually agree with Nintendo's long-held position that game-related purchases are mostly impulse buys and, as such, advertisements shouldn't be shown well in advance. Any person who would plan a console purchase a year in advance would be the sort of person who knows everything there is to know about upcomming consoles anyway. There's no need to waste advertising dollars this early in the game.

What Nintendo needs to do to distract from the 360 is to create a media blitz, not for the Revolution, but for the DS and it's wifi service. Even though they don't directly compete, parents are only likely to buy their kids one expensive new system this holiday season....Nintendo needs to make sure that system is DS and not PS2 or Xbox 360.
 
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Offline Kairon

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RE:Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #15 on: November 01, 2005, 03:47:27 PM »
That's actually an appealing idea ViewtifulGamer. Except for the fact that TV campaigns cost 100s of millions of dollars, and that tech savvy people skip commercials with tivo and/or just stopped watching tv.

I'd actually propose you do a similar concept, yet withing 2 months of the real launch when there's actually something to show for the system instead of jumping the gun now when interested parties have nothing to find out, but in print ads in popular publications like Newsweek, Time, Discover, Entertainment Weekly...and in newspapers across the country as well. The very juxtaposition of audience and medium would cause an interesting effect, I'd like to think, and it would reach people who ARE the real audience, not already-gamers like us with our gaming mags and internet banner-ads, but people who never really considered themselves gamers.

Hmm...do you work in advertising?

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Offline Djunknown

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RE:Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #16 on: November 01, 2005, 04:09:54 PM »
Quote

Ever thought of, I don't know, releasing at least a f*cking screenshot to try to get people to actually know the Rev exists.


Unfortunatley that's not going to happen. Pretty much, this holiday season belongs to Microsoft. Accept it. Move on...

Using my super Spanish skills, Merrick says that they have no defintive games. If they did, they'd show it! [his words, my translation].

He says they're going to wait until they have playable titles before they start showing the Revolution[again]. Just hope they'll show something at GDC or DICE...

Question: Towards the end of the interview, he mentions various features of the Rev. He also mentions that it'll use SD cards. How much are SD cards on average? I'd hate to see a PSP-like price...
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Offline NinGurl69 *huggles

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #17 on: November 01, 2005, 04:55:08 PM »
Bestbuy.com:

128mb SD card, ~$25 USD

256mb SD card, ~$45

512mb SD card, ~$70

1 GB SD card, >$100

 
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Offline Ian Sane

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #18 on: November 01, 2005, 05:43:05 PM »
"Using my super Spanish skills, Merrick says that they have no defintive games. If they did, they'd show it!"

That doesn't sound very good.

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Offline Bill Aurion

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #19 on: November 01, 2005, 07:21:51 PM »
What?  Merrick said that Metroid, Mario, SSB, and Zelda are "progressing nicely"...He never said anything about lacking "definitive games"...I assume that was taken from him saying Miyamoto doesn't like to show "incomplete games," which really doesn't point out a specific point along the path of development...
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Offline Mario

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #20 on: November 01, 2005, 07:28:58 PM »
Not to mention at E3 Iwata said "work on Revolution games is well underway". I think he even mentioned they'd started rev game development at E3 2004 even.

Offline PaLaDiN

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #21 on: November 01, 2005, 07:52:50 PM »
You guys, what Nintendo says only means anything when it's negative. Everything else is just marketspeak. Stop being parrots and think for yourselves.
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Offline KDR_11k

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #22 on: November 01, 2005, 08:23:59 PM »
Bestbuy.com:
128mb SD card, ~$25 USD
256mb SD card, ~$45
512mb SD card, ~$70
1 GB SD card, >$100


Ripoff. A GB should go for 50-70. It's 50 Euros here so roughly 60 USD. Of course you'll get awful prices if you buy in some big store. Go to a small PC hardware shop, those usually have much better prices. Or Newegg but they have a bad reputation, they got a GB for 50$.

Offline Djunknown

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RE:Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #23 on: November 02, 2005, 04:36:45 PM »
Quote

Pero no tenemos juegos definitivos, ni el hardware tampoco. Si lo tuviéramos, ¡lo lanzaríamos ahora mismo!


I'm translating this as literally as possible. "But we don't have definitive games, nor the hardware either[specs aren't finalized!?). If we did, we'd launch it right now!"

Quote

Queremos esperar a que todo esté listo, que cuando enseñemos por primera vez los títulos de Revolution sean plenamente jugables con el mando definitivo.


"We want to wait until everything is ready, when we [show] for the first time, Revolution titles [that] are playable with the definitive controller."

As always, any other interpretations/translations are welcome!

Pro and KDR: Thanks for the heads up! I hope that 128mb isn't the equivelent of the 'Cube's 59...
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Offline NinGurl69 *huggles

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #24 on: November 02, 2005, 04:53:19 PM »
Pricewatch.com:
Kingston brand 1GB SD card, online shop, >$55.
>$53 for "generic" brands.

There we go.

~~~~~

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Offline mantidor

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #25 on: November 02, 2005, 05:15:10 PM »
yup, the translation is correct, "juegos definitivos" means more like completed games than definitive games.
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Offline KDR_11k

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RE: Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #26 on: November 03, 2005, 05:03:05 AM »
Djunknown: You sound like you were planning to buy a 128MB card (mb is millibit...). Get a gigabyte, it's worth it! If you don't need it for saves you can store other data on it.

Offline 31 Flavas

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RE:Merrick Talks More Revolution
« Reply #27 on: November 03, 2005, 09:27:25 AM »
Quote

Originally posted by: Djunknown

Pro and KDR: Thanks for the heads up! I hope that 128mb isn't the equivelent of the 'Cube's 59...
The only difference this time is that since Nintendo doesn't produce, design, sell, or for that matter even own the IP of SD memory cards you can't say, "OMFG, OMFG, z0mg! Nintendo is just  EXTORTING MONEYIES from us." You'll have to direct that hupla at the SD memory manufacturers.
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