Author Topic: A fine line to be number 1  (Read 7854 times)

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Offline thecubedcanuck

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A fine line to be number 1
« on: February 02, 2003, 12:11:33 PM »
After reading these boards for over a year, and seeing how everyone wants Nintendo to regain the number 1 position in the console race, I pose a few questions and give a few thoughts.

First of all, what was it that lost Nintendo the number 1 spot in the first place?
Was it refusing to go the CD format, or was it a bigger issue?

May here seem to want to 2 very differant things from what I have seen.
Everyone wants Nintendo to make new and innovative games and at the same time keep the old favorites alive and kicking while remaing true to their roots.
Can this be done? Can they be innovative and keep the feel of the past glory in these games?

Now one has to consider what it will really to tkae to overthrow a really powerful king in Sony.
Sony is succesfull because it appeals to the masses, this cannot be argued.
Can Nintendo appeal to the masses, while pleasing the difficult to please Nintendo loyalist?
How can they do both?
It seems to me like it it is a double edged sword. To overthrow the king one must first emulate the king at the same time convincing people that they will the same but better.

I am not sure how this can be done.
Will Zelda be a start, I really dont think so.
Metroid could have been, but needs more pushing still.

I  am looking for some real objective feedback here, not the standard "if people were smart they would just buy Nintendo" rhetoric.
How do you get a sony fanboy to take a look, and even more important, how do you make him like what he see's?

Thanks

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Offline ShanD

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A fine line to be number 1
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2003, 12:13:55 PM »
I think their biggest, and best buisness strategy is being ignored as of now. Letting the 3rd parties take over franchises. So, while the 3rd parties make games true to the roots, Nintendo can work on the new and innotive games that Nintendo was saying that were coming out this year.
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Offline Mingesium

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« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2003, 12:50:45 PM »
The real problem is third party support. Nintendo lost a lot of third party support when they went with carts. The GameCube fixed that problem with the GameCube. The problem now is third party software isn't selling well compared to PS2 and XBox. The competition from Nintendo software are hurting third parties. The solution is to get a huge userbase to support first and third party games. I think that Nintendo is on the right track. Software sells systems. I expect more people to buy the GameCube these year because of Zelda, Mario Kart, etc.

Handing out franchises is a great way to help third parties and it frees up EAD to create new franchises. So far we haven't see those new franchises and I hope that they will be revealed at E3.

Offline WhoDey

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A fine line to be number 1
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2003, 01:41:29 PM »
Sometimes I wonder if Nintendo even really cares about being #1. What I mean is that while they'd love to be have the top selling console (who wouldn't), they aren't going to sacrifice money in order to make a run to get there. Most of us aren't business majors and yet we can see all kinds of things Nintendo has and is doing wrong if their main objective were to have the #1 console. Things such as not marketing enough, not matching competitors prices with software (players' choice titles), not blitzing the press enough like Sony and Microsoft do with future titles, and not keeping top companies (Rare) are a few examples. Nintendo specializes in this and has to forcast what each move will result in so maybe these aren't mistakes at all.

I think Nintendo is quite content with where they are now. Although they aren't #1, they are major players in the industry. They pretty much have a monopoly over a profitable handheld market and apparently are profitable with the GC. Their software sells extremely well. So while overtaking Sony would be great, it may not really be a goal. While we cringe when EA announces they will not support the GC with most of their sports titles, Nintendo is surely disappointed, but not to the point of doing anything about it. I think they are quite satisfied.

Offline thecubedcanuck

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« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2003, 01:48:21 PM »
Quote

So while overtaking Sony would be great, it may not really be a goal


thats a good point, I honestly never once looked at it from that angle.

However I do find that train of thought disturbing. To not want to be the best at your givin field seems like a death wish.
Eventually that attitude would only further there competiters lead.

As for the handheld market.
I hate to see what will happen when Sony releases a handheld. From my personal buisiness experience, I would think that SOny having the Number 1 console would steal a lot of GBA users. Users would want their handheld to match there console especially is the handheld and console will link up, which it no doubt will.
This is a big reason why Nintendo has to see the importance of the console position because one day it will hughly affect there other and most profitable market.
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Offline Nintendo

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A fine line to be number 1
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2003, 02:11:27 PM »
I believe Nintendo finally have things the way they always wanted them to be.
Keeping most of the crappy third party games away from their console.
Yet the GameCube is still receiving tremendous third party support compared to any previous console.
Make no mistake, most of the nay-sayers are just comparing system exclusives, which is what makes any console profitable for their manufacturer.
"What if everything you see is more than what you see - the person next to you is a warrior and the space that appears empty is a secret door to another world? What if something appears that shouldn't? You either dismiss it, or you accept that there is much more to the world than you think. Perhaps

Offline WindyMan

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« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2003, 02:32:45 PM »
Nintendo doesn't care about being number 1, it cares about making a boatload of money.  Remember, even though Nintendo is in a tough spot when you look at the sales numbers, the fact of the matter is that it's still making more money than everyone else is overall.  The GBA does have a lot do to with this, but still, it's about the money more than it is about the market position.  It's always nice to have both, though.

Ultimately, I believe Nintendo's problem was Yamauchi's stubborness.  Sure, when you lead a company for as long as he did, he should be remembered for the company's successes, which he will be, but when you're not using the $6 billion in the bank and losing market share by the week, someone needs to be blamed.  Iwata should be more willing to spend some money for the North American campaign, and get Nintendo's console business back where it was.
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Offline thecubedcanuck

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« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2003, 02:41:59 PM »
Quote

the fact of the matter is that it's still making more money than everyone else is overall. The GBA does have a lot do to with this, but still, it's about the money more than it is about the market position


Like I said earlier this could change overnight when Sony enters the Handheld market.

Market position and making money always end up being related, maybe not in the immediate future but somewhere down the road a lack of market share will always translate into making less money.

I am not sure how MS will figure into all of this. I am not sure if them entering the market will help nintendo or hurt them in the long run.
At the moment they arent a real threat, even though there sales match nontendos.

Catching Sony, hell even coming close, is the real key here. How do you get Sony users to come to the cube before GBA users go to sony?
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Offline Smadte

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« Reply #8 on: February 02, 2003, 02:57:32 PM »
OH, GOD! Not another one of these discussions.

Offline Perfect Cell

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A fine line to be number 1
« Reply #9 on: February 02, 2003, 04:08:15 PM »
I posted this in the old forums.

2003 could be the year Nintendo jumps back in, as a serious contender, but they do have to get their Act together.

1.Improve marketing, Whoever makes commercials for Nintendo is really bad. Keep it Clean for SMS? The horrible Eternal Darkness ones? Horrible! They need to improve them. Also every month the companies pay money to game stores to get their product infron of the store. This month its PS2. Nintendo needs to get their product in front of the store as well. Spend more money to increase and improve marketting

2.Get their product faster to Europe. Metroid Prime not in Europe? not Acceptable! Nintendo needs to accept the fact that Europe is an important sector in the market. They need to improve the time it takes to localize games.

3.Get more exclusives and less delays. We still dont have Hitman 2. Stuff like this shouldnt happen. Nintendo needs to pay Money  to get their games early. You got to spend money to make money. Also get a big franchise exclusive like they did with Resident Evil. Many third parties in interviews said that RE was a reason they decided to make games on the cube. They need another franchise, possibly Castlevania.


4.Aquire developers. Look at M$ they bought Rare and now want Vivendi AND Rage software. Vivendi while they do have alot of crap, they have Blizzard and Half life. Nintendo needs to get on the ball and make a move for someone. Capcom would be IDEAL. Expensive but damn well worth it.If not then give us Treasure! Make it known to the common gamer that Nintendo wants to be a serious contender.


5.Push the Triforce-GCN. I had high hopes for the Triforce, many companies making Arcade games that could be ported fast to the cube. Other than Fzero what is there? Not acceptable. Get more Triforce games.

6.More RPGs Where is my Golden Sun Cel Shaded Gamecube RPG? Where is my Enix! What else is there from Square? Why not pay Money to square to get a Super Mario RPG sequel using the Kingdom Hearts type graphics?

7.Online Online Online people want it. Use the PS2 model. Let companies give the servers. Push the Modem, i want my Pokemon MMORPG! It could respark the Pokemon franchise.


8.Push the GBA-GCN conectivity more, it should be more than a gimick

9.did i mention marketting? Its The single most reason why PS2 is cool, its main stream and Gamecube is not. This is the most important thing Nintendo has to Fix! Also pus the Adult Market more. I know I know nintendo has no set age group, hell i love Pikmin but the mainstream gamer does not. Make a big time violent game. Ala PS2s The Getaway. Here is a suggestion Nintendo. Get the rights to the movie The Transporter. And make a big Budget game using the franchise into a Driver 2/GTA type game. I bet this would help TREMENDOUSLY!

and Finally 10

10..Divy up more of their older franchises. Konamis support sucks, well Give them the Kid Icarus franchise. Give more franchises out. Nintendos got a tone of em left. Lend Activision /Z axis the Exitebike franchise, give Sega the Duck Hunt liscence  ect. People want these old franchises back but Nintendo cant remake them all.

If nintendo follows these to the bone, they would easyly regain major Market share IMHO.


Offline WindyMan

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« Reply #10 on: February 02, 2003, 04:11:02 PM »
Quote

Like I said earlier this could change overnight when Sony enters the Handheld market.


If it was going to change, it would not be "overnight."  Nintendo dominates the handheld market with about three times the force that Sony dominates the console market.  The only thing Sony could manage in a year is a denting Nintendo's position, not overthrowing it.  Remember, even though the GC and Xbox have the far better hardware, when you'd already had 8 million or so consoles installed, it doesn't matter how good your system has, publishers are still going to make games for the older system.  No matter what comes out, people will still make games for the GBA, which has something like 20 million systems sold worldwide.

By the way, Sony has already developed a handheld-type system.  There's a reason why you haven't heard of the PocketStation.
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Offline nolimit19

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« Reply #11 on: February 02, 2003, 05:14:38 PM »
no one is going to mess with the gameboys position this generation. and it wont be over night. its true. the only way they could dethrown the gba is by maybe making the games on disc so that they are cheaper to develop for. that the only reason sony was able to over take nintendo. and not to mention cds on a handheld system may not work because of skipping and what not. i am not an expert at these things, but i really doubt nintendo will lose the handheld market.
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Offline thecubedcanuck

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« Reply #12 on: February 02, 2003, 06:55:28 PM »
windy man

Do you really think that if Sony made a hand held that connected to the PS2 and will connect to the PS3, marketed it hard, and  brought over games like Vice city and such that it wouldnt put a big dent in the GBA?
I may not happen in one month, but over a span of 2-3 years I think Sont could and would take over the hand held market.

I am Sure when the PS1 came out no one cared either.

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Offline ThePerm

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« Reply #13 on: February 02, 2003, 06:59:16 PM »
you certainly cant beat the selection...all GB, SGB, GBC, and GBA games....
its the same with playstation psx and ps2 games ar ein a huge volume.
No one could really catch up on selection for gba as a competitor.
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Offline WindyMan

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« Reply #14 on: February 02, 2003, 09:04:59 PM »
Quote

Originally posted by: thecubedcanuckHindsight is always 20-20


Yes, which is why the Game Gear and its bigger color screen and vast game library totally crushed the puny black and white Game Boy when it came out.

Oh, wait...
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Offline thecubedcanuck

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« Reply #15 on: February 03, 2003, 06:09:22 AM »
Quote

Yes, which is why the Game Gear and its bigger color screen and vast game library totally crushed the puny black and white Game Boy when it came out.


Gimme a break, SEGA had no where near the market saturation that Sony does now. You are comparing apples to oranges.
Sony users would definately buy a linkable sony hand held. Why do I own a GBA, because I own a cube, it just makes sence.

Like I said this wont happen overnight, it might take 1, 2 even 5 years, but resting on the laurels of a big lead in a said market is very self destructive thinking.
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Offline WindyMan

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« Reply #16 on: February 03, 2003, 09:20:50 AM »
Just because someone has a successful console, that does not gurantee a successful handheld.  I already mentioned the PocketStation as proof to this, and I'll mention the Wonder Swan too.  Square did develop for both, so even with big-name developers on board to make games for a new handheld, it's not going to mean success in the short-term or long run.

By the way, you're the one comparing apples and oranges.  You're comparing today's console market leader with yesterday's failed handheld upstart.  If you want to make the right comparision, realize that Nintendo had something like 9 or 10 million Game Boy units installed when Sega came to market with the Game Gear.  When that didn't work, Sega tried to marry its Genesis (which at the time, was the market leader, just like Sony) with a handheld in the form of the Nomad, and that still didn't work.  If you add up Game Gear and Nomad sales, it's still just a fraction of total Game Boy original sales.

Even though the system was better, the fact of the matter is Sega was trying to infiltrate a market that already had a proven leader in Nintendo's Game Boy, and it ultimately failed simply because people went with what they had been going with for the three years or so before it.  You're banking on the fact that PS2/3 users will automatically buy a handheld that can link with a supposed Sony handheld.  Big deal, Nintendo will have been doing that for the year before.  There are about 15 million people in the world with a GBA and no GameCube.  Granted, most GameCube owners own a GBA, but the point is that people buy a handheld first for its own merits, then for all the bells and whistles after that.  That's why every single handheld that is not a Game Boy has ultimately failed.  And that's an almost 15 year history.

What's going to happen in five years?  Who knows?  That's too far away to even begin speculating on what might happen.  Personally, I see no viable way that a handheld will go to a disc format, because a disc can only be so small.  Sony or Microsoft might have some sort of stake in the handheld market.

If you think Nintendo is just going to sit back and let people eat into its handheld position, though, you're crazy.  Nintendo has proven before that just because you're number one doesn't mean you sit back and let the others catch up to you.  If they would have thought that at all since 1989, we'd probably be playing games exclusively on our cell phones by now.
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Offline Ian Sane

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« Reply #17 on: February 03, 2003, 12:18:28 PM »
"Nintendo doesn't care about being number 1, it cares about making a boatload of money. Remember, even though Nintendo is in a tough spot when you look at the sales numbers, the fact of the matter is that it's still making more money than everyone else is overall."

True.  Nintendo doesn't care about being number 1 NOW because they've making a lot of money.  But in the future will they still make a lot of money if they don't at least TRY to be number 1?  There are people who where "burned" by the N64 who still bought a Gamecube because they felt that without the limiting cartridge format Nintendo had a shot of eventually regaining their top spot.  It's not likely they could do it with the Cube but that doesn't matter.  In the eyes of many fans the Gamecube was seen as the first step where Nintendo would slowly gain more and more market share on the road to catching up with Sony.  Now would any of these people have bought a Cube if Nintendo had said outright "We have no plans on regaining the top spot.  Therefore Nintendo fans can continue to expect minimal third party support and a lack of mature titles and RPGS"?  Nintendo fans want Nintendo to be number one again because we know that with the top spot comes the most games.  We saw that with the NES and SNES and that's largely why those consoles are spoken about so fondly and the N64 not so much.  If Nintendo makes it clear that they have no intention of even trying to achieve this then it's less likely that we fans are going to buy the next Nintendo console.  Why buy another Nintendo console if things are never going to improve?  If fans buy less consoles then GAMES are going to sell less which means Nintendo makes less money.  Therefore if Nintendo wants to continue to make money they HAVE to try to be number one or they'll lose customers fed up with Nintendo's refusal to try and improve things.

Now of course the GBA changes things up a bit because it's so successful.  However any negative aspects of their console business will hurt the Nintendo name which in itself hurts the Gameboy.

As for Sony I believe there is only one way they will ever lose their top spot: they must f*ck up in a way where they will lose most of their third party support like Nintendo did.  Then third parties will flock to another console and with them the games and with those the gamers.  Therefore Nintendo should get themselves in a safe number two spot so that if/when this happens they'll be the first choice for all third parties.  As it stands right now Gamecube would likely only get Capcom and Square if such a thing happened now while Xbox would likely get most of the American third parties and Japanese third parties like Sega, Tecmo, and Konami that have either been bribed or hate the Gamecube.

Offline Infernal Monkey

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« Reply #18 on: February 03, 2003, 12:40:31 PM »
Quote

Originally posted by: thecubedcanuck
First of all, what was it that lost Nintendo the number 1 spot in the first place?
Was it refusing to go the CD format, or was it a bigger issue?


I'd say Nintendo lost their number one with the whole introduction of the Nintendo 64. They made alot of enemies during the production of it. Shunning Sony away, pissing off Silicon Graphics Inc. with the anouncement of the cartridge format, not to mention Square, and well, every other company.
Plus Nintendo were slow. They often boasted how the N64 would be so much powerful than the other two, and they kept pushing the release date back. Over and over. From 1994 to freakin 1996.

Yes, upon release, it stunned everybody. But Nintendo thought Mario 64 would keep them going for quite some time. They got lazy with their releases. Fans had to wait months for a new game. Not to mention all the big 3rd parties avoided the system like it was smeared with dog crap. Nothing from Square, Capcoms first release was a kiddy Tetris game, Namco made a kiddy baseball game as their first and only game (They didn't develop RR64, they licensed it to Nintendo, who destroyed everything that was good with Ridge Racer)

They pissed everybody but the die hard fans off.

And now, it would seem Nintendo have won back 3rd party support... But now they've just gone down the crapper. They're keeping everything hush-hush, everything is a damn secret. It's so stupid. If nobody has any idea of what they're up to, why should people care? Or support them? Telling a mainstream gamer to wait for amazing games in the future won't work. They need to be blasted with hype in order for a purchase.

And personally, I'd like to see Nintendo get serious with the GBA. I'm disgusted by their first party support. Porting over Mario World is a nice idea, but where's the new Mario? And why should I be forced to pay full price for it? It's over 13 years old! All they did was add a save game anytime feature and throw in those voice samples..

EDIT: Can't believe we've still got language restrictions here =/