Whether fuelling the boom at retail or helping third parties like Sega rack up an incredible million UK units of Mario and Sonic in just four months, Nintendo has aided the wider business.
Nintendo leapt from ninth biggest console publisher to number one in 2007. Its titles made up 18 of last year’s 40 best-sellers.
Nintendo is now the UK leader in both handheld and static console. The Wii has flown past the two million mark in terms of installed base and the DS is at well over six million.
Last night David Yarnton was rightly called on to pick up the Grand Prix award for the second year running, and for the third time in four years.
Over 89 judges from all sectors of the business also sent Nintendo to comfortable victories in PR, Marketing and Publishing.
Rivals will surely want to finally knock this lot off their perch next April, but no one in the room will have begrudged them another night of glory.
There were many deserving winners last night, such as Ubisoft capping a fantastic year with its Sales Team and New Games Brand double.
Grainger, GAME, Play.com, HMV and Zavvi were comfortable victors in their retail categories.
Microsoft’s tremendous work with Halo 3 was rightly remembered. EA’s trade marketing team got the recognition it deserves, Codemasters edged out its studio rivals after an impressive year and 505 Games showed that small companies can still achieve big things – Cooking Mama pipping Mario and Sonic to the Sales Triumph award.
Meanwhile, Centresoft beat off Gem, Koch and sister outfit Advantage. But the most emotional moment and a universally popular winner was Paul Donnelly – recognised by the MCV Retail Advisory Board for 25 years at the sharp end of the channel.
The Gem founder and chairman Paul Donnelly is a diamond geezer, for sure.
Cheers to Paul, and to everyone who participated in another proud night for the UK games industry.
After all, it was the trade itself that voted for them. And you lot know your stuff.