James Batchelor talks to Nintendo’s junior product manager Zoe Cooper about why retailers should show the new version of the handheld some love this Valentine’s weekend...
Who are you targeting with the pink DSi and how will you engage with this audience?
With this new colour it is definitely about the girls – although that’s not to say that it is exclusively for them. We know a lot of boys and men who picked up pink versions of the GBA SP and DS Lite. The launch date for the pink DSi bundle offers a great gifting opportunity, and so should help us to instantly engage the female audience as this is the ultimate girly accessory for Valentine’s Day.
The DS has always had a strong female userbase – what do you attribute this to?
It’s as much to do with the console being accessible to any level of user – regardless of age, gender or gaming experience – as it is to the great line up of software that has really enabled us to attract a larger than usual female user to the platform.
I suppose you could say it all started with the release of Nintendogs and soon after that we had Animal Crossing: Wild World for younger players. Since those releases, we have continually released compelling and disruptive software on the console through launches such as Brain Training, 100 Classic Book Collection, Hotel Dusk: Room 215, Mystery Case Files: Millionheir, the Professor Layton series and Style Boutique.
How do you expect the pink DSi to affect sales of the format overall?
We know that both retail and a large number of our female userbase have been asking for DSi in pink ever since we launched the original black and white versions last year. We saw great success with the launch of the pink DS and DS Lite, and we hope that the pink DSi will see similar success. We would hope that all those pink DS owners will see this new colour launches as an opportunity to get a DSi in their favourite colour.
What are your expectations for the pink DSi and the bundle, in terms of sales and public reception?
We have released a series of colours since the launch of DSi, but pink is definitely one of the most anticipated colour variants we’ve worked on. The fact that it is released around Valentine’s Day gives us an instant gifting opportunity and the incorporation of Style Boutique software makes this a complete starter package.
Why have you chosen Style Boutique as the title bundled with the pink DSi? How successful has this title been in the past?
Style Boutique has performed well since its launch in October. It continues to sell consistently week in, week out for us and has now sold over 100,000 units in the UK.
Including Style Boutique in this SKU will offer the ultimate accessory to girls who receive this bundle as a gift or purchase it themselves, thanks to hours of fashion game content. Offering a bundle also ensures that anyone can get playing on their DSi straight away.
Could we see other colours and game bundles in the future?
The Nintendo DSi is available in an array of colours and we would not rule out future bundles. However, it is important that when a bundle is released it is truly offering something extra, or is a perfect fit with good software. With the pink DSi and Style Boutique, it offers girls a complete gaming experience and a great piece of hardware too.
How successful have previous bundles been?
Bundles have performed consistently well for us right from the original Nintendo DS Nintendogs bundle through to more recent Brain Training bundles. It ensures that consumers get the complete package and an enjoyable first experience when they purchase. It’s really important to make sure the right software is included so people are encouraged to share with their friends and make further purchases.