Nintendo will not be hosting a press conference at E3 this year.
Traditionally, Nintendo has held a Tuesday briefing to show off new software and/or hardware to a mixed audience of press, investors, retailers and publishing partners.
But speaking in a Q&A with investors last night, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata said that the company’s new Nintendo Direct broadcasts had satisfied the demand to give the public information on new games, and that it would otherwise hold smaller events or work one to one with retailers and distributors.
Plus a costly event – like the ones it has been hosting at the Downtown LA Kodak Theatre for the past five years – doesn’t seem smart when Nintendo will be only focusing on software, not hardware.
Iwata is also not going to be the host of these smaller events, either.
He told investors: "Instead, at the E3 show this year, we are planning to host a few smaller events that are specifically focused on our software lineup for the U.S. market.
"There will be one closed event for American distributors, and we will hold another closed hands-on experience event, for mainly the Western gaming media.
Also, I did not speak at last year’s presentation, and I am not planning to speak at these events at the E3 show this year either."
Iwata’s full explanation is as follows:
"In the past we invited reporters, investors and analysts, industry partners, such as software publishers, and distributors who attended E3 to our large-scale presentations. We also used them as a communication tool in which we broadcast our presentations on the Internet to reach out to video game fans around the globe. I believe that many are expecting us to host a similar event this year.
"On the other hand, since we set out on new endeavors such as Nintendo Direct two years ago in October, we have been paying special attention to the fact that different people demand different types of information from us. For example, as video game fans are looking for information about games, it seems that they are less interested in sales figures that investors and analysts on the other hand attach much greater importance to, and distribution partners are looking for information on how we are going to market our products in the immediate future. At previous financial briefing sessions we announced information about our products, showed videos and even uploaded the recording of these events onto our website, but given that we now have an established method such as Nintendo Direct, we feel that we will be able to deliver our messages more appropriately and effectively by doing so individually based on the various needs of different groups of people.
"At E3 this year, we are not planning to launch new hardware, and our main activity at E3 will be to announce and have people experience our software. Many people are certainly very interested in learning more about the Wii U titles that we are going to announce. We will use E3 as an ideal opportunity to talk in detail mainly about the Wii U titles that we are going to launch this year, and we also plan to make it possible for visitors to try the games immediately. As a brand new challenge, we are working to establish a new presentation style for E3.
"First, we decided not to host a large-scale presentation targeted at everyone in the international audience where we announce new information as we did in the past.
"Instead, at the E3 show this year, we are planning to host a few smaller events that are specifically focused on our software lineup for the U.S. market. There will be one closed event for American distributors, and we will hold another closed hands-on experience event, for mainly the Western gaming media. Also, I did not speak at last year’s presentation, and I am not planning to speak at these events at the E3 show this year either. Apart from these exclusive events for visitors, we are continuing to investigate ways to deliver information about our games directly to our home audience around the time of E3. We will share more information about them once they have officially been decided.
"During the E3 period, we will utilize our direct communication tools, such as Nintendo Direct, to deliver information to our Japanese audience, including those who are at this financial briefing, mainly focusing on the software that we are going to launch in Japan, and we will take the same approach outside Japan for the overseas fans as well.