A cryptic translation of a Nintendo investor FAQ has suggested that Nintendo intends to take steps to mitigate a possible lack of third party support for its NX console.
President Satoru Iwata attempted to deflect questions about the NX, but did comment on the decision to announce the machine so early. Having reiterated that the decision was in part designed to alleviate fears that the company may abandon consoles in favour of mobile, Iwata also said that he wanted to machine to be a surprise.
Details on the new platform essentially should come later. This is because the entertainment business has an aspect where there is value in surprising consumers,” he argued. It is not convincing enough to the consumer if we describe how the magic works before actually showing it to them and then expecting them to be surprised or delighted. Having the element of surprise or doing the unexpected is the premise for introducing new ideas and having them welcomed with surprise.”
What exactly was meant by the following comment, however, is certainly up for debate.
I will not share details on NX today but with regard to the launch of Nintendo 3DS and Wii U not necessarily having progressed well and not acquiring sufficient support from software publishers, we intend to offer NX through a Nintendo-like solution,” he said. Thank you for understanding that we are making various considerations and preparations in order to avoid what happened with the previous generations.”
I will not share details on NX today but with regard
to the launch of Nintendo 3DS and Wii U not
necessarily having progressed well and not acquiring
sufficient support from software publishers, we intend
to offer NX through a Nintendo-like solution,” he said.
Thank you for understanding that we are making
various considerations and preparations in order to
avoid what happened with the previous generations.”
Satoru Iwata - President, Nintendo
A Nintendo-like solution? That reduces the company's reliance on third party publishers?
The platform business can sometimes be referred to as a ‘momentum business',” he told another investor. Thus, it is ideal to have a jump start and drive momentum. Looking back at some of Nintendo's past platforms, this ideal launch has been achieved 100 per cent by perhaps only Wii. Even the Nintendo DS launch had areas in which we could have done better. I cannot disagree with your indication that Wii U is experiencing the most unfavourable situation.”
Iwata also pledged that the company will not drop support for the 3DS or Wii U when the NX does eventually arrive. However, is there anything to be read into the fact that both machines were mentioned? After all, it's unlikely that Iwata had to address questions about the company possibly dropping support for the DS when it announced the Wii.
NX is a new platform, so the installed base will have to be built up from zero,” he stated. When NX is launched, there already will be a certain volume of Nintendo 3DS and Wii U hardware widely existing in the market, so from a software business perspective, it would be highly inefficient to stop releasing titles for Nintendo 3DS or Wii U right after the launch of NX.
Therefore, while we are preparing NX for the future, we are discussing within our internal development teams as well as with the second-party developers we co-develop software with and also with third-party software publishers about how to continue creating software for Wii U and Nintendo 3DS. As for Wii U, we will continue to make efforts, as it is a priority within the company to think about how we can satisfy the consumers who purchased this system to the maximum extent possible.”