So, word on the street is you’ve been hanging out with 3DS again.
People have been talking about it for a while, but I wasn’t gonna say anything. I mean, it’s not really that big of a deal. You guys care about each other. You’ve been through a lot together. It makes perfect sense that you’d still enjoy each other’s company.
But, lately… uh, Nintendo, you guys have been getting to be a little too close. I know it’s none of my business, but man, I care about you, and I’ve gotta be frank dude… your behavior lately has been kinda embarrassing.
Remember a few months ago when you met Switch? You couldn’t stop talking about her for five seconds. I’m not gonna say it was “love at first sight,” but holy crap dude, you guys were perfect for each other. I mean, you still are. She’s amazing for you. Everyone loves her, we haven’t seen you this happy in a long time.
And I don’t wanna see you sabotage this new console because of your insecurity.
You recently announced the Nintendo World Championships 2017. When I saw that on Facebook, I was like, dude, awesome! It’s so great seeing my best friend do all this cool stuff with his new console!
…but… you’re not bringing Switch with you to the championships. You’re bringing 3DS. And Mario Kart 7.
Nintendo… are you serious right now? Here you have this brand new console, one that you’ve invested so much time and energy into marketing, one for which you’ve released some of the best competitive multiplayer games ever made within just the past three months… and you’re gonna ignore her and focus on a mediocre 3DS game that came out six years ago?
Look, dude, I know you don’t like to talk about it, but… let’s call it like it is.
You’re doing this because of Wii U.
I know you still think about her all the time. I know you’re struggling to get over her hurting you. I get it. But you’ve gotta realize that you don’t have to prove anything. Everyone is on your side, we all know it was unfair.
You treated her so well. Better than anyone else treated her. Better than that asshole Microsoft treats his consoles. And what did you get for it?
Poor sales. Unwarranted criticism. Articles about how you’d never get to have another console ever again.
You gave Wii U some of the best games you’ve ever made. You put in all the entertainment features and apps that people had been asking for without compromising that goofy interface that makes you special. You did something new and innovative with the controller—which, let’s not forget, your competitors tried to rip off.
You were so nice to her friends, too. You treated them even better than their own companies treat them.
And even when it was obvious that things weren’t going to work out, you still kept your promise to her that you’d give her a new Zelda game. Even though no one would have faulted you for just kicking her to the curb at that point, you still did it just because you said you would. You’re a good guy, Nintendo, and you deserve way better than Wii U.
Things just never really took off. Wii U was a little slow. She spent so much time being jealous of the good times you spent with Wii that she never had the confidence to establish her own identity and just be herself. It’s a shame… she thought she would make you happy by attempting to recreate one of your past consoles, but she just ended up holding you back.
Don’t you see where this is going, though? That’s exactly where you’re at with 3DS right now.
Like I said, I get it. When Wii U treated you poorly, 3DS was there for you. You tried giving Wii U one of the most phenomenal platformers ever made, and when she didn’t appreciate it… well, the inferior 3DS version sold a little better. 3DS reminds you of how happy you were with DS. She’s everything you wanted Wii U to be.
So I understand why you’re so attached to her. But you’ve gotta move on, dude. This new Switch console is something special. I know you know that. Everyone can see how amazing you are together.
But when you give your new Metroid game to 3DS instead of Switch… I worry about you, Nintendo.
I’m worried that you’re going to keep drifting between 3DS and Switch without ever really dedicating yourself to one or the other. I know, it worked out for you when you were younger, but you’re getting up there in years, buddy. You’re not the sexy new kid in town anymore. You can’t compete with Apple.
You’ve gotta settle down, dude, but I’m worried that what happened between you and Wii U made you afraid of commitment. I know it’s scary going all in on one console, but Switch is the one, man, and if you don’t realize how special she is, someone else will. We’ve all seen the way Sony and Microsoft look at her. They’re gonna go after Switch just like they’ve gone after all your other consoles, and if you don’t seal the deal now… well, don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Please. Don’t throw away what you have with Switch just because 3DS makes you feel comfortable. Consoles like Switch don’t come around very often.
3DS puts out, though. You can't ignore that. It's aaaaaaaaall profits at this point. Plus games are cheaper to develop. So more profits. Profits profits everywhere. Third parties also don't shun it. Could you get the same kind of profits from Switch? Maybe, but it's more expensive to make right now and still sells less than the 3DS. So you going to flush what you've got now down the tubes for what *might* pan-out in the future?
Say you ditch the 3DS and focus solely on Switch. You don't have enough of them at the moment, but you've got more than enough 3DS systems. Chances are very good the Switch will be hard to find even this holiday season, nine some months after release. And you can't buy that kind of publicity, either. The "it" item is "it" no matter how much marketing money you spend. But here is the option and opportunity to make a butt load of money, spend next to NONE on marketing, and still get your console into people's eyes and mouths going forward.
Mom goes into Gamestop come November. She needs one of them Nintendo consoles with Mario the kids want. All sold out, says the guy behind the desk, but hey, here is another portable Nintendo system and it also has several Mario games (2D and 3D) plus some fancy new special editions. Mom says "hey I can get one for EACH of the kids for the same price as that sold out console." Boom, Nintendo rolls around in their piles of money.
Kids already have a 3DS? Release a limited edition with a new paint job (so easy and cheap) and BOOM, they just BOUGHT ANOTHER ONE.
Let's talk Samus Returns. Nintendo puts it on Switch rather than 3DS. It sells zero more consoles, because Switch is already selling out. Zero. What kind of company would do something like that? That's dumb business.
ANECDOTE ALERT. I have a friend who basically stopped console gaming at this point. Used to be a huge part of his life. His girlfriend essentially swooped in and made him quit. But he still has a love for Metroid the likes of which I've never seen. Anyway, because Samus Returns and Prime 4 are on different systems, Nintendo is going to get money out of him they'd never see without those two games. Both on Switch? That's a few hundred bucks out of their pocket. Now is the time to milk the snot out of every dollar you can. This is the time. This is the time of profit.
If the Wii U was a smash hit, console gamers wouldn’t feel so insecure about the success of the 3DS. I don’t recall articles like this being written after the Wii, and DS games were still coming out at a steady clip. Just saying.
Nintendo isn't doing anything unusual with their business practices right now. They are treating their handheld the same way they have all their handhelds. The only "difference" that some people are perceiving now, is that Nintendo's console market presence SUCKED for the past four or so years. While on the other hand, 3DS has been killing it for over six years. As @J.K. Riki has said, it would be foolish to ignore the 3DS. It just doesn't make sense.
And let's not kid ourselves into thinking that Nintendo isn't putting forth valiant effort on the Switch. They launched the system with one of their biggest, most critically acclaimed games of all time. They launched a brand new IP with great success. They recently put out a sequel to one of their biggest new franchises exclusively on Switch. The newest Super Mario game is coming exclusively on Switch. And oh yeah, did we forget that Metroid Prime 4 is in development? For the FREAKIN' SWITCH? (why can't that be on 3DS?) So yeah, no. Nintendo is doing FINE.
Besides all that, people are kidding themselves if they think Nintendo's "main" system is their console. It's not. It's their secondary business. Far and away, Nintendo's flagship systems have pretty much ALWAYS been their portables. They know what they are doing. Everybody relax.
I don't know, did it? It actually sold pretty well at launch...Nintendo just had maybe *too* lofty goals for it. I mean, just shortly after launch (end of March 2011) the 3DS sold through nearly 4 million units. 4. MILLION. UNITS. nearly That's nothing to sneeze at, regardless of what metric you're using.
By the end of that year, 3DS sold over 11 million units. That was of course helped by the price cut and Ambassador Program, sure. But again, those numbers are impressive. In fact, in the 3DS's first year, it actually outsold the DS during IT'S first year. And as we all know, the DS went on to be one of the best-selling things ever. It's hard to say the 3DS really "fucked up hard and early" when you actually look at the numbers.
@GameDadGrant That was post price slash. Slashing the price is definitely a hard and early fuck up.
The Wii U saw no such luck. Let's not forgot Wii U software droughts were more than likely aided by all hands on deck to save the 3DS. So it's super unfair to label 3DS this huge success that just worked while the Wii U was a piece of shit failure when Nintendo clearly favored one over the other.
We'll never know how the Wii U could have fared if it got a price slash and a bunch of attention thrown at it to ensure success.
The Wii U had a really good first few months too, but then petered off hard.
I would have written articles like that during Wii. I always thought handhelds took away from their consoles. They could have had an ecosystem similar to Switch long ago if they had planned for it.
I always thought handheld exclusives were stupid. Sure, it could go both ways (like a handheld weirdo can think console exclusives are stupid) but for me personally, and those that don't really like handhelds, Nintendo's just sabotaging themselves. Especially now, why not release Samus Returns on Switch as well? They can have their 3DS version, fine, but they should also be supporting their current/future console. Why couldn't OOT and MM 3D have come to Wii U? Hey, fuck it, why can't Samus Returns come to Wii U even? I'd gladly take that. The only reason I'm quiet about Samus Returns being 3DS exclusive is Metroid is finally back (beggars/choosers), plus we're getting Prime 4. I'd still rather see Samus Returns on Wii U or Switch though.
There's more Wii U out there than Switch, so why isn't Wii U seeing any ports?
Ps. Handhelds are their main business but not their main consoles. Why do all the mainline titles come to their consoles? We've been over this before. Just because they make more money with one it doesn't mean they prefer it over what their core business has been from the beginning. I will always see handhelds as consoles little brother. They sell better to kids/masses because of price and accessibility, but let's get real here. The main/"real" games are always the console games. The scope/quality of console games always takes a dump on handhelds. Just compare Smash 4. MK7 to 8. LTTP to Link's Awakening (yes I'm well aware many of you weirdos consider that game like best in the series), Mario 3 to Mario Land, Tropical Freeze to an inferior port of Returns, Mario Maker, Wind Waker to those other 2 baby Wind Wakers, and the list goes on and on.
Consoles are where it's at. It's where the A teams like to work. Sales don't change how Nintendo themselves treat the games on each console.
How long have people been clamoring for a mainline Pokemon game on consoles? There's a reason for that. This ENTIRE time Pokémon has existed, they could have been making superior console versions. Is there actually actually anything a handheld can do better than a console aside from portability, an issue Switch has finally solved?
By the logic of "better sales equals main business" one could say mobile is Nintendo's main business now. Nah man. Consoles have always been Nintendo's main business. Their handhelds have sold better but that dosent mean the console, game, controller, etc are better. I'll give their handhelds credit for improving as time went on, of course, though. The lines blurred a bit more and stuff like ALBW and M:SR are pretty "console quality" games to me. So credit where credit is due.
I'll give the DS credit for the whole 2 screens and touch stuff though. That was actually truly influential to their whole business. Other than that their handhelds have just been lesser, better selling versions of what they offer on their consoles.
I resent handhelds for these reasons. There's no reason to resent their consoles. They put forth their best efforts there for the most part, and it's where it all started for them in earnest with the NES. Game & Watch doesn't count because reasons :p
Handhelds are their main business, consoles second. That's just how it is, you can choose to accept it or not.
Handheld games are often more full experiences - few games out there have the kind of depth and scope of nearly any Pokémon game of its time. Monster Hunter 4 crushed any other console game in the franchise. Animal Crossing: Wild World was a better experience than City Folk, which actually came after. And even you gotta admit, Kid Icarus Uprising took a dump over nearly every other game this past generation. The list goes on and on.
Thankfully Nintendo now has the Switch, which can *kinda* cater to both handheld and console gamers. So now we don't have to worry about console games taking up development time for superior handheld games. It's the best of both worlds!
You do bring up a good question though; why didn't Nintendo do an "Ambassador Program" for the Wii U, like they did with 3DS? Well, isn't it obvious? They didn't care. Wii U was clearly a second thought - so long as their main business of handheld gaming was secure, their console business was just not necessary. Gameboy pretty much carried Nintendo through the N64 generation, GBA carried Nintendo through the GCN generation...Wii actually did well, but the DS was clearly the more successful platform. And again - even you must admit - 3DS carried Nintendo during the Wii U's life. They knew where to place their bets. And their best games.
Gah, who am I kidding. We'll never completely agree on this topic, will we?
If handhelds are their main business why do all (ok fine, 90%) the mainline games come to consoles?
You can't ignore the list I made comparing the console to handheld counterparts. Every handheld game you've ever listed could be done on consoles, but better, but the same can't be said for console games ported to handheld.
Facts is facts man. There is no feasible reason on earth that any handheld game ever made can't be done on consoles, but better. Except if you wanna argue how trading worked in Pokemon or something lol.
Also, hardware innovations. I gave credit to the DS for dual screens and touch, but basically every other innovation Nintendo has ever done has been on consoles. Motion, analog, rumble, shoulder buttons, triggers, you name it.
Their handhelds sell better, it's their cash cow. But it's not where they choose to be bold, innovate, make their best games, (for the most part), etc.
It's their main business moneywise, but artistically it's abundantly obvious which they prefer.
I always thought handheld exclusives were stupid. Sure, it could go both ways (like a handheld weirdo can think console exclusives are stupid) but for me personally, and those that don't really like handhelds, Nintendo's just sabotaging themselves. Especially now, why not release Samus Returns on Switch as well?
Read my post above. It's just one guy, but that one guy is buying a 3DS (AND Switch) because he can't get both Metroid games on one system. That means an extra $150 (or whatever a 3DS costs these days, been a while) in Nintendo's pocket. All because they hold back on one port. Multiply that by the people who will be in the same boat and it's time for a trip to the bank for the Big N.
There's more Wii U out there than Switch, so why isn't Wii U seeing any ports?
They don't make Wii Us any more. They want to lure people to the Switch, or even the 3DS. This isn't like the 3DS they they still make (and make new versions of almost daily!). It was actually pretty absurd to release BotW on Wii U. But then, didn't matter, because they can't boost Switch sales more than they currently are: Sold out.
Eh, there are arguments and valid points as to why all those "handheld versions versus console versions" fall apart. Mostly involving handheld versions having more content, innovating more, or the console versions coming out AFTER the handheld versions, thus Nintendo (or another developer) being able to implement content they had in other versions into the new ones. Plus the handheld versions will always have the advantage of...well, being portable. And also less costly to the consumer.
But never mind! I didn't want to get into that because that road leads to verbosity.
One point you posted was how "any handheld game could be done on consoles, but better" and I wanted to touch on that. I think you may have had a point there....like, 20 years ago. But nowadays? What can consoles really do anymore that handhelds straight up can't? Tell me this, actually: what possible benefit could a game have by being on a console instead of a handheld? I literally can't think of even one.
I'll agree with your point about innovations - rumble, analog sticks, motion, etc. Nintendo generally did put those into their consoles first (and their handheld games were able to benefit from those steps) so we can at least agree on that. It should be noted Nintendo did make some innovations on their handhelds too...I mean, the fact that there is a handheld market AT ALL is due to Nintendo developing that technology in the first place, haha. And yeah, the stuff you mentioned like dual screens, touch screens, etc. are courtesy of the DS. Let's not forget that Nintendo's portables were really the ones to headline true online gaming for Nintendo. And wireless multiplayer gaming. And stereoscopic 3D. And new stuff like StreetPass and to a lesser extent, SpotPass. But yeah, Nintendo made some great innovations on their consoles. I still love that IR aiming for the Wiimote - best way to play Resident Evil 4!
But yeah, I dunno man. A lot of Nintendo's games have their main entries on handhelds. Pokémon is an obvious example. All mainline Kirby games are on handhelds...with the one exception being Dreamland 3. Same goes for the Wario Land games, and the WarioWare games. All mainline Metroid games are on handhelds, too. (yeah, I love the Prime games, but don't forget those are side games, not part of the main series!) Zelda and Mario are kind of all over the place. All the Zelda games released, whether on handheld or console, could be considered a "mainline" game. The story structure of that series is all over the place. (I mean, is Majora's Mask any more or less a spin-off than say, Oracle of Ages, for example? I dunno.) Mario certainly started off having side games, spin-offs or remakes on Gameboy/Gameboy Color/Gameboy Advance...but ever since DS, handheld Super Mario games have more or less been main games. Unless you can explain to me why NEW Super Mario Bros. is not a main Super Mario game but NEW Super Mario Bros. Wii *is.* Or why Super Mario 3D Land is not a "main" Mario game, but Super Mario 3D World actually is a "main" game.
Like I said, we'll never agree on this, so I may be done with this thread. Unless I get bored later, haha. But you make some good points, this has been a fun little conversation/debate. Thanks for that, man!
EDIT: I was complaining about being too verbose at the top of my post, but then I ended up making a huge post anyway. D'oh!
What can consoles really do anymore that handhelds straight up can't? Tell me this, actually: what possible benefit could a game have by being on a console instead of a handheld? I literally can't think of even one.
HD and higher quality assets. Single cart/system multiplayer. Big screen for multiple people to watch (something important for my wife and I when we play, because she prefers to just watch most of the time except RPGs).
I've got no dog in your fight with carlos, but it seems to me the biggest point of contention comes from both of you jumping to the extreme sides of the pool. Just as there was a "feasible reason on earth" for a game to be on a handheld vs. console, I think you can "literally think of even one" benefit a game could be on a console vs. handheld, yeah?
We all need to meet in the middle here. Both handhelds and consoles have pros and cons. We know who is in which boat, but that doesn't mean we can't swing the boats close to each other and share a few sodas while we talk about how great both boats are. :P
EDIT: And let's not forget who the real enemy is, here. Trent, for writing this and TEARING OUR FAMILY APART. THANKS FOR NOTHING, TRENT.
We all need to meet in the middle here. Both handhelds and consoles have pros and cons.
If only there were some sort of device that was a combination of a handheld and a console so you could have the best of both worlds! Man, if something like that existed, it'd be pretty dumb to continuing releasing games on either of the other two platforms.
I think that Nintendo isn't taking full advantage of the potential of the Switch.
The Wii U had a lot of problems but a lacking game library wasn't one of them. The system had well-done games. Some people interpret this to mean that Nintendo made enough errors that the whole console unjustly sank. In my opinion, it was indicative of something else:
Nintendo isn't as valued as they used to be by the general consumer.
The reason that handhelds continued to do well while Nintendo had good systems was that the market was more okay with a $200 entry price point with $40 games as opposed to $300 entry and $60 games. That can be for whatever reason, kids might be more prone to break it so get them something cheap, gaming can be costly so more people opt for systems that will get major releases etc. But for the average consumer, the idea of paying several hundred dollars to get the drip feed of Nintendo products isn't compelling. This has only not been the case when Nintendo released a unique console that resonated with the gaming public for reasons outside of gameplay. The two biggest games on the Switch are Wii U games so it makes zero sense for the gaming public to all of a sudden be like 'Ohhhhh Nintendo games are good, okay, well I will buy this system then.' It is about the system itself. I think what this means is that right now they have an uptick of interest with this cool new platform.
Eventually, though, that excitement will fade and all that will be left is the games. And it is here where Nintendo is still messing up in my opinion.
The Wii was a phenomenon when it launched but by 2011 the system was all but totally dead. For comparison, the Wii launched in 2006 and shot ahead of its competition but was all but dead in 2011 and had its successor launch in 2012. The PS3 which had a very troubled launch alongside the Wii had its best year in 2013 with swan song titles like BioShock Infinite, Last of Us, and Grand Theft Auto 5. It continued to do well after that releasing the same games as its successor as the generations overlapped. And how did the PS4 go on to light the console scene on fire? By not changing anything and keeping what people want, bigger and better games, front and centre. The Wii U tried to innovate and despite being somewhat compelling it floundered.
Here is what we should learn: New and innovative ideas are great but they must be followed up on or else you risk losing it all next generation. Ask yourself this: Is Nintendo truly making the most of the beneficial situation they've found themselves in? With a Zelda port, Mario Kart port, a samey Splatoon sequel from a game barely 2 years old, and some weird first person fighting game? All the while releasing games on a system that while good doesn't really offer any advantages over their new system? I would say no. I like the Switch but I have no problem waiting for it and once the wow factor of taking your games to and fro wears off on people or becomes more commonplace (like say, Sony or MS following suit) then what? What does that mean for the Switch U?
If Nintendo isn't going to be a player for third party major releases then they NEED to keep people invested in their ecosystem by focusing all their developmental effort into one system. 3DS games can and should be continued to be made but there should almost always be a Switch version with a few extra bells and whistles and the Switch needs impressive exclusives with broad appeal. Hopefully, Mario Odyssey hits that mark. Otherwise, we might go from the successful Switch to the lackluster Switch U and who knows how compelling the next idea will be after that.
3.) Big screen for multiple people to watch (something important for my wife and I when we play, because she prefers to just watch most of the time except RPGs).
1.) Irrelevant for handhelds, for two reasons. One, HD/higher quality assets are unnecessary because games made for a handheld look great on the device's screen in its native resolution. Higher quality assets won't do much for the overall visual fidelity, if anything. And especially in the case of 3DS, the stereoscopic 3D trumps HD visuals - at least IMO. And two, it's kind of a moot point anyway, since Nintendo's latest handheld actually DOES display in HD.
2.) Again kind of a moot point, at least for me anecdotally. I mean, I've probably got like, 7 3DS systems at my house. And a lot of the games I'd play with others in multiplayer are either single-cart download play (Street Fighter, Mario Kart, Starfox) or would basically require the other player to have their own copy of the game anyway in order for the game to be any fun to begin with (Pokémon, Monster Hunter). Even Smash Bros. on 3DS can technically be played without ANY copy of the game, thanks to the demo from the eShop. (did the Wii U version ever get a downloadable demo? I can't remember) But again, even that doesn't hold much water in my case, since my household also has multiple copies of that game in addition to the multiple systems available. I realize this may not be the case for everyone, but it is at least for me, and most of my friends as well. Another point is, when it comes to those local multiplayer games? Everyone has their own screen. None of that split-screen stuff from the '90s.
3.) Your last point would actually be a determent at my house, haha. It's incredibly frustrating for my wife to have video games hog up the TV. And sometimes even for me - I may want to play something, but the TV is being used for a movie or a show for the kids...and not all games have off-TV play. Handhelds eliminate that hassle entirely. These anecdotal situations are probably exactly whey I couldn't think of a reason why consoles could ever be better than handhelds, because for me, the handheld option is always the better, more convenient way to go.
EDIT:And let's not forget who the real enemy is, here. Trent, for writing this and TEARING OUR FAMILY APART. THANKS FOR NOTHING, TRENT.
Now this is something I can get behind. If I didn't know any better, I would have assumed this was a troll article. Too many times over the course of the generation have I seen the 3DS being demonized by the Nintendo community. (admittedly, mostly by Rob - whom I hope is doing well, by the way. Where is that guy?!?) And I'm always baffled by that. It's Nintendo's greatest success this generation, and has some of Nintendo's best work. Why are NINTENDO FANS putting so much hate on something that is pretty much literally keeping their favorite video game company above water, single-handedly? And even now, sure the Switch is off to a great start. Lots of great games are out for it, and as time goes on more and more third parties are warming up to the system...one of the most anticipated games ever is in development for it exclusively (though without Retro, which should be interesting)...what is there really to complain about? And why are there people (at least around here) that are so eager to kick the 3DS to the curb? This machine has been great for Nintendo, there is no reason to stop the train now.
Could this be a Nintendo fan-only kind of problem? I don't recall many PlayStation fans calling foul when Sony was still releasing games like Motorstorm and God of War II for PS2, despite the PS3 being out for years. Xbox fans didn't get a chance like this though - Microsoft basically cuts ties with their old hardware almost immediately when their new hardware is out. So maybe it IS just Nintendo fans. For some reason.
Oh well, whatever. I'm gonna try again to back away from this thread, haha. I don't think I'm going to get the answers I either A.) Want, or B.) Agree are actually valid.