Nintendo Thinks The Switch Won’t Suffer The Same Fate As The Wii U – Forbes
Over at GameSpot, there’s an interesting interview with Reggie Fils-Aimé, the president and COO of Nintendo of America, about the Switch’s future. He makes some interesting points though, which are as follows:
Nintendo Switch is a home console you can play anywhere, with anyone. Clear. Compelling. We see the reaction by consumers whether it’s measured in Twitter trending topics or views of videos on YouTube or just the frequency with which I get called by old high school buddies that I haven’t heard from in 30 years who are asking me how to get their hands on Nintendo Switch. We have communicated the proposition clearly and it is compelling.
Wii U will go down as having fantastic content–the issue was as you look at the reality of exactly when the games were launched, there were large gaps in between.
I’d agree that the buzz surrounding the Switch is more prominent and focused than it was with the Wii U. However, the issue of the delayed game releases on the Wii U was down to lack of third party confidence in the platform.
While there is an argument to be made that the Switch does indeed have greater public interest surrounding it, people are still unsure after the Wii U. The fact that, superficially at least, the consoles appear similar to one another also doesn’t help.
In a functional sense, the Switch and Wii U are actually very different. You don’t have the dual screen setup on the Switch anymore and its controllers are a whole other thing entirely.
However, the fact that Nintendo adopted a tactic of radio silence for a good few months after the initial Switch announcement has actually only helped to fuel this confusion.
This is the actual issue here and one that Nintendo could have negated with clear and regular updates on the new hardware. In that, the company could have built the hype up around the Switch but done so in a way that was clear in what the console was and was not.
The fact that the Wii U comparison keeps on coming up even after the recent and considerably more thorough presentation earlier this month shows that Nintendo still has obvious marketing problems ahead with the Switch.
Reggie is right though, the Switch needs a constant flow of game releases to keep the console alive but much of the heavy lifting on that will come from third party companies, companies that could be still unsure and at worst confused as to the benefits of Nintendo’s new console.
Read my Forbes blog here.