It’s hard to label the Wii U as anything but a disappointment. The Wii wasn’t much better, despite phenomenal initial sales. Even the Gamecube was debatable at best. It’s starting to seem like Nintendo has lost their touch, or perhaps they’ve lost touch with their fans. Despite this, loyalist are holding out hope for the NX, but they’re doing so with caution. The same gamers that have loved Nintendo for so long are starting to feel like they’ve been forgotten about, abandoned even. How can Nintendo heal the wounds of constant disappointment and turn things around?
The NX is coming, that’s for certain. This is their chance to make a change, to set things back the way they need to be. But, there are some concerns. We now know that it’s not being displayed at E3 at all, for unknown reasons. With new rumors of yet another manufacturing delay being in effect to shoehorn in some VR support, the big N is making me nervous with their new plans. Rumors and patents pointing more and more towards some sort of 3DS/Wii U hybrid are seeming more and more likely. I don’t want any of that.
Nintendo seems absolutely determined, convinced even, that a gimmick is needed to push them back to the top. This is probably due to the fact that the Wii sold so so many consoles with the motion controls as the only real selling point of the units. Sure, it made Nintendo a lot of money, but people caught on pretty quick that the motion controls were actually more frustrating than fun and that the pitiful hardware made it impossible for most third party games to be ported to it. Game sells dropped off and gamers quickly lost interest. When the Wii U hit the shelves, it sat there. It still sits there. People saw through their gimmick of having a second screen. People saw their poor hardware choices, slow interface, and again, poor graphics performance as a whole. Somehow I think Nintendo believes it’s all marketing that makes the Wii U a failure, and not the implementation of a fancy controller or odd built in accessories.
I, personally, want my old Nintendo back. Nintendo used to understand the gamer. They used to understand that power sold units. Their best selling and most beloved consoles were all pushing top of the line hardware for their time. The NES, SNES, and the N64 were all moving the industry forward in important ways. 3D graphics, better controllers, more storage, save data, all of this came dominantly from Nintendo. They didn’t have gimmicks. They provided simple controllers, nice visuals, stellar audio, and primarily, an emphasis on good games.
I want a standard controller. Two joysticks, lots of buttons and a couple of triggers. I want amazing visuals that outclass the competition. I want hardware that makes it easy for third party game developers to port their games to the system. I want 4K streaming. I don’t want motion controllers. I don’t want a built in VR headset, a watch me sleep machine, a fitness tracker, or any other nonsense they might try to shove down my throat. If they build a simple console that does what it needs to do, play games, games will come. When games show up, gamers will show up. When gamers show up, more developers will make games for the system. This is simple logic that Nintendo needs to stop ignoring. It’s what Sony is doing right now, and look how they’re performing in the market. They’re doing what Nintendo USED to do, and N can do it again.
I’m not a child anymore. I don’t need gimmicks. I grew up with Nintendo. I grew old with Nintendo. I am still the fanbase that they should be targeting. Adults buy consoles, adults buy games, and adults are the gamers that still have the passion for Nintendo. Nintendo needs to open their eyes and listen to the needs of their most beloved. The same gamers that have fat wallets.
Somewhere deep down I think Nintendo knows that they’ve been making a chain of mistakes. I think there is an internal fire that still burns. They’re still making fabulous games after all. I also think that there is some misguided force lurking inside the Big N, forcing these bad decisions. I just hope that they’re listening.