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Why is Nintendo relying on "gimmicks" for its consoles?

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Brandon    299

Pre post note: This is not meant to flame or troll or anything -- merely an honest question.

 

 

Growing up in the 90's, Nintendo consoles were the star of almost every household. It first started with my friend's SNES, then eventually my own N64. I went through Super Mario 64 3 times and beat Zelda Ocarina of Time twice. I spent countless hours wasting away time in front of my TV and eventually got a Gamecube to play more games. At the same time, I picked up an Xbox and expanded that way.

 

When I was on the go, I had a Gameboy Color, then a GBA to play Pokemon, Zelda, Mario, etc.

 

Needless to say, I grew up with all these Nintendo characters and loved the game style and gameplay.

 

Then the Nintendo DS came out. Super Mario 64 DS was neat. It was like an N64 game, but mobile! Then I tried Zelda -- "you're telling me I have to use a stylus to move Link around? How awkward!?"

 

Then the Wii came out. Wii sports and like were fun, but try playing Zelda or Super Mario Galaxy? I got tired of swinging my hands around after a long day of work and sold both of the games after playing them for less than 5 hours or so. Bought the Gamecube version of Twilight Princess and loved it. 

 

Then the 3DS came out. the 3D hurt my eyes after playing it in the store for 5 minutes or so.

 

Yet a week ago, I pulled out my N64 and played Ocarina of Time for 5 hours straight on a snowy Sunday evening. 

 

I guess what I'm asking is what happened to Nintendo? When did the highlight of their system not be the quality 1st party games they made, but the strange (and rather annoying) gimmicks they seem to force upon you? It's not like the Kinnect for Xbox where it's optional. I'm totally cool if they allowed me to use a Gamecube controller for the games as a way of input. Give me the option. 

 

Guess I just want the old Nintendo back :-\

 

 

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Anibal P    2,055

Nintendo progressed with cool features, some that were copied by MS and Sony, but the nostalgic crowd has decided they are too cool for it

 

Me I really liked the Wii and the controller, haven't managed to get a Wii U, but it follows the same ideas, maybe it's time to let go of nostalgia and embrace change, it's not that bad after all 

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n_K    2,608

Yeah nintendo lost it years ago. You know things are bad when the nintendo highlight is 'we`re re-re-re-releasing zelda: OoT for the 13th time'...

I've yet to actually see a 3DS so I can't comment on the 3D aspect of it, but from videos I've seen of the various games, the zelda game looks OK where you can go 2D and whatnot, the mario game looks pretty dire and mario kart seemed to look alright. Every other game though was just *snore*

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NamoBhagavan    0

yeah, this is what they are doing. Nintendo is a Japanese company, has a totally different culture. In Japan, they say don't like? then don't buy. complaints are never welcome there. (I have been living there for decades)

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Brandon    299

Nintendo progressed with cool features, some that were copied by MS and Sony, but the nostalgic crowd has decided they are too cool for it

 

Me I really liked the Wii and the controller, haven't managed to get a Wii U, but it follows the same ideas, maybe it's time to let go of nostalgia and embrace change, it's not that bad after all 

 

For some games, the Wii setup is pretty neat. Sports games etc. But honestly, swinging my arm through the air at 8PM on a weeknight after working for 10 hours seems a lot less fun than just grabbing a controller, laying on the couch and pushing A or pulling a trigger. 

 

I guess I've never found a game on another system that I've liked as much as some of the 1st party Nintendo games. 

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LimeMaster    15,602

The SNES, N64, GBC & GBA all had gimmicks to them as well, so that's not changed. The thing that has changed is the fact that Nintendo has tougher competition, which has caused losses for them, as a lot people prefer the offerings from Sony & Microsoft.

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margrave    1,465

Because it's worked for them. You do what makes the moneys.

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WinMacLin Guy    210

Pre post note: This is not meant to flame or troll or anything -- merely an honest question.

 

 

Growing up in the 90's, Nintendo consoles were the star of almost every household. It first started with my friend's SNES, then eventually my own N64. I went through Super Mario 64 3 times and beat Zelda Ocarina of Time twice. I spent countless hours wasting away time in front of my TV and eventually got a Gamecube to play more games. At the same time, I picked up an Xbox and expanded that way.

 

When I was on the go, I had a Gameboy Color, then a GBA to play Pokemon, Zelda, Mario, etc.

 

Needless to say, I grew up with all these Nintendo characters and loved the game style and gameplay.

 

Then the Nintendo DS came out. Super Mario 64 DS was neat. It was like an N64 game, but mobile! Then I tried Zelda -- "you're telling me I have to use a stylus to move Link around? How awkward!?"

 

Then the Wii came out. Wii sports and like were fun, but try playing Zelda or Super Mario Galaxy? I got tired of swinging my hands around after a long day of work and sold both of the games after playing them for less than 5 hours or so. Bought the Gamecube version of Twilight Princess and loved it. 

 

Then the 3DS came out. the 3D hurt my eyes after playing it in the store for 5 minutes or so.

 

Yet a week ago, I pulled out my N64 and played Ocarina of Time for 5 hours straight on a snowy Sunday evening. 

 

I guess what I'm asking is what happened to Nintendo? When did the highlight of their system not be the quality 1st party games they made, but the strange (and rather annoying) gimmicks they seem to force upon you? It's not like the Kinnect for Xbox where it's optional. I'm totally cool if they allowed me to use a Gamecube controller for the games as a way of input. Give me the option. 

 

Guess I just want the old Nintendo back :-\

 

When the Nintendo 64 came out, I remember a lot of older relatives and friends commenting how they disliked the analog thumb stick and how it would make things uncomfortable and many of them felt that Nintendo had needlessly tacked this on and forced gamers to use it, a few years later analog sticks were standard on all systems (as I recall actually both the PS1 and Saturn got controllers released with analogs within months of Nintendo releasing the Nintendo 64; and all 6th gen systems which came out a few years later starting with Dreamcast had analogs by default). 

 

Personally speaking, I actually liked the Wii's motion system in certain games, I know some people dislike the need to swing the remote around at all times, but it made certain games more immersive or more accessible (especially for friends and family members who do not game a lot). I personally really enjoyed the more immersive combat offered by Zelda Skyward Sword (though like you I disliked the Wii Zelda TP controls because they literally involved swinging the remote without a lot of mapping), I also really enjoyed how the motion system simplified the controls of Mario Galaxy and Metroid Prime 3  thanks to a simple motion that initiated the spin attack and the pointing capabilities that made collecting items and stunning enemies easier, I found a lot more friends and family members could play games like Mario Kart thanks to the motion controls which made the Wii the go to system for parties (the Wii U in my house now holds that position, but for similar reasons). Of course, there are tones of Wii games that do not use the motion system in a thoughtful manner

 

With the 3DS, it will take your eyes around 2-3 weeks to get used to the effect (after which it should no longer bother you), but for me it has changed the way I play platforming games, because it allows you to precisely see and judge your movements and were you are going to jump and land. The second screen on the system is also a good place to store look at maps and manage items without having to constantly pause the game (this made Ocarina of Time's water temple a lot more manageable for me because you could easily put on and remove the iron boots without having to constantly pause as was the case on the Nintendo 64).

 

The Wii U is a bit of hit and miss. The second screen gives you the benefit of managing inventory and looking at maps but due to its size and the way you hold it (you cannot easily look at both screens like you on DS and 3DS) actually kind of makes it difficult. The off-screen play features are good (especially if you are like me, and want to play it bed). The assymetric-gameplay capabilities are also great when playing multiplayer and party-games (you could play split screen in a game like COD Ghosts or Mario Kart for example without others peaking at your screen or being distracted by what it is on another person's screen; and there are other cool things you can do with this gameplay setup like playing Pictionary on your TV as well as others [there is a great party like game called Game & Wario that really demonstrates some of the cool concepts that be done with this assympetric-gameplay model on Wii U].

 

I think it really depends what you would consider a gimmick, and whether or not you personally like it. It is also important to consider how the developer uses the hardware (there are a large number of game, most from third-parties but even a few from Nintendo that force the hardware on you in uncomfortable and needless ways Zelda TP is one of those examples). I would also say that one of the key failings of Nintendo (aside from their atrocious marketing which is the big issue) recently has been that they are excessively focusing on a single hardware selling point for their systems (their own games are generally top-notch and most of them make good use of the hardware, and the primary reason why people invest in the hardware is because of the game); by this I mean that their gimmicks are cool and innovative if used properly, but not spending time developing a good network system, a consumer friendly digital shopping service, third-party friendly hardware, and good all-around media capabilities is really hurting their position.

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Tha Bloo Monkee    591

Let's not forget about R.O.B. in the 80's, or the Virtual Boy.

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game_over    802

Wii U: best console I've ever owned (and ive owned them all) .. If you want nintendo nostalgia then the wii u is full of it, the first party games are stunning and keep classic nintendo gameplay, and there is lots of VC games and can be played on classic controller (which happens to have a GameCube version) .. If you want to delve into modding then it gets even better.

People call the game pad a gimmick, I call it a portable hand held gaming unit, it's like 2 consoles in 1

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Dale    16

As a Nintendo fan who has owned all of their systems (except for the SNES. I was a Genesis fan). I felt that the N64 controller was one of the biggest gimmicks that turned into a success, I am a fan of the Wii U right now, especially in hyrule warriors. I can play multiplayer with my friends and the person with the touchscreen controller has their own screen.

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Tha Bloo Monkee    591

I wouldn't say they "rely" on gimmicks but sometimes I find they tend to use some of the features just for the sake of using them, like using the stylus for Zelda on the DS for example.  Or playing Zelda with motion controls.  It's all debatable, but I personally didn't like it.

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+Red King    2,466

They are target for kids more than adults. You are an adult - a kid loves gimmicks, you don't.

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compl3x    6,290

Gimmick seems to be exclusively used in a negative context here. I don't think just because something is a gimmick it is therefore bad. In fact, I would argue consoles makers have to have some sort of hook, or gimmick if you'd prefer, to lure in customers.

 

Depending on who you ask in any given era, all of the following were considered gimmicks:

 

The D pad

The analogue stick

bumper (L & R) buttons & trigger buttons

rumble packs

motion controls / accelerometers

3D graphics/ pre-rendered cut scenes

 

 

 

The thing I think Ninty has done recently which is stupid is that they created the Wii U gamepad in a rather obvious attempt to move in on the tablet market. The gamepad isn't bad, it is just pointless and under utilised. And they've remade the same effing handheld over and over again with trivial or pointless revisions. They have a 2DS . . . ? It underscores Nintendo's bizarre relationship with their consumer base.

 

No other company would get away with even 1/2 of what Nintendo does. I'm part of the problem: I am a Nintendo fanboy. 

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+virtorio    3,241

Nintendo compete in a slightly different space to the Xbox or Playstation. They've come up with lots of "gimmicks" over the years that are now standard features in other games consoles. 

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mdtaUK    58

Gimmicks/Innovations - time will tell which ideas become industry standards, and which will be abandoned over time.  Nintendo is a company where the internal developers get a big say in what the hardware allows, and so if they see an emerging technology and want to explore gameplay ideas with, there is a chance it may make it into the next hardware release.

 

- Direction Pad;

- Analog Stick;

- Motion control;

- Touchscreen controls;

- Multi-screen gaming;

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Shiranui    1,920

I'm really enjoying the WiiU, but the main reason for this is the fact that I play games with my son.

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compl3x    6,290

I'm really enjoying the WiiU, but the main reason for this is the fact that I play games with my son.

 

 

Nintendo nails the family angle. MS and Sony can't get close to what Nintendo has built in that respect.

 

Also, it's totally cool you game with you son. If you don't mind me asking how old is he?

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Shiranui    1,920

He recently turned 8, but we got it around the time Super Mario 3D world came out.

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