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potato_hamster said:

Okay, first off, I totally agree that EA is not, and will never be the deciding factor on whether a Nintendo platform succeeds. EA is a part of third party support, not the be-all-end all. I'm sorry if I was not more clear on that point. I meant to use them as an indicator of the health of third party support on the Switch.

And yeah, Vita's library wasn't that great, mostly because third parties fucked off pretty quickly when sales were so terrible. The PSP on the otherhand - glory days. For me, to this day, that is the best portable gaming library a portable has ever had, and man, that thing was lacking in so many areas. The vita is such a missed opportunity. Sony blew it, flat out. I sadly spent more time than I should have playing PSP games on my vita. I guess I wasn't really clear on what I meant on that point either.

But to be clear, there is definitely a void there that Vita was supposed to fill, and Nintendo just does not give a shit about trying to fill it. And no, I do not think that three publishers a handful of their games on the Switch is good enough, it's just better than nothing.

And also to be clear - absolutely anything can be ported if you're willing to put the time in and simplify enough things. Witcher 3 is a prime example of that. It is just really fucking difficult and expensive. I remember reading article after article after article about just how easy the Switch was going to have PS4/Xbox One games ported to it. Many people on this very site were convinced that Switch was going to be a prime example of just how far "scaling technologies" have come and getting the latest and greatest games from major third parties on Switch was going to be about as much work as getting a PS4 game to run on Xbox one.

They could not have been more wrong. But what were they wrong about? Development tools, mostly, which is Nintendo's responsibility. There are several things Nintendo could have done to support third parties better and give them the tools they needed to make porting a PS4 game to Switch as easy as possible, and from what I've heard, Nintendo isn't doing anything more than what they were doing during the Switch days. Now, granted, I don't know if Nintendo has any special arrangements with Activsion/Blizzard or Bethesda or CD Project Red, but I don't suspect Nintendo is really any more concerned with what's going on outside Nintendo today than it was a decade ago.

Nintendo can do what Sony and Microsoft do when trying to get games on their platform that developers are on the fence about doing. Partially or totally fund the cost of getting those games on the platform. Nintendo did that with Bayonetta. Why not do that with GTA V or Cyberpunk or Madden? Even if GTA: Online isn't part of the package, that would be a huge win, and make people take notice. Nintendo isn't helpless in this by any stretch of the imagination.

Switch sales have not proven that they do not need AAA. They've proven that they do not need AAA to sell 35M units. We actually do not know if they'll need AAA in order to sell 100M units. I suspect they do much more than people realize. Nintendo spent years pulling resources away from the Wii U and DS and delayed some games to give the Switch a first party year one library that might never be rivaled in terms of major first party titles to give the Switch the best possible start it could, and it worked, and it's sold admirably. Unfortunately, the number of Wii U ports people will buy on Switch has dwindled to almost nothing. Breath of the Wild and Mario Odyssey are less effective at selling consoles today than they were a year ago, and they're going to become less and less effective as times goes on. It's already apparent Nintendo can't keep up the pace they had, which means as time goes on, third parties become more and more important to sustain sales and keep "Nintendo Switch" fresh across the media and the internet. The Witcher 3 will help with that, but let's hope that's the first of a new wave of tremendous first party support instead of a one-off in a timeline that is filled with indies and shovelware in between Nintendo first party releases.

I agree with you to an extent in your first paragraph about getting as many 3rd parties on board as possible but not necessarily about the type of games. The likes of EA, Ubisoft, Activision, etc have all showed up on Nintendo's successful platforms over the years but on none of them were the AAA, mainstream titles the ones that were selling extremely well or pushing hardware sales. It's always been the smaller A/AA or family/casual type titles that have thrived or become breakout hits.

I 100% agree that there is a large potential void left by PSP that Vita failed to attract and Switch has yet to take full advantage of (I think they have partially filled it with games like Skyrim, LA Noire, Mortal Kombat, Doom, Diablo, Witcher, Wolfenstein, etc) but even then it's not like PSP was getting many day and date AAA ports of PS3/360 games in its heyday, it didnt get things like GTA IV, Red Dead, Modern Warfare, mainline Assassins Creed, Fallout 3/New Vegas, Elder Scrolls IV, Batman Arkham, Battlefield, Saints Row, Dead Space, Mass Effect, Borderlands, Bioshock. It typically got spinoffs or built from the ground up versions of the big mainstream franchises which was common for handhelds in the 90s/00s to receive but has significantly reduced over the last decade for various reasons.

PSP didn't receive those AAA 3rd party titles in the mid-late 00s for the exact same reason that Switch is not receiving most AAA titles now.

I'm not sure where you have heard about Nintendo providing poor development tools and not doing anything more than the Wii U days when all reports have been the exact opposite.

Sony nor Microsoft pay to get support from 3rd parties, they pay for things like exclusives, timed-exclusives, marketing rights, etc but they dont pay to get things like Madden, Call of Duty or GTA on the system and Nintendo shouldn't have to either as it sets a precedent that they need to pay to get support. If they pay Activision for Call of Duty 2019 than do they have to pay to get COD 2020 and onward? Does Take Two say well you payed Acti for COD so you need go pay us for GTAV? How long and how many games do they need to pay for before they start getting equal support as PS/XB?

No Switch has absolutely proven that it doesnt need AAA titles to sell well, 35m in a little over 2 years and sales currently up over 25% YoY with the biggest games this year being a 6 year old Mario port and a B/C teir release in Yoshi from Nintendo and a bunch of previous gen ports and indies from 3rd parties.

Sure games like BotW and Odyssey selling power will slow as time goes on but you act as if nothing is around the corner to further push sales. Mario Maker, 2D Zelda, Luigi's Mansion, Pokemon & Animal Crossing are all huge franchises set to release in the next 9 months and Switch has yet to receive any price cuts or revisions so there is zero reason to expect any sort of notable slowdown any time soon. It may not hit 100m but at this point nobody should be expecting anything under 80m.

When the herd loses its way, the shepard must kill the bull that leads them astray.