Forums - Nintendo Discussion - Nintendo sucks at marketing its older-teen blockbusters

Does Nintendo suck at marketing its older-teen blockbusters?

Yes
No

Not too long ago I made an article comparing the success of Halo to the success of Metroid, among other interesting things.

Now we ALL know that Metroid Prime was a game without multiplayer and Halo was a game with online multiplayer support. However, is multiplayer the be all end all of sales?

A game like Assassin's Creed 1 will tell you the opposite. Solely catering to a single-player immersive experience, Assassin's Creed 1 had no online multiplayer support, no local multiplayer support.

Nonetheless, it went on to sell a total of 9.6m units across the PS and 360 platforms.

Pos Game Platform Year Genre Publisher North America Europe Japan Rest of World Global
1 Assassin's Creed X360 2007 Adventure Ubisoft 3.04 1.55 0.07 0.53 5.18
2 Assassin's Creed II PS3 2009 Action Ubisoft 2.19 1.92 0.21 0.83 5.16
3 Assassin's Creed II X360 2009 Action Ubisoft 2.74 1.57 0.08 0.50 4.90
4 Assassin's Creed PS3 2007 Adventure Ubisoft 1.77 1.84 0.09 0.77 4.47
5 Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood X360 2010 Action Ubisoft 2.43 1.43 0.03 0.43 4.32
6 Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood PS3 2010 Action Ubisoft 1.55 1.80 0.11 0.73 4.19
7 Assassin's Creed: Revelations X360 2011 Action Ubisoft 1.98 1.39 0.03 0.39 3.80
8 Assassin's Creed: Revelations PS3 2011 Action Ubisoft 1.23 1.76 0.07 0.69 3.76

Assassin's Creed II followed the same success, as well without multiplayer. It's only with Brotherhood (the non-numbered sequel to ACII) that multiplayer was introduced.

Comparing to Halo, we have:

Pos Game Platform Year Genre Publisher North America Europe Japan Rest of World Global
1 Halo 3 X360 2007 Shooter Microsoft Game Studios 7.64 2.69 0.13 1.17 11.64
2 Halo: Reach X360 2010 Shooter Microsoft Game Studios 6.59 1.76 0.08 0.83 9.26
3 Halo 2 XB 2004 Shooter Microsoft Game Studios 6.82 1.53 0.05 0.08 8.49
4 Halo: Combat Evolved XB 2001 Shooter Microsoft Game Studios 4.98 1.30 0.08 0.07 6.43
5 Halo 3: ODST X360 2009 Shooter Microsoft Game Studios 4.16 1.28 0.06 0.60 6.09

(Halo4 and AC3 removed for simplicity, since they're new releases)

Now why is it a game like Metroid follows this trend rather than Halo's or Assassin's Creed's?

Pos Game Platform Year Genre Publisher North America Europe Japan Rest of World Global
1 Metroid Prime GC 2002 Shooter Nintendo 1.96 0.67 0.10 0.09 2.82
2 Metroid Prime 3: Corruption Wii 2007 Shooter Nintendo 0.86 0.54 0.07 0.16 1.64
3 Metroid Prime 2: Echoes GC 2004 Shooter Nintendo 0.87 0.35 0.07 0.04 1.33

The answer is simple: Nintendo doesn't know how to advertise its core titles to the extent that the likes of MS and Ubisoft advertise their older-teen posterboys. Even Sony, which gets less sales overall for its 1st party offerings, puts a lot of advertising money into some  of its blockbusters, like Gran Turismo and Uncharted.

As far as I remember, Metroid Prime 3 had little to no advertising, as with Metroid Prime 2. The first prime had some advertising, it was a big new game with big potential. However, it got much less exposure than Halo.

The follow-up question is, even if they wanted to, COULD Nintendo support the advertising style MS gives to Halo, and if so, would it yield some kind of return on investment even if the game's sales didn't cover the cost?



Around the Network
happydolphin said:

As far as I remember, Metroid Prime 3 had little to no advertizing, as with Metroid Prime 2. The first prime had some advertising, it was a big new game with big potential. However, it got much less exposure than Halo.

Looks like you've been on VGChartz for too long

I think overall is has to do with the fact that Nintendo doesn't really have that many titles targeted at that specific demographic. It doesn't help that Metroid Prime doesn't have that mainstream appeal either.

Zelda seems to sell well enough, though.



My 3DS Friend code is 0877-1237-2177 ...ADD ME! :D

miz1q2w3e said:
happydolphin said:

As far as I remember, Metroid Prime 3 had little to no advertizing, as with Metroid Prime 2. The first prime had some advertising, it was a big new game with big potential. However, it got much less exposure than Halo.

Looks like you've been on VGChartz for too long

I think overall is has to do with the fact that Nintendo doesn't really have that many titles targeted at that specific demographic. It doesn't help that Metroid Prime doesn't have that mainstream appeal either.

Zelda seems to sell well enough, though.

Hehe, yeah gonna fix that :P

Yeah, Zelda TP was a nice success there, and did get some good coverage especially by being bundled with the Wii advertising, which was massive.

But MP, why does it have no mainstream appeal, splain dat part to me.



Well, the MP games require more thinking than Halo or AC, so that rules out a lot of kids and dumb people.

________________________________________________________________

happydolphin said:

Yeah, Zelda TP was a nice success there, and did get some good coverage especially by being bundled with the Wii advertising, which was massive.

But MP, why does it have no mainstream appeal, splain dat part to me.

It just doesn't have that "cool" factor that mainstream "hardcore" titles have, which appeals to the teen demographic. AC has an assasin, Halo/CoD has its dudebros, Uncharted has its graphics/cinematics, God of War has uber violence. All these attract that teen demo, I notice it irl.

Also, MP's genre is weird. First Person Action Adventure is what people call it I think. It has no multiplayer mode, which seems to be pretty mainstream right now, and the main character's a girl :p



My 3DS Friend code is 0877-1237-2177 ...ADD ME! :D

Around the Network
MP2 had Multiplayer ^^


...but it sucked.

________________________________________________________________

KylieDog said:
Well, the MP games require more thinking than Halo or AC, so that rules out a lot of kids and dumb people.

Blunt as usual, but it's spot on.



Legend11 correctly predicted that GTA IV (360+PS3) would outsell SSBB. I was wrong.

Biased reviews are a pleasure to read. Just my opinion, of course.

miz1q2w3e said:
happydolphin said:

Yeah, Zelda TP was a nice success there, and did get some good coverage especially by being bundled with the Wii advertising, which was massive.

But MP, why does it have no mainstream appeal, splain dat part to me.

It just doesn't have that "cool" factor that mainstream "hardcore" titles have, which appeals to the teen demographic. AC has an assasin, Halo/CoD has its dudebros, Uncharted has its graphics/cinematics, God of War has uber violence. All these attract that teen demo, I notice it irl.

Also, MP's genre is weird. First Person Action Adventure is what people call it I think. It has no multiplayer mode, which seems to be pretty mainstream right now, and the main character's a girl :p

Couldn't Metroid have dudebors like Halo does? Or is it because Halo is more set in an American-style army world than Metroid Prime?

COD is a no-brainer, it's based in the military world, but why Halo, and why Master Chief more than Samus? Most people don't even know she's a girl, if that's the issue.

I also think that this character is similarly appealing to this character.

        



KylieDog said:
Well, the MP games require more thinking than Halo or AC, so that rules out a lot of kids and dumb people.

Makes sense :) But then again, couldn't the same be said about Zelda TP?

Maybe a lot of casuals bought TP, but then are the casuals more adult or more smart than the HD twin crowd?



Around the Network
Nintendo absolutely needs better marketing if they want to win back some of the core audience that have strayed over the years. Metroid seems like it would be the perfect IP for that. There is potential depth there that they should be able to capitalize on. I think Nintendo can be more than a little arrogant in that regard. They almost seem to have the attitude that all they need to go is make the hardware and the game and then sit back while the money piles up.

Keep in mind that I'm one of those who drifted away, beginning with the PSOne. After playing Final Fantasy VI on the SNES, I started craving games with more complex plots and characters, which ultimately led me away from Nintendo first party games and to the much more varied third party offerings on the Sony platforms. Before someone gets offended, that's not a slight against Nintendo, it's just a statement of taste. Characters and story are important for me, which is why I care nothing about Mario.

As far as multi-player goes, if you create an intriguing and immersive universe, then it's not necessary at all. BioShock Infinite isn't going to have multi-player and it's going to sell like hotcakes. Neither did God of War 3 or the Fallout games. Dead Space did quite well without it.

Personally, I'm interested to see if Nintendo openly markets Bayonetta 2 or if they sit back and pretend to the mainstream that they have nothing to do with it. I think that might tell us a bit about how serious they are. I honestly see no reason why Metroid cannot become a large, important IP. Quite honestly, along with Zelda, it's one of the few Nintendo has that really makes me want Nintendo systems.