Forums - Nintendo Discussion - Furukawa: "Expanding the gaming population no longer fits the current situation"

Don't get too excited, this doesn't mean what you think. 

Basically, Furukawa is saying that the ubiquity of smartphones means creating an entry point for gamers who never played a game before is no longer a priority for Nintendo, as smartphones now do that job fine. Rather, Nintendo's new mission statement is to expand their products and brand awareness to these existing smartphone gamers. Creating games and products that can be enjoyed by both casual smartphone users, or veteran console gamers.

No, Nintendo isn't abandoning casual gaming, they are however, no longer focused on getting people into gaming, and instead focused on appealing to as wide an audience as possible. So I don't want to hear any BS about Labo failing or Nintendo's back to "teh hardcorez" now because none of that is true. 



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Yes, I would like you to continue to be Nintendo. That is all.



It means the Wii/DS era is pretty much over and even Nintendo knows it. The Switch demographics are largely adult core gamers, that's simply a fact.

There is no need for stuff like Brain Training or Wii Sports today to get "non-gamers to try video games!" because the smartphone is too good at doing that and does it for free. There's no proposition Nintendo has been able to come up with in oh 8 years or so that has captured the imagination of that blue ocean audience.

I said this stuff many times over the last few years and the Switch software trends and demographics basically bear that out. 

Nintendo always appeals to a wide audience, the NES, SNES, N64, GCN were all more "friendly" entry points for a gamer than other systems, that's nothing new. The Wii/DS era of casual fad chasing is over though, Nintendo knows they can't win with that audience, those people don't care enough about video games to pay $200-$300 for a dedicated game system on top of a whopping $40-$60 a game when they can get their minor game cravings satisfied for free on their shiny new iPhone. 

It's not 2007 anymore. 

Last edited by Soundwave - on 31 January 2019

 

Soundwave said:

It means the Wii/DS era is pretty much over and even Nintendo knows it. The Switch demographics are largely adult core gamers, that's simply a fact.

There is no need for stuff like Brain Training or Wii Sports today to get "non-gamers to try video games!" because the smartphone is too good at doing that and does it for free. There's no proposition Nintendo has been able to come up with in oh 8 years or so that has captured the imagination of that blue ocean audience.

I said this stuff many times over the last few years and the Switch software trends and demographics basically bear that out. 

Nintendo always appeals to a wide audience, the NES, SNES, N64, GCN were all more "friendly" entry points for a gamer than other systems, that's nothing new. The Wii/DS era of casual fad chasing is over though, Nintendo knows they can't win with that audience, those people don't care enough about video games to pay $200-$300 for a dedicated game system on top of a whopping $40-$60 a game when they can get their minor game cravings satisfied for free on their shiny new iPhone. 

It's not 2007 anymore. 

Not really, the Switch's audience is very broad, including people who only really played Smartphone games before. You're correct that Nintendo is no longer focusing on targeting people who never played games. But, that doesn't mean they're going to be some hardcore, gamer company because the reality is, they were never that to begin with. Instead, their goal is to appeal to smartphone gamers with their IP, along with ideas you can only find on Switch. The success of titles such as Pokemon Let's Go!, Super Mario Party, 1-2 Switch, and Nintendo Labo means that smartphone gamers will pay a premium for console games. 

It may not be 2007 anymore, but the core philosophy at Nintendo remains the same. Make products and games for everyone. 



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TheMisterManGuy said:

 

Soundwave said:

It means the Wii/DS era is pretty much over and even Nintendo knows it. The Switch demographics are largely adult core gamers, that's simply a fact.

There is no need for stuff like Brain Training or Wii Sports today to get "non-gamers to try video games!" because the smartphone is too good at doing that and does it for free. There's no proposition Nintendo has been able to come up with in oh 8 years or so that has captured the imagination of that blue ocean audience.

I said this stuff many times over the last few years and the Switch software trends and demographics basically bear that out. 

Nintendo always appeals to a wide audience, the NES, SNES, N64, GCN were all more "friendly" entry points for a gamer than other systems, that's nothing new. The Wii/DS era of casual fad chasing is over though, Nintendo knows they can't win with that audience, those people don't care enough about video games to pay $200-$300 for a dedicated game system on top of a whopping $40-$60 a game when they can get their minor game cravings satisfied for free on their shiny new iPhone. 

It's not 2007 anymore. 

Not really, the Switch's audience is very broad, including people who only really played Smartphone games before. You're correct that Nintendo is no longer focusing on targeting people who never played games. But, that doesn't mean they're going to be some hardcore, gamer company because the reality is, they were never that to begin with. Instead, their goal is to appeal to smartphone gamers with their IP, along with ideas you can only find on Switch. The success of titles such as Pokemon Let's Go!, Super Mario Party, 1-2 Switch, and Nintendo Labo means that smartphone gamers will pay a premium for console games. 

It may not be 2007 anymore, but the core philosophy at Nintendo remains the same. Make products and games for everyone. 

Switch's demographics show it's very clearly an adult centric platform and that's OK. 

There's a thing that happens to kids ... it's called growing up. What's happening now is kids who were 9-10 fifteen years ago have grown up, but they still love Nintendo and have their own disposable money and are driving Nintendo's business today. 

I would bet even for Pokemon Lets Go ... it ain't little kiddies buying the majority of those games or even smartphone users. It's the core Nintendo fanbase -- which is large today, much larger than 10-15 years ago. Every time I see someone buying an Amiibo it's not some kid, it's some 29 year old dude with a full blown beard, lol. 

This is the same thing that happened with the comic book business, the majority of comic book fans/audience for those movies are adults, not children anymore. You have multiple successive generations of kids who are now grown up and they out number whatever number of kids. 

The casuals who can't play a damn game any more complex than Super Mario Bros. are gone to smartphones, they're not coming back, Nintendo knows that. They're not going to waste heavy resources on that crowd anymore, you can't compete with Apple/Android, unless your game is giving free blow jobs there's no value proposition at $50 that works for a non-gamer when you put your game up against ... Candy Crush for free on their phone. 

This is a new era for Nintendo where demographics are simply different for them and there will be new software trends. The Wii/DS era is long in the past, step into the present, it's plenty interesting. 12 fucking million copies of Smash in one month is something pretty damn new, not even the Wii could dream of doing that. 

And I told you Labo was not going to even sniff Brain Training's jock strap. 

Last edited by Soundwave - on 31 January 2019

 

Soundwave said: 

Switch's demographics show it's very clearly an adult centric platform and that's OK. 

There's a thing that happens to kids ... it's called growing up. What's happening now is kids who were 9-10 fifteen years ago have grown up, but they still love Nintendo and have their own disposable money and are driving Nintendo's business today. 

I would bet even for Pokemon Lets Go ... it ain't little kiddies buying the majority of those games or even smartphone users. It's the core Nintendo fanbase -- which is large today, much larger than 10-15 years ago. Every time I see someone buying an Amiibo it's not some kid, it's some 29 year old dude with a full blown beard, lol. 

This is the same thing that happened with the comic book business, the majority of comic book fans/audience for those movies are adults, not children anymore. You have multiple successive generations of kids who are now grown up and they out number whatever number of kids. 

The casuals who can't play a damn game any more complex than Super Mario Bros. are gone to smartphones, they're not coming back, Nintendo knows that. They're not going to waste heavy resources on that crowd anymore, you can't compete with Apple/Android, unless your game is giving free blow jobs there's no value proposition at $50 that works for a non-gamer when you put your game up against ... Candy Crush for free on their phone. 

This is a new era for Nintendo where demographics are simply different for them and there will be new software trends. The Wii/DS era is long in the past, step into the present, it's plenty interesting. 12 fucking million copies of Smash in one month is something pretty damn new, not even the Wii could dream of doing that. 

You do realize that casual gamers can be adults too? I think your basing your claims on early demographic charts for the Switch at launch, and those aren't accurate currently. Early adopters are always the hardcore. Even the Wii and DS had a mostly male audience in the first year of their lives. There's already data to suggest that many people who were introduced to Pokemon with Pokemon Go! on their phone, bought a Switch for Pokemon Let's Go! Nintendo themselves even said that.

"The casuals who can't play a damn game any more complex than Super Mario Bros. are gone to smartphones, they're not coming back, Nintendo knows that. They're not going to waste heavy resources on that crowd anymore, you can't compete with Apple/Android, unless your game is giving free blow jobs there's no value proposition at $50 that works for a non-gamer when you put your game up against ... Candy Crush for free on their phone."

This right here is complete BS. I already explained. Super Mario Party, Pokemon Let's Go!, 1-2 Switch, Nintendo Labo, Even Mario Kart and Smash all appeal to casual gamers and have sold very well. The Switch appeals to everyone from casual smartphone gamers, to hardcore console players. There's nothing to suggest Nintendo is going more niche or focusing on hardcore mature games for mature gamers. They've actually said the exact opposite.

"The current market environment for smart device applications is showing signs of maturity, and the competition is becoming even fiercer. Also, it’s becoming difficult to create different game experiences on different devices. And, with the pervasiveness of smart devices, the gaming population has expanded rapidly beyond the reach of Nintendo's dedicated video game products. We will continue to propose products that are not limited by the definition of “game,” and that bring entertainment to various consumers regardless of region, gender, or age. However, the term of “gaming population expansion” itself does not fit in the current situation. In this market environment, we believe that the strengths Nintendo has cultivated historically will become even more important. It is the strength of being in a position to create the value unique to Nintendo, through developing both hardware and software as integrated products, and is the strength of being able to create the entertainment which can be enjoyed by anyone including families and friends, both children and adults, with a lot of fun when they get together."

https://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/pdf/2019/190201_2e.pdf

If anything, they're doubling down on appealing to casuals. They're just not focused on trying to appeal to non-gamers because those people don't really exist anymore



 

Soundwave said: 

And I told you Labo was not going to even sniff Brain Training's jock strap. 

Well okay, it wasn't an immediate juggernaut. But Nintendo said it sold well for its first year, and they'll expand on and grow it in the future. Labo's meant to be a long term product. 



Labo ain't doing shit, lol. Give it a rest. It is nothing close to Brain Training.

This is a new era, just enjoy, stop with the freaking cheerleading over an audience that's just fine and happy playing stupid games on their smartphones. If that's what they want, let them have it.

Nintendo has their own audience and it's not a small audience anymore they don't need some fat soccer mom who can't play video games to have to buy a Switch to be successful today.

Nintendo has always made games that families can enjoy together, that's not anything new or special. What's happening now is the successive build up of several generations of Nintendo fans growing into adults and quite frankly becoming a legion that can drive huge business. That's how you get your 12 million Smash copies in 1 month. It's no accident. 



 

TheMisterManGuy said:

 

Soundwave said: 

And I told you Labo was not going to even sniff Brain Training's jock strap. 

Well okay, it wasn't an immediate juggernaut. But Nintendo said it sold well for its first year, and they'll expand on and grow it in the future. Labo's meant to be a long term product. 

Yeah, yeah, just like "Labo will do great" was said before launch, and then "It's just a soft launch, it will be a monster for Christmas!" was said after launch. Labo will supposedly always "do well later".

Except that it most likely won't. Nintendo will obviously never admit that the stuff they counted on was a failure, but it was. Maybe they'll modify it and try again later, who knows.