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Forums - Sales Discussion - The evolution of the console market over time

IcaroRibeiro said:
Pyro as Bill said:

BoTW is arcade compared to previous 3D Zeldas. Party games are arcade. Splatoon like most online shooters is arcade. RFA is arcade. Switch Sports will be arcade.

I don't see shooters as arcade games

Regardless of what you're able to see, certain types of shooters were in fact a huge part of the arcade. Asteroids was probably the first major shooter. Then you have games like Time Crisis, Terminator 2, House of the Dead to name a few that were in virtually every arcade all over the world and on every cruise ship.

Last edited by Jumpin - on 28 March 2021

I describe myself as a little dose of toxic masculinity.

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IcaroRibeiro said:

BOTW differs nothing from Sony/MS games,

I don't see shooters as arcade games

I don't think we're going to agree on much.



Nov 2016 - NES outsells PS1 (JP)

Don't Play Stationary 4 ever. Switch!

Jumpin said:
IcaroRibeiro said:

I don't see shooters as arcade games

Regardless of what you're able to see, certain types of shooters were in fact a huge part of the arcade. Asteroids was probably the first major shooter. Then you have games like Time Crisis, Terminator 2, House of the Dead to name a few that were in virtually every arcade all over the world and on every cruise ship.

I get it, but when I see multiplayer shooters the only thing thet comes to mind is Counter Strike (granted, it's far from the first online shooter, as online multiplayer on PC shooters were a thing since the 90's)

Even if the genre born in arcades its selling point lies on online multiplayer, this used to be a PC game feature. Just like RPG born in PCs, but evolved on their own way



Pyro as Bill said:
IcaroRibeiro said:

BOTW differs nothing from Sony/MS games,

I don't see shooters as arcade games

I don't think we're going to agree on much.

Humm, I can agree to disagree with the shooters, but I'm still failing to see what set Zelda apart of many action modern adventure games, lack of mandatory cinematic scenes? 

I even see their design focused on exploration and puzzle solving as heavily borrowed from PCs



IcaroRibeiro said:
Pyro as Bill said:

I don't think we're going to agree on much.

Humm, I can agree to disagree with the shooters, but I'm still failing to see what set Zelda apart of many action modern adventure games, lack of mandatory cinematic scenes? 

I even see their design focused on exploration and puzzle solving as heavily borrowed from PCs


Minecraft is technically a MS game so I was wrong to imply BoTW has nothing in common with MS/Sony games.

Would you consider local wifi multiplayer on DS to be a more arcade or PC innovation? What about LAN gameplay on PC? You're right that PC did online first but online is just an extension of local multiplayer so I'd consider it an arcade innovation for PC.



Nov 2016 - NES outsells PS1 (JP)

Don't Play Stationary 4 ever. Switch!

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Pyro as Bill said:


Minecraft is technically a MS game so I was wrong to imply BoTW has nothing in common with MS/Sony games.

Would you consider local wifi multiplayer on DS to be a more arcade or PC innovation? 

Well Minecraft is a sandbox game, I think their oldest inspiration might be simulators like Sim City where you could farm resources to build things. I don't see much similarity between Minecraft and BOTW besides the open world, but well I've stopped playing Minecraft about 10 years ago no idea how this game looks like now

I would say local multiplayer is more like Arcade evolved (inspired by arcades, executed on consoles). I agree it has arcade roots from games like Metal Slug or Captain Commando



RolStoppable said:
The_Liquid_Laser said:

Ok, you are using a very different classification then I would use.  I do not associate PC games with having a steep learning curve, per se.  The principle of "easy to learn, difficult to master" is simply a principle of good game design, whether it is on the PC or console or arcade or a board game or whatever.  The average PC game in the 80's and 90's did, in fact, have a steeper learning curve compared to the average arcade or console game, but that is because of another more important reason, which I'll state in a bit.  I remember playing Warcraft 1 and 2, though.  These games are extremely easy to learn.  In reality the main campaign for these games is actually a huge tutorial, but it doesn't feel that way, because the games are so well designed including being very easy to learn and yet difficult to master.

There are plenty of pure PC games that I like and there are plenty of pure arcade games that I like, and here are the main differences I see between the two platforms.  (This especially is referring to 20th century games).

Arcade:  Short, intense, focus on intuitive controls, easy to die, mainly challenges the body (i.e. coordination, timing, reflexes, etc...).
PC:  Long, slower paced, content heavy, focus on cutting edge graphics, mainly challenges the mind (i.e. strategy, puzzle solving, etc...).

Just going by these qualities I've stated, neither arcade nor PC gaming is inherently better than the other.  However, since PC games challenged the mind, they tended to have a steeper learning curve just to make that challenge interesting.  Arcade games, on the other hand, did tend to be simple, because a person needed to feel they had a meaningful experience in about 3 minutes.  So, arcade game designers did tend to be better at executing the "easy to learn, difficult to master" principle.

I think that there needs to be a "PC evolved" category, just for the sake of making discussion easier.  I would call NES games like The Legend of Zelda, Mega Man, Metroid, Castlevania, and Mike Tyson's Punch Out, "arcade evolved".  Their basic gameplay comes from the arcade, but they are also longer, with more content, than a pure arcade game.  They are mostly on the arcade side, but borrow somewhat from PC design.  I would call games like Dragon Quest and Fire Emblem "PC evolved".  They borrow from a PC genre, but they are also made simpler and more intuitive for the console.  I would also call a game like DOOM "PC evolved".  This was the first time an action game became really popular on the PC.  That was a big part of it's appeal.  To me it felt like a "casual action game" in the same way that Dragon Quest feels like a "casual RPG".  The controls on consoles were better than keyboard and mouse.  In reality though, they borrowed a few elements from arcade game design to make DOOM.  However, it came to PC first, because PC could handle 3D graphics better than consoles could.  The graphics focus makes it a PC game, but the action part is why I would call it "PC evolved".

It's not about declaring one better over the other, it's about recognizing differences and that's the basis for the placements of consoles in the table.

Said placement then provides the answer why certain constellations don't cut into each other's sales like most others did, particularly in those cases where there is a horizontal gap (one empty cell or more) within a given generation. These situations create an additive scenario rather than a zero-sum game for total console sales, because the two sides arcade and PC have a relationship of supplementing each other rather than one being able to replace the other.

As I said, it's a condensed version. A more elaborate version would have more columns and list more consoles, including handhelds. If I had used more columns here, the formating wouldn't have worked anymore because there's only so much space that can be displayed flawlessly.

Regardless, one takeaway is that Nintendo will remain very successful if they stay on their path because neither Sony or Microsoft are interested in moving in that direction. Another takeaway is that neither Sony or Microsoft will find success on their current path in Japan because the country has never warmed up to PC gaming.

Lastly, a more personal response to you because apparently you've made a bet with curl-6 that the PS5 won't sell more than 80m units. This thread explains why Switch isn't going to cut into PS5 sales to this degree. While Switch can and will hurt the PS5 in Japan due to the unique circumstances of the country, the same thing cannot be replicated on a global scale. Switch serves the traditional console market while the PS5 is the leader in playing PC-style games on console, so in most of the world that will result in both consoles being successful with no ifs or buts. It would have to be Microsoft who has to limit PS5 sales by a large degree to keep the PS5 under 80m lifetime, but through now four generations Microsoft hasn't shown an ability to solve their ongoing problems, so their potential to damage Sony isn't particularly big. In other words, curl-6 has it very easy.

Oh, I see.  You think the Switch is like the Wii.  You think it is attracting a new crowd of people or maybe bringing back the old Wii crowd.  That is why you are defining "arcade" in terms of accessibility.  

The problem with this reasoning is that the Wii was a whole lot more accessible than the Switch is.  The Switch has no Wii Sports type of game.  If you are thinking "arcade" means accessible, then the Switch needs a mega seller that is as easy to learn as Wii Sports.  It doesn't have this.  You shouldn't put the Wii and the Switch in the same vertical column on your table, because their library of games is pretty different.

Switch is not successful because of extreme accessibility.  Switch is successful, because it is a handheld system.  Nintendo has never been defeated in the handheld space.  They are leveraging their extreme success in the handheld market and bringing it into the home market as well.  That is why the Switch is successful.  It is not about extreme accessibility.

The "arcade gameplay" on the Switch is actually pretty similar to the "arcade gameplay" on the N64 and Gamecube.  Switch's big arcade-like games are Mario Kart, Smash Bros and Mario Party.  You could find these same types of games on the N64 and Gamecube.  You could also find these types of games on the 3DS.  They sell better on the 3DS.  Now they are selling well on the Switch.  That's because the Switch is bringing in all of the handheld gamers and then bringing in some home console gamers too.  It's not bringing in the Wii crowd in big numbers.  It's merging the home and handheld markets.



The_Liquid_Laser said:

Oh, I see.  You think the Switch is like the Wii.  You think it is attracting a new crowd of people or maybe bringing back the old Wii crowd.  That is why you are defining "arcade" in terms of accessibility.  

The problem with this reasoning is that the Wii was a whole lot more accessible than the Switch is.  The Switch has no Wii Sports type of game.  If you are thinking "arcade" means accessible, then the Switch needs a mega seller that is as easy to learn as Wii Sports.  It doesn't have this.  You shouldn't put the Wii and the Switch in the same vertical column on your table, because their library of games is pretty different.

Switch is not successful because of extreme accessibility.  Switch is successful, because it is a handheld system.  Nintendo has never been defeated in the handheld space.  They are leveraging their extreme success in the handheld market and bringing it into the home market as well.  That is why the Switch is successful.  It is not about extreme accessibility.

The "arcade gameplay" on the Switch is actually pretty similar to the "arcade gameplay" on the N64 and Gamecube.  Switch's big arcade-like games are Mario Kart, Smash Bros and Mario Party.  You could find these same types of games on the N64 and Gamecube.  You could also find these types of games on the 3DS.  They sell better on the 3DS.  Now they are selling well on the Switch.  That's because the Switch is bringing in all of the handheld gamers and then bringing in some home console gamers too.  It's not bringing in the Wii crowd in big numbers.  It's merging the home and handheld markets.

Most of the popular accessible Wii games already have a counterpart on Switch: Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, NSMBU Deluxe, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Ring Fit Adventure, Super Mario Party. You are setting a very arbitrary rule by saying that Switch needs a sports game in order to qualify for the same column when there's already a good selection of accessible games on the system. Being like the Wii does not mean to be exactly like the Wii.

Switch being successful because it's a handheld system is as shallow of an analysis as saying that Switch can't have a long lifecycle because Nintendo consoles don't have long lifecycles. Indeed, you are on the same level as a common anti-Nintendo troll.

I've said it multiple times before, a complete version of such a table would include handheld consoles. I can tell you where Nintendo's handhelds would be placed: GB/C, GBA and DS would all be Arcade Evolution, because those were the games those handhelds were about. The 3DS would go into Balance, because Nintendo's initial sales pitch bragged with IPs like Assassin's Creed, Darksiders and other games from American/European developers who started out with PC development. Some of these games were never released for the 3DS, but failure does not change intent, just like it does not do it for the Wii U where PC games got even more attention from Nintendo during the initial sales pitch.

This context explains why Nintendo handhelds were successful. Not because they were handhelds like your shallow analysis suggests, but because they were built on what made Nintendo a successful console manufacturer. The 3DS was only moderately successful at best and it's very likely that that is a direct consequence of Nintendo's different approach, because the pattern that is forming for Nintendo's ups and downs strongly correlates with their strategies.

Lastly, the IPs you named (Mario Kart, Smash Bros. and Mario Party) all sold better on the Wii than on the 3DS. And on Switch they are selling even better than on the Wii. I give you that Switch is bringing in the handheld gamers, because it obviously does. But at the same time the Wii crowd has been coming back, hence why we've already seen new franchise records for games long before they are done selling. Switch software numbers already look amazing, but these games are from being done yet.



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

A Biased Review Reloaded / Open Your Eyes / Switch Shipments

RolStoppable said:
The_Liquid_Laser said:

Oh, I see.  You think the Switch is like the Wii.  You think it is attracting a new crowd of people or maybe bringing back the old Wii crowd.  That is why you are defining "arcade" in terms of accessibility.  

The problem with this reasoning is that the Wii was a whole lot more accessible than the Switch is.  The Switch has no Wii Sports type of game.  If you are thinking "arcade" means accessible, then the Switch needs a mega seller that is as easy to learn as Wii Sports.  It doesn't have this.  You shouldn't put the Wii and the Switch in the same vertical column on your table, because their library of games is pretty different.

Switch is not successful because of extreme accessibility.  Switch is successful, because it is a handheld system.  Nintendo has never been defeated in the handheld space.  They are leveraging their extreme success in the handheld market and bringing it into the home market as well.  That is why the Switch is successful.  It is not about extreme accessibility.

The "arcade gameplay" on the Switch is actually pretty similar to the "arcade gameplay" on the N64 and Gamecube.  Switch's big arcade-like games are Mario Kart, Smash Bros and Mario Party.  You could find these same types of games on the N64 and Gamecube.  You could also find these types of games on the 3DS.  They sell better on the 3DS.  Now they are selling well on the Switch.  That's because the Switch is bringing in all of the handheld gamers and then bringing in some home console gamers too.  It's not bringing in the Wii crowd in big numbers.  It's merging the home and handheld markets.

Most of the popular accessible Wii games already have a counterpart on Switch: Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, NSMBU Deluxe, Animal Crossing: New Horizons, Ring Fit Adventure, Super Mario Party. You are setting a very arbitrary rule by saying that Switch needs a sports game in order to qualify for the same column when there's already a good selection of accessible games on the system. Being like the Wii does not mean to be exactly like the Wii.

Switch being successful because it's a handheld system is as shallow of an analysis as saying that Switch can't have a long lifecycle because Nintendo consoles don't have long lifecycles. Indeed, you are on the same level as a common anti-Nintendo troll.

I've said it multiple times before, a complete version of such a table would include handheld consoles. I can tell you where Nintendo's handhelds would be placed: GB/C, GBA and DS would all be Arcade Evolution, because those were the games those handhelds were about. The 3DS would go into Balance, because Nintendo's initial sales pitch bragged with IPs like Assassin's Creed, Darksiders and other games from American/European developers who started out with PC development. Some of these games were never released for the 3DS, but failure does not change intent, just like it does not do it for the Wii U where PC games got even more attention from Nintendo during the initial sales pitch.

This context explains why Nintendo handhelds were successful. Not because they were handhelds like your shallow analysis suggests, but because they were built on what made Nintendo a successful console manufacturer. The 3DS was only moderately successful at best and it's very likely that that is a direct consequence of Nintendo's different approach, because the pattern that is forming for Nintendo's ups and downs strongly correlates with their strategies.

Lastly, the IPs you named (Mario Kart, Smash Bros. and Mario Party) all sold better on the Wii than on the 3DS. And on Switch they are selling even better than on the Wii. I give you that Switch is bringing in the handheld gamers, because it obviously does. But at the same time the Wii crowd has been coming back, hence why we've already seen new franchise records for games long before they are done selling. Switch software numbers already look amazing, but these games are from being done yet.

You misunderstand my argument, so let me put it simply for you.

1) The words "accessible" and "arcade" do not mean the same thing.  The game Defender was not considered accessible, but it was most definitely arcade.  Likewise, "The Sims" was an extremely accessible game, but it was most definitely a PC game.  If your argument is really about accessibility, then you should call it that instead of "arcade".

2) Even if you think these two words do mean the same thing, the Switch is not nearly as accessible as the Wii was.  The main thing Nintendo found before they developed the Wii is that people hated the classic controller (i.e. 2 analogue sticks, 8+ button, etc... controller).  Most Switch games use this as the default controls.  The Switch is not selling because of simple controls.  However, the Wii had Wii Bowling and Wii Tennis.  All you do is wave a TV remote and the game works.  The magic is not in the "sports" part.  The magic is in the simplicity.  People who would not play any other video game would still play Wii Sports.

There is no mega seller on the Switch that is as simple as Wii Sports.  The Switch is selling to a different crowd, and that crowd doesn't really care about accessibility.  I would be shocked if I walked into a retirement center and they were all playing Animal Crossing.  I wouldn't be shocked if they were still playing Wii Sports, because no other game has come along to get them to buy a Nintendo system.  Animal Crossing is selling to a totally different crowd.  It's not pulling in the Wii gamers.



I wouldn't consider the Wii U PC Priority, more like a balance. While Nintendo was trying to get multiplat and 3rd party support to get the PC games. The Wii U is far closer to having an arcade evolution type experience then consoles like the PS3/360 and Xbox since the Wii U offered a gamepad to create new simple arcade type experience with its touch functionality and other features, as Nintendo prioritized simple arcade fun over PC games and a game like Nintendo Land shows that. The PS3/360 and Xbox weren't really aiming to be arcade evolution (Outside the Kinect & PS Move, but those are add-on and the system originally wasn't made with those add-ons in mind). If the Wii U was PC Priority, the Wii U would've been far more powerful to be able to gain more 3rd Party Support to get the PC games primarily on Xbox One and PS4.