Why the Wii won't be another GameCube

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Matt Barton's picture

Wii: This ain't no GameCube.Wii: This ain't no GameCube.Well, things are certainly starting to look bright for Nintendo's Wii. GameDaily Biz is reporting that Nintendo's recently promoted president, Reggie Fils-Aime, is promising that Nintendo has learned from its mistakes with the GameCube and will be pursuing a much different strategy for the Wii. Primarily, that means establishing better relations with developers: "We have been sharing information and development tools with publishers since very early on in the process." Seems like a smart move to me, but I'm not sure that bad developer relations was the primary cause of GameCube's disappointing sales. What do you think?

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brn
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Why The GameCube Won't Be Another N64

The Current Line from Reggie Fils-Aime (http://biz.gamedaily.com/industry/feature/?id=12788&rp=49)

"[T]he initial software lineup for the GameCube was simply not 'diverse and strong enough from a first and third-party perspective.' And compounding that problem, he said, was that the next wave of titles was far too slow in arriving.

The Old Line from Howard Lincoln (http://www.planetgamecube.com/newsArt.cfm?artid=5396)

"[I]f you look at the N64 experience, I don't think we were hurt at all by being late or after Sony. Very likely we were hurt by the number of games[.]"

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The Current Line from Reggie Fils-Aime (http://biz.gamedaily.com/industry/feature/?id=12788&rp=49)

"In order to avoid repeating this mistake with the Wii, Nintendo said that it has already changed its strategy and has been far more open with its partners from much earlier on."

The Old Line from Howard Lincoln (http://www.planetgamecube.com/newsArt.cfm?artid=5396)

"[T]he number of games had more to do with problems with development tools, and we won't make the same mistake again on the [GameCube]."

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I'm still psyched about the potential of the Wii, but that doesn't mean I believe the hype. :)

Bill Loguidice
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I agree, Nintendo still has

I agree, Nintendo still has a lot to prove and make up for in the console space. However, Nintendo's advantage this time around is being radically different from their competitor's systems. This does two things. One, it allows Nintendo to create their own market space and two, pretty much disallows any direct comparisons that might highlight any specific title weaknesses in their software lineup. There is significant value in the MS and Sony approach of hi-definition state-of-the-art gaming, just as there is significant value in Nintendo's approach of gaming centered around a method of control. This is a win-win for the consumer, as they can both get a system with "super powers" and an alternative that plays alternative games. Again, this is the first console race where it truly makes sense for a consumer to own more than one for reasons other than exclusive titles. That's a good thing.

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Bill Loguidice, Managing Director
Armchair Arcade, Inc.
[My collection - www.billandchristina.com/vgamecomp/vgamecomp.htm]
[www.MythCore.com]

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Mat Tschirgi (not verified)
Thoughts on the Wii

I'll admit, the new name "Wii" makes it a delightful target for jokes, but I strongly feel Nintendo has done things right this time around for a few reasons.

1) The low price point is the best thing the Wii has going for it. Costing about half as much as either of the next gen consoles, parents in particular will be pleased with the lower price point.

2) The whole "controller as an virtual wand" is a bit gimmicky, but I thought the same about the DS at first. While not every DS game makes good use of the dual screen and stylus, the ones that are effective do so in such a way to promote exciting new game design concepts (i.e. Yelling in the DS microphone to activate bombs in Bomberman).

3) A big weakness with the GC and N64 were the "little kid" appeal of it... I mean, I'll always be a Nintendo kid because I was practically raised on the damned thing, but I can see younger teen gamers turning away from a system loaded with Marios and Kirbys. The GC did have some hardcore titles, but the Wii needs to focus on this more to keep more than a cult branch of the hard-core audiences.

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=- Mat Tschirgi =- Armchair Arcade Editor
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Bill Loguidice
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Wii price

I still debate whether the price will make much of a difference, as it had little effect in my opinion this past generation. The Gamecube was always the lowest-priced, and often by double, but it still managed a third place in the US and Europe. Of course there were many other factors for that. Perhaps with the Wii's sleek look (though stupid name) and a generally greater price differential, it may make a bigger difference this time around. We'll see, but at the same time, it's a very different system/experience, so that may be enough to sway people one way or the other, lower price or no.
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Bill Loguidice, Managing Director
Armchair Arcade, Inc.
[My collection - www.billandchristina.com/vgamecomp/vgamecomp.htm]
[www.MythCore.com]

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Matt Barton
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Joined: 01/16/2006
Bill Gates Unimpressed with Motion-Sensors

Apparently, Bill Gates isn't impressed with motion-sensor controllers, claiming that they'll cause more anguish than enjoyment for players. He seems to be thinking the new Wii controllers will have similar problems to the infamous PowerGlove--player fatigue, causing accidents by just setting down the controller, and so on.

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Bill Loguidice
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Wii is great, but...

I would like to say I disagree with Bill Gates, but having a large collection of motion sensing gaming hardware and peripherals, I can't fully dismiss his comments as simple playful marketing banter all three companies like to engage in. I have raised those issues and others many times before. I still think it will be a wonderful and fun system, but for those who think it will be the end all, be all, simply because of the motion sensing, will be sorely dissapointed. I think a good term for stuff that takes true advantage of the Wii control is "Active Gaming" versus the idea of "Standard Gaming" using traditional stationary controls. My "Active Gaming" term implies just that, a more physical gaming experience, which - no matter how subtle the extra movements - involve more physical exertion than a standard control, more room to move, more qualifiers about location to the sensor, etc. Again, it's great stuff and will surely be fun, but I bet traditional control is not dead yet, not even on the Wii, where standard movement methods may get utilized more than some realize...

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Bill Loguidice, Managing Director
Armchair Arcade, Inc.
[My collection - www.billandchristina.com/vgamecomp/vgamecomp.htm]
[www.MythCore.com]

n/a

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