“A choke hold on the gaming industry, sorry Nintendo”
By now, all gamers know and have accepted that the Xbox and the Playstation have a choke hold on the console gaming industry. From the looks of it, these two do not seem to be letting go anytime soon, especially when looking at the sales of the Playstation 4. For those who will bring up the PC conversation, we know that you have the ultimate machine but if you can read, you will notice I am talking about consoles exclusively.
There is a very good reason these two consoles have taken over the industry. Why does one buy a specific console? Aside from wanting to play the third-party games, consumers want exclusive games that will provide unique experiences. Gamers are looking for games that will make their investment in a console worth the cash they dropped. Over the years, all three console companies have given us excellent games such as The Last of Us, Halo and The Legend of Zelda. Putting my own bias towards Sony aside, I will admit that Microsoft and Nintendo have been releasing high quality exclusives, but like it or not things and people change.
“The game of change”
Over the years, the style of games has changed. Gone are the days of gamers hungering for simple straight forward games. Gamers now expect high quality, movie like experiences. A perfect example of this is The Last of Us by Naughty Dog. The gameplay itself is extremely fun, but the main part is the story it tells. Studies show that a high percentage of households in North America have at least one console, thus developers wanting to make games that compel the average person. A plethora of these people usually have an Xbox or a PS4 and the percentage of the people who go the Nintendo route is small.
“In a league of our own”
If people are choosing Sony and Microsoft over Nintendo, how do they compete? Well, they are smart they wont. Nintendo does not need to compete with anyone, because they are in a league of their own. Comparing Nintendo with the rest, is like trying to compare Grand Turismo with Burnout, they are trying to do very different things. Since the beginning, Nintendo never really tried competing with the other game companies directly. They always wanted to create new experiences and new ways to play. Without the Wii would motion controls have been so popular from 2006 to 2014? What would mobile gaming look like if they never released the Gameboy? Point is right from the start Nintendo was playing in their own world.
“A seamless switch”
In 2017 their tactics have not changed in the least. Nintendo is highly aware that their handheld consoles sell like hot cakes, so why not embrace what you do best. In March Nintendo finally released the most Nintendo console ever, the Switch. This new console provides both handheld and console gaming. People who are constantly on the go can now take their games everywhere. May it be on the metro, the bus or a waiting room, Zelda can be played everywhere. This is perfect, because not only are they making a simple console to give us new exclusives, but they are taking advantage of the mobile gaming industry. What they started with the Wii U, they are perfecting with the Switch and whatever comes next.
“To live you must die”
The Wii U right from the start felt wrong. They barely advertised that this was a new console and not an expansion, but also their key feature which was the gamepad didn’t live up to expectations. An idea so good was executed poorly and this turned off gamers and companies alike. After a couple of long and game-less years, Nintendo decided to kill off their test console and create what was most probably the original vision for the Wii U. Sadly, I also feel that in the process of promoting the Switch and its double experience, the 3DS might take a hit but that is a different conversation for a different time. In the mean time thank you for reading, play games and don’t lick the Switch cartridges.