Saturday, July 24th, 2021

Soapbox: Nintendo is more collaborative and open than ever before, which benefits us all


© Nintendo

Nintendo is a company that has never been particularly good at communication. But this is a company that is good at learning from its mistakes.you remember The infamous Skyward Sword demo At E3 2010, right? Miyamoto came out on the stage, shaking his controller, but the one that couldn’t make it work (sounds dirtier than I thought)? Not surprisingly, Nintendo started using pre-recorded Nintendo Directs the following year, which means it doesn’t have to experience the humiliation of live demos again.

In the past few years, Nintendo has adopted unprecedented new methods and established partnerships with various companies. The way they communicate with fans has undergone major changes. Nintendo Directs was originally developed under the guidance of Satoru Iwata, allowing direct communication with fans; although the company’s fan activities and community creation methods based on the Nintendo franchise are lagging behind where we want it to be, it’s important for game development software. Concerns such as Super Mario Maker and the recent Game Builder Garage have shown a certain degree of “others” willingness to make games similar to Nintendo.

Let’s not pretend that Nintendo uses their intellectual property for free like a company like Sega, just like Nintendo. still Notorious for being one of the most mysterious companies in the gaming industry. But recently, the company has expanded its business scope and cooperated with a series of partners on various multimedia projects and opportunities, which will undoubtedly be avoided in the past. These partnerships seem to have borne fruit, because the initial agreement between Nintendo and Illumination to produce Mario movies has seen Illumination’s CEO Chris Mele Dandri join Nintendo’s corporate board as a non-executive role.

After the last time, Nintendo took the time to choose a partner and bring Mario back to the big screen
After the last time, Nintendo took the time to choose a partner and bring Mario back to the big screen

What is more unusual for Nintendo is that it also wants to provide further background and understanding of its history. There are many unofficial books and documentaries to gain insight into the history of this private company, but for the first time, Nintendo will control the way its history is expressed through the development of the official Nintendo Gallery Museum, which will open in Japan in 2024.

It is very important for game developers and publishers to have their own space dedicated to displaying and explaining their legacy to the public. No other platform holder has its own museum, which makes a pretty bold statement about Nintendo’s important position in the gaming industry. This is also a more expensive step compared to the previous classic Iwata Asks series, although the new “Ask The Developer” series also hopes to capture the spirit of Satoru Iwata’s revealing interviews. Whether the protectionist interest generated by the “gigaleak” hack has affected the company’s method of making archived materials more publicly available is not known, but if nothing else, the unfortunate incident shows that Nintendo fans’ desire for behind-the-scenes development material is eternal. Not satisfied.

But it’s not just Nintendo that is involved. Former Nintendo employee Toru Hashimoto recently opened his 84-year-old secret Tokyo Nintendo Cafe. The general public first. At first, this cafe was only open to Nintendo employees and big-name Japanese game developers. It displayed incredible Nintendo memorabilia, as well as exclusive artwork and graffiti from Japanese developers, such as the influential Brave Fighting Evil The designer of the dragon series Yuji Horii.

Although Hashimoto pointed out that due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the hotel industry, changes need to be made, but this means that Nintendo fans can one day sit in the same seat as some of the greatest Japanese game developers of all time, many people Will seize the opportunity to seize the opportunity.

So, let us ask your questions here: What does this mean for Nintendo’s future content?

Brace Yourself Games became the key to the world of Zelda with the crossover game Cadence of Hyrule: Incredibly long title
Brace Yourself Games obtained the key to the Zelda universe with a cross-border game Hyrule’s rhythm: incredibly long titles (Photo: Nintendo Life)

First, the company will increase its investment in partners, not only game developers, but also other media formats such as movies and TV. We have already begun to see the results of its more radical licensing methods, including steadily increasing merchandise sales, the Super Nintendo World theme park and the Mario movie being produced, but this means that one day we may see rumors of Searle Da Legend Netflix show, or something similar. In the future we are likely to see more Nintendo franchises get the same treatment, Mario movies side by side with Zelda or Metroid content (Smash Bros. style MCU, anyone???).

Nintendo is more willing to distribute their licenses to other companies, and we can also see that more types of games are developed in the hands of Nintendo

But as Nintendo is more willing to distribute their licenses to other companies, we can also see that more types of games are developed in the hands of Nintendo. This is something the company has tried in the past to give independent developers the opportunity to obtain licenses for their gaming IP, such as using the Zelda series in Hailar’s ​​Cadence.Has not yet surrendered full control of the main franchise items always It worked well in the past (look at you, Metroid: Other M!) but their collaboration with MercurySteam to develop the long-awaited Metroid horror thing looks promising.

Sometimes, it feels that Nintendo has too many plate rotations when dealing with development on multiple systems, resulting in a significant decrease in output in the Wii U/3DS era. The main focus is that the Switch contributes to a smooth development pipeline to a certain extent, but there are still regular intervals in the Switch release calendar, especially for larger versions. This is why Nintendo is cooperating with companies such as Bandai Namco on various projects, but if more conventional “large” Nintendo games are developed externally or in cooperation with other developers, we can see how Nintendo games are The release schedule is more consistent. Party partners, thereby increasing the opportunity for Nintendo’s internal team to develop its own new franchise.

For me, some of the most interesting versions released by Nintendo in the past few years are new IPs like Splatoon and ARMS. This seems to be a priority for Nintendo. President Shuntaro Furukawa has previously confirmed that Nintendo will add “development of new games and series” in the future. “.

Great game, ARMS
Great game, ARMS (Photo: Nintendo)

Obviously, these actions are not brand new. At different times in Nintendo’s history, the company worked hard to bring its franchise rights to people outside the video game field, and cooperated with various organizations to achieve this goal.We all remember classic Super Mario. Brother movie, isn’t it? what. The consequence of misjudgment can be said to be that the company is too cautious in IP licensing. Or how about the Zelda CD-i game? Double uh.

But this time, I really feel that it has more strategies. By working hard to bring Nintendo’s content to theme parks, big screens and even museum audiences, Nintendo has become more open as an organization. This is a good thing for everyone.