The so-called "hardcore gamer" contingent may see any move away from better graphics and story as something of a betrayal, but in a recent interview, Nintendo's Satoru Iwata makes an interesting -- and obvious -- point. "Targeting highly detailed graphics and epic stories are options, and in that situation, the gamer population doesn't increase," Iwata said, according to Asahi.com, and there's a lot of truth to those words. There are many ways to approach video games, and the epic story/epic visuals is one way. It's been the most common path to improvement in the gaming industry over the past few years -- and it wasn't really growing the market. So Nintendo, in an effort to bring in all new gamers, tried out some different options
, and thus, we have Wii Sports
Iwata also says that many people shy away from gaming (or did) because so many games are a huge timesink, and here we agree. Listen, we play games like there's no tomorrow and even we think there's just not enough hours in the day for everything. Sometimes you want to plop down for five minutes and take a breather, and there are a lot of great options for that on the Wii and the DS. Apparently, people who weren't gamers
felt a similar need for mental breaks, and that contributed to the rousing success of Nintendo's latest projects.
Does this mean that Nintendo will abandon the older core audience? As we've said before, no, we don't think so. Just as with the strong visual approach, the pick-up-and-play mentality is only another option
. Unfortunately, it's one that makes for a lot of cheap games for developers, but we've seen enough goodness on the Wii that we're confident there will be much, much more.