Feeds

Nintendo chief speaks

Why there won't be a modem or many third-party games at GameCube's launch

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

New hybrid storage solutions

With Nintendo's preparations for SpaceWorld 2001 in full swing, Japanese magazine GB-Advance caught up with director Satoru Iwata to discuss third-party relations, software strategies and more. Among comments about the GameCube's successful reception at E3 and his thoughts on how the software lineup conveys "Nintendo's philosophy in motion", Iwata made some interesting comments on N64 sequels, the largely first-party software line-up and the proposed modem add-on.

One of the first things the Japanese interviewer asked was why N64 originals like Doubutsu no Mori were of such importance to the company on the GameCube. Iwata responded: "There were a handful of titles for the Nintendo 64 that were very unique, but they didn't have the opportunity to reach a large audience." Iwata believes these games have mass appeal, but they weren't able to get a foothold. A more obvious concession of the N64's failure we haven't seen for some time.

Although the early line-up generally speaking dwells on franchise games to make its mark, Iwata claims to be "opposed to sequels" on principle. We'll let him off for the dozens of Mario iterations then, shall we? "Not all of them are bad. However, if a sequel isn't substantially different from its predecessor then there's no reason to buy it, and players realise that. So we've rejected those kinds of sequels." Sequels on the GameCube, Iwata says, will either "try to give players a complete new experience" (like Pikmin) or "try to create a new spin on a popular theme."

The next interesting point is about third-parties. The interviewer first asks whether or not third-parties are hesitant about developing for the console. Iwata sidesteps this somewhat by saying that it would be "contrary to our philosophy to concentrate on third-party software and the number of software titles available in order to sell hardware". Clearly not content with that, the interviewer presses the point, saying that he finds it disconcerting that the GameCube's launch lineup consists largely of Nintendo's own titles, much like the Nintendo 64, which Iwata has already all but admitted was a failure.

Iwata reckons you can't expect to see a large number of third-party titles for a while yet. You have to foster interest in the console. "With the Nintendo 64, third-party software took a while [to appear] because the hardware was difficult to develop for," he admits. "We've taken that into consideration when designing the GameCube, so we don't feel that's a problem this time. On the other hand, though, we feel as if we have to create a market through Nintendo's software first in order for the GameCube to succeed. It's like battle - we have to go in and establish our position before calling our allies for reinforcements."

Finally, Iwata is asked about the proposed GameCube modem, and tells the interviewer that unfortunately it won't be available for launch. "A definitive release date and pricing still hasn't been decided, so I can't really discuss it," he adds. "Sega has been encouraging us to release the modem because of their upcoming Phantasy Star Online title. We're considering their needs and discussing how soon we can release the modem. We should have an announcement ready for SpaceWorld." ®

Copyright © 2001, Eurogamer.net. All rights reserved.

The next step in data security

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.