Why Nintendo would have been slow to take an interest in online multiplayer

According to the former president of his American branch, if nintendo took so long to consider the online multiplayerit’s simply because the manufacturer did not see what his interest was here.

If we do not focus on all the initiatives taken by Nintendo in the field, and in which case, we should remember these games that could be downloaded in blank Super Famicom cartridges, the manufacturer has started to introduce multiplayer in line in its consoles in the Wii/DS era. Note, however, that the GameCube allowed such an opening, but more limited.

But a few years earlier, the Dreamcast and then the Xbox had already tested this ground, and the second more convincingly than the first. Still promoting his book “Disrupting the Game,” former Nintendo of America (NoA) head Reggie Fils-Aimé recently opened up about why his ex-house took his time getting together. engage for good in the “online” multiplayer.

Online multiplayer: Nintendo above all convinced of the strength of the local

Reggie Fils-Aimé explains to begin with that Nintendo was already very comfortable in local multiplayer.

“First of all, Nintendo’s business philosophy has always been to do things differently, to innovate by playing to the strengths of the company rather than those of others. So, for example, when it comes to multiplayer, Nintendo really excelled at what we internally called ‘couch play’ – sitting next to someone playing Mario Kart, sitting next to someone who plays a variety of different games like Wii Sports. In-person multiplayer was really an area the company excelled at, and that’s where it focused.”

But getting into online multiplayer wasn’t without risk. It took a particularly promising experience to impose it on Nintendo consoles. And new releases of Smash Bros. appeared.

“To get into online multiplayer, the company had to think about the new type of game, the different types of experiences that we would have to create to excel in this form of game. And frankly, it took a while to company to think about it, to come up with something that they think would be fundamentally different and bring new added value. I would say the main success of the company started with Smash Bros. – a key franchise for them – which they took online, to exceptional success. This gave rise to a first-person shooter, which is halfway between first-person and third-person gameplay, with a franchise called Splatoon, which has been incredibly successful in the market. So that’s the first part of the answer: the company is still thinking about how it’s going to enter these markets in a unique, different way, and play to its own strengths.”

As for the second part of the answer, it is in the culture of Nintendo, not very focused on games between users around the world.

“The second thing I would point out is that – and this is where some of the cultural differences come in – culturally, the company didn’t see a big opportunity in online gaming. This is an area where the Americas and Europe have consistently tried to educate society in Japan on the value of online gaming, investing in the online infrastructure that needed to be done for the experience to be positive. .”

Hence the first hesitant steps… and a walk which, despite everything, continues to be punctuated by stumbles.

Source: GeekWire (via Nintendo Life)

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