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As one poster on GameFAQS said, when the man who made Nintendo what it is today comes out and says what he said, you bet it’s news. As I said on the heels of the Hyrule Warriors 3DS leak, I have no reason to buy a Wii U now. Even without outright saying it, it’s obvious the decision to name the console Wii U played a large role in the system’s failure: It’s been selling at a loss since it launched two years ago.
It also sounds like the NX (the official codename for the console that comes after the Wii U) is indeed the Wii U’s successor. One can only speculate what this would mean for the Wii U. Some folks have even started making comparisons between Nintendo today and Sega just before its collapse in 2000: At the time, Sega had released three consoles in 4 years (Dreamcast, Saturn and Jaguar), bankrupting the company out of making consoles.
The clear difference is Nintendo can absorb the losses. The Wii says hi.
Let’s say the NX is the Wii U’s successor and not a console version of the New Nintendo 3DS (LOL). Nintendo could do one of two things with the Wii U, both of which have been done by Sony and Nintendo in the past:
- Rebrand their console division under the NX. In exchange, the Wii U is made a Legacy Console and is a dedicated hub for Nintendo’s past and digital gaming. It also would NOT be backwards compatible with physical Wii U games but they would continue to support the Wii U. Sony did this with the release of the PSP Go, which was released at the same time as the launch of the Playstation Network as a digital-only handheld.
- Split the console division between the NX and the Wii U. The NX would be for traditional (hardcore) gamers while the Wii U would be younger (and casual) gamers. The NX would have its own library but it would have backwards compatability with some Wii U games like Super Smash Bros. and Bayonetta 2. Nintendo did this with the DS and the 3DS until two years ago: The 3DS was a significant upgrade but they continued to support the DS until the 3DS XL was released.
Of the two, the second is sure to cause the least amount of outrage among current Wii U owners but it will cost Nintendo more to do. The first would ensure Nintendo doesn’t take as big of a hit financially but it would be sure to anger Wii U owners who may have recently bought the system.
Whichever route Nintendo goes, at the very least they need to create a unified online system like the Playstation Network and Apple: Buy ONE copy of a game, video, song/album or App and you can redownload to as many Sony/Apple Devices as you own. For example, I bought Frozen last year on iTunes. I can delete and redownload it as many times as I want on all the iOS Devices I own. With Sony’s Playstation Plus you can back up your save files online. This came in REAL handy for me when I bought my own PS3 two years ago: I was able to download my Tales of Graces f Save Data onto my PS3 after uploading it from the one I shared with my brother.
The other big news of the day from Nintendo: Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime let it slip in an interview the smaller New Nintendo 3DS may be coming to the U.S. After all. This is huge news. Some gamers speculate Nintendo didn’t announce it at E3 on purpose to boost sales of the New Nintendo 3DS XL through the summer, which was released in February in the US. The smaller version was released alongside the XL version in Japan and Europe but not North America.
This is great news. Ever since the Nintendo DSi XL was released, I always went with the smaller version for this simple reason: They fit comfortably in my front pants pockets. I can’t say that about the XL versions. Now I just need a game to buy the console for: I have Xenoblade Chronicles for the Wii already so…yeah. No need to buy a second copy of a game I haven’t finished yet XD