The gaming industry is having a difficult time comprehending Nintendo’s recent success.
Many gamers who have since moved on exclusively to more “mature” Xbox and PlayStation offerings even suggest that the “Wii bubble will burst any day.” That is people will grow tired of Wii’s novelty and inferior graphics in the long-run despite the similar and ongoing success of Nintendo’s DS.
As for me and my house, I’m more than pleased with Wii games right now and beyond.
Is the Wii different than what I first played some 23 years ago? Yes. Do I play it 24/7? No. But then again, I don’t play anything for that long, and all my consoles “collect dust” from time to time.
According to Chris Kohler’s excellent gamer segmentation article, I fall somewhere between being a hardcore and casual gamer, though I consider myself a softcore gamer for girly giggles. I find Kohler’s definition of the primary gaming audience to be spot on, namely hardcore gamers, casual gamers, expanded gamers, and kid gamers.
Assuming he’s right, Nintendo owns the latter three (and larger) groups at the moment even wooing in several hardcore elite to boot.
That wasn’t always the case. Sony’s PS2 formally dominated the entire casual market (not to be confused with “people who don’t play a lot of games”) with its attractive price, a slew of games, and the most inferior technology when compared to the competition at the time. Sounds a lot like Wii with exception to how one interacts with the machine, no?
The real question then becomes, did Nintendo consciously calculate this successful segmentation which is paying off in spades, or did they sorta stumble on success by their willingness to radically change how they make and market their products? I guess we’ll never know as Nintendo will always claim the former.
But one thing’s for sure; the company is more relevant today than they ever have been.