Now, hindsight’s 20/20, but looking back, most gamers can agree that Nintendo could have done things differently with the Gamecube. The system has found its way to the bottom of the 3 console race in the US, and with the next generation of gaming just around the corner, odds are, the GCN will stay there.
However, for the folks at Nintendo, the sun has not yet set on the GCN. It seems likely that the Revolution will not debut for another 6-12 months, and the “3 Pillar” strategy, needs to stay strong until then. The DS is doing phenomenal, and the GBA/SP/GBM is holding its own. But for the next half year or so, Nintendo needs to keep the GCN rolling. So instead of shaking our heads, wondering what could have been different, let’s look ahead at the Gamecube’s final, and hopefully best, run.
Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance. Arguably the most anticipated title left for the GCN, second only to Zelda, is set for release today (October 17). October is then filled with [sarcasm] more great games, including SpongeBob SquarePants: Lights, Camera, PANTS! and Nicktoons Unite![/sarcasm]. The only other title worth noting is Dance DanceRevolution: Mario Mix. November continues to exploit Nintendo?s weak 3rd party support and in a month where Microsoft has big plans. MS will release the Xbox 360 within the first few weeks. Let’s put that into perspective. SeaWorld: Shamu’s Big Adventure vs. the Xbox 360. On the bright side of things, the 11th month of the year brings a few strong. Peter Jackson’s King Kong is shaping up to be phenomenal, and Shadow the Hedgehog looks to help redeem Sega after a disappointing go at Sonic Heroes. Viewtiful Joe returns to theGCN in Red Hot Rumble.
From there, some decent titles, such as Super Mario Strikers are scattered sporadically throughout the winter months. The real focus falls on Zelda: Twilight Princess. Its set to be the last big GCN title, and possibly one of the best in the system’s library. People remember how something ends, and if this goes as planned, a mediocre system in the eyes of most of the gaming world, will go off with the biggest of bangs. For that period of time, gamers will forget the 3rd place GCN, and they’ll find themselves engrossed in Zelda. If Nintendo can follow closely with the Revolution, it could be a great1-2 punch.
What I’m getting at is this: the GameCube needs to stay strong until the Revolution arrives. In order for that to happen, the few key titles left, need to do their job. Fire Emblem, Sonic, Mario Sports, and Zelda are among the most highly acclaimed series in video games, and each has a title due out for the Gamecube within the coming months. If they fail to match expectations, the third of three pillars may collapse, and a large part of that structure along with it. Though the handhelds are holding their own, Nintendo cannot afford to drop out of the console race, even for a few months.
Actually, I think Nintendo can afford to do whatever they want. People always seem to talk about Nintendo as if they’re teetering on the brink of bankruptcy, when in fact they are still an incredibly profibable company. Also, everyone bemoans the fact that the GC fell to 3rd place in the US beneath the Xbox, but forgets that Nintendo actually profits off each GameCube sold while Microsoft continues to take a huge hit for each one of those costly Xboxes.
In any case, I’m sure they’ll finish the GameCube’s life on a high note with Zelda, and I hope it leads the way to a promising future with Revolution.
Personally, I don’t think I would have wanted Nintendo to do anything different with the Cube. I’ve been pretty happy with it.
I’m currently playing Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory.
I’m with Nicholas. I absolutly love what the gamecube has offered as far as a video game console, an i don’t consider myself a fanboy. Just someone who likes to play quality games several times a year.
Personally, I’ve enjoyed the games on my GameCube much, much more than the games on my PlayStation 2 or Xbox. If Nintendo is profitable and making games that gamers want to play, then how was the GameCube a failure?
DS is doing phenomenal? I think that word was used a bit casually. It is doing great, though.
I love my Gamecube, too. I think that I am truly following what gaming should be………all about innovation.
Thanks again rollin for the tip.
(from the PSP and DS thing).
No, phenomenal was used perfectly. That DS has sold a TON and it’s EXTREMELY popular – and only gaining more ground! And this is the gaming system critics thought would bomb.
Ha, take that, you bastards.
Nintendo lives on.
Anytime. You mean the video right?
Get a hold of urself there. Where are u talking about exactly when u say “DS has sold a TON and it’s EXTREMELY popular”? DS is going great, but not phenomenal. If you’re talkin about the US, it’s selling well, not a “TON” and isn’t “EXTREMELY” popular. It’s doin alright.
I’m eagerly anticipating the REV since there’s nothing coming out I’m interested in buying, other than Zelda. I’d get the X360 but the price isn’t worth getting it for the premium package… When it hits $199/premium, I’ll get one. There’s nothing screaming “buy me” opposed to the REV. I know there’s no concrete info on REV games but the old school games got me excited.
I believe it’s nearly impossible to keep the systems like Nintendo has. Everyone knows That the Revolution Is coming, and many are instead buying all the past games they missed. but getting to sell new gamecube I don’t thing so, besides, the “new thing” is the DS for gaming and not even “the beautiful PSP” or the xbox360 are going to be able to make a dent. Most of the mass market is just catching on the nintendogs trend, and the Wireless games it ha coming are the main detractor of the gamecube, let alone of the other consoles as well. I just got an xbox to mod it and make it a cheap media server, but new games for it? nah,unlike the gamecube, most of them suck.
what made the gamecube look like a failure is the lack of games, most of the ones released were good, but for years the must-get game has been “Super Smash Brothers” and maybe Zelda, but Nintendo seem to look to their next console too early, even if it’s a good investment. Now they are trying to win the market again, but by saying they are trying for the “second console market” they are saying Sony and Microsoft what they want to hear. Sony thinks they got the market already and say how the PS3 will be the center of the home and they will sell millions. Microsoft is thinking they might sell more Windows Media Center PCs with their multimedia xbox “IPOD COMPATIBLE TOO!” but seem not focused on the games with are the ones that sell consoles. We’ll see what happens
Nintendo has left us to the wolves. Us being the hardcore gamers. Sony and MS are the wolves. They are battling for us the same way they have been forever. Nintendo is being a sly fox and going the devious route of getting ppl from ouside to buy so that they have 2 separate types of ppl turned into one unified fanbase. Alot of us seem to not realize that the users Nintendo is going after r not us. We aren’t everyone. It’s a much larger picture than we think. So Nintendo isn’t directly battling them, but they are fighting to be number 1 nontheless. So you see, u can’t really compare the situations and tactics yet. Only ppl we can speak for is ourselves. The non-gamers outnumber us vastly.
I think the push toward casual gaming is a fantastic thing, and Nintendo is a brilliant company to jump out to the forefront.
For the “failure” that was the GameCube, they sure have done well turning it into a much more desirable system to someone who just enjoys games, as opposed to being a gamer. Consider for just a second, in Prime, Wind Waker, and RE4, Nintendo has had THREE easy GOTYs from “last place.”
If you let games engulf your life constantly, then no, you might not find enough here. But if you just enjoy games, no system provides more enjoyment for your time spent than the Cube.
I believe that’s how they’re selling it from now all the way through Revolution’s coming. I think Zelda’s gonna be heavily pushed to further that.