September 13th, 2007
Before I start this article, I want to thank you guys for your patience. I know its been longer than usual between this and my last posts, reason being because it is the last week of Uni for the term. Hence I have been run off my feet.
It almost goes without saying that Nintendo is currently regaining control of the gaming industry that it once reserected. The Nintendo Wii in less than a year is already the best selling home console on the market. Just sneaking ahead of the Xbox 360.
Nintendo through clever marketing has regained it’s old crown back. But I don’t think that they want to stop now. They are undoubtably on a very powerful roll, one which I believe they plan on taking full advantage of. So let me introduce you to what I call:
The Conversion Process
Lets put things into perspective first. Nintendo has successfully gained large control over the non gaming market with the Wii console. These people are now literally sold on almost anything that Nintendo would try to plug to them. Nintendo well and truely has them hooked on the line.
So it would be wise of Nintendo to use this time(that is the Christmas period and onwards) to attempt to persuade the casual customer into trying some of their ‘core’ titles. If they can successfully lure this market towards their core titles then they have the ability to turn these games into dedicated Nintendo followers. Which for them will guarantee success in the generations to come.
This “convert” the casual gamers into dedicated supporters theory is the main idea behind The Conversion Process.
The Conversion(corruption?) has already began
This process has already started. Infact it started a few weeks ago with the release of Metroid Prime 3 Corruption. This game can definetly be labelled a ‘core’ game for the system. It is made for the traditional Nintendo gamer. But the new Wii controls definetly make the experience much more accessible to new players of the series.
So how would Nintendo pitch this game to gamers? Would they plug it as an accessible action title or something to gets the fans excited? I’ll let George Harrison take the stage:
“Metroid Prime 3 has a revolutionary control style that makes it easy for anyone to immediately jump into the action,” says George Harrison, Nintendo of America’s senior vice president of marketing and corporate communications. “Now, an entirely new audience can experience this amazing first-person adventure”.
So George thinks that the title is for well….anyone and he is right, this title can definetly appeal to anyone.
The Metroid Preview channel also backs up the idea that Nintendo are beginning The Conversion Process. Nintendo knows that all of the fanboys are going to snap up the title from day one so for them they are just waving meat infront of starving dogs. But as for the casual gaming base, the marketing ploy unintrusively allows curious gamers to find out what this title is about. Nintendo are allowing the non gamer to plant their own seed.
So Whats Next?
Alright, alright. I probably need a bit more juice to back this theory up, right? Thankfully this past week Nintendo have provided this for me with the announcement of a new pack in game for the upcoming Wii Zapper peripheral. That is Link’s Crossbow Training. Ugh it reminds me of this:
Anyways, it kinda makes you think as to why they chose Zelda as the theme of this game rather than say your Mii character? Here is how I see it. This title is the gateway in this Conversion Process because just like Metroid it contains ‘core’ Nintendo mascots and accessible gameplay.
Unlike Metroid, this title is more appealing to the non gamer. Not because Link is more appealing than Samus but because the game comes with a peripheral. Now, heres the thing, most of the Wii peripherals are pretty damn useless but they sell like anything, especially to these non gamers.
Hence this bundle is an attractive purchase, doubly so if Nintendo market it correctly. So then what happens? The casual crowd are then familiar with Link and decide to try out that other Link game that they have heard about(Twilight Princess). Once again, planting the seeds.
The Zapper can also lead the way towards other ‘core’ titles like Resident Evil Umbrella Chronicles and Medal of Honour. So it has enourmous potential.
Now if Nintendo can string these points together then they are on their way to baptising a new future for themselves. Of course, with more ‘core’ gamer titles on the way only time will tell as to how well they will take advantage of this massive opportunity.
On a final note, this idea stemed from some thoughts that fellow blogger Matt G kicked around a few weeks back. Once the Link’s Crossbow Training was announced I saw the link straigh away and had to share my ideas.