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Apple Is Nintendo's "Enemy of the Future"

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the blue-hedgehogs-are-old-hat dept.

Businesses 272

Pickens writes "The San Francisco Chronicle reports that video game industry revenue fell by 26 percent in April, adding more concerns about the health of the industry in the worst year-over-year decline since July 2009. But the big news is that the decline in portable sales makes up 61 percent of the overall monthly decline, suggesting that the Nintendo DS platform is losing steam but also reflecting the growing clout of the iPhone platform as the iPhone and iPod Touch continue to draw in more casual gamers, the iPad offers a bigger screen experience, and Apple announces the 'Game Center' — a social gaming hub with console-like online gaming features. Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata is understood to have told his senior executives recently to regard the battle with Sony as a victory already won and to treat Apple, and its iPhone and iPad devices, as the 'enemy of the future.' 'If Nintendo's future mobile platforms are to be any kind of success, the company will have to figure out how to take on the ease of use afforded by the App Store,' writes Nicholas Deleon. A large part of Nintendo's faith in reviving its efforts hinge on the 3DS, which may ship in the fall, the first truly major handheld introduction for Nintendo since the original DS in 2004. He adds, 'Maybe Nintendo should just release a phone?'"

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Cue in sopssa Ballmer Cock Jock posts in 3, 2, 1 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32211612)

w r u sopssa!?

can't see the forest for the trees... (5, Insightful)

Em Emalb (452530) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211620)

I disagree with the premise of the article.

I believe the lack of video game sales is due to the crappy economy overall, not because of things like the iPhone/iPod/iPad.

I could be wrong, but I feel their view is too shallow.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (-1, Flamebait)

mangu (126918) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211670)

I believe the lack of video game sales is due to the crappy games overall

FTFY

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212102)

Are you kidding? I know it's cool in an emo sort of way to always trash everything as if the world sucked, but that last few years have seen absolutely AMAZING games hit the shelves. As someone who's been gaming for 20+ years, there's never been a better time to be gaming.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (1)

snowraver1 (1052510) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212148)

I agree, but last month sucked for games... At least to me. There haven't been any compelling releases. I usually buy at least a game per month, and the last game I bought was Mass Effect 2(2-3 months ago).

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212208)

Really?
Name 1 in the past year that was on the level of HL, HL2, DOOM, Monkey Island, Portal. I love gaming and some good games did come out recently but I cannot think of a great 1-2 in the past year.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (0)

RTFA (697910) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212296)

Call of Duty : Modern Warfare 2, Halo 1-2-3, Gears of War...

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32212530)

All "Army/military" games suck.
Halo 1-2-3 sucked.
Gears of War sucked.

If those are examples of what you consider to be good games, then you have extremely poor taste and/or very limited gaming experience. Since you are a drooling console mook, it isn't too surprising that you haven't seen much.

Next!

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (0, Troll)

Kell Bengal (711123) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212224)

Depends on what you're looking for in games. If you want vapid console titles, sure - great! If you want deep and thoughtful simulations or (god forbid) adventure games, you're out of luck.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32212286)

"Vapid" does not mean "not to Kell Bengal's personal tastes".

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (1)

geminidomino (614729) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212334)

Are you kidding? I know it's cool in an emo sort of way to always trash everything as if the world sucked, but that last few years have seen absolutely AMAZING games hit the shelves. As someone who's been gaming for 20+ years, there's never been a better time to be gaming.

Like what? Sure, there have been FUN games the past few years(Most recently, I had a great time with Bayonetta and Darksiders), amid the vast number of disappointments. But I could say the same thing 30 years ago when I played Yar's Revenge amid the sea of crap Atari Games.

I think you're too easily "amazed" unless you're conflating marketing success with actual quality if your number of "amazing" games surpasses the number of fingers on one of your hands.

I don't think I've been "Wowed" by a game since probably Soul Reaver 2 (Defiance came very close, but the change to forced linear progression hurt it), and even its gameplay was a rather simplistic Hack'n'Slash Box Puzzler. It was the story that led to it being enshrined.

Combine that with the growing customer-hostility from the gaming houses, the advent of the net-enabled consoles with local storage letting them push out buggy, broken crap and leave out core gameplay for later (or immediate) DLC sales, and a general lack of risk-taking, and I really have to say that this is probably the worst time to be a gamer since the Atari Crash.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (1)

mangu (126918) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212512)

that last few years have seen absolutely AMAZING games hit the shelves.

Like which?

I used to love adventure games, the last I bought was Grim Fandango.

I used to love car racing simulations, the last I bought was Need For Speed Underground, which sucks. Why haven't they ever managed to create a *good* physical car simulation since Grand Prix Legends came out in 1997? I don't mean the kind of simulation you drive with your thumbs, I mean something that gives realistic responses with a force-feedback wheel.

The last game I bought in any genre was Sid Meier's Pirates. Yawn! The same half-dozen plays repeated in a couple of dozen places... You call that entertainment?

I propose this law for games: entertainment value is inversely proportional to the square of the money spent on the production.

We don't need those super graphics effects, if you want to see fog and raindrop reflections and all that just leave your parents basement and walk outside. What games need and are sorely lacking today is imagination.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (2, Insightful)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211696)

We had more precipitous drops in the whole economy over the past 24 months that did not see the same kind of month-over-month and YoY declines in game sales.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (1)

Spazntwich (208070) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211788)

...and entertainment budgets tend to be the first cut during hard economic times. While true, your point does little to counter his.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (4, Insightful)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211998)

So why would we see it happening more now, and not previously? These hard economic times did not begin recently; as one of the first to go, you'd think entertainment spending would have taken a bigger hit some time ago.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (2, Interesting)

Spazntwich (208070) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212190)

Couldn't tell you that. What I can tell you is "Apple did it" holds about as much water explaining the decline of the videogame industry as " did it" does for explaining physical phenomena unless someone has better statistics than a loose correlation between a product release and a sharper decline in an already declining industry.

If you believe all the increasingly speculative articles lately, the ipad has killed videogames, netbooks, paper books, adobe, countless child laborers, and who knows what else.

Seems to me all it's killed is what shreds of reason Apple fans had left.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (3, Insightful)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212346)

What I can tell you is "Apple did it" holds about as much water explaining the decline of the videogame industry as " did it" does for explaining physical phenomena

That's not what TFA or TFS are claiming. Did you read them? They note a disproportionate decrease in sales for portable gaming, and postulate Apple's offerings as being part of that. I think in your rush to post early, you might have missed the point behind the numbers given.

Surely you see that it's possible that the Apple products have cut into the traditional portable console game sales?

I mean, you did read the summary at least, right, where they specifically mention that a large portion of the drop in video games sales was in the portable segment?

And surely you can see that Nintendo could feel that Apple's products are a threat to their business?

If you believe all the increasingly speculative articles lately, the ipad has killed videogames, netbooks, paper books, adobe, countless child laborers, and who knows what else.

Let's not generalize this. Neither I nor TFA attack Apple, there's no need for you to show up on a white horse and defend them from an attack that doesn't exist.

You, me, and just about anyone out there with any knowledge of current tech understands that the Apple products that have come out recently will compete with Nintendo for portable gaming.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212414)

Wait, are you saying you wouldn't be scared if you were Nintendo? Millions of people are buying smartphones, and oh, by the way, they have more gaming horsepower and screen real-estate than a DS.

If I were trying to sell special-purpose handheld game consoles, or handheld GPS units, or cheap digicams, or PDAs, I would certainly be thinking about the future, because smartphones do all that and more.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (1)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212140)

...and entertainment budgets tend to be the first cut during hard economic times.

Which would mean that the bigger declines would have happened previous to now.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (2, Insightful)

Spazntwich (208070) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212282)

Please support your assertion.

The economy has continued to worsen in the previous two years and unemployment continues to rise. It is not at all unreasonable to think more and more American consumers are finally awakening to the depth of the economic crisis and beginning to ignore the irrational exuberance network news tends to spew.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (5, Informative)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212540)

Emphasis mine:

The economy has continued to worsen in the previous two years and unemployment continues to rise.

Depends on how you calculate it. Unemployment is only continuing to rise because we've been using numbers that underestimate the unemployed; as we correct for that (rather, it corrects itself as more people are trying to enter the workforce), the unemployment number can be going up even though we have more people gainfully employed.

I wish we could use employment figures instead of unemployment figures, it'd be a lot more clear. Currently unemployment figures are based on something like this, with B being the "unemployment" figures:

A) Fully Employed
B) Unemployed, but looking for work
C) Unemployed, but not looking
D) Underemployed

The current situation is that people are moving from C to B, and so the "unemployment" figure is going up, even though A (fully employed people) is also going up.

If you really want to look at video game spending as a function of general economic health, you should compare the video game market to consumer spending. Consumer spending has risen for seven months straight -- yet video game sales haven't mirrored this rise in spending. So it's likely that the cause of decreased sales is dependent on more factors than just the general state of the economy.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (2, Insightful)

Mordok-DestroyerOfWo (1000167) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211726)

Maybe it has something to do with tax season (at least in the U.S.)? Or the fact that there weren't many big name releases this month? If you want to attribute slumping sales to iWhatever uptake, I'd like to see correspondingly high games sales numbers for the device. Otherwise I call shenanigans.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (1)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211734)

Looks to me like Apple is getting on everyone's enemies list [wikipedia.org] . HTC, Google, Adobe, Nintendo ... who's next?

Ralphie Wiggam: Hi Super Nintendo Chalmers! [wikipedia.org]

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (2, Insightful)

ndogg (158021) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211822)

While I agree with you, I think it would still be stupid for Nintendo to ignore Apple.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (2, Funny)

Narcocide (102829) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211878)

While I agree with you, the selfish part of me still hopes Nintendo disagrees with you because then maybe I can one day buy a Nintendo-branded cellphone, at which point my soul will finally be at peace.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (2, Insightful)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211900)

I think their scope is incredibly narrow. The DS has been out for 6 years, the 3GS (the most popular Iphone to date) was released 2 years ago. So, where Sales for the DS Exploded in its first 2 years, they've plateau'd and started to fall. And since the iPhone sales have exploded in their first two years, they THINK they are seeing a pattern. The pattern is that both devices have done well early on. But only so many people want a DS, and only so many people want an Iphone. The DS is almost dated now, its lack of sales should suggest that Nintendo release a NEW handheld, and not a rehash like the DSi or DS lite. Apple can get away with Rehashing the iPhone because each upgrade has more of an improvement than the last, their marketting team is amazing (hate to admit it), and people are always looking to update their phone now-a-days.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211958)

their marketting team is amazing (hate to admit it),

When you consider who they primarily market to, this isn't really saying much...

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (2, Insightful)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212116)

Knowing your audience is half the battle in Marketting.

I suppose one of two things is happening:

1) Apple has their finger on the pulse of their fans, and know exactly what they want, how they want it, and when to release it to maximize profits. They know their supporters well enough that marketting to them is a breeze.

2) Apple has more control over who becomes their fans. They decide what they want an Apple fan to be like. They want others to desire to be an Apple fan, and it works. They don't market to everyone, they market to that select Niche that regular consumers WANT to be. Thus people who wouldn't regularly be fans become fans.

Either way - I'd be impressed.

Re:can't see the forest for the trees... (1)

fortapocalypse (1231686) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212074)

I think it is a valid point that Nintendo will have to battle it out with Apple a bit. You can't knock that the app store has a ton of games, and these are in fact competing with the DS and other handheld gaming devices.

Anon Advice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32211628)

Seven words: "Adapt your games to your competitors' platforms". Unified devices are so hot right now.

Re:Anon Advice (0)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211984)

This, I bet official NES, gameboy and such games would sell big. I use an emulator on my Droid, since nintendo does not seem to want my money.

Re:Anon Advice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32212260)

You've already proven by pirating Nintendo's games that you don't want to give them your money, so why would they try to convince you?

Re:Anon Advice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32212352)

You do realise that this is Nintendo we're talking about, right? The same Nintendo that threatened to cut off any third party developers if they made games for non Nintendo consoles. The same Nintendo that sued Tengen because they dared to make games without paying the Nintendo "Seal of Approval" tax. The same Nintendo that got slapped with a class action for price gouging customers of the original NES and then "settled" the matter by issuing $5 coupons towards Nintendo only game purchases. The same Nintendo that backstabbed Sony over the PlayStation in ultimate weasel fashion because Nintendo suddenly got more greedy after rereading a three year old contract.

The day Nintendo goes cross platform is the day that Apple prices their products reasonably, Microsoft stops writing buggy software and Linux becomes the dominant desktop OS.

Re:Anon Advice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32212554)

and with this one post, you have pissed off every fanboi. Good job sir.

how much would it take (1)

butterflysrage (1066514) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211646)

how much would it really take to add a phone to a 3DS? Surely it has more than enough processing power, the displays are crisp, it has touch screen already... only issue I could see would be adding an antenna.

Re:how much would it take (1)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211806)

how much would it really take to add a phone to a 3DS? ... only issue I could see would be adding an antenna.

It may take a few other basic components, an OS that can do more than play a game, etc, etc ... and don't forget the DS Phone Game cartridge "now only $39.95!"

Re:how much would it take (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212150)

It has an OS / libraries that can already play a game while using a radio interface (WiFi) while using a camera and while using an SD card. And two screens at the same time. Oh, there's IR too.

I don't think adding cellular module is outside its capabilities.

Well that's reason to panic... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32211660)

The *_WORST_* downturn since July of 2009! Who seriously believes this stuff really matters, aside from newspapers and TV news that need this for sensationalism?

weird wording (1)

stokessd (89903) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211662)

I realize that it's a translation, but it reads like "enemy of the future" as in apple doesn't like and will fight the future. Not a "future enemy" like you are poking the sleeping bear with a stick...

Sheldon

Re:weird wording (1)

Mordok-DestroyerOfWo (1000167) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211756)

I kinda like the wording, like Apple is going to send back an iTerminator to take out Mario when he is still in his 8-bit phase.

Re:weird wording (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212180)

But...that Terminator and 8-bit Mario both use the same CPU...

woo (2, Interesting)

nomadic (141991) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211692)

Two companies that unconscionably lock down their platforms and have amazingly obnoxious fanboy supporters. Is there a way they can both lose?

Re:woo (2, Interesting)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211738)

Considering who the other players in the field are, why would you want them to both lose?

Would you rather Microsoft, Sony, or the nascent overlord Google win?

Re:woo (1)

dskzero (960168) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212080)

Considering who the other players in the field are, why would you want them to both lose? Would you rather Microsoft, Sony, or the nascent overlord Google win?

No one really needs to lose at all. I'd rather have them all go bankrupt, though, just to see if that would give back the quality PC gaming before we had to dumb down the games, simplify the engines, and lock the game down just to make them compatible with console gaming. That said, Apple can be a competitor to Nintendo, if, and that's a big if, the bigger companies decide that. I have a hunch they won't, but I could be wrong.

Re:woo (1)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212438)

That said, Apple can be a competitor to Nintendo, if, and that's a big if, the bigger companies decide that. I have a hunch they won't, but I could be wrong.

I disagree that some bigger companies need to decide on the fate of Apple in portable gaming. I'm a casual gamer, and I'm stoked that in the next year or two I can get rid of my handheld gaming device and instead just play games on my smartphone.

The question is whether some bigger game developers will choose to develop games for Apple, and whether Apple will allow them on the app store... and I'd be willing to bet that both will, as there is money to be made.

Re:woo (1)

nomadic (141991) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212268)

Eh, upside is if Microsoft won it would really annoy the linux fanboys, the other leg of the obnoxious fanboy triumvirate.

Re:woo (1)

Gravatron (716477) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212442)

sony's game department is actually pretty open. Even PSN has been fairly open, allowing most games to be shared with up to 5 ps3's.

Or... (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211750)

The time just before the last month saw the news about successor of Nintendo DS (which is itself long in the tooth, although considering that - doing rather fine)

No no no no (5, Insightful)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211766)

Well maybe Nintendo could release a phone. I'm not against that. I guess. I don't know how I feel about that.

But what I'm really noing to is WHY the sales are dropping. Its not because of the iPhone.

It's because the DS is almost 6 years old. Nov 2004 was its release. Anyone who has wanted a DS, already has one. Nintendo foolishly tried to enhance the sales with the DS Lite and DSi. How shocked am I to find that nintendo fans who purchased a DS, don't feel the need to buy a DS lite, or a DSi. So how much money went into those two projects, and really what benefit did they expect to see? Did they expect a resurgence of sales? They merely expanded the market of the DS by small margins. And so only those who didn't wants a DS for various reasons would be so inclined to buy a DS lite or DSi, hoping those reasons would be resolved.

I'll stick my neck out and make this claim: If Nintendo decided to launch a new handheld - and it was different than the DS or Gameboy, it would sell well. Problem is that Nintendo has started to fall apart on their innovative ideas. The Wii has also been out for 4 years now, and the only innovation they've added to it has been the Wii Fit board 2 years ago, and the DS gets rehashes.

So, when Apple releases a new phone, and it sells, Nintendo isn't losing because its a threat in any sense, its more or less that Nintendo's sales have already plateau'd and started to have fallen, and Apple sales just happen to be on the rise.

Correlation != causation.

Re:No no no no (1)

jasno (124830) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211834)

how much money went into those two projects

Probably not much. I'm guessing they just needed something to keep the company busy while they try to think up something worthy of being the next-big-thing. You can't just fire your entire marketing dept for a year or so while you wait for R&D to finish.

Re:No no no no (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212012)

Marketting should be drumming up the idea of a new product from Nintendo if Nintendo is indeed working on something.

Since we're on the topic of Apple, just look at their marketting. There have been more articles speculating on the next iPhone than I can count (and thats a lot, I can count pretty high you know), and theres been more leaks for their phones than theres been leaks in my house.

Before the Wii came out, the whole speculation about what the "Nintendo Revolution" was going to be about really got people talking. I wonder why they aren't doing anything like that.

Re:No no no no (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32212194)

Except Apple hasn't released a new phone in years either. They are just upgraded versions of the previous year's model. How is this any different than the new DS versions (DS Lite, DSi, DSiXL).

Re:No no no no (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212262)

Apparently the leap to the 3GS was a big one.

Not to mention the telecoms work in conjunction with Apple. You have an iPhone? You signed a 3 year contract? You can upgrade to the new iPhone if you sign another 3 year contract, no charge...

They would consider that a "sold" iPhone even though the consumer themselves didn't hand over the money for it, the Telecoms did on their behalf to have 3 years worth of money from the consumer.

Re:No no no no (1)

justthinkit (954982) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212288)

...and the only innovation they've added to it has been the Wii Fit board 2 years ago...

MotionPlus [wikipedia.org]

Re:No no no no (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212342)

Agreed its an improvement to the system and was a good move and it may or may not be selling well (I haven't checked on it) - but it didn't add anything new to the Wii, it just makes the controller do what it was supposed to do in the first place.

Re:No no no no (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212340)

Also who says Nintendo gives a shit about DS sales? The DS has sold like 60 million units. What this means is there are tens of millions of gamers with DSes out there. Nintendo makes money on each and every DS game sold, since they license them all. So what they really care about is that the games keep moving. Based on my informal observations, combined with the number of units out there, I'd say they are. DS games get a lot of shelf space at Target and Best Buy and so on. More than any of the consoles and as much as PC software. Tells me they move a lot of DS titles.

So Nintendo could never sell another DS and still make shitloads of money on the things. As long as the games move, it is doing well.

Hardware is rarely, if ever, where the real money in consoles is made. Sometimes companies make a bit on their hardware, other times they break even, and still other times they take a loss. Software is where the cash is made. So if everyone who wants a DS has one, great. Nintendo is fat and happy so long as those millions of gamers keep buying the games.

bigger screen experience (1)

similar_name (1164087) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211770)

Not just a bigger screen but a bigger screen experience. sigh

Competition is legion (4, Interesting)

jasno (124830) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211776)

It seems like there are all kinds of things competing for the attention of gamers nowadays. I can't really see 'bejeweled' or whatever the hell the kids are playing on their iPads competing with WoW or whatever. But what about huge timesinks like facebook, twitter, youtube, and even internet news/chat/etc?

I can't say... I just hit 35 and I've damn near lost my ability to sit still in front of a video game. It just feels like a giant sucking waste of time - then again I'm posting on /., so what does that say about me?

Even when I did game, I'd put down $40 for half-life and get... 4-5 years out of it. So I guess I'm not a typical gamer.

Re:Competition is legion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32212134)

Even when I did game, I'd put down $40 for half-life and get... 4-5 years out of it. So I guess I'm not a typical gamer.

That's not a fair comment. They don't make 'em like that anymore.

We're in the age of FPS games where a map pack looks like this:

3 maps from the previous generation game
2 new maps
---
$15, or about a quarter of the cost of the game.

I don't think I could count the amount of free and great maps released for Unreal Tournament, Quake 3, Half-Life, Counter-Strike, etc.

"year over year" decline (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32211782)

Last time I checked, July 2010 hasn't happened yet. So how can we have a greater year-over-year decline in less than a year? Did the definition of year get changed?

Re:"year over year" decline (2, Informative)

Daetrin (576516) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212186)

"Year over year" [about.com] means comparing the sales for the current month with the sales from the same month last year. The reason for doing this is that the industry generally follows cycles. Comparing sales in January to sales in December would be uninformative because of the huge boost to sales during the holiday season.

What the article says is that the difference, or rather the loss, between April 2009 sales and April 2010 sales was larger than any other since July 2009. July 2010 doesn't factor into the equation at all.

Oh, I don't know (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211790)

Maybe they could make a wiiPhone?

Re:Oh, I don't know (1)

denis-The-menace (471988) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212220)

What?
You draw numbers on the ground with it and it dials that number?

From laughed at to "Enemy of the future" in 1 yr. (4, Interesting)

hmbcarol (937668) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211796)

Gee a few months ago, they were not taking Apple seriously... Apple "...is not having an impact on Nintendo... I’ve seen data that suggests that while consumers are constantly downloading apps, they play with them for a few times and then they are moving on to the next thing,” Reggie Fils-Aime, Nintendo of America’s president, told Kotaku. “Clearly it doesn’t look like their platform is a viable profit platform for game development because so many of the games are free versus paid downloads.” "iPhone and iPad not viable gaming platforms", "Apple games are not even a mouthful" A year ago, Satoru Iwata, president of Nintendo was argued that iPhones and Nintendo products were not competitors because they appealed to different people.

Re:From laughed at to "Enemy of the future" in 1 y (2, Insightful)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212088)

Well, Reggie Fils-Aime is right, they download a game ($3-5) and play it a few times until they get bored, and dl another game ($3-5) and play it.

Guess what, it is easier to justify $3-5 on a game, crappy or otherwise than it is to risk 10 times that on a game that may or may not suck, may be fun for many hours of pleasure, or just boring after one time through.

Ten sucky games are worth more than one that may or may not suck.

And I wish I was running a game company right now, as I have bitchin' idea how to make/market games.

Re:From laughed at to "Enemy of the future" in 1 y (2, Insightful)

MemoryDragon (544441) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212292)

You dont know corporate speak, one thing is you will never ever here from a corporate guy in public that they are concerned about someone else, this is like admitting a defeat.
Reggy after all is a salesman and for that he has to lie his way around. I do not understand why the press even interviews those guys anymore they could preprint their answers (we are not concerned bla bla, strong product lineup bla bla, we are the future bla bla) and have it signed by them, would not make a difference but would be way cheaper.

Nintendo phone? (1)

PedoPope (1806810) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211820)

Oh dear lord - a busload / metro train full of people waving their arms around like airport flagmen having grand-mal seizures.
And you thought loud cell-phone conversations were annoying.

*THWACK!* *Biff* *Poink*!

It'd be like an episode of the 300 Stooges. Can't wait.

Apple+Sony vs. Google+Nintendo vs. Microsoft (1)

Orga (1720130) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211830)

I stick Apple and Sony together since they love making up their own proprietary stuff. I see Nintendo as living more hand in hand with Googles approach.. and MS is just... MS.

Re:Apple+Sony vs. Google+Nintendo vs. Microsoft (1)

countSudoku() (1047544) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212226)

Negative. The thing Nintendo needs to learn from Apple is how to create a closed system that also does not violate your common sense by not being able to MIGRATE YOUR DOWNLOADED CONTENT TO THE NEXT SYSTEM. Plain and simple. I have both and I'm telling you I won't purchase an upgrade to the DSi in any way until they pull their heads out of their asses and make it so I can move my downloaded games to my other, rightfully purchased and legal, system. At least my walled-gardening apps for the iPod Touch can go on any other one I choose to sync to. Not so with any DS system, not so with Wiis. Big turnoff and a system killer, not to mention so un-Google like to be laughable. Subscribe to my newsletter, or perish.

Another good thing to copy from Apple would be to have a rating system built into the downloadable content areas. I'm not as willing to purchase any DS downloads that are not top-quality, known games, from good developers. And add some more free content for crapping out loud. The Free section is almost, no, is a joke.

Nintendo phone (3, Interesting)

Voulnet (1630793) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211832)

I would buy a Nintendo phone. In a heartbeat.

Re:Nintendo phone (2, Funny)

jasno (124830) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211930)

"We're sorry, but your voicemail is in another castle!"

Would all calls sound like you're talking through a giant steel pipe?

very funny! (1)

SethJohnson (112166) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212490)

"We're sorry, but your voicemail is in another castle!"

funniest thing I've read all week! Nintendo should have released a cellphone four years ago.

Re:Nintendo phone (1)

Bugamn (1769722) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212122)

Does it come with a appdex?

Gotta download them all!

Re:Nintendo phone (1)

MozeeToby (1163751) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212402)

I wouldn't, not unless they drastically changed their attitude when it comes to emulators and roms. As it is now, I can play NES, SNES, Genisis, Gameboy, and Gameboy Advanced games on my phone. The games I like (RPG and strategy) play very well, are very inexpensive (just a few dollars for each emulator) and for the most part are games that are so far out of print that I don't even feel guilty pirating them as they aren't available anywhere else anyway.

Not just Ease of Purchase, but Ease of Transition (3, Interesting)

powerlord (28156) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211840)

If you're a parent with 2+ kids, which would you rather do?

Buy a DS, along with a copy of a game cart for each kid (or a download for each DS, not just now but in the future also), or purchase an iPod Touch + 1 copy of the game to sync with all of them?

Add in Nintendos HUGE lack of ability to replace hardware (go search for people needing to replace Wiis and DSs and trying to keep their purchased DLC ... here's a hint at the conclusion "Good Luck!").

Seems like Nintendo SHOULD be concerned. Heck, SquareSoft is even releasing titles on the AppStore. If Apple added a button or two, it would be that much easier, but they still have dual stick shooters (that are personally "okay", but not great), and a HUGE potential for game developers.

If a few major developers jump on board and accept it as a First Class gaming platform (which they MIGHT since they don't have to worry about used carts being resold and the install base is huge), then Nintendo could be in for a huge awakening.

A industry designed to fail.. (1)

Kirin Fenrir (1001780) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211848)

Gee, with shorter games, dumbed-down games, yearly franchise releases over-saturating brands, less focus on bug-free releases, a dramatic rise in nickel-and-diming DLC, exploding budgets, and a general fear of innovation or creativity, I wonder why the video game industry is starting to slump?

The only game on the horizon I'm really looking forward to is Guild Wars 2.

Re:A industry designed to fail.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32212302)

nintendo is slumping, the industry as a whole is not. and nintendo is still making piles of money, just smaller piles than they were in recent history. but the industry as a whole is now enormous, big enough that it no longer has to give a shit about snarky little asswhipes who've never left their parents basement and can't wait for guild wars 2.

Re:A industry designed to fail.. (1)

geminidomino (614729) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212360)

The only game on the horizon I'm really looking forward to is Guild Wars 2.

Yeah, a free-to-play WoW should do really well for the first year or two.

They'll have to release a phone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32211860)

No one will buy two portable gaming devices when one will do, that defeats the point of portable gaming. The only way they can compete is to make a comparable product. That or just focus on making games for the iPhione/iPad/whateverelsethereisoutthere.

No. (2, Insightful)

soupforare (542403) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211870)

Not until they start putting real controls on their products. Being able to play games for longer than a couple hours would help too. I don't see either happening any time soon.

iSteam (1)

Krau Ming (1620473) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211904)

don't forget that Steam and some of its games are now Apple compatible... that will also probably steal some gamers away from other systems.

Again?! (5, Insightful)

RyanFenton (230700) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211942)

This story is eerily similar to the previous "Oh NO! Nintendo sales are down!" article about the Wii. Nintendo is the dominant player of the market, and sales are down, BECAUSE ALMOST EVERYONE POSSIBLE ALREADY HAS A DS.

Market saturation, mixed with the usual mid-year games lull, and the anticipated rollout of a new platform combine to lower sales numbers. Does that mean competitors are taking over the market? No, no it doesn't.

I'm not crazy about "does this mean that...?" style of journalism. Speculation is fine - but it isn't news. Yet, this style of "journalism" seems to be rising as other forms of journalism are going out of business. It's fine for arguments, but annoying when there's too much of it, too often.

Ryan Fenton

Re:Again?! (3, Funny)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212064)

Speculation is fine - but it isn't news.

Well, they're speculating that it is. :)

Re:Again?! (2, Insightful)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212444)

I'm not crazy about "does this mean that...?" style of journalism. Speculation is fine - but it isn't news.

People use predictions to try to make themselves look smarter. A few days ago somebody was posting here about how the future of Nintendo was gloomy because Sony is attempting to replicate the Wii's controller. This sort of broken logic works because of a general lack of understanding of what went into the success of the product. Journalists do this too, afterall, their relevance is dependent on the respect people have of their command of the topic. It works because nobody holds these guys to anything they say.

How old is the Average DS User? (1)

Kagato (116051) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211954)

Last I checked the most popular titles on the DS system were targeted at kids. Who the heck is going to have a kid with an expensive iPhone on an expensive data plan. Maybe Apple can peel off some older casual gamers, but they aren't going to nab any of Nintendo's core DS customers.

Apple is the Enemy of the Future? (3, Funny)

Tekfactory (937086) | more than 4 years ago | (#32211996)

I thought that was Skynet.

Skip one lousy meeting...

Re:Apple is the Enemy of the Future? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32212130)

Apple will build a new Terminator, it will be called iTerminate.

welcome to the real world (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32212034)

lol =) care to have a look at the growth of online flash games?

i can't be bothered to pull out some figures for you but to be honest this kind of story reflects the increasing distance between reality and the people that you find on slashdot.

maybe its that you don't want to face up to this uncomfortable fact and would rather crap on about the iphone some more.

Nintendo has had a patent on gameboy phone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32212084)

Nintendo has a patent on a gameboy phone since before the iphone came out. They do have it before apple but most people would call it a copy and bash them .its not worth releasing a phone.

Nonsense. (2, Insightful)

MaWeiTao (908546) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212092)

Couldn't the decline in DS sales simply be due to the fact that the market is saturated? Anyone who wanted a DS has already purchased one. The same goes for all the consoles. We're at the mid-point for this generation of consoles, a point at which I would expect console sales to have stagnated somewhat. It's not surprising that Wii sales would have declined the most dramatically, given the nature of its relatively outdated hardware. The PS3 is probably the only console of the three with some growth potential given it was such a late starter.

So far Apple is a non-competitor in the console arena, outside of perhaps the portable market and even there it's still a minor player. And Apple is always going to struggle as a gaming device given its significantly higher price point, being a more fragile device and, for the iPhone, requiring a pricey subscription with AT&T. We have to consider who's playing on these consoles. A significant number of them are quite young, not the sort of people who would normally be using an iPhone or iPad. For adults who might be interested in gaming, chances are they'd own both an iPhone AND a console, or two.

Is this more nonsense from "experts" gushing over how wonderful everything Apple is? Currently Apple poses no threat to the consoles. Any decline in game sales is almost certainly connected to the general state of the economy. However, anyone with common sense at Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo would certainly be eying Apply with caution and would be wise to prepare for the future.

I have a hard time seeing Apple entering the dedicated gaming market. They seem more interested in creating a ubiquitous general-purpose entertainment device. Gaming is one of it's many capabilities. I'd say it's more likely that the consoles will move in that direction; in fact, the PS3 and Xbox360 have already made some moves that way. Sony has even built in some connectivity between the PS3 and PSP. But I think such devices are still some time off.

Apple is everyones enemy? (1)

pieisgood (841871) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212094)

First it was netbooks and now it's nintendo? Yeah sure, this seems more like bullshit to me. Hipster talk about the "gaming future" and how apple is taking over every market (to their delight)... but what it is, is a desire to see trends as, instead of what they are, apples products crushing other markets.

I bet the next article will be "PC gaming decline! did steams jump to MAC kill PC gaming?" or something similar.

they should (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32212118)

just release their DS games for the ipod/ipad/iphone/droid (or whatever is coming out next) and rake in the dough @ $10 a pop. Then they don't have to make a new handheld unless they want too. Dunno, maybe I am wrong.

Worst year over year decline? (1)

Aeros (668253) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212146)

How can it be the "worst year over year decline since June 2009" when this is only 11 months since then? Weird phrasing

How boring. (1)

pclminion (145572) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212264)

I was expecting something much more exciting. Say, like Apple has plans to come out with a console. That would be much more interesting than this garbage.

Why the DS has lost its appeal with us (1)

joelsanda (619660) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212276)

My son and I have had every Nintendo DS since they were first released. Since that time eBook readers and 'Smart Phones' have not only come down in price but they have increased in capability. What we're finding is how burdensome the DS has become, compared to our phones. I have a DSi XL, and my wife and son each have a DSi.

The Wifi capabilities are generally good, but it's hit and miss if it will work when I'm at a coffee shop. Not so with our phones - the Wifi seems to work fine and there's the 3G connection as well.

The cameras on the DS? Poor in comparison to the phones we have. And all of our phones connect to a PC or Mac to copy photos over. The DS requires an SD Card.

Same thing with music. A cable versus an SD card, and the DS can only handle AAC; our phones can use AAC and MP3. Our phones can play music and let us pause it when we're on the web on taking a phone call. The DS is a one-shot device. Music or game, never both.

Playing a game on the DS is, generally speaking, better than on a phone. Two screens, a stylus, held in the hand or placed on the table - it is superior to a phone.

But it's also another piece of technology I have to carry.

For us the biggest threat isn't the iPhone or similar mobile Apple technology but the limitation of the DS. We don't have iPhones and the DS has rapidly lost its usefulness for us - a family with only mobile phones, an XBox 360 and Wii, and a DS for Mom, Dad and Junior.

Phone? (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212290)

No thanks. The last thing I need is the three-years contracts and absurd monthly fees from the Canadian cellphone companies.

Nintendo should check the sales of the iPhone + iPad 3G vs iPod touch + iPad Wi-Fi.

Nintendo release a phone?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32212294)

No thanks! I don't need no MarioPhone! I'll stick with my iPhone 3GS

The 3DS is to blame really. (1)

medv4380 (1604309) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212404)

Is it that hard to see that Nintendo announced or leaked info about having a 3DS coming out in 6 months to a year and the next quarter the hand held sales are down? Who in their right mind would buy the current hardware knowing that the future hardware is about to come out and soon. Nintendo doesn't even need to beat out the Apple App store since they already have a decent store for the Wii it shouldn't be too hard to port over the functionality that they already have. As much as Apple might have some games for their cute little iPhone and iPad get real. I wasn't that impressed with the DS having a touch screen but at least it had buttons. I can just imagine breaking my Android in Game Over rage, and I don't think apple customers would be immune to that ether.

has anyone? (1)

charliemopps11 (1606697) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212516)

Has anyone mentioned yet that all the games that have come out in the past few years have basically giant packages of suck? I don't really think it has to do with console manufacturers, or apple or anything... Games just suck now. Developers spend all their money making them look pretty or developing ways to suck money out of you via microtransactions... but no-one is making decent games anymore.

DS (1)

gilesjuk (604902) | more than 4 years ago | (#32212528)

How many versions of the DS? DS, DS lite, DSi?

Perhaps they should get off the behinds and produce something new again?

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