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Miyamoto Speaks, Nintendo Ditching the Hardcore?

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the strange-week-to-be-a-nintendo-fan dept.

Nintendo 314

After Nintendo's very ... different ... press conference, you may be wondering what's going on. In a roundtable discussion with Nintendo, folks like Eiji Aonuma and Shigeru Miyamoto discussed Zelda, Mario Galaxy and WiiFit , giving some context to the message the company had on Wednesday. The balance board begged the question from the people there, is Nintendo ditching the hardcore? According to the Nintendo folks, not at all: "Aonuma believes that control can be pick-up-and-play, but that doesn't necessarily mean a game overall has to be easier. But he still states that his 'goal was always to appeal to...a vast audience.' One attendee pushed the issue further, asking if all Zelda games from now on are going to cater to the more casual crowd--will we ever again need a strategy guide to complete a Zelda game? Aonuma says that judging by Japanese sales so far, accessible 'stream-lined play has been effective,' but he wants to see how Western audiences react to the new Zelda before making a final decision on future games' difficulty levels. Aunoma also hopes to venture into new territory and create a wholly original game at some point in his career." For a lengthy treat, check out Kotaku's series of interview clips with Mr. Miyamoto.

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Nonsense (5, Funny)

danbert8 (1024253) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850531)

With the power of the Opera Browser on the Wii, Nintendo has ensured that hardcore will exist forever. Porn on your TV, powered by your console. How is that ditching hardcore?
 
OHHHHHH, hardcore GAMERS... My bad.

Re:Nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19850635)

Run a local webserver on your home network, and stream porn right to your TV.

Porn on demand!

oddly enough, my security word is 'better'. Ironic much?

Re:Nonsense (2, Funny)

192939495969798999 (58312) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851207)

And let's not forget that you can control it all with that wireless 360 motion controller... I dare you to imagine the ungodly interactive porn, won't someone think of the children!

Mandatory Bill Hicks Quote (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851387)

Pornograhpy and video games ... I'd have high score on clam lappers by now!

Re:Nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851425)

Just pick up a copy of Mario Party 8 and you've got yourself a porn training game. Try the soda shaking game and you'll think twice about what Mario's hand is really doing.

Re:Nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851557)

...won't someone think of the children!


I love thinking of the children! But every time I do, they try to send me to jail!

If you watched their E3 press conference... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19850561)

You'd know; they are abandoning the hardcore.

No way (3, Insightful)

cromar (1103585) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850591)

Of course every game on the Wii is not going to be easy.

For example: I've been playing Gradius III (SNES) very casually lately: about 7-15 minutes every few days. It's hard as hell, so I die within that time period and look forward to the next time I play when my skills will hopefully be a little better.

Even if all the Wii games are "casual" games, they won't necessarily be easy.

Re:No way (2, Insightful)

ifrag (984323) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850877)

Hehe, just wait till you get to the high speed level. It's probably the shortest playtime level in the game, but likely one of the most difficult to master. Of course, unless you are using save states, that level might not be reachable in your playtime.

Strategy guide? (5, Insightful)

Zelos (1050172) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850597)

will we ever again need a strategy guide to complete a Zelda game?
Why would anyone want a game that requires a strategy guide to complete? That's normally a sign that the game has failed for me.

Re:Strategy guide? (2, Interesting)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850667)

Depends on what you mean by complete. If you mean that it's bad for a game to need a strategy guide to finish the main storyline, I'd agree with you. If you're saying that complex side-quests are a bad thing, then I'd have to disagree.

Re:Strategy guide? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19850815)

You still shouldn't need a strategy guide for the side quests. If a puzzle is so unintuitive that you need someone to tell you how to solve it, then it's not a good puzzle.

Re:Strategy guide? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19850991)

maybe you're not smart.

Re:Strategy guide? (4, Funny)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851367)

Then the game should adaptively judge your intelligence and make things more obvious for stupid people. At the end it should display a friendly message, like this:

Congratulation! You have WON!
(Your estimated IQ is 50)

Re:Strategy guide? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851015)

As an example of something so redonkulously unintuitive that it makes someone wonder what the hell the game makers were thinking, just look at a game like Final Fantasy 12.

Obtaining the best weapons in FF12 is literally IMPOSSIBLE without a strategy guide/faq. Hell to get the "best" weapon, The Zodiac Spear, a player has to refrain from opening 4 specific chests throughout the course of the game. If one does not open these 4 chests, a chest in an optimal dungeon near the end of the game will contain the Spear (otherwise it will be empty). The 4 chests you can't open are not distinguished in ANY way and are in plain sight, making the entire process retardedly obscure.

I enjoyed FF12, but stuff like that made me wonder what the fuck Square was thinking. If Nintendo can make games that don't resort to that kind of bullshit just to sell a $20 game guide, them I'm all for it.

Re:Strategy guide? (1)

Shotgun (30919) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851703)

I enjoyed FF12, but stuff like that made me wonder what the fuck Square was thinking. If Nintendo can make games that don't resort to that kind of bullshit just to sell a $20 game guide, them I'm all for it.

They were thinking that you would pay $20 for a game guide. You don't really think that someone just sits down and figures out which 4 of the hundreds of chests not to open, do you? 8*)

Re:Strategy guide? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851047)

You still shouldn't need a strategy guide for the side quests. If a puzzle is so unintuitive that you need someone to tell you how to solve it, then it's not a good puzzle.


Most of the it's not even an issue of needing a guide to solve the puzzle. It's that you don't even know the quests existed without the guide. Many games have side quests not tied into, or even remotely related to the main plot. Some even have obscure triggers that you only by performing some action you wouldn't usually do (like wondering around in a remote forest and waiting for a special random encounter). The guide would serve more as a checklist for those who are obsessed to obtain every single item and finish every single side quest the game has to offer.

Re:Strategy guide? (1)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851331)

Most of the reason I use a strategy guide is make sure I don't miss something.

A lot of side-quests in many games involve hunting for certain items across the world. The locations these items are hidden in may be somewhat obscure. In addition, various dungeons in games will hide certain bits of treasure in strange places.

Basically, these are exactly the sort of things that I would've picked up on on the 2nd or 3rd replay of a game when I was in high school that made those games great to replay. However, as an adult, I don't have time to replay games yet I still have the same satisfaction from doing all the side-quests. Strategy guides are required for me to do every last bit of a game on the first run-through with my limited free time, but that doesn't make a game bad in my opinion.

After all, there are people with free time who still play games.

Re:Strategy guide? (2, Interesting)

shoptroll (544006) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851007)

Odd. I finished Twilight Princess with only having to hit up FAQs twice I think. And that was when I couldn't figure out some pretty damn obvious things in retrospect. Not I said finish. Not find every damn thing in the game.

Same thing with the Zelda:Oracle games on the Game Boy Color.

I think I stopped using strategy guides maybe 6 years ago. Gaming is a lot more interesting without something to hold your hand.

Re:Strategy guide? (1)

ravenshrike (808508) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851345)

Eh, after I played through ocarina twice, I borrowed the guide from a friend, mainly to find all those damned skulltulas.

Re:Strategy guide? (5, Interesting)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851153)

That varies by person (not your attitude, but whether or not a game needs a strat guide). Some people probably couldn't make it through the original Mario Brothers without a strat guide. Some people can crank through the most complex game there is with no guide (especially those who have to WRITE those guides in the first place :)). Problem is, what data point is good? If they make a game that anybody who tries to complete it will do so, then for some gamers it's going to be boring as hell. Games to many are about challenge. On the flip side, if it's too complex, the less skilled and casual people will get frustrated and give up.

The solution, and it's a simple one, is for manufacturer's to just realize that there are different market segments, and make a variety of games that appeal to each different segment. The market WANTS some really, really hard games. It wants some dirt easy ones. It wants some long games, some short games. It wants some violent games, and some non-violent ones. Give 'em what they want.

Re:Strategy guide? (5, Funny)

omeomi (675045) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851277)

Some people probably couldn't make it through the original Mario Brothers without a strat guide

What exactly would that strategy guide say? "Run to the right. Jump over anything in your way. Run to the right some more. Continue running to the right..."

Re:Strategy guide? (5, Funny)

jahudabudy (714731) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851441)

Dude, spoiler alert warning next time!!!! Some of us like the figure out games on our own. Sheesh.

Re:Strategy guide? (4, Funny)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851517)

What exactly would that strategy guide say? "Run to the right. Jump over anything in your way. Run to the right some more. Continue running to the right..."

How could you expect them to jump? The game is about running to the right. No wonder I kept dying. Damn puzzle games.

Re:Strategy guide? (4, Informative)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851669)

What exactly would that strategy guide say?

To get to the warp zone...

Mole enemies are invulnerable to fireballs...

To get over sections full of small jumps, hold the run button and run across.

Likitu is a pain. The best strategy for dealing with him is...

Hammer Bros. are an enemy that require precise timing and movement to defeat. The best strategy is...

Seriously, anyone remember when strategy books were about strategy and not just answer keys? I probably still have my SFII strategy guide somewhere, which goes into detailed strategies that people figured out for playing the various characters in the game. This included sets of combos that were most effective against particular opponents and at what ranges.

Re:Strategy guide? (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851663)

I admit, I had to use a strategy guide a few times to complete Zelda: Twilight Princes (Wii). I don't resort to them lightly; I really do my best to figure out puzzles before doing that. In one or two cases (like the Z-pattern switch in the first dungeon), yeah, I completely missed the answer. But what bothered me is that in a lot of cases, I graced the puzzle that they wanted me to solve, but then got hung up on some trivial technical issue that kept me from advancing with the story. Here are some examples:

I'll make this as spoiler-free as possible.

-For the ice dungeon, you have to figure out a lot of puzzles to get to it. I successfully figured out how to get some hidden area, then how to get some proper bait, then find where you're supposed to use the bait, then where you're supposed to cast your rod. The strategy guides reveal all of this for you, but I was able to find it on my own. BUT since it had been ages since I had done bob-fishing (I only played on weekends), I forgot some minor intricacy involved, and that kept me from catching the fish. The strategy guides for this section *don't* tell you that subtlety. It wasn't clear from RTFMing either. Eventually, I solved it by starting a separate file, and playing the game from the beginning to where it introduces bob-fishing (not that long actually), and then from the live demo it made sense.

-On the 7th dungeon boss, I didn't even ask Midna for help. There are basically 3 phases to that boss, and the first two I figured out easily. Then, when it got to the third, I guessed what you had to do to beat and, and I was right. BUT! since early on I decided that Z-targeting just wasn't my style, I couldn't do the task fast enough. And again, when I looked at the strategy guide or asked Midna, they told me to do *exactly* what I was already doing, but none mentioned Z-targeting. So again, the guides solved the hard puzzle for me, but didn't solve the "easy" part, which I had to figure out. It was only by realizing that I was "right" all along that I figured that maybe I should use Z-targeting.

Re:Strategy guide? (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851705)

I agree with this wholeheartedly.

Personally, I think the perfect difficulty for a game is that it always feels like a challenge, but somehow never prevents you from progressing. You should never just get "stuck" on some part of a game with no idea on how to move on for weeks at a time, the only way to continue is to cheat in some way. (And yes, in my mind, looking up info in a game guide is "cheating")

Softcore (0)

Reason58 (775044) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850607)

That is like a movie studio executive deciding if he wants to make a thoughtful independent film or another CGI movie with talking hamsters.

Of course they are abandoning the hardcore gamers; there is simply so much more money to be had in blasé games and infinite sequels.

Re:Softcore (3, Insightful)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850747)

there is simply so much more money to be had in blasé games and infinite sequels.

I can't wait to buy Halo 3 and GTA IV ...

Oh snap, that's the sound of your point flying out the window.

Re:Softcore (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19850919)

Both of those games appeal the the casual "frat boy" gamer.

Re:Softcore (1)

techiemikey (1126169) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851003)

Final Fantasy
Zelda
MGS

Nuff Said.

Re:Softcore (3, Insightful)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851303)

Final Fantasy and Megaman both outgrew the NES/SNES.

Point is, no platform is immune from sequels. But who cares if they have new elements/stories/etc. Mario 1-3 are all basically the same story [well except USA #2], but they're still fun. So were the SNES and N64 versions of "the same game."

Nothing wrong with a fresh sequel. It's when they re-use story/graphics/maps/levels/etc wholesale that it becomes a ripoff [e.g. bomberman 1 vs. 2].

Re:Softcore (1)

techiemikey (1126169) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851391)

exactly! I was responding to the comment about how the games mentioned that people were looking forward to were "frat boy" games...so i added some more.

Re:Softcore (5, Insightful)

Chr0me (180627) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850775)

Of course they are abandoning the hardcore gamers; there is simply so much more money to be had in blasé games and infinite sequels.
Yeah like Madden, Final Fantasy, Halo, any WWII shooter, DooM, Quake, UT, etc...

Oh wait, you meant that games "hardcore gamers" play *aren't* blasé, infinite sequels. Sorry, I was confused by your contradictory point.

Re:Softcore (2, Insightful)

7Prime (871679) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851099)

I'd consider most of those casual games, except for maybe Final Fantasy, which REQUIRES hours and hours of dedication in order to really enjoy it (not sure if that's actually the qualification for hardcore, but it's in there). Halo is one of the most casual games I've ever played, you can just pick it up and play it for 5 minutes and you'll have fun with it. Same (supposedly) with WWII shooters (although I find them boring no matter how much time you sink into them), Doom, Quake, UT, etc. Madden, actually is probably along side Final Fantasy, neither might be super-popular, but it still requires a lot of time to really get anything out of it (from what I've heard).

Pretty much any RPG or adventure game, these days, could be classified as "hardcore" simply because of the amount of time it takes to complete them... there are no "stages" to judge your progress like with Halo or Mario. Battlefield 2142? That's starting to get more hardcore, since there are A LOT of long-term goals defined in the game if you play it for long enough.

But I would call most FPSs casual games... well, maybe not quite that, but not hardcore, anyway, they're way too big of mass appeal, and they take no time to just pick up and put down. To me that qualifies as "casual".

Re:Softcore (1)

king-manic (409855) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851489)

I'd consider most of those casual games, except for maybe Final Fantasy, which REQUIRES hours and hours of dedication in order to really enjoy it (not sure if that's actually the qualification for hardcore, but it's in there). Halo is one of the most casual games I've ever played, you can just pick it up and play it for 5 minutes and you'll have fun with it. Same (supposedly) with WWII shooters (although I find them boring no matter how much time you sink into them), Doom, Quake, UT, etc. Madden, actually is probably along side Final Fantasy, neither might be super-popular, but it still requires a lot of time to really get anything out of it (from what I've heard).

Pretty much any RPG or adventure game, these days, could be classified as "hardcore" simply because of the amount of time it takes to complete them... there are no "stages" to judge your progress like with Halo or Mario. Battlefield 2142? That's starting to get more hardcore, since there are A LOT of long-term goals defined in the game if you play it for long enough.


Your list of non-hardcore games are in fact hardcore. Non-hardcore game sis more like cooking momma because all the FPS's, RTS, sports games etc... all assume you know a certain gaming grammar. Power ups, ammo, weapon swap, box puzzles, strifing, rocket jump, micro, macro etc... all things that are "hard core". non-hardcore games are generally the ones that bore you after 20 min with their lack of depth (cooking momma, Rayman, etc..).

Re:Softcore (1)

7Prime (871679) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851631)

Actually, most FPSs bore me from lack of depth in exactly the same way, for the same reasons. They're repeatitive, episodic, and quick to pick up and put down... and this comes from someone who is inately HORRIBLE at FPSs.

My theory is that there's very little difference between the mental dedication of Halo and Rayman Rabbids, but that the "badass" meter reads high enough for FPSs that most people who play them on a regular basis, tout the games, and themselves as "hardcore gamers".

Maybe they're slightly removed on the continuum, simply because you don't find people dedicating hundreds of hours to Raving Rabbids. But a game with an arc that REQUIRES 40-60 hours of play and includes a lot of problem solving, I would consider much more "hardcore", even if it doesn't read as high on the "badass" meter.

Metal Gear Solid, Resident Evil, Zelda, Metroid, Fallout, Final Fantasy, Oblivion, Grand Theft Auto - all of these are at the center of hardcore gaming. Most FPSs don't qualify, in my book, since they don't inherently require any length of time or dedication.

And item pickups? Arcade games invented item pickups back in the day, and I'd be hard pressed to call Allyway a hardcore game (maybe now, since it requires someone who is interested in games that are not readily available).

Re:Softcore (2, Insightful)

Gogl (125883) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851075)

Ummm, are you comparing "hardcore games" to "thoughtful independent films"? Cause seriously, if that's your insight, you need to go back to the drawing board.

Videogames are meant to be fun - Nintendo is actually being innovative in finding new ways to be fun (as opposed to the "another CGI movie with talking hamsters" dig). It's Sony/Microsoft that are releasing yet another FPS/Madden game, again and again and again.

Re:Softcore (1)

PixelScuba (686633) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851563)

Oh come on, stop right there. Something doesn't need to be "innovative" to be fun. Twilight princess isn't really innovative, but it's fun. Dozens of FPS and "Madden" games don't have to be "innovative", but many are fun... (and if you want to nitpick, the newest Madden for 2008 is supposed to be a complete overhaul of the physics engine and straying from canned animation sequences to dynamic... so that could be argued as "innovative"). So Dead Rising, Lost Planet, Prey and etc aren't fun because they're not "innovative"? I had fun playing them, so don't try and be the guardian of "fun", we'll decide that for ourselves, thanks. Frankly, I don't see Nintendo doing a whole lot of innovation. The Wii and the remote function are interesting but, to be honest, I haven't see many games take advantage of the functionality... and even if they do, and it IS innovative... is it "fun"? Red Steel was largely panned as a poor game... despite being "innovative". There is no link between "innovation" and fun.

Re:Softcore (1)

7Prime (871679) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851695)

I sort of liken Nintendo to Pixar. The "badass meter" for WarioWare and Ratatoilli is extremely low, but they're probably a lot more creative and sophisticated than most of the generic blockbuster action films and games out there. It's sad to say this, but Finding Nemo probably had more sophisticated themes, jokes, and dialog than you'll find in 95% of other movies these days. But it's all about the "badass meter", of which Pixar films and Nintendo games read very low on.

In many ways, it's children who are getting the more creative endevours, where-as adults are moving into a place where they want to be enesthitized. I don't remember it being that way during the 80s, most adults didn't pay much attention to action films... those were mostly for teens.

Re:Softcore (1)

Doctor Crumb (737936) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851185)

"there is simply so much more money to be had in blasé games and infinite sequels."

Yeah, they should instead concentrate on releasing the exact same FPS games and car racing games with shinier textures! Mario Party may be the eighth in the series, but the gameplay is entirely different from all of the previous iterations (though the textures are shinier, that's secondary).

Nintendo is not abandoning new IPs; they are abandoning the idea that the only way to improve is by adding better graphics and more realistic blood spatters. Since that seems to be all that "hardcore gamers" want, they are feeling abandoned. Nintendo is making games that kids and working adults will want to play, and are leaving the 18-24 frat boy crowd to sony and MS.

Re:Softcore (1)

Reason58 (775044) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851329)

Nintendo is not abandoning new IPs; they are abandoning the idea that the only way to improve is by adding better graphics and more realistic blood spatters. Since that seems to be all that "hardcore gamers" want, they are feeling abandoned.

I want games involving more than one button. I want to be challenged a little bit instead of having watered down puzzles that a 10 year old could solve. I want a storyline and character development that is slightly more involved than the last episode of Pokemon.

If these things make me hardcore then I feel awfully sorry for the "gamers" who think the industry is better off without these things.

Re:Softcore (1)

Doctor Crumb (737936) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851369)

I'm curious, which wii games are you basing these statements on? I can only assume that you do own a wii, since you are commenting as if that is the case...

Except.... (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851715)

The difference between Casual Play games and hardcore games are not that different except one for people who Like to play games to have Fun, vs. People who play games as a life choice. It is more like a studio deciding to make a continueing story soap opera vs. a half hour show where at the end of the day all the characters are back were they started. They both have there pluses and minuses the Soap Opera caters to a loyal fan base who will alter their lives to watch the show, thus getting consistant ratings. Vs. the Sitcom which may have ratings fluctuating more but if it goes down then it will go back up because people don't feel lost if they miss one or two shows. It is not like Soap Opera are more intelegent or have better acting then the Sitcoms. It is just a different fan base.

Never wholly geared to hardcore (0, Troll)

religious freak (1005821) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850619)

Nintendo was never geared to truly "hard core" players. Sure, you had the occasional games, like Zelda which required a fair bit of tinkering, but truly hard core? Nope, I don't think so.

Re:Never wholly geared to hardcore (5, Insightful)

Winckle (870180) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850645)

Excuse me? For a long time in the 80s to early 90s "Nintendo" was "Video Games".

What do you interpret hardcore as meaning?

Re:Never wholly geared to hardcore (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19850883)

Let me guess, you're also Disney cartoons' biggst fan? I'll correct your sentence:

"For a long time in the 80s to early 90s "Nintendo" was "Video Games" for me, I just loved those cutesy characters and had such fun pushing on every block on the map for days in Zelda to find some random room with a blue key etc. And the noises- blablouing, berrrring, ahh the fun we had- endlesss amusement"
Meanwhile over in Europe we had Atari STs, Amigas, Sega Megadrives and later PCs- how we wished we could play a pink princess like you.

Re:Never wholly geared to hardcore (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851055)

Yes yes the Atari's, Amiga, Speccy, Commodore, Colecovision, etc, were out during that time. But in the mid 80s to late if you asked a child what a videogame was 99% would simply state "Nintendo" or name a Nintendo franchise. That is what Winckle was alluding to.

And Disney movies use to be alright, pre 1993.

Not everyone was playing Nintendo... (1)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851719)

Meanwhile over in Europe we had Atari STs, Amigas, Sega Megadrives and later PCs- how we wished we could play a pink princess like you.
Yes yes the Atari's, Amiga, Speccy, Commodore, Colecovision, etc, were out during that time. But in the mid 80s to late if you asked a child what a videogame was 99% would simply state "Nintendo" or name a Nintendo franchise. That is what Winckle was alluding to.
I believe the point the OP was trying to make was that during the original 8-bit NES's era of greatest success in the U.S., it was *nowhere* near as dominant in Western Europe. (Certainly not in the UK at any rate).

In fact, do you remember the Sega Master System, the NES's "flop" competitor as far as U.S. and Japanese markets were concerned? Well, believe it or not, the NES was outsold by the Master System in the UK, (partly due to better marketing).

However, this obscures the bigger point- that unlike the US, the UK/European games market during the second half of the 1980s was not mainly console-driven, but still based around home computers. Sure, some people had the SMS and NES, but far more people were still using computers (8-bit ZX Spectrum and Commodore 64 still going at the low end, 16-bit Amiga and Atari ST coming in at the high end). Now that I think of it, I this probably applies to the 2600 era as well. Although I remember some people having Atari VCSs, the ZX Spectrum computer is the poster boy for early-80s nostalgia in Britain.

Anyway, this situation changed in the early 1990s, with the dawning of the 16-bit Mega Drive (AKA Genesis) and SNES era. They did very well, and from there on, the low-end/mass gaming market was dominated by consoles. (The PC took over the high end, and the once-cool but now aging Amiga 500 suffered from being stuck in the middle).

But basically, ask a nostalgic European games player what they had during the 1980s, and it's far less likely to be Nintendo and more likely some flavour of computer. Different markets, different games...

Re:Never wholly geared to hardcore (3, Insightful)

religious freak (1005821) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851375)

Oh yeah, I don't disagree with you there. "Nintendo" definitely was equivalent to video games, for the most part.

But were the games TRULY hard core back then? I suppose something like Sim City came a little close, but comparing Sim City to WoW shows just how hard core things were back then.

Video games have gotten much more hard core over the years, I don't think that's even debatable.

Re:Never wholly geared to hardcore (4, Insightful)

Sciros (986030) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851493)

Not at all, bro. I grew up on Nintendo and believe me there was more than enough to make someone hardcore. And certainly more hardcore than even current "hardcore" gamers consider themselves. Ninja Gaiden 1 and 2 for SNES, Gradius and Life Force -- these are OLD, and they are HARD but awesome and lots of people played the heck out of them and got very good.

SNES had plenty of challenging games that kept you playing for months because they were that good -- FFVI, Killer Instinct, etc. I still don't know a single person who has beaten Captain America and the Avengers for SNES (Genesis, yeah, but not SNES because in Genesis Captain could at least block with his shield...)

I don't think games have gotten more hardcore at all. In fact I think they've gotten *less* so in terms of challenge. How many people whined and moaned about how difficult the Ninja Gaiden for Xbox was? Those people were all spoiled by the fact that every game that's released nowadays is beatable by even remotely dedicated players. Ninja Gaiden 2 eats Xbox's NG alive in terms of difficulty on every level except Master Ninja (which was added later just for kicks, and isn't really relevant because one could have always slid the difficulty meter all the way to max in Baldur's Gate making that game impossible but who cares).

Re:Never wholly geared to hardcore (1)

falcon5768 (629591) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851513)

which is also why video games suffered as being a nitch market in the last 15-20 years, when back in the 70's early 80's they where something everyone played.

Nintendo has realized one of the biggest problems Sony and Microsoft didnt, that hardcore gamers are not a big market and catering to them severely limits your audience. If you look at some of the biggest games of the last few years, they cater to general audiences and are party games.

Re:Never wholly geared to hardcore (1)

undeaf (974710) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850939)

Ahem... ever heard Super Mario 2? ie. the one released in Japan?

Re:Never wholly geared to hardcore (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851173)

The Super Mario 2 that was later released as the Lost Levels outside Japan? Yeah, what's that got to do with anything?

Re:Never wholly geared to hardcore (1)

undeaf (974710) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851541)

It was absurdly hard, and it had 20 hidden levels. Hardcore doesn't mean that it requires you to think, that's largely a function of what genre the game is.

Re:Never wholly geared to hardcore (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851341)

Can I take it then that the number of times you have caught 'em all is less than or equal to one?

You can appeal to casual and hardcore audiences (4, Insightful)

Kelbear (870538) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850637)

The solution has been around: "Easy to play, hard to master."

You don't have to be a pro to enjoy a sport, an instrument, or a game and yet pros can keep engrossed so long as there's room for growth.

Re:You can appeal to casual and hardcore audiences (1)

dosius (230542) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851325)

And what Nolan Bushnell knew in the early 70s, most game companies seem not to understand 30, 35 years later. :/

-uso.

Re:You can appeal to casual and hardcore audiences (1)

CrazyJim1 (809850) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851567)

I think the reason people like RPG with their action is that as the game ramps up difficulty, you can just level your character if you can't fight the boss on your own.

Why can't they do both? (5, Insightful)

p4rri11iz3r (1084543) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850693)

It seems to be that recently everybody seems to be associating games with a decent length to "hardcore." While I don't entirely agree with this, it serves my purpose for this post.

If we look at what happened at E3 and where the anticipation seems to be, I note that Super Mario Galaxy and Metroid Prime 3. Looking at the past, these games predecessors have typically been quite lengthy affairs. Thus, it would seem that these games appeal more to the "hardcore" crowd.

We also see games like Wii Fit and Super Smash Bros. Brawl. Wii Fit, which seems to resemble the mechanics used in Wii Sports and Wii play, will sport short games. SSBB is often seen as a quick, pick-up-and-play-a-round style game as well. These games appear to appeal more to the casual gamer who don't have as much time to play.

I guess what I'm saying is, whether you're "hardcore" or casual, you have some really great games to look forward to this year and next.

I'm not hardcore, but I've been ditched (4, Interesting)

hansamurai (907719) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850751)

It seems Nintendo thinks that by releasing a new Zelda game every few years, they are catering towards the "hardcore" crowd. I don't consider myself a hardcore gamer, but I have been a Nintendo fan my entire life. I bought a Wii on release date along with Zelda and quickly beat it. Then I sold the Wii to my brother-in-law as at the time there was still a huge shortage and I told myself I'd pick up a Wii as soon as I could find one. However, I am simply not interested in picking up another Wii until at least Super Smash Bros. comes out. Absolutely no games have interested me. I haven't seen a single game that I would buy if I still owned the system and still, the only thing I'm looking forward to is Super Smash Bros. And now I'm hearing rumors that SSB might not include online multiplayer, which for me, is a deal breaker. I played hundreds of hours of SSBM for the Gamecube during high school and college, but I don't live near any of my old friends anymore, there's simply no way for me to get the full experience out of SSB without online.

I'm personally feeling alienated, but I'm not really Nintendo's primary focus anymore, I don't think. I enjoy games like Okami, God of War, Guitar Hero, Grand Theft Auto, 2D Castlevanias, and RPGs. I still enjoy my DS, but I can't see myself picking up a Wii again until it's cheaper. I haven't considered myself a "hardcore gamer" for years, but yet I feel like Nintendo has moved on with the Wii. But I can live with that, the DS and PS2 still provide me tons of games I'm interested in.

Nintendo Hasn't Moved (Much) (5, Insightful)

Alaren (682568) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851171)

This whole discussion makes me think of a story about an elderly couple driving down the road. The wife sees a young couple in another car, cuddling close. She asks her husband, "Why don't we snuggle like that anymore?" Her husband (who is driving) looks at his wife, sitting less than two feet away from him, and replies, "Well, I'm still sitting where I've always sat."

I'm personally feeling alienated, but I'm not really Nintendo's primary focus anymore, I don't think.

Super Mario Brothers. Metroid. Zelda. Later, Super Smash Brothers, Paper Mario... it's not that you're not Nintendo's primary focus "anymore," it's that the games you play have moved to other platforms (though, with the Wii's success, they appear to be moving back). Nintendo is still doing exactly what it has always done, only with the Wii they are trying to correct some of their mistakes with the N64 and (more) with the GameCube as well as expand their audience. Every game I've come to expect, as a "hardcore gamer," from Nintendo--Smash Brothers Brawl, Mario Galaxy, Twilight Princess, Super Paper Mario--is being delivered. Look at your list of games. God of War is a Sony title, but I think every other title on your list is third-party. Whether or not it appears on a Nintendo system is not really up to Nintendo, except the part where Nintendo needs to have sufficient installed user base to attract third-party titles

And with the Wii, that's exactly what's happening. There is a lag, of course, because so many developers wrote the Wii off as Nintedo's last gasp, but the titles are coming. And in the meantime, Nintendo is delivering everything they've always delivered, plus even more in an attempt to gather the casual gamers in.

I have certainly felt the lack of RPG titles on my Nintendo consoles since the SNES. I'm really, really hoping Camelot (the makers of Golden Sun) deliver a great RPG for the Wii, but I'm also looking forward to Crystal Chronicles (the first one was a blast to play with my wife and brother, we scheduled every Saturday night for weeks on end). But don't mistake flagging third-party support for any move on Nintendo's part. It's the "hardcore" who have moved (myself excluded, I guess) to FPSs and MMORPGs and HDTVs instead of adventure games, party games, games you play with other people in the same room and games you play for the fun of playing instead of the fun of griefing n00bs and bragging about polygons.

Re:Nintendo Hasn't Moved (Much) (1)

c_jonescc (528041) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851411)

Well said!

I'm not yet sure that all the whining about Nintendo "abandoning" the hardcore is any different from the whining about the GC being too "kiddy".

Play the games you want to play, on the systems that they're available. I don't understand what sense of entitlement moves people to argue that Nintendo should be loyal to them as individuals, all the while claiming that what they really want is a conventional controller and long RPG games, which are already available, and the hardcore probably already own, in a 360 or PS3.

Re:Nintendo Hasn't Moved (Much) (1)

Mr_eX9 (800448) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851455)

I'm replying to this because I mistakenly modded it down. I really think you're right on the money here. The Wii is becoming very appealing as its base of titles grows, allowing Nintendo to recover from their N64/GameCube mistakes.

Re:I'm not hardcore, but I've been ditched (1)

ASimPerson (138798) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851357)

It's too early to feel alienated...the console hasn't even been out for a year and as another poster noted, no one was developing games for this thing before launch. I'm not saying you're not allowed to feel this way of course, but I just wanted to point out the console hasn't really been out that long.

Re:I'm not hardcore, but I've been ditched (1)

morari (1080535) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851521)

[...]there's simply no way for me to get the full experience out of SSB without online.
You're obviously unaware of what the "full experience" is then. It's not simply playing against other humans, it's playing against other humans in the same room. The series has always been a party game, and party games are not fun when you can't see and hear the expressions of your opponents are you pull off a powerful smash attack. In the end, online capabilities are mostly just a nice feature to list on the back of the box. It's like that with any game. No game is better online than with friends, and certainly not to the point of being a "deal breaker".

Ask 3rd parties... (1)

HalAtWork (926717) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851637)

Ask 3rd parties why they don't want to make games for what will be the most popular and accessible console this generation. I guess they don't like money?

Re:I'm not hardcore, but I've been ditched (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851649)

I played hundreds of hours of SSBM for the Gamecube during high school and college, but I don't live near any of my old friends anymore, there's simply no way for me to get the full experience out of SSB without online.

make more friends.

Wait. What? (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850755)

Aonuma says that judging by Japanese sales so far, accessible 'stream-lined play has been effective,' but he wants to see how Western audiences react to the new Zelda before making a final decision on future games' difficulty levels.
I thought the Japanese players were the hyper-obsessive 'hardcore' gamers who explored every nook and cranny of a game.

I wonder what's going on with Japanese gaming demographics such that 'stream-lined play has been effective'.

Makes sense (1)

Bullfish (858648) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850785)

Nintendo wants to tap into the casual market for the same reason nVidia and AMD (ATI) make all those low and mid range video cards. You make a heckuva lot more money and get your product into more people's hand.

old folks too? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19850799)

They're trying to appeal to old people now, as well as children? Us young adults won't care either way.

Nintendo the gateway console (2, Interesting)

grapeape (137008) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850829)

Is this necessarily a bad thing? Even if they attempt simplified Zeldas and Metroids its not going to mean that traditional ones dissapear forever. For the established gamer Zelda and Metroid are franchises to the casual audience its just another game to choose from. If the game doesnt sell to the usual crowd it will either have to stand on its own as enjoyable title or they will no doubt go back to drawing board and try to recapure the audience they already had. Mario is in a different league, its recognized by non-gamers just like Pokemon and Sonic, so thats not a concern with those titles.

The Wii could very well be a gateway console for gaming leading people to the harder stuff down the road. I really cant see Nintendo totally abandoning their established fan base, but I can see an extra emphasis being put on grabbing new gamers. There are still plenty of "hardcore" titles in the pipe. Don't worry about it, no need to be elitish about it, the more people gaming the better.

Hardcore (5, Insightful)

GWLlosa (800011) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850899)

I used to define myself as a 'hardcore' gamer. In college, all night-lan parties every weekend were the norm. Games had to have ludicrous depth and complexity before we'd consider including them.

Times change. I'm married. 2 kids. 9-6 job in a cube. I now love the fact that so many games that are available are simple 'pick-up-and-play-in-the-evening'. In a way, Nintendo's game console has evolved to match my needs just as my needs changed. I imagine I'm not alone.

Re:Hardcore (3, Funny)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851059)

So Nintendo has finally produced games for the "mature" audience?

How about these slogans.

Nintendo the game system for people that don't live in their parents basement.
or
Nintendo the game system for people that have a life.

Re:Hardcore (0, Flamebait)

Abcd1234 (188840) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851155)

9-6?? Good lord, what's it like being a wage slave?

Re:Hardcore (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851575)

I notice the types at my work who are 'married with 2 kids' are far more likely to be in early and leave late. Anything to get away from the Mrs. and kids....sad.

Re:Hardcore (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851735)

Um, you do realize that a 40 hour work week is normal for the bulk of full time working people all over the US, right? I'm salaried and work 8-5 with an hour lunch - but for the record, being a wage slave is great because in exchange for my services I am compensated with money that allows me to live comfortably.

The industry has forsaken the hardcore long ago. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19850959)

Making games cool in the mind of the general public is the worst thing that ever happened to the games industry. Going mainstream was the last thing we needed. Games are already released like movies nowadays. Anything to turn a quick buck. Too much caters to the lowest common denominator. The average gamer now is the same as that brainless dweeb who thinks he is a gangster, sitting in the theatre laughing his ass off at the trailers and low-brow humor. Utterly pathetic.

WOW YOU MUST BE A REAL GANGSTER!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851437)

you comment is SOOOO hardcore!!

Cue the language-nazis (1, Offtopic)

Daetrin (576516) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850969)

The balance board begged the question from the people there

Indignant explanation of the correct usage of "begging the question" coming in 3, 2, 1...

Re:Cue the language-nazis (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851543)

You know, if the editors learned a little bit of English, the language Nazis might not be as vocal.

Not abandoning, but certaintly not focusing either (4, Insightful)

LordZardoz (155141) | more than 7 years ago | (#19850973)

Nintendo is going right on ahead with its current strategy of attracting non gamers. Doing so has worked pretty decently for them, and like any large company, they like money. They are not going to abandon the core demographic. They are still going ahead with Metroid and Smash Bros: Brawl. But it is becoming increasingly obvious that they are not focusing on the core either.

My biggest concern for the platform is that that instead of being known as the "Kid Console", they may become known as a non game console.

I am convinced that it is the 2nd and 3rd generation of Wii titles that will ultimately define the Wii. The first year has, as expected, suffered from a lack of big name titles. The launch was strong, but Metroid, Mario, and Brawl got pushed back too far. And because no one expected the Wii to do as well as it has, no one was developing 'core' games for the platform outside of the launch window. Of course, everyone scrambled to find a place on the bandwagon.

The casual titles are easy to develop. Core titles take alot more time. Until the first batch of 3rd party core titles come on stream, you will get pretty much what we already have. Kid games, Ports, some 1st party Nintendo titles, and casual games.

If Nintendo does manage to completely alienate the core gamer demographic, than that kind of title spread is what will dominate the platform. Certaintly entertaining, but that means that those seeking a more 'traditional' gaming experience will have to stick to the Xbox 360 or the PS3.

END COMMUNICATION

Re:Not abandoning, but certaintly not focusing eit (1)

darketernal (196596) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851195)

Agreed. I believe that 3rd party games will heavily cater to the so called hardcore crowd.

That said, I'd rather get my parents interested in playing games than have Really Cool Hardcore Games to play.

Only complainers are hardcore gamers (2, Interesting)

sysadmintech (704387) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851091)

And who are they? Isn't the engine for GTA4 used in a ping pong game? So is Sony ping pong hardcore and Nintendo ping pong casual? Or are hardcore gamers easily fooled? If games are created using placeholders, what does it say about someone who proclaims themselves a hardcore gamer based on the artwork of a chainsaw and blood spatter compared to a spatula and omelet? Are people proclaiming themselves to be hardcore the casual, just not smart enough to know?
The Wii Fit is a technological advancement of the game pad. A huge detriment of the game pad is that it is only focused on pressing the 4 button set. In order to interactively control a character there needed to be more control. By measuring things like weight and center of gravity, the Wii Fit is much more capable of controlling interactive action than we have seen. When combined with the Wii mote an amazing amount of control can be created. I have a feeling that we have been kept in the dark as a marketing move by Nintendo to release the content slowly but that internally at many developers levels of control in games is far ahead of what we are seeing from the other 2.

Hardcore != difficulty level (2, Insightful)

Alexpkeaton1010 (1101915) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851093)

To me, the hardcore/casual designation is more about who the game is targeted to, not the difficulty level. Example: I consider Guitar Hero a casual game, but the difficulty level is very high on the harder levels. Easy to learn, very hard to master. A typical FPS like Halo is a hard game to learn (for someone new to FPSs), but very easy to master (the single player).

I define a hardcore game as a game targeted to the age 14-35 male demographic (approximately), and a casual game as targeted to the 6-65 male/female demographic. Nintendo is focused on games for the larger demographic. If you are a 14-35 male, you are not being targeted by Nintendo anymore, so the odds are that you will enjoy games from the consoles that are targeting *you*. Personally, I do not like the "general audience" type of games, and do not feel a need to buy a Wii. That does not imply that it is not a good console for the average Joe, it is just not the optimum console for the average Joe in the 14-35 male demographic. It also doesn't imply that some of the "general audience" type of games will not be extremely good and attract mass attention from the hardcore audience.

Re:Hardcore != difficulty level (1)

Turn-X Alphonse (789240) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851627)

I think you have FPSes wrong. They are very easy to learn, but unforgiving, but when you go online you start to see that Single player skills are laughable and to truely be good you have to invest some real hard time into the game and know every little detail to the point where it's a sixth sense rather than just skill.

I feel the Wii right now is a classic Nintendo Console. It's just waiting for it's Mario 64, which looks to be Brawl this time round.

This is wrong (2, Insightful)

solar_blitz (1088029) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851135)

For the life of me I cannot imagine why Nintendo would want to ditch their hardcore audience. They were the most important audience for the Nintendo 64 and Gamecube, practically the ones who kept the consoles afloat. I don't understand why they would want to cast aside that audience in favor of the casual gamers. Sure, casual gamers are a much bigger audience, but hardcore gamers are dedicated and faithful. Casual gamers will move from system to system; mark my words, once Microsoft and Sony drop the prices of their consoles to $300, and they get more party games, Nintendo will lose a lot of casual gamers to them.

As for me, I was really disappointed by Twilight Princess. Yes, it was enjoyable, but it lacked a lot of what made the Zelda series special. For instance, the design of the world was made so you could go from point A to point B: there's only one or two paths to get to a designated objective, and all the extra things are easily distinguished by their deviation from this A to B criteria. Link to the Past will always be my favorite because despite the fact that it forced you to go into the dungeons in a particular order, it was about as free-roaming as the original Zelda game for the NES, and it had the most complex, intriguing puzzles I have ever seen. Those were frustrating enough to make you break your controller, nothing like what we're seeing today. Also, the items in A Link to the Past are much cooler. You could explore and find things beneficial to your journey that couldn't be found in dungeons or whatnot, like the magic cape or the gloves or the flippers. Stuff like that makes the game so intense and awesome!

Sequel-itis is the death of entertainment (2, Interesting)

nerdup (523587) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851181)

"Aunoma also hopes to venture into new territory and create a wholly original game at some point in his career."


That's a pretty shameful statement on the current state of the 'art' in videogames. I suppose it's a natural result of the big-business nature of videogame and movie making, but the number of 'safe' sequels being churned out is frankly embarassing. Show some guts people and take a chance or two. Our culture will thank you for it.

Re:Sequel-itis is the death of entertainment (1)

Remus Shepherd (32833) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851307)

Someone mod the parent up. I was going to post much the same thing, and read through the thread to see that nerdup beat me to it.

It's a sad, sad comment on the industry when a developer 'hopes' to do something original *once* in their career.

Re:Sequel-itis is the death of entertainment (1)

SethraLavode (910814) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851355)

How is it shameful? It shows that he has been working his way up the ladder. Nintendo expects a certain amount of polish and care with their projects, and they're not likely to just hand a major project to a relatively-untested new talent. Aonuma's helmed a couple of projects (under supervision) to prove his worth and now he's earned the right to start directing and producing his own IPs.

If he were talking about something small and simple, like Electroplankton, they'd probably give him the resources to go ahead, but he's probably wanting to create something new and epic (on the order of say, Pikmin), he has to make his case first.

Two Questions: (1)

MorpheousMarty (1094907) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851217)

When was Nintendo ever hardcore? What games are hardcore?

Re:Two Questions: (1)

c_jonescc (528041) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851537)

I think the answer that creates the most complaints of "being dumped" are:

I'm hardcore, and I started gaming on NES, so therefore the NES was hardcore.

The games I that I'm better than other people at, and take several workweek's worth of hours are the hardcore ones.

Hardcore = Petulant.

Re:Two Questions: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851547)

ultima exodus
golgo 13
rygar
defender of the crown

What games are hardcore? (1)

Junta (36770) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851607)

Custer's Revenge.

depends on what part should be hardcore... (1)

Churla (936633) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851225)

The Wii focuses on an innovative controller. It's about having controls that are intuitive and easy to pick up and learn.

I don't think "learning how to control the damn thing" should be part of what makes a game hardcore, which several "hardcore" games are. That is one reason to started getting less and less interested in console gaming when suddenly you had to remember which commands mapped to which of the 8-12 buttons plus D-pad on the controller. That much complexity? I'll just take a keyboard and play on my PC.

As for if the Wii has some hard to master games to it, go play the SSX game for the Wii for a while. Let me know what you think.

Re:depends on what part should be hardcore... (1)

gatzke (2977) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851501)


Right. Once FPS on my PC got too complicated (beyond ASDW and mouse) I gave up on PC gaming. There is something to be said for a simple interface.

I personally wish Nintendo would release a high end game+Tivo+DVD system that ran at 1080p. The interface is terrific on the screen and the wiimote is intuitive, I just wish my PVR, DVD, and cable box were half as nice. The 480P looks ok, but it could be better still.

1080p and more GPU may satisfy the hardcore gamers, I would assume. Or do they need more buttons as well? Or maybe they just want to be hardcore in the sense that not everyone is doing it, so when Wii got popular it was not hardcore?

What is "Hardcore Gamer"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19851237)

I am not sure what the definition of a "hardcore gamer" is. Can someone define it for me?

long games for casual gamers (1)

Speare (84249) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851265)

I have never been what people would call "hardcore" about games, but for the right content, I'll work on a game long enough to finish it, and found a couple things about playing non-casual games as a casual gamer.

I don't like having a clock against finishing every level. MAYBE on one part of one level, a short time limit to achieve a small, obvious goal. If I'm under the gun to finish every level, I just get turned off. Yet, the opposite is true too: I don't want to play if I can't save for the next hour. Lego Star Wars II has unlockable bonus rounds where you play through a whole episode, with a par time of one hour. I could hit Pause and turn off the TV, but for these bonus rounds, I can't save to turn off the game machine and resume later.

I don't like having no clue about what the objective is. If I can't even figure out what the weak spot on a boss IS, nevermind how to hurt it, without googling for a walkthrough guide, it's a big turnoff. I know it's very formulaic to find out "oh, this game requires collecting the 8 scattered dinguses, one in each world, and then beating the big boss," but it's even worse for games that just add on more and more quests without an obvious end in mind.

I really hate it when there's no way to get through an area without dying many times, or when the controls are taken away from you every three seconds. I don't want the game to be trivial or easy, but I want it to be survivable if I am doing the right thing. Some of the bosses in Zelda were not just difficult for me, they were extremely frustrating to the point it was souring me on the game. Every few seconds, the boss would pick me up or lock me down or shock/burn me out so I can't see a thing or move a muscle. In the brief intervals, I'd have to aim a crosshairs using a cruddy dpad or stick to hit some tiny little target, and of course I'd have to do this a dozen times. In one Lego scene, you walk into stormtrooper headquarters, and no matter your technique, you were going to explode and lose points at least ten times. I have to turn off the machine and wait until later, lest I teach my daughter how to ruin expensive electronics in a fit of pique.

Make it fun, make it possible to succeed, make it clear how to succeed, make it so there's some challenge but not overwhelming, make it so I can save every 15min at worst, and I'll probably play all the way through. Otherwise, I have better things to do with my time.

Answer == yes. (1)

FatherOfONe (515801) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851519)

If you saw their E3 presentation and where companies like EA are putting resources in to then you would know the answer is yes.

Nintendo doesn't give a rats ass about "Hard Core". They don't even care about "Medium Core".

Bring in the casual games and mini games! We need a good 20 or 30 Mario Puzzle Battle Party games.

Oh an Electronic Arts, you get it great to. You can produce a bunch of crappy games and not have to pay your developers anything, then sell it for a full price game! Then you can take the same game and change it slightly and sell it next year and the year after for the price of a new game!
(Note this is almost exactly what the CEO of Electronic Arts said at E3).

Press conference (5, Informative)

SethraLavode (910814) | more than 7 years ago | (#19851699)

After Nintendo's very ... different ... press conference, you may be wondering what's going on.

What's going on is that you witnessed an actual press conference, aimed at the main stream media, as opposed to an enthusiast-oriented hypefest. Nintendo saw the retooling of E3 as an opportunity to return to its intended roots, put on a show, and got their message out to those who needed to hear it. The point of the press event is to build up hype among retailers and the major press, which means communicating your vision, supporting your position, and giving them something to remember. This wasn't about abandoning gamers, hardcore, traditional, or otherwise.

Nintendo knows that the hardcore gamers get their news from Kotaku, NeoGAF, IGN, or other websites and internet fora. The diehards are the ones who are checking Smash Brothers Dojo daily to keep up with the new updates. The fanboys already check obsessively to keep up with breaking news on what is going to be available. They don't need to be the only ones attended to. Right after the conference concluded, Nintendo's E3 site went active, with new trailers for all the major upcoming releases and with lists of upcoming releases. The fans knew where to find it all, and didn't need for it to be shown on stage. And if they had any lingering questions, the round table session was devoted to fielding questions for and from the hardcore crowd.

That's not to say the enthusiasts were ignored. The first thirty to forty minutes of the event was dedicated to showing off the upcoming AAA titles for the benefit of the fans. They revealed that three major releases (Metroid Prime 3, Mario Galaxy, and Smash Brothers Brawl) are all coming out this year, with Mario Kart soon to follow. The announced that EA's entire sports lineup will be online, and that Medal of Honor will support 32 player online matches. They showed that they were specifically working with third-parties on accessory support to enhance gameplay options.

Nintendo then shifted focus and aimed straight for the USA Todays and WSJs out there with the last twenty minutes or so. They brought out the new IP with the broad appeal that is in line with their market strategy, becaues that was the ideal moment to make it known to the world. And they succeeded spectacularly in that the major newpapers were talking about Wii Fit instead of Killzone 2 or Halo 3.

Nintendo isn't abandoning the enthusiast market. What they are doing is making a conscious effort not to abandon the people who might become gaming enthusiasts, given the right gateway.

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