Iwata transcript - 3DS' lack of software, devs doing extra work to utilize 3D, 3DS games without 3D

The Nintendo 3DS did not sprint out of the gate from the start in accordance with our sales scenario. So we have done various analysis (on the cause), and we ourselves have many things to reflect on. But if I say, "That was a mistake," or "We shouldn't have done that," at this point, my words might be only partly cited, or in some cases distorted and spread. Therefore, I do not think talking about what we did wrong in a public space will have a good impact on the future of the Nintendo 3DS. Of course, there are several things I am reflecting on, and I am also considering a number of things, but please let me refrain from mentioning respective points in detail. But at least, I think we have to greatly reflect on the fact that, at the launch, we could not implement the functions we have offered by the system update (via the Internet) around the time of E3 in June this year.

I do not think that creating 3D software always requires significantly additional work. It can be said that it adds to the R & D work for performance tuning, but if the world in the game was originally meant to be constructed in 3D, making them viewed as 3D images do not require significantly more work. However, it is true that it is more challenging than we initially expected to communicate the appeal of 3D. One reason is that we cannot communicate the appeal of 3D through TV commercials, and it greatly differs by game content whether the appeal of 3D is easy to present or not. If one tries to show the appeal of 3D for difficult content, it will be hard and one might have to try repeatedly for a long time. This might lead to the idea that 3D may not have appeal worth its efforts.

I think that it is better to have a variety of ways to show the appeal of the software, depending on the titles. For example, Nintendo just released software called "Rhythm Heaven" for the Wii console. Because this software is for Wii, you would usually think that we are supposed to shake the Wii Remote. However, this is a title which only uses buttons to control it, and does not require users to shake their Wii Remotes. It does not use any of the Wii-specific features, so some people might say, "Why did you release it on the Wii (if you only control it using only buttons)?" or "I can't see the necessity of releasing this for the Wii." But from the users' perspective, rather than all Wii software using the same feature in the same way, it is better to focus on other features of the Wii. For example, Wii is connected to a big TV in the living room, and because all of the family members have touched it at least once, we thought that if someone starts to play it, people around him or her can be involved. This is why we decided not to use the major feature of the Wii and concentrate on button control. This can be also said for the Nintendo 3DS. I think there could be a Nintendo 3DS software title which does not use the 3D feature at all, and I believe Nintendo will develop such software. Instead, other features of the Nintendo 3DS should be focused on. It might be a communication feature, or other functions (such as the gyro sensor or the motion sensor). The important thing is that each respective software title has its own characteristics, and appeals to the consumers in a way that fits the software. So I am not worried in a way like, "The value of the Nintendo 3DS will decrease when the novelty of 3D wears off." Having said that, however, our main software for the end of this calendar year, "SUPER MARIO 3DLAND" and "MARIO KART 7," both integrate well with 3D. Regarding "SUPER MARIO 3DLAND," depth is an important theme because Mr. Miyamoto has been tackling the depth issue, like having Mario run to the back of the screen, jump and correctly hit a block, for many long years since "Super Mario 64," but it was difficult for users to play it without 3D display. Concerning the 3D for "MARIO KART 7," looking at the reactions of the people who experienced the demo version at E3, many people are naturally enjoying the appeal of 3D, so I think we will be able to convey the appeal of 3D with this software too. But I do not think consumers would be satisfied if every software title we release in the next year only focuses 3D. So, I believe we have to implement new proposals focused on another appealing feature of the Nintendo 3DS, which is the communication feature. - Satoru Iwata

Categories: Interviews, Portables
Tags: 3ds


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