Apple’s mistake, Nintendo’s opening

Nintendo may have a hit on their hands with the Switch. It’s still early days but the sales of the new Nintendo Switch have been encouraging with a purported 1.5m units sold in just over a week of sales.

A main driver of the early success is of course the new Legend of Zelda game, the Breath of the Wild. According to SuperData, approximately 89% of Switch owners also purchased the game with their new console.

One of the potential drivers of future sales is the indie and retro market. E.g.

  • The Binding of Isaac
  • Shovel Knight
  • King of Fighters
  • Metal Slug 3
  • Ultra Street Fighter II

Apple could have had access to this market, in fact it does, sorta. Most of these games (e.g. Binding of Isaac, Street Fighter) are available on iOS.

But what Apple has failed to do is to execute on the idea. It boils down to physical controls. Not everyone is a leet gamer able to do amazing things via on-screen controls.

There’s been plenty of controllers for iOS devices but they are flaky. Either they don’t work well with iOS or the games don’t support it.

Apple decided on a heavy handed MFI (made for iPod) certification system which was expensive and not everybody signed up for it.

They should have just supported USB game controllers and made it easy and cheap to be certified.

So they’ve missed the boat as far as I’m concerned. They could have forced all developers to support USB controllers but they didn’t.

Now Nintendo has come up with an alternative platform that has mobile and home gaming applications with support for physical controls which can benefit from the demand for retro games (nostalgia) and indie games (non-mainstream gaming).

Apple could have done it for mobile gaming (iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad) and home gaming (Apple TV) but have dropped the ball. Too bad Apple. I would have loved to give you (more) money.

Nintendo – time to Switch back?

I believe the first console that I bought with my own money was the Playstation.

playstation

But the second console that I purchased was the Nintendo Gamecube!

gamecube

I loved my Gamecube, mainly because of Zelda. I’ve been a fan of the series ever since I played A Link to the Past whilst house-sitting for a friend back in the 90s.

linktothepast

I got The Legend of Zelda Collector’s Edition for it which came with The Legend of Zelda, Zelda II, Ocarina of Time, Majora’s Mask and a demo for Wind Waker. That was a great disc! I thoroughly enjoyed playing Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask and quickly bought Wind Waker after playing through the demo.

aquos

It helped that I was playing on a vibrant 20″ Sharp Aquos TV. Flat screen TVs were just becoming available then.

So I was extremely excited when the Wii came out. As soon as it became available in the country I was staying in, I picked it up. Had to call around half a dozen stores before I managed to put my name down for one. Hurriedly went to pick it up after work to play the new Zelda – Twilight Princess. Was so overjoyed, had never been so excited before (or since) to pick up a console.

Subsequently to the Wii I purchased the PS3, then the Xbox One. Inbetween the two I actually purchased the Wii U for a bargain price but was forced by the missus to sell it off. 😦

Anyways, the release of the new Nintendo Switch reminded me of my excitement when I got my Wii. But now, being older and wiser, I have decided not to join the Day One crowd.

Especially when the Switch is priced above the PS4!!!

I plan to wait to see the reviews on Breath of the Wild to see if it runs better on the Wii U or the Switch. If the former I’m sure I can pick up a second hand Wii U + the game for less than the price of the Switch!

Given that the Switch is region-free, if the Switch version of the game is better, I can always look to purchasing the console + game in America. Would probably work out cheaper…

Sorry Nintendo, but your pricing strategy in this part of the world means that I won’t be Switching back…not yet anyways!