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So Where Does Nintendo Go From Here?

thismeinteil

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After the disappointing sales of the N64 and the poor sales of the Gamecube, Nintendo came to the conclusion that not only could they not compete when trying to aim for power, but also that their IPs alone could not push console sales. Ever since then they have been selling their consoles around HW gimmicks and trying better to court 3rd parties, with varying levels of success.

The first piece of HW to follow this new philosophy was the DS, based around two screens, one of which was a touch screen. This was a huge success, becoming one of the highest selling consoles ever, 2nd only to the PS2. This was followed shortly after by the Wii, based around motion controls, but with a power level not too far above the Gamecube's. This was a big hit initially, with 4 years of great sales, only for them to drop off of a cliff when the motion control craze died off. It still was able to pass 100M in sales, however, and can definitely be counted as a big success.

Then came the 3DS, which was based around the same gimmicks as the 3DS, only this time with a 3D screen. While this was successful (Nintendo did have to drop the price by $80 after just 6 months on the market because of disappointing sales and to better compete with the upcoming Vita's price), it failed to sell even half of the DS's numbers, ending at 76M. Next was the utter failure that was the Wii U, which was based around motion controls like the Wii, but adding gaming on a tablet, which had started to become a thing for casuals with Android and Apple tablets. Even though it followed the same basic principles as the Wii, not being much more powerful than the previous gen, which allowed it to launch much cheaper than the competition, it failed to draw in gamers like its predecessor. Ultimately, it failed to pass even 15M units sold.

After seeing the handheld market shrink (the PSP+DS was able to sell 230M+, while the 3DS+Vita only hit ~92M) and their failure with the Wii U, Nintendo did probably what they felt they had to do to survive, combine their two console markets into one, allowing all of their resources to go to one platform. This lead to the Switch, which was based around it's hybrid nature plus motion controls that were detachable/shareable. While many did doubt if a $299 Nintendo handheld/hybrid could succeed, especially after the 3DS at a $249 price point was met with mediocre sales, the Switch was a huge success. While it does seem it's sales have started to decline, with it already being at 89M, it's a no-brainer it will pass 100M, and, more than likely, hit at least 120M.

This leads me to my question, where does Nintendo go from here? They are now focusing on one console per gen. While this is a good thing in that they can focus fully on that one platform, it also means that they can't fall back on a handheld if their other console isn't received well. And with their HW seemingly needing appealing HW gimmicks to sell, what more could they do to interest gamers and casuals alike? Can they just coast by continuing to follow the hybrid/joycon path, or will that novelty have worn off by the time the Switch U comes out? We have already seen time and time again that having Mario or Zelda doesn't necessarily mean that their consoles will sell. So, what do you think?
 

Kuranghi

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Coolwhhip

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I think they should just make a Switch 2 that is 4k capable. The more casual crowd understands 4k and they can just continue selling their games for 5 more years with it.

I dont know how realistic a 4k Switch 2 is tech wise though, maybe some tech geeks can chime in.
 
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DadEggs

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abandon the hybrid approach and reinvent an underpowered wheel...again

can't see them go the streaming route at all though since their online is NEVER up to even the most basic snuff.
 
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jigglet

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They just need to stay the course, but have services that span generations. There's no reason why the eshop, virtual console, and account system needs to be burned to the ground every 5 years and started again from scratch. This shit needs to persist.
 

AmorousBiscuit

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Bottom of the (biscuit) barrel.
Releasing inferior hardware for a mark up and selling you the same ips they have been for the past 20+ yrs. Also selling you shit online service because fuck you
They're getting there very slowly with the online stuff. Who knows, we might have online infrastructure to rival that of PS3 and X360 come the next Nintendo console!
 

Amory

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Seems to me Nintendo's path is far clearer now than it has been in a long time. Switch 2 sometime in the next few years, 4k support, first party games, indies, and a shit ton of ports this time from the ps4/xbox one era.

It's not the most interesting future for me personally, but more and more I realize that even though I don't particularly care for nintendo first party games these days I still end up buying their new systems anyway
 
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Marty-McFly

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Obviously Switch 2 considering Switch 1 is breaking sales records.

The hardware is just a means for them to sell games, and Switch, being a portable and a console has accomplished their goal of finally streamlining to one platform, and they are selling all of their games by the truckload.... this is why you won't see a wacky followup.
 
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Saber

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Releasing inferior hardware for a mark up and selling you the same ips they have been for the past 20+ yrs. Also selling you shit online service because fuck you

Yeah. There isn't much of going foward at least in terms of "evolution". Their games are mostly top stuff no doubt, but their console only proved that they don't need to improve at all. And I'm not talking about pro stuff people insist to spam(I for one couldn't give a damn about pro), but the quality of hardware and services are mediocre to say the least.
 
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6502

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Whatever they should do, they probably won't.

N64 and Gamecube did not prove they cannot compete on power. It proved they could not sustain enough 1st party releases and token B team efforts to compete with the rest of the industry.

A trend which has continued to this day.

Hybrid was the correct answer but the releases have been barren compared to what I would expect with only 1 platform to support.

Have Nintendo let internal devs go? I don't understand how they dont have at least 1 new AAA game released a year.
 

Astral Dog

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Switch 2 obviously, joycons are here to stay, they will be fine as long as third parties don't run out of games to port.

Hybrid is different gimmick from 3D or GamePad, so it should last longer. Nintendo just needs to show us why a Switch 2 has more value than a Deck. By the time Switch 2 releases gamers will be looking at new hardware to buy alongside their Xbox Series/PS5
 
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Jan 9, 2018
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I disagree with much of the above summary; in particular, I find any analysis of Nintendo's products to be naive when it overuses the word "gimmick" and downplays even the massive shift in play that the Wii successfully brought about.

That said, my prediction is that some new and unexpected things are brewing up at Nintendo HQ. So many of their ace internal dev teams have been quiet for a while, and usually this suggests a great deal of internal R&D towards new concepts. I expect that their current struggle is between riding the Switch wave onto a Switch-2 or doing what they do best and basing the next console off some sort of surprising new features way off the grid from what their competitors are doing or what the gaming conventional wisdom expects.

Anyhow, weird Nintendo is best, so my main hope is that they throw 100% of the industry expectations and online demands right into the trash (4K, who gives a shit lol) and do something unique.
 
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MachRc

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Switch 2, more powerful upscale all old titles for continuity back-compat,

newer games only playable on switch 2

and old joy cons wont work on switch 2 because fuck you pay me.
 

Hinedorf

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With how poorly everything is going this year on consoles I still think MH: Rise has a strong chance to be the GOTY

IMO Nintendo is having a better rollout of games than either MS or Sony, and you wonder where they go from here?



Change nothing, stay the course, release older IP and new IP. New hardware has never been Nintendo's answer
 

-Minsc-

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and old joy cons wont work on switch 2 because fuck you pay me.
Neither do my Super Nintendo controllers work on Switch.

Change nothing, stay the course, release older IP and new IP. New hardware has never been Nintendo's answer
Nintendo: Do what we do until it don't. Then leave video games in the ditch along with the hanafuda.

Don't know how accurate this is but it's an interesting read.


This is neat: During the 60’s Nintendo started branching out in different directions while continuing toy production. They opened a taxi company, an instant rice company, and a hotel chain. All these ideas failed. Un-phased Nintendo went back to its roots as a toy company.

I'm more convinced now than ever that Nintendo is a company that takes risks and has benefited from them. They just don't take the risks that gamers want. All these quirky side things of Nintendo is just par for the course. Sometimes they get a hit.
 

Von Hugh

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They have basically never released a successful direct successor to a previous popular console/handheld, so I'm not so sure.

Switch 2 will probably just be a new Wii U or 3DS. They need to revamp their marketing if they are ever going to make one.
 
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MachRc

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Neither do my Super Nintendo controllers work on Switch.
I only say this because I use all my xbone controllers on my series x. I didnt have to plunge 60 dollars times 3 to have people play together day one on SX.

My guess is the next switch is going to be hybrid handheld. Very close to the switch since it will most likely play switch games(maybe Im wrong here)
But they will make you fork over 70 for new controllers is for sure.
 

Kokoloko85

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Switch 2.

By 2030 Nintendo will have a mind reading gimmick controls console like the Wii had with motions. Thats when they can return to the console market. Until then, they need hybrids / handhelds to do well Lol
 
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tommib

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I think they should just make a Switch 2 that is 4k capable. The more casual crowd understands 4k and they can just continue selling their games for 5 more years with it.

I dont know how realistic a Switch 2 is tech wise though, maybe some tech geeks can chime in.

Can we stop with the 4K nonsense? Not even the PS5/Series X are doing native 4K most of the times. I have the feeling that whatever they release as their next console is going to be completely different from what we expect.
 

tommib

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This thread and a lot of the responses in it are a good example of why current GAF fucking sucks ass for a Nintendo fan.

I love Nintendo but people expecting state of the art tech from them puts me off. But I agree. People do hate Nintendo around here and think it’s for kids although they probably have the best digital store at the moment from all the console makers.
 

Lionel Richie

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I love Nintendo but people expecting state of the art tech from them puts me off. But I agree. People do hate Nintendo around here and think it’s for kids although they probably have the best digital store at the moment from all the console makers.

The thing that gets me is that there are lot of viable criticism you could say about Nintendo. They aren't perfect, not by a long shot. But these threads are usually filled with the same braindead, ignorant, recycled and lazy retardation over and over again. It's always the same shit. It's so out of touch and so aggressive it makes me feel this is a support group for people whose mothers have been JAVed by Miyamoto.
 

Captain Toad

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They should do the exact opposite of what most of us here want them to do.

Make incredibly cheap hardware that's at least 1.5 generations behind the competition, but price it as if its equivalent. Don't ever drop software prices, no matter if the game is a hit or not. Think big picture over short-term.

Re-sell older games whenever possible, but price as new AAA games.

I can't blame them. As long as they still have the high quality software people want, they'll still kill it with this business philosophy. Low risk, high reward.
 
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Bonfires Down

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They are going to do a Switch 2 which will the same with maybe some minor gimmick slapped on. No reason to change the concept. I'm sure they will try something more experimental again at some point, but that will be in addition to the Switch line rather than replacement.

Their most popular games are evergreen on the same level as Minecraft. Mario Kart 8 and Animal Crossing would keep selling well to new gamers for decades even if no sequels were released. So they don't need to change what they are doing.
 
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vanguardian1

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Someone suggested in another thread they could use a more powerful version of their current cpu/gpu to get 4k DLSS, that'd be acceptable to me and probably many others.

Personally, I want a modified version of the controls that has proper build-in IR for FPS games like Wii (I HATE gamepad/tilt controls for FPS). I wouldn't mind that for a controller upgrade as long as it fixes the drift issue.

For software, I'd take old franchises (waverace, f-zero, pilotwings, etc) and have 3rd parties make 30$ eshop "spiritual successors" to tempt the audience. Also, despite the flak I'll receive for it here on GAF, I'd like a proper successor to Wii Sports in addition to the regular Nintendo titles.
 
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RCU005

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My guess is that they will indeed release a Switch 2. Nintendo has done this two times:

DS - 3DS: This was a huge success. They got rid of the GameBoy brand for the first time with the DS, and wanted to continue the new brand of DS with the 3DS. It paid of really well.

Wii - Wii U: This was a flop. The problem with this was that there were so many peripherals for the Wii announced, that focusing on the controller when announcing the Wii U just caused a lot of confusion and was the first step to failure (sales-wise). It was a good console, but we can't deny that Nintendo wanted to keep riding the Wii brand success, instead of starting over.


IMO, they will try it again. They don't have so many options, though. If they release a portable, they alienate the home console business and they won't want to release a home console only because portable is a huge success in Japan mostly.

The ideal plan should be to make a sequel to the Switch and have all Joy-con compatible with the new system, but seeing how they need to improve their design due to many issues and also the console itself. I think that they will start over with new gimmicks, but will have the same hybrid concept. They will not want to move on from the Switch brand.
 
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-Minsc-

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I only say this because I use all my xbone controllers on my series x. I didnt have to plunge 60 dollars times 3 to have people play together day one on SX.

My guess is the next switch is going to be hybrid handheld. Very close to the switch since it will most likely play switch games(maybe Im wrong here)
But they will make you fork over 70 for new controllers is for sure.
I do get what you mean. For years I've used a 360 controller on my PC. Gets the job done.

At the end of the day it doesn't matter too much to me since I don't own a Switch or planning to buy the successor.
 
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Nintendo seems to have a pattern of great hardware followed up by mediocre hardware, so lets see. People have this idea that everything nintendo does is a success when 2 out of their last 4 consoles have been commercial failures. They pretty much went all in on portables since their home consoles seem to have been a riskier play. So with the home console power only creeping up I can see them just saying fuck it and going full portable.
 

cyber69

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Not sure how much further Nintendo can push until their visions run in to technological limitations. The Switch OLED is Nintendo in prime form.
 

reinking

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If I had my way they would make a more portable hybrid. I will not get my way.
 

Zannegan

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It would be nice to see a fairly conventonal upgrade from the Switch--same core concept, but everything's improved.

But, it's Nintendo. You never know what they're going to do. If nothing else, they keep the hardware space interesting, and their software is always worth it.

Business-wise, they always make bank, even when they're running a distant third. The exception that proves the rule was during the 2008 financial crisis, and even then they turned it around fairly quickly.
Switch 2, more powerful upscale all old titles for continuity back-compat,

newer games only playable on switch 2

and old joy cons wont work on switch 2 because fuck you pay me.
I'd actually prefer it if the new joycon were so improved/had some new feature that it made playing with the old joycon impossible. I'd definitely like them to be bigger/more grippable.
 
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twerkouting

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I'll hope against hope they'll stick to the hybrid model; it seems to resonate with the masses but then again, the masses are fickle and will move on to the next big thing, whatever that may be.

But just incase, for all you dedicated gaming hobbyists, people who enjoy getting into the inner workings of tech, visuals, performance, etc,; they don't make things for you anymore and they haven't since the Gamecube. They make novel hardware to support their software and whatever crazy ideas they might get. The fact that broad swathes of you can't seem to understand how the Switch is big seller prove you either don't or won't get it.

You're never going to get cutting edge tech, you're never going to get the latest and greatest big budget AAA games on their hardware. You're going to get weird shit that will not jive with about 70% of you, you're going to complain it's not for you, you're going to complain that "Nintendo is hold their IP hostage," or whatever perceived slight you feel they sent your way. The masses are where it's at and the masses are are who they're going to focus on. Go buy a Steamdeck.
 

CS Lurker

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Switch 2 comboed with a Nintendo Quest (they will use the switch as the processing unit, so the HMD itself will be cheap. Also, they'll use the joy-cons 2.0 with an add-on so the controllers can be tracked by the HMD (another $ave) )
 
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NeoIkaruGAF

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Surprising replys. I expected “off a cliff/third party, hopefully” at the top of the page.

Switch could be the final form of Nintendo hardware, but it’s hard to believe they won’t try something different in the future. Contrary to what some people believe, Nintendo are aware of what’s going on in the games market.
 

DonkeyPunchJr

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My prediction: we will get lots of sensible suggestions from Nintendo fans about what their next console should be. Nintendo will not do anything like that, instead they will do something completely bonkers and unexpected.

50% chance it’s a massive, raging success. 50% chance it’s such a disaster that it almost kills the company.
 

tr1p1ex

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They will do what they always do. Come up with a new system that has some new ways to play ( what some like to call gimmicks) while retaining much of the traditional controls. And release new versions of their franchises that make use of the increase in power and the new ways to play. Come up with some new IP. Remaster/remake/rerelease some old games. ... I expect the form factor to remain the same.


AS for new ways to play:

1. The Switch form factor is setup to be a VR trojan horse. Labo VR showed a glimpse of the future once the Switch gets a higher res screen. Could that happen next gen? All depends on pricepoints of hi-res ~7" screens.

2. Also feel like Nintendo could do something with AR as well. They did some AR with the 3ds. Pokemon Go has some AR. Mario Kart:Home Circuit was all about AR.

3. what other cheap tech is out there to be unexpectedly utilized by Nintendo...inquiring minds want to know. What unheard of ways could they use cheap tech? What other tech could they use. Nintendo doesn't get enough credit for its use of cutting edge tech. They were first with wireless controllers. They did 3d in the 3ds. They had AR in the 3ds. Wii U did WiFI direct video transmission that had less lag than tv sets of of the day. Switch had a USB-C HDMI dock 4 1/2 years ago. They did touchscreens in 2004. Dual-screen too. ...


They have to do something new and interesting and to get a lot of people on board. Yes some just want a Switch 2 with more power and will be easy sells. But for a lot of people, a Switch 2 will look a lot like a Switch and they will need more convincing. New ways to play even if they ultimately are "gimmicks" not only get people to buy in but also freshen up franchises and add some fun factor and at the very least the sizzle to the steak. Remember the switch capability of the Switch won't be novel this time around.
 
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Apr 20, 2015
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I'll go with the thing probably not a single user on GAF suspects them to do: They'll do a traditional, stationary console. But make it weak. And, of course, no handheld to accompany it.
 
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Azelover

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One thing is for sure, they're not gonna do what everybody is expecting..

IMO they should do a Switch 2, basically the same thing but with better graphics and better rumble. Which they might do, but certainly not without another innovation attached.
 
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