Question Time: Nintendo

As part of a mega three-part series, each of the big players in the console market – Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft – have agreed to let us speak to their head honchos, their proverbial Charles in charge, so we can get an idea of where each company is headed in the lead up to Christmas and beyond.

But here’s the (ever so slightly awesome) twist – we want you guys to be fielding the questions.

So here’s the deal: We’re looking for the most insightful, probing questions. Simply post them in the comments section, and we’ll round up the best questions and take them right up to the top of the chain and get the answers you want.

We've sent your Sony questions across to Michael Ephraim, with the assurance that we'll get them back before the end of the week. So, in the meantime, it's time to start collecting some questions for Nintendo!

This time round it'll be Nintendo's Marketing Director for Australia Greg Arthurton answering your questions.

Let's hear what you've got!


    Where do you think Nintendo will be in 10 years time? If someone asked you in 2000, would you of guessed correctly for 2010?

    Same as Sony,

    Even though you are a platform that is known to cater for more casual and younger gamers, do you/would you ever support retailers in a pro R18+ stance in Australia, why/whynot?


    Do you think Nintendo has a place for games that are targeted for mature gamers?

    (Im a big fan of games like Madworld and would much rather see more of them rather then the constant shovelware and odd rehashed Nintendo ip.)

    Does Nintendo feel threatened by the recent developments in other next-gen consoles towards motion-based gaming?

    If not, why not?
    If so, does Nintendo have a plan to respond with new or updated technology, to stay ahead of the curve (for home-based consoles - 3DS aside)?

    Ooh, I have another one.

    Nintendo is obviously aware of the selling power of its major franchises: Mario, Zelda, Donkey Kong. Do you see reliance on a (very) limited number of strong IPs as an advantage or disadvantage? Why?

      This'd be my pertinent question too. More so regarding how much more Nintendo feel that can get out of their long lasting IPs. To maintain these IPs, are there more individual, tailored specifics and benchmarks that games containing them must pass? More stringent form of quality control, perhaps?

    As you may have heard, Krome Studios was recently shut down.

    Like most other video game companies, Nintendo Australia is primarily a distributor of goods imported from overseas; but what does it actually do for the local video games development industry?

    With one original IP released during the Gambcube era (Pikmin) and a similar number of original titles for the Wii how do you see Nintendo conintuing to innovate in the future?

      lol thats so stupid as if he is going to say no we are not going to innovate we will just keep releasing the same games

        Are you 5 years old? Your comment makes me believe so.

        MrBS wasn't asking WHETHER they would continue to innovate, but HOW they planned to do so. Quite a legitimate question, actually.

    Is the console marketplace big enough to sustain 3 console giants simultaneously?

    Over past generations, we've generally had 2 'major' players, with a third trailing behind. Would Nintendo combining powers with Sony/Microsoft/Apple/a new challenger be a possibility down the track?

    I realise that Nintendo is targeting the more casual gamers, but at the same time isn't that to be the demographic that won't be prepared to keep up with console cycles as often as say a (harder-core) gamer?

    Will Shiggy sign my ass?

    Has Nintendo ever thought about creating some new IPs/characters instead of rehashing Mario, Metroid, Zelda, Donkey Kong etc?

    Are there any plans to introduce a proper online system that doesn't require friend codes?

    Can we expect to see the price of the 3DS closer to the American price compared the UK?

    To what do Nintendo attribute their declining hardware sales, and is there a perception that you've now reached a saturation point in the market?

    Nintendo appear to be one of the more innovative, or adventurous, game and console developers at the moment, particularly with respect to the Wii and 3DS.

    How much focus is placed upon R&D and how viable does Nintendo consider this sort of technology? (e.g. is it reasonable to expect an evolution of 3D and motion-based technology with a future generation of consoles?)

    Oh- I asked a question on 'ask me stuff' ages ago but never got a proper response. I might cut it down a bit:

    Whats the deal with the prices for 1st party Nintendo software?

    Take Super Mario Galaxy 2 for example, it was on special at several retailers for a short period when it first came out, down to $79 I think at JB Hi-Fi.

    Its now back to $89 dollars where I would imagine it will stay for the next 5 years. In line with Mario Kart Wii (2008 - $89), Super Mario Galaxy (2007 - $99), Super Smash Bros Brawl (2007 - $89) and Zelda: Twilight Princess (2006 - $89). Paper Maro and Super Mario Bros Wii are also still full price games.

    The issue also applies to Nintendo DS games, its very common to see Zelda: Phantom Hourglass (2007) selling for the same or more full retail price as Zelda: Spirit Tracks (2009).

    Most Xbox and PS3 games are down to $70 after a few months and <$49 after a year or so, not only that but games for these machines tend to get cheaper faster the MORE they sell, not the other way around.

    Is it time for Nintendo to put at least some of these games into a 'Classic' range at <$49?

      I second this, what is the deal?

      Evergreen my ARSE!

      I want Mario Kart discounted now, and without that dodgy steering wheel!

        I'd say thats because they still sell at that price.

        I 3rd that!

        And 2nd the bit about MK without a wheel!

        And I add;

        Why is it so damn hard to find the games I want? (eg Sin & Punishment 2, and that Gay Boxer one.)

        Also, not a question, just a threat:
        Release the 3DS at a reasonable price (no more currency excuses!) or I aint buying it, ever.

    Are there any more 1st/3rd party games, such as Other M, planned for the future? (for example a Zelda RPG with Bioware?)

      You just made me [censored] all over the keyboard!

    Maybe you can could actually ask some questions Nintendo 'Australia' could answer. Asking about IP's and the market as a whole you can only get an opinion on. Nintendo here don't decide any of them.

    If you want to make a difference or want answers then ask questions that they can answer.

      Good point — though Kotaku doesn't mention anything about it being Nintendo "Australia" in the article. They just say Nintendo’s Marketing Director Greg Arthurton. I think most people can be forgiven for thinking he's the MD of the whole company.

      The article should definitely clarify this though.

    Is it Nintendo's fault the original GoldenEye hasn't had a HD re-release?

    Have any of the guys who wrote the story for Other M been asked to commit Seppaku yet?

    Do you worry that by region locking the DSi system that you are actually breaking ACCC rules (because you are you know...)?

    If there is no good reason to region lock a system, the ACCC fights it and there is NO GOOD REASON to region lock the DSi and 3DS.

      How about "Since the courts will allow third party devices that circumvent region locks, are you concerned that your ability to combat piracy will be hampered by the region protection on the DSi?"

    Will the rising Aussie Dollar/Falling US Dollar become a factor in deciding RRP's of games and systems, especially the Nintendo 3DS? Many Australian gamers are growing tired of paying double what Americans pay when our dollar is now on an equal ratio to theirs, and are instead turning to imports (or worse, piracy) which only hurts our local economy.

    Is Nintendo concerned about the high volume of wii shovelware on the store shelves?

    Nintendo has stated that 3rd party software sales is a priority for the 3DS, what about the Wii? Has Nintendo already given up?

    Do you think the PS move is a threat to Nintendo or a complement to the market leader?

    Are there any plans to lock the Nintendo 3DS? Is Nintendo Australia aware that if they do region lock the 3DS, people will have a legitimate reason to use piracy devices for "region free gaming"?

      ding ding ding :) With region locked consoles R4 carts become legal.

        FYI R4 carts are already legal in Australia

      As far as I know it is region locked, and I would really like for them to ask this questions.

      When prices are fixed so terribly in Australia, and with a bunch of awesome games released overseas but never released here, region locking seems like a terrible idea.

      Unless, of course, they stopped charging absolutely ridiculous prices for games and didn't just decide not to import games for no reason, but the chances of that happening are very slim.

        Easiest solution? Import both the system and the games.

        If they are going to jerk us around then stuff the local economy.

    Three more, now that I've read everything through properly:

    Rarely does Australia benefit from being an isolated, PAL region: some games are delayed, others don't make it at all, etc. Have Nintendo been working to resolve this and do we have anything special/exclusive to look forward to?

    I believe (now former?) Nintendo Australia boss Rose Lappin said the biggest contributor to Australian game prices was the weak exchange rate. With an improving AUD and stronger economy than most other nations at present, should we expect anything to improve in the near future?

    What are you most looking forward to in the next 12 months, and why should everyone else?

      Ha I like that idea.

      Unfortunately I hate the wait on importing games though

    Where does Nintendo plan to go with the new generation of consoles, it seems it's been as innovative as it can without going into virtual reality. will it just be the Wii HD, or do you have another idea planed?

    Has the creation of the Mii started a slow death of our favourite characters? This cross my mind while playing Wii Party and wondering if there will ever be a Mario Party 9?

    Everyone wants to see themselves in a game! Of course it's not only the Mii, but Avatars on the Xbox and created persons on Sony's home... not to mention Create at Character in Sports/Wrestling/MMA games etc.


    Okay... that's long and drawn out, Mark, but you know where I am heading with it. Work your editorial magic!

    What's been going on with the Virtual Console?? After being one of the Wii launch's biggest selling points, it's like Nintendo just doesn't care anymore. There are many of us (myself included) who would still much prefer the Virtual Console over WiiWare.

      yup, agreed. and the release schedule is barren compared to other regions.

      nintendo australia sucks can they say the exchange rate stops them from selling their own games for less than 70 Aussie dollars when i can fly the damn game from Japan to Hong Kong/USA/UK and the fly it to Australia all for much less than 70 aussie dollars.

      could it possibly be because the exchange rate has NOTHING TO DO WITH THEIR PRICES.

    Does Nintendo Australia have any plans to improve the number of localised releases here in Australia?

    The disparity between the number of game releases in Australia compared to the U.S.A is absolutely laughable.

    To make matters (embarrasingly) worse, the U.K. market is seeing some amazing releases this year, and Australia? Sweet F.A.

    Do explain...

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