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Sega: Nintendo Should Support Mature Gamers

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Bloody Mario...

Speaking after the news that Sega is starting to have second thoughts at attempts to target older Wii gamers, following slow sales of other publishers' software and its own mature titles, the company believes that Nintendo should be trying to widen the market with its own 18 certificate games.

James Rebours, the CEO of Sega for France and Spain, has spoken about the lack of support from Nintendo, stating that the company has left the job of catering to mature gamers with third party publishers. He goes on to say that despite the potential to make good sales in this area, not everyone is keen on taking a risk with investment in such titles.

Rebours believes that if Nintendo were to publish a mature game and back it up with a sustained television advertisement campaign, they would be able to increase the size of the market and probably make large sales. However, he thinks that Nintendo is a publisher who has mostly ignored this area, with games consistently aimed at the 3+ to 7+ age bracket.

[via gamekult.com]

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User Comments (71)

Mange

#3

Mange said:

Whata loser, if he wants to sell games maybe he should put up his own sustained television advertisement campaign. I have never seen a mature games ad on tv on "adult" time. If they want to sell mature games.. don´t send ads on nickelodeon. CEO!.. Ha He should be happy Nintendo don´t put out mature games. the competition from Nintendo would be too hard for Sega to swallow.

Token_Girl

#4

Token_Girl said:

@Mange

Haha, yeah. If Ninty put out a hardcore game with strong advertising, 3rd parties would blame them for making difficult to compete if their sales remained slumped.

JimLad

#5

JimLad said:

Well he just lost all credibility by chiming in with the teenager's false theory.
Mature gamers buy the Wii, as well as kids. It is mostly immature gamers that the 18+ games are catering to. I'm not saying they are bad games, but the level of gore and swearing that has become commonplace is just ridiculous.

Ranting aside: This is one of the worst excuses for poor sales I've ever heard. I'm hoping this is just one guys views, because if it IS the company saying this, then shame on you Sega.

RichieTheSignPainter

#6

RichieTheSignPainter said:

Nintendo Japan have just agreed to publish their first ever mature rated game so SEGA might get what they want.
I completely agree with @Mange though... Madworld was a great game but there were no ads!! Bayonetta has tonnes of ads but it for Xbox and PS... Just shows that it's SEGA not Nintendo that's failing to support the games.

maka

#7

maka said:

I agree with JimLad. And anyway, why would nintendo have to put out "mature" titles? That bit about nintendo releasing games mostly for 3-7yo kids is so silly! I mean, just because a game is not gory doesn't mean its gameplay is aimed at kids, and afterall, gameplay is much more important than whether a game has losts of blood in it, and as an adult gameplay interests me much more anyway...

If Sega wants "mature" games on the wii, they should just do them and market them accordingly, but they'd better be good games too, or else they won't sell very good either... if they only release niche titles with no publicity, they shouldn't be surprised by the low sales...

Ryuuga

#8

Ryuuga said:

Nah...most mature games focus more on violence than in gameplay, I can live without them. And the good ones (Madworld for example) had zero market. Marketing is the soul of business, right?
Also on-rail shooters are not what Wii gamers want, and 3rd parties can't understand it. They should create great games and stop complaining like babies.

Btw, nice picture, the best of the year hahahahahah!

Caliko

#10

Caliko said:

haha, so this idiot is saying Nintendo should develop a Mature game, spend their hard earned cash on advertising so he can in turn make a "mature" game and it will help him make money??

So now It's somehow Nintendos job to push developers to make GOOD mature titles?? By creating games better than theirs???

JakobG

#11

JakobG said:

16 yes, 18 I-dunno.
I'm 16, and most 18+ games don't appeal to me.
Not because I can't play them, it's just that I'm ot interested in playing horror games.

SanderEvers

#12

SanderEvers said:

I've said it before, Nintendo should make a game about what happens after Link/Mario saves the princess.

V8_Ninja

#13

V8_Ninja said:

Great, developers are trying to blame Nintendo because of their poor sales with their M rated games. Developers need to start thinking.

Sean_Aaron

#17

Sean_Aaron said:

I'll have to disagree with Mssr. Rebours and say that I don't think there's a big market for 18+ games, but possibly a sizeable niche market.

The notion that Nintendo should cultivate that market on their "fun for the whole family" console is completely ludicrous and really doesn't deserve further comment.

SanderEvers

#18

SanderEvers said:

Maybe Nintendo should make a deal with Microsoft and/or Sony and release a HD Zelda (or Mario game) on the XBOX360 / PS3 :p (No pun intnended)

SanderEvers

#20

SanderEvers said:

Both have already been on a non-Nintendo console. The CD-i.

But I see your point, releasing a Zelda/Mario game on one of the competitor's conoles will increase the sale of those consoles. But I've never seen any good Mario/Zelda look a likes on my XBOX 360. Darksiders does look a lot like a Zelda game, though. But the story isn't as good.

warioswoods

#23

warioswoods said:

@5

"Well he just lost all credibility by chiming in with the teenager's false theory.
Mature gamers buy the Wii, as well as kids. It is mostly immature gamers that the 18+ games are catering to."

Precisely. "Mature" games are bought primarily by a not-so-mature age bracket; the only reason the industry is so disproportionately concerned about them, however, is that these people buy a whole lot of games compared to others, given their stage in life and free time.

Token_Girl

#25

Token_Girl said:

Maybe Sega should take a page from Nintendo and focus less on "mature" titles and more on solid, family friendly titles. Then we'd get games like "Sonic: It's cute and colorful and awesomely fun to play and not broken" instead of "Shadow the Hedgehog."

Sneaker13

#26

Sneaker13 said:

But what would they call the Metroid serie then? And I don't think Super Smash Bros. Brawl is for childeren too. And there is Day of Crisis, although I don't know how this game did, but I remember reading somewhere it did ok.

astarisborn94

#29

astarisborn94 said:

Does Dynamac Action Slash rings a bell? Nintendo is supporting mature games from other companies, they just don't make them often. And remember, they helped you adversite in France. At least Capcom learned from there mistakes.

Rogues

#31

Rogues said:

I'd love to see more unique and mature rated games show up on the wii but I don't think it's any particular companies obligation to support the genre. It's up to each company to create a QUALITY game and advertise it in the right places. I think a game that is worth buying will show up prominently on the blogs and review sites which as gamers, I'm sure most of us will notice.

There are an awful lot of Wii's out there and I'm sure there are more than enough teen+ gamers that would buy games aimed at the core gamer.

Sneaker13

#32

Sneaker13 said:

@thelawyer, maybe it's not as violent because of the lack of blood and gore. But kids having fun in Mario Kart and other Mario Party games, might be shocked why there favorite characters are all of the sudden beating the living hell out of each other. And the storymode is pretty dark and sinister too in my opinion.

jwl

#33

jwl said:

I don't see why games aimed at older gamers necessary means more violence. I don't mind violent games, I play games like Quake, Unreal Tournament and Serious Sam alot on PC, but still. How about just more complex games? Good storydriven RPGs, strategy games or the likes.

IlikeVideoGames

#34

IlikeVideoGames said:

Maybe it is because I am slowly turning into an old geezer, but I really could care less what the rating is on a game when I buy it. Granted quite a few of my games have an M rating, there is still quite a few that carry a T or E rating as well.

Crunc

#37

Crunc said:

I've not come across too many M rated games that weren't targeted at the 15 and under crowd that gets to play games they shouldn't be allowed to play.

Rawk_Hawk

#38

Rawk_Hawk said:

The only M rated games I want are from the Resident Evil and Silent Hill series. Although an Eternal Darnkess sequel would be appreciated.

bestbuck

#39

bestbuck said:

I think what he means by Mature Gamer is what we call Hardcore Gamer. Not sure Nintendo know how to make adult games, I'd be happy if they just made Games full stop.

Xkhaoz

#41

Xkhaoz said:

That pic scared the crap outta me. But I think Nintendo should have some more T games.

pixelman

#43

pixelman said:

lol, I love the pic. I'm happy with what Nintendo's putting out already, thankyouverymuch. We're getting lots of first-party (published) RPGs, and a Mario, Zelda, and Metroid game all in one year. I'm one happy Ninty gamer. :3

LittleIrves

#44

LittleIrves said:

Yeah, 'cause Galaxy, Twilight Princess, and Prime Trilogy are geared towards that highly-skilled 6-year-old gamer...
I'm a fan of France, and I've become a bigger fan of SEGA games recently, but I'm not taking anything the CEO from SEGA of France says seriously.
That being said, some out-of-nowhere Mario game where he disembowels koopas with his new "Butcher" suit (imagine the plumber wearing a white apron which gets more and more spattered in red) or something would be pretty amazing, just for the sheer ridiculousness of it all. And, frankly, I wouldn't put it past Nintendo to shock us all, even if it is against their Family-Friendly reputation. Remember, at one point they collaborated to make Killer Instinct, a fighting game where a robot (oh, Fulgore, how I miss you) takes his head off his body so a huge machine gun can rise from the neck cavity and decimate your opponent with explosive firepower... that's a Big N published title, people. I don't care one bit for all the 1st-person gore-a-thons on PS360, but a crazy over-the-top "mature" game, if done well, can be fun. And isn't that what the Wii is all about?

JebbyDeringer

#45

JebbyDeringer said:

I see his point but I don't think Nintendo needs to make any 18+ games. I like mature games but that doesn't mean they need nudity, excessive violence, or excessive foul language. Resident Evil 4 is great and I don't really need anything more over the top than that. Nintendo is pretty good about making games that cater to everyone. The graphics are usually cutesy but their games offer a challenge and often deep game play. I do like a mix though and there's nothing wrong with the odd more mature, darker pieces.

RaylaxStaff

#46

Raylax said:

Wait, so he's basically saying "We can't get our niche and almost entirely unadvertised 18 rated games to sell, so it's your fault." Oh Sega, how you amuse me.

Giggsy

#47

Giggsy said:

Personally I would like to see Nintendo take another crack at the new Disaster Day of Crisis IP. They really didn't help themselves with that game with little to no advertising. With a bit more polish that could be a great series. The first one while not mind blowing was quite a solid game in my opinion.

MrPinguy

#49

MrPinguy said:

Another cluess moneyeater man-in-suit... Like my poor loved Sega isn't already hurted by little purple dogs fail-marketing creators...
NEXT!...

SwerdMurd

#50

SwerdMurd said:

I'm kinda half-in half-out with this one....While I think that, in large part, it's Sega's fault their games didn't sell, I also think it'd be great for Nintendo to release an 'Uncharted' or a 'Halo' just so that gamers with that age/mindset feel catered to. I think it would go long way towards opening up the market--I mean Wii Sports paved the way for the metric ton of minigame comps that followed, and they all seem to do well enough to keep spawning progeny. If Nintendo lit the torch and paved the way...who knows? Again Metroid Prime was along these lines, but it was like 2001...and the 'Metroid' IP wasn't exactly new at the time anyway.

Does Sega need to advertise more/in better places though? Yes they do. I for one like Sega's contributions to the Wii and honestly I've been buying more of their products than Nintendo's lately...but I'm far from the audience that needs to be advertised to. I tend to be clearer on release dates than the companies releasing the games :) If that's the only audience that enjoys these games....well, Sega's right--they should stop focusing on this audience, as it's not large enough to provide the sales they want.

Adam

#51

Adam said:

Waah, waah, waah. Sega just needs to come to terms with the fact that it does not make good games and never did.

It'd be great if Nintendo did what they suggest, but the company is not obliged to for the sake of third-parties. If Sega made a "mature" game that was well advertised and good, it would have no problem selling.

Objection

#52

Objection said:

Frankly, I just want my damn Disaster to be released over here. Please and thank you, make it happen, NOA.

IAmNotWill

#53

IAmNotWill said:

Maybe if Sega made a good game, then Nintendo and everybody else would listen to them.

Bankai

#55

Bankai said:

So, a struggling company complains that a successful company isn't making their lives easier.

Yes, sour grapes much?

Nintendo has published plenty of mature games. TV advertising is a stupid waste of marketing money, and Sega is a dinosaur. Move on, nothing interesting here.

MetalMario

#56

MetalMario said:

Yes "Showdow the Hedgehog" was horrible. :-D

They would need more than one rarted "M" IP...one isn't going to convince most people to buy another system.

madgear

#57

madgear said:

"Sega just needs to come to terms with the fact that it does not make good games and never did."

Woah woah woah! Outrun, Afterburner, Sonic The Hedgehog, Golden Axe, Streets of Rage series, Shinobi, Virtua Racing, Virtua Fighter series, Virtua Cop, The House of the Dead, Daytona USA, Skies of Arcadia, Sega Rally Championship, Crazy Taxi, Shenmue, Jet Set Radio, Nights, Panzer Dragoon series, Phantasy Star Online, Rez....that's just off the top of my head!

ueI

#58

ueI said:

I was pretty disapointed with Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection. Most of the games seemed extremely primitive when compared to Super Mario World and Link to the Past. There were only a few games that would hold up in today's environment.

dizzy_boy

#59

dizzy_boy said:

wave race, 1080 snow boarding, f-zero.
hmmm, ok, these three games are nintendo franchises. and as is my understanding, they`re not directly aimed at kids.
although a younger audience can play them, but they don`t exactly look like what the average under 13 would probably be asking for for their birthday presents.
and another thing. what has happened to these three games, i`ve enjoyed playing each instalment on previous nintendo consoles, and would love to see a wii outing of each game.

MrPinguy

#60

MrPinguy said:

@Adam
"Never did."
You usually say the right thing, but "never did"?...
never other two words showed so much blindness.

@Uel
I will choose Sonic 2 or Sonic 3 & Knuckles and Phantasy Star 4 over World and Link to the Past any day. It's an matter of opinion and prespective.
"There were only a few games that would hold up in today's environment." the same could be said about any old console, even the mighty SNES.

BlueFlameBat

#62

BlueFlameBat said:

I don't agree with SEGA very often, but this time I do. I'm not saying we should give Mario a chainsaw and have him dice Koopas in horrible ways, but there should be some mature content developed by Nintendo or at least using characters from Nintendo's world. Maybe a GTA-type game set in F-Zero/ Perhaps send Samus after some humans. Maybe make a Zelda game that's like Fable. I wouldn't mind the return of Eternal Darkness. I'd really like that bloody parody of Super Smash Bros Brawl to become a reality.

TrueWiiMaster

#64

TrueWiiMaster said:

I hate the way people say a game is aimed at 3+ or 7+ just because it is lacks violence/mature themes. They seem to be forgetting that the mature rating was given to games because they are too graphic for younger people, not because they are actually more appealing to adults than to kids. I mean, is there really some magical age when a person will start considering Mario childish and get a sudden urge to kill things violently? I'm an adult and still prefer Mario/Mario-like titles over most Mature rated games.

New_Age_Retro_Hippie

#65

New_Age_Retro_Hippie said:

Replying to all comments I choose to!

@JimLad: I hate the "only immature gamers like M+ games!" argument. Games like MadWorld, No More Heroes, and Dead Space: Extraction are excellent. Not one of those does gore for gore's sake - MadWorld did it to be almost cartoonish in its execution (ie, the pimp who is repeatedly killed by one of his ladies of the evening in gruesome ways - obviously tongue-in-cheek); No More Heroes comes from the same branch as MadWorld, though a different kind of cartoonish. The same way Bayonetta, another excellent example of a great, truly mature M-rated game - and regardless of the fact that she becomes nearly naked during some of her more extreme fights, remember that Bayonetta is from the same person as MadWorld, and where MadWorld took violence to the cartoonishly extreme, Bayonetta takes sex to a cartoonishly extreme. And Dead Space: Extraction is all about the plot, a very well-made plot. It just so happens that in the middle, people be dying, people be losing limbs, and blood be happening. It's inevitable, it'd be like saying Inglourious Basterds and The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly were for immature movie viewers.

@Richie: True, Sega can't really complain since it does almost as much to back their games as Nintendo does for them. Though, there was a pretty powerful campaign for MadWorld, and I believe that there was one for one of the House of the Deads.

@Ryuuga: Err? How is that more fair than saying that Mario focuses more on kid friendliness than gameplay? No matter how you cut it, Halo is a great game. I don't like it much, but it is clearly great, it had a lot of heart put into it. It's not like they ran a generic shooter out on a rail, it was made by an accomplished developer. Doom, regardless of the extreme gore, was more revolutionary than almost every single Nintendo game ever made. The only games you can really make a case for are Grand Theft Auto and some of its clones, but even in the case of GTA, it's roundly praised for its excellent gameplay. The only thing lacking in GTA is that it doesn't allow players the option to go "good" - ie, refuse a mission which they may deem too extreme or evil, which would create a new story tree. I have a feeling that the series is on its way to that, though, especially after Niko, who seemed like a real character and not just some thug like the player characters before him [Chris Johnson aside]. And your comment on rail shooters is frown. Perhaps they're not preferred to "real" shooters, but there is a big fanbase for the rail shooter. I myself rank Dead Space Extraction the fifth best Wii game ever made!

Caliko: True, Nintendo doesn't have to cater to Sega. But should they? Yes. They have a veritable treasure trove of cash at their disposal, and it's only going to hurt them in the end if they don't help create an atmosphere that allows for mature titles to exist and sell well. These games may receive zero marketing, but when you put a mature game on the Wii, you have to weigh the difference - spend money to advertise a game that is likely to be a failure regardless, or try to save some money? It's a difficult atmosphere to create a game in. Honestly, if Nintendo were losing and Sega gave this advice, they'd take it. Nintendo's so much more fun when it's desperate.

warioswoods: Do we need to be making sweeping generalisations of the 18-34 demographic? Just because people this age also play Halo doesn't make every one of them immature, nor do people who buy M+ rated games necessarily become immature as a result.

Token Girl: While Shadow the Hedgehog was a major failure game-wise [not sales-wise as I've seen], I don't think Sega's asking for a game starring a dark version of Mario; Nintendo already did that [and did it right, of course]! With Nintendo's current standpoint, they do appeal to everyone, and I'm sure the Haloites or the Uncharted fans enjoy them, it's not enough to hook that demographic to the Wii. They need to be the frontrunner to grab the attention of these gamers, and Metroid just doesn't cut it. Speaking of Metroid, that seems like the best proof that the Wii is doing a poor job pulling the 18-34 crowd in. I mean, on the 360 or PS3, Metroid Prime 3 would have been a smash hit; multi-million seller and such. However, it barely broke 1 million on the Wii. Clearly, Nintendo needs a hook to help cultivate an audience. Not only would it help games like Metroid perform, but it would make third parties more willing to give Nintendo the time of day in regard to serious, big budget games. I fear if they can't widen the audience, third parties will just give us their family fun packs with a two month development period.

Rogues: I think we can safely say that a lack of quality isn't the problem; looking at Metacritic, we've got Resident Evil 4, Okami, Metroid Prime Trilogy/3, No More Heroes, Dead Space Extraction, MadWorld, Murasama, House of the Dead: Overkill, and others with very respectable scores. However, looking at them, only RE4 and the Metroids were true successes. Okami was successful enough to warrant a DS sequel, but not much more; No More Heroes the same - it did just well enough to warrant a sequel, but it was clearly viewed from the "is it successful by Wii standards" perspective. Dead Space Extractions, while receiving some mild "well we're satisfied with it etc." from the developers, was clearly disappointing for the developers. MadWorld had a pretty strong ad campaign and was a very solid game, but ultimately failed for the most part. Murasama was bound to fail, but it would have been nice to see it an incredible success. And House of the Dead was a success after a drastic price drop. It's not fair to dismiss these as bad games, nor is it fair to say that none of the companies gave it a good ol' college try.

LittleIrves: That's not what he meant at all. He wasn't saying that any of those games were kiddy, this isn't Next-Gen Gaming. He's saying that those games do not have a strict appeal to the mindset that's buying into the Call of Duty series, or the Halo series, or the Half-Life series. Nintendo doesn't really have that one franchise that can grab their attention, and it's hurting the Wii because it's creating an image of the Wii being the thing that mom, pop, and the kids play on Thanksgiving rather than something they should buy to get the latest greatest shooter, or something with an amazing plot, or something that completely immerses you into the game. Zelda may be amazing, but Half-Life pulls you into the game more than any Zelda game ever has. You never lose control of Gordon - you don't go into a cutscene and watch Gordon wander around aimlessly. It's practically true to say that you are Gordon Freeman and the computer is never. But with Mario, I find myself taken out of control of him far too often. As a game, amazing. But Zelda still lacks the amazing story that Half-Life perfectly speaks to you. And that they published Killer Instinct is not that odd - Nintendo has been publishing mature-rated games for quite a while. Just not very many before recently. And please, again, stop generalising every shooter as a "gore-a-thon". Like it or not, Halo does have a pretty engaging plot. Can't vouch for CoD though.

JebbyDeringer: Uggh, I don't mean to get testy with anyone, but it's really frustrating to see so many people interpreting anything labelled mature as "sexy violent swear words!". Metal Gear Solid is rated M for mature, but it has very little nudity to it [the kind of nudity you'd expect from a very well-made movie], killing your enemies is actually DIScouraged in a way, in that if it killing an enemy can be avoided, it really ought to be. And the level of cursing is appropriate for the situation and context in the games. Why can't they make something on the same level as RE4 or MGS? And why haven't they? And I'll reiterate my argument that while some of their best titles are for everyone, they're not for "everyone". A gamer who is a fan of a more mature setting - ie, more life-like, or even simply a better combination of realism and fantasy - may have fun playing some Mario Galaxy, but it's still not what he's looking for in a game. Metroid Prime and Zelda perhaps, but the sales don't exactly show us that these shooter fans are very interested in the Wii.

Nintendo-Naut: Well, riddle me this - what is the average PEGI rating for Nintendo games, and the average ESRB rating? :p

Adam: Well, Grand Theft Auto Chinatown Wars had more advertising for a Nintendo system than I can remember from a third party and was considered a failure. Being both good and well-advertised, it shows that the theory isn't sound at all.

my_point_is: Not to rain on your parade, but all three of the games you mentioned have not had a sequel in this generation, so wouldn't that actually make the argument that Nintendo doesn't care about the demographic those kinds of games are aimed at?

</Guy who spent too much time responding to too many people. Sorry if I came off as rude or abrasive!>

JimLad

#66

JimLad said:

In my defense, New Age Retro Hippie:
I didn't say 'only' immature gamers like M+ games, but I do see your point.
However it is my opinion that the mature content in a lot of games today is manufactured to create controversy (ergo hype), and that this certain level of intensity is unneeded for most games.

It's nothing new though, game makers have been continually pushing the envelope ever since the days of the Mega Drive/Genesis. When they realised that the biggest consumers of games are teenage boys.
But now it's backfired on them, because the age bracket has shrunk so much over the years, and the lure of adult themes have lost their edge. It has allowed Nintendo to exploit an enormous gap in the market.

They probably know that 360 and PS3 have dominance over that audience, and are happy to just step back and scoop up everything they are missing.

StarDust4Ever

#67

StarDust4Ever said:

And there have been Mature games developed on Nintendo Consoles. Conker's Bad Fur Day, anyone?
<a rel="external" href="http://retro.nintendolife.com/reviews/2009/04/conkers_bad_fur_day_retro">http://retro.nintendolife.com/reviews/2009/04/conkers_bad_fur_day_retro</a>
Hilarious game in my opinion, though unlike most modern games the "M" comes from the excessive toilet humor, not violence and gore. Nintendo even refused to even acknowledge it's existence in Nintendo Power, and only allowed ads to run late at night, which was really dumb and unfair thing to do for RARE.

bbb7002004

#68

bbb7002004 said:

Nintendo develops games everyone can enjoy, including "mature gamers". I don't see how catering to a specific age group, namely 13-25 year old boys, magically expands your market place. In fact, it does quite the opposite.

New_Age_Retro_Hippie

#70

New_Age_Retro_Hippie said:

bbb7002004: How does it? Just because Galaxy is enjoyable by everyone does not mean that it opens the market to the 13-25 year old boys/men. The 360 did not suffer from Modern Warfare 2, and it certainly does not appeal to everyone.

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