The Wii Was Born Thanks To Microsoft And Sony's Rejection
Posted by Orla Madden
And boy, does that feel good
Motion Control has quickly become an important part of how we play games today. The Wii's success has been based around this bold invention but in reality, the patent, idea and various concepts came from an independent inventor named Tom Quinn.
Nintendo bought a small stake in Quinn's company and as part of the deal were granted licenses to use Quinn's motion control technology. However, Nintendo wasn't first on the list, as Tom had initially approached Microsoft and Sony. You already know the outcome; both companies rejected the pitch.
He spoke with Steve Ballmer - CEO of Microsoft - who loved the idea. Ballmer set up a meeting with the Xbox team, and here's what happened according to Tom:
The meeting went terribly. The attitude I got from them was that if they wanted to do motion control, they would do it themselves and make a better job of it. I mean, they were just rude. In fact, the meeting went so terribly that one of the executives came over to me afterwards and apologised on behalf of others. I remember him saying how this was not how Microsoft should be engaging with potential partners.
Sony was no different when Tom went to discuss his ideas with 'The Father of PlayStation' Ken Kutaragi:
We were in a tiny little room with a big PC projector and Kutaragi comes in, introduces himself, sits down and – I swear this is true – he closed his eyes the moment I started showing my pitch. He never opened them until I had finished.
The rest is history, as Nintendo went on to produce one of the best selling gaming consoles of all time.