News Article

Talking Point: Nintendo's Changing the Media Game at E3

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Abandoning the big presentation

So here's how the E3 game is supposed to be played by the three major game manufacturers. They appear at E3, talk up how exciting it's going to be, and then hold a high-profile press conference that's viewed by thousands of gamers before being mercilessly dissected. At that point senior figures conduct interviews to talk up what was revealed, and much debate is had about who "won E3", with a focus typically on those three major press conferences. That's the game, and Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony are all supposed to play it.

Except Nintendo has decided not to play. If this was a playground, Nintendo would be saying "I'm taking my ball over here instead, and I'm going to bounce it and kick it however I want", as Microsoft and Sony go back to some enthusiastic arm-wrestling. Satoru Iwata informed investors, and those of us snooping at the President's Presentation targeted at those moneyed men and women, that Nintendo would instead host its own smaller events, meetings and presentations:

At the E3 show this year, we are planning to host a few smaller events that are specifically focused on our software lineup for the U.S. market. There will be one closed event for American distributors, and we will hold another closed hands-on experience event, for mainly the Western gaming media. Also, I did not speak at last year’s presentation, and I am not planning to speak at these events at the E3 show this year either.

Apart from these exclusive events for visitors, we are continuing to investigate ways to deliver information about our games directly to our home audience around the time of E3. We will share more information about them once they have officially been decided.

During the E3 period, we will utilize our direct communication tools, such as Nintendo Direct, to deliver information to our Japanese audience, including those who are at this financial briefing, mainly focusing on the software that we are going to launch in Japan, and we will take the same approach outside Japan for the overseas fans as well.

We asked you what you thought about this surprising news, and you can see the result below.

How do you feel about Nintendo's approach to E3 2013? (358 votes)

It makes sense, less E3 and more Nintendo Direct broadcasts is better

36%

They should do both, E3 and Nintendo Direct

42%

They should concentrate on E3

10%

I'm confused, what's my name?

12%

As a snapshot opinion, it's clearly fairly divisive, with a close to even split between two main arguments, one supporting more Nintendo Direct focus over E3 and another stating that Nintendo should simply do both. In fact, doing both was exactly what Nintendo decided to do at E3 2012, which perhaps makes this a reasonably surprising decision. Last year we had a pre-E3 Nintendo Direct broadcast focused on the Wii U's functionality, the main E3 presentation, a post-presentation broadcast showing more games and Satoru Iwata staring at a banana, and also a live 3DS presentation at E3 itself. It was quite the promotional blitzkrieg, some of it very impressive, but it was arguably the main event that fell short. We gave plenty of opinions on Nintendo's major press conference and, give or take the expected variations in perspective, our stance seemed to be that it was a good effort without necessarily being a knock-out.

Perhaps the trouble with that presentation, and it afflicts Microsoft and Sony in similar ways, is a difficulty in getting the overall messaging right. Dedicated fans are the most invested in the event, but it's being broadcast to a wider audience that includes consumers that are less committed or on the fence about the brand. Companies are trying to impress the media packing out the hall, but need to also show the public why they should be excited. The right balance is rarely found, with an hour-long presentation, from Nintendo or its rivals, often lopsidedly veering from high octane action titles and sizzle reels, to laid-back "casual" games and dawdling presentations explaining basic ideas. Nintendo's presentation at E3 2012 arguably fell into those traps, starting with a bang, but stumbling around ill-fitting genres — platforming to survival horror, to dancing, to sizzle reels and then a mini-game collection.

For one thing, Nintendo may feel that the format and expectations don't show it in the best light. In truth the reaction from the mainstream media, in fairly generalised terms, has been muted or even critical of Nintendo's last two presentations; there are exceptions, of course. The Wii U reveal in 2011 caused confusion, while last year's effort wasn't exactly praised and sung about from the rooftops. In trying to fit in content to suit everybody, there's a danger of satisfying nobody, and with systems such as Wii U and 3DS that target such a broad range of consumers, there's a danger of muddling messages and incurring the wrath of bad press reviews of the event. Nintendo doesn't want newspapers or mainstream websites telling thousands — or even millions — of readers that it dropped the ball or failed to impress.

And so we'll apparently have smaller, targeted events. Some will be behind closed doors for industry figures, some will be press events, and others — likely to be Nintendo Direct broadcasts — will target the public. It's an approach that'll allow Nintendo to be region specific, with Western presentations being different from similar broadcasts running in Japan at the same time. An argument could be made that Nintendo was actually at its best in the last E3 in its smaller broadcasts and presentations around the main event, as they featured more of the quirky humour and light-hearted approach for which it's becoming famous. For Nintendo enthusiasts, we'd suggest the main presentation was its usual mixed bag, but wondering why Satoru Iwata was staring at fruit or marveling at the Non-Specific Action Figure meme defined E3.

And yet, there's the rub, Nintendo enthusiasts may feel that way, but Nintendo is throwing away a potential ticket to the undecided masses. With all of the risks of negative press or unbalanced presentations, it should be remembered that the main E3 presentation is an enormous shop-window. E3 is an event that's almost defined by bombast, and we can be sure that Sony and Microsoft will be screaming about their products as loudly as possible. By sacrificing its grandest fixed stage in exchange for its own plans, Nintendo does face a danger of lacking a presence with the mainstream media and the watching public. It's not always the most enticing or imaginative voice that's heard, but that which shouts the loudest.

Nintendo will have its reasons, both from a public relations perspective and that of maximising its impact at E3; the company hasn't been competing at the top table of the video game industry all of this time without being organised and logical in its business. Some insight was actually given by Satoru Iwata in his recent financial results presentation; the Nintendo President highlighted that it's become common for Nintendo Direct videos to be viewed 500-600,000 times on the 3DS eShop, with far lower figures on YouTube. With increasing online connection rates of Wii U and 3DS, Nintendo is no doubt hoping to drive a lot of traffic for its E3 efforts on existing systems, while using social media and those smaller events to grab the attention of the wider world. Will the word get out beyond enthusiasts? Who knows, but we doubt this decision has been taken without a good deal of number crunching and analysis.

In any case, this could be a rather peculiar E3 for Nintendo fans. Microsoft and Sony will be showing off new hardware and declaring that they're launching a new generation of systems, while Nintendo won't have an equivalent event — of equal bombast — to say that the new generation is already here, while showing footage of huge Nintendo franchises on an over-sized screen. We may not all like the loud marketing of E3, but it'll nevertheless be strange to see Nintendo abstain from the game.

Perhaps the existing model of a big presentation is stale and losing impact, and Nintendo will pull off a social networking and media relations triumph to seize the day. Or perhaps, alternatively, Nintendo will try to achieve that but be drowned out by relentless chatter about the 75 minute shows put on by Microsoft and Sony. We'll find out soon enough, and Nintendo is once again — for better or worse — going off and doing things its own way.

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User Comments (89)

ikki5

#1

ikki5 said:

This doesn't bode well, a bunch of Nintendo directs and media to people who mostly already own their stuff instead of sending out the information to many new people

Dpullam

#3

Dpullam said:

I believe that the trend of having to showcase your system or titles at E3 is slowly dying. After so many years of using E3 it has become a tradition but at the same time it has also started to grow stale as the above article mentioned. As time goes on, I believe that E3 will slowly fade into existence and far from the glory days that the expo used to command. Nintendo is taking a bold risk but in the future I feel other companies will do the same thing. I like being able to have a mini E3 multiple times a year via Nintendo Directs rather than an E3 once a year.

Regardless, I wonder what Nintendo will have up its sleeve if they won't be at E3 with a major presentation. Perhaps they will focus on currently announced games while announcing a select few new games for both the Wii U and 3DS. Only time will tell if their new bold and risky move will start a change for future E3 conventions.

eirikr

#4

eirikr said:

That's something unexpected. I don't know what to think. I loved how Nintendo kicked some asses with the E3 shows before but maybe the Nintendo Directs are making more noise.

MeddlingIdiotStaff

#5

MeddlingIdiot said:

Maybe they just need to sit it out for this year? They're not showing any hardware like the other two will be, so their presentation will be probably be over shadowed anyway. This may also be another strategy for them to show they're not actually trying to compete with Sony and Microsoft... The Nintendo Directs are good and obviously cheaper for Nintendo to make. They may not appeal to a broader audience, but then again all gaming websites watch them and then post whatever's been revealed anyway, much like E3.

Dr_42o

#6

Dr_42o said:

Nintendo Direct is fine with me. More info, less time people applauding everytime someone walks on stage.

HeatBombastic

#7

HeatBombastic said:

@ikki5 How does E3 get reported to newer people than what Nintendo Direct does? Nintendo Direct news always go into gaming news and magazines. E3 is targeted toward the shareholders, retailers, and journalists, not us gamers, not the new guys.

Harrison_Peter

#8

Harrison_Peter said:

It's the sensible thing to do, to avoid embarrassment. The others have their consoles coming, plus huge games that are pretty much finished and ready to show off. Nintendo has no new hardware and few games ready to show except for 3DS. I think Nintendo are being very clever here and doing the right thing, but I don't think it should be viewed as a positive, or spun to look like Nintendo "changing the game" of E3. Nintendo will get bad publicity if they have a huge press conference with little to show. Last year was the big one. If they get their act together then they could have an exciting conference full of great software next year. I hope so. I want to see Nintendo at E3, but I want to see them at their best.

WingedSnagret

#10

WingedSnagret said:

I can't help but wonder if Nintendo, knowingly or not, is starting a new trend for conveying gaming news as a whole. Who knows, maybe in a few years the Big Three may drop the big stage show tradition all together and just do (company name here) Directs.

rjejr

#12

rjejr said:

That's a long piece for not giving an opinion on the topic, unless I missed it, but I really did look.

With all my WiiU death cries this morning out of my system my one big remaining concern is how 3rd parties will view this news. I know the Ubisoft presentation last year was equal to, if not better than, the big 3, but will they feel Nintendo is throwing in the towel? I know the big E3 presentations are mostly about 1st party games but there are always representatives from other companies hawking their games on stage as well. If I'm a 3rd party wanting to sell my game I'm on the phone w/ Sony and Microsoft right about now.

BTW - Best thing at E3 last year - maybe ever - was Miyamoto and the Pikmin in his dressing room. Worst thing was Wonderbook reveal. Though Nintendo did spend too much time w/ NintendoLand.

I really hope this isn't about a lack of WiiU game news to present, my 2nd biggest concern.

Spuratis

#14

Spuratis said:

A lot of people don't seem to realize that Nintendo will still be at E3, just not doing a conference.. it doesn't mean they won't be announcing and showing off new products. I personally could care less about a big conference because after watching the last Nintendo Direct, I just want to see more from it. This is a good thing.

Nintendo would be over-shadowed by the other two companies announcing and showing off their new consoles anyway. Let those two fight it out while Nintendo takes it to a whole new way of doing things.

Onett

#15

Onett said:

I'll admit that I'm a little disappointed that there pulling away from the stage show. Watching the Nintendo conference became something more than just business; it was like a holiday, a treat that I looked forward to every year. Sure the NintendoDirect will take its place, but it won't be the same as the stage show and the magic that came with it.

I will reserve all judgement of this strategy until I see how it plays out. This may very well be a more effective course of action.

Faruko

#16

Faruko said:

E3 its all about trying to please 3 kind of demographics (and never ever really doing a good jb at it) casual, hardcore, and shareholders. And for once EVERYTIME Nintendo did a ND, shares raise a little, wich actually they being on a roll in that case, not wasting money in this doesnt mean they do not have, but that they dont want to waste if there are better wyas to do it (im not saying they are, but hey first there was gasoline and after that diesel, now biogas, things change...)

Instead Nintendo, its separating those 3 in different smaller conferences for people that care about that, so... no longer we will have to watch an hour and a half, where 30 minutes were games that we care, 30 were crappy dancing games (with people dancing or doing like they play music, or reading a book...) and 30 about "the 3DS sales are... ZZZZZZ (people start to sleep)"

And let be honest, in this day and age where everything its so fast and information goes around in a matter of seconds, waiting a FULL year to announce some games its pretty stupid, E3 has being awful for around 3-4 years now, sure its nice since we get to hear the hype in the audience, seeing or new games and everything, but Nintendo Direct has been doing a pretty good job at that, no longer showing a new game that wuold not work on stage (Skyward Sword),

For me, im kind of happy with this decision, trying to please all 3 demographics in one big conference has always been a bad idea, but doing different more personal conference since like a good choice, wasting A LOT of money in 1 big conference was a good idea when the internet wasnt that big, and news didnt travel like today with smartphones, tablets, etc... that you can watch them in a matter of seconds, but now ? it seems stupid that companies keep on wasting money, when you can be doing something smaller that (again, with the help of how fast its information travelling this day...) will get the same kind of attention for A LOT LESS

if GRUMPY CAT manage to be this big with just a couple of photos and videos, you think nintendo wont with a small more personal conference ? Everything changes, and finding new ways, more efficiently to do so, its just how the world it is now

Burning_Spear

#17

Burning_Spear said:

They presumably have no major hardware announcements, so it wouldn't make sense to have a lavish presentation. It might even have worked against them if they made a huge presentation to announce games, given that Sony and MS will be showcasing their new consoles.

Harrison_Peter

#18

Harrison_Peter said:

@AltDotNerd You'll definitely see footage of new games. Demos, gameplay, trailers... the press spend a lot of time getting footage and details from the show floor.

ThomasBW84Admin

#19

ThomasBW84 said:

@rjejr It varies, but in some TPs we give some opinions but focus on looking at various angles to prompt debate. Depends on the topic, it's a flexible template.

WinterWarm

#21

WinterWarm said:

Well, that's a shocker, but I think it's for the best, Nintendo may have had the advantage in November, 2012, but this year is PS4 and Xbox Durango year, I think Nintendo should have waited to lauch the Wii U, now their fresh out of platform material. If they were to make a huge presentation, they would most likely get somewhat over-looked. Well, that's that. I, for one, will enjoy these more frequent Nintendo Directs that go "Direct to YOU"- Saturo Iwata.

SteveW

#23

SteveW said:

@Burning_Spear Sony and Microsoft didn't skip E3 last year when they had no hardware announcements...

This would have been the perfect time for a huge announcement... something like "now the Wii U can play DS and 3DS games!"

It's a huge mistake to not do anything, it will only make people just write them off more than they already do...

Bragoon

#24

Bragoon said:

I don't know exactly what this will do to them as far as reaching certain groups of people, but the way I see it, it won't have much effect. The only people I know who watch the E3 presentations are already avid gamers who just expect major announcements, not people who might be thinking about buying stuff.

I like it. I think it's bold.

DreaddJester

#25

DreaddJester said:

Personally I think Nintendo is doing exactly what I predicted they were doing. Steping back, saying, "hey Sony and Microsoft go ahead and duke it out," letting the fur fly and once a winner is determined Nintendo will then step in and stomp on whatever is left of the victor.

That's the way it is in my head anyhow......

ikki5

#26

ikki5 said:

@HeatBombastic
simple, when you have a big conference, it is broadcasted all over the world on many broadcasting sites, without it, it will just be them sending their Nintendo directs to youtube probably where it will be primarily subscribers and people who already own the hardware watching as well as on the systems which people already own. Without the conference at E3, you probably get like 2-3 minute videos of whats going on in their floor and the rest of the info being sent to those who already own their hardware/subscribed to their youtube/facebook.

GiftedGimp

#27

GiftedGimp said:

Its not the first time Nintendo havn't took to center stage at E3, if memory serves me right Sony and MS have chosen to be lower key in the past... tho not in recent years.

Demo, Game footage, and news that Nintendo put out at e3, will be published by the media, and everyone regardless if they own a Nintendo System or don't will know what Nintendo will be bringing to WiiU and 3DS.

Its simply a case of not needing the big stage to talk games when all it mean would be the games getting totally overshadowed by MS/Sony's Console unveilings and announcments.

ajcismo

#28

ajcismo said:

This move will ultimately prove to be Mr.Iwata's boldest and & best, or the beginning of his demise as CEO. I'm curious as to how it works out, can't wait.

Wilford111

#29

Wilford111 said:

@ajcismo I agree, though Iwata has been making some very strange decisions lately. Though, that may not just be him, but with a bunch of higher ups panicking because of financial losses.

Harrison_Peter

#30

Harrison_Peter said:

@ajcismo I don't think it will be very obvious though. I reckon that if they did have a big press conference, it would back-fire. By not having one, they might be doing the best thing given the situation, but it's not something that will show results. Looking back it might not be easy to see that it was a good thing (which I think it will be).

Redfield_Lynch

#31

Redfield_Lynch said:

I'm a little scared with this move from nintendo and what it may represent... last year's conference wasn't what it should have been, and truth has to be said, the message wasn't passed to the main public. Heck, i'm a nintendo fan and i still haven't bought WiiU... the Wind Waker remake will be the push i need i think, but if i ain't convinced, how about all the others... i think this is smart from nintendo in a way, since i think they won't have anything trully good and new to announce, but this is scary since sales really need a push and i don't think nintendo is doing what they should... I think WiiU will be the next gamecube, an excellent system, but a poor seller, and if this happens, nintendo will have to redesign all their strategy... i hope i'm wrong here, but i trully think nintendo will be starting over from scratch... this move from nintendo is, in my opinion, the preparation for that! I'm not worried about finantial results, but the WiiU not making the half a million mark in 4 months...

rjejr

#32

rjejr said:

@ThomasBW84 - Damn your journalistic integrity, how am I supposed to debate you if you won't pick a side ;-)

Oh well, sleep on it for a few nights before you publish your next piece (which I'm fully looking forward to reading):

Opinion: Why Nintendo is doing the right thing by not having a big E3 presentation

or

Opinion: Why Nintendo is taking a gamble by not having a big presentation at E3

AtomicToaster

#33

AtomicToaster said:

I don't think the mainstream watches public these, it's the press. And the press are still being catered to. I do wonder if potential stock investors will back Nintendo if they don't have the hype from a show.

They've had to appeal to too many people with these, the fans, the press, the stock investors, and the general public. And they've gotten boring. I'm fine with a fancast and then footage from gaming press about the games just like we had a week or so ago. And I don't need to know the whole year anymore, just what's coming out in the next few months.

I feel it does say one thing though. Nintendo is doing their own thing with the Wiiu and 3ds and they have their own goals with those systems. They are NOT competing with Sony and Microsoft this gen pretty much just like last gen. The Wiiu will be just like 3ds and get lots of 1st party games and then probably a lot of the Japanese third party support and hopefully we'll see that support make it to the west because their affordable consoles are a better venue for it these days!

I'm just glad they're still around and I'm sure they'll be fine!

tetrizheroz

#34

tetrizheroz said:

"when you're not winning the argument, change the conversation.". That is what Nintendo is doing. The big speech at conference is built for the 1980's. We have the internet and social networking. I feel it is a very smart move. Sony and Xbox are going to be all about the next Gen. Nintendo is there. Let's talk about that. :-P

AtomicToaster

#35

AtomicToaster said:

There could be a lot of good potential out of this too. There's no doubt a show coming out would have them compared to Sony and Microsoft and they really don't want to be compared to Sony and Microsoft anymore. So much less of the console war garbage of "how will you compete with A from Sony and how will you compete with B from Microsoft" and more focus on all of the games. I really DON"T want people to talk about if the WIiu is next gen or not for three weeks when it doesn't loving matter because the games are awesome and that whole "next gen" thing is just loving marketing buzzwords like "hardcore" that all the drones have a pavlovian response to!

The other possiblity is if the other two consoles just try to rip eachother apart but neither one gets out of it with much success nintendo may come out more ahead then we've bargained. But who knows that's a big if!
Watch the profanity — TBD

DerpSandwich

#37

DerpSandwich said:

I guess it makes sense, and I can't even say I didn't see it coming, but...I can't help but feel like someone just told me we would be opening Christmas presents on one or more as-of-yet-undetermined days somewhere near Christmas.

emiru69

#38

emiru69 said:

I'm actually really happy about it. E3 in the last few years it's always been frustrating for me. 90% of the critics hating on Nintendo and myself trying to explain some of the great eShop titles or the less popular franchises. I think E3 is a bit too American for Nintendo. I'm not trying to offend anyone but American Marketing is really aggressive compare with Japanese and even European Marketing. I always felt like Nintendo was out of place in this event. Yeah, I know that Sony is a Japanese company too but I think they can adapt better to an American audience because they also sell Tvs, blu rays, movies and other electronics. Nintendo is the only company in the last 10 years that never had a unfriendly or (excuse my expression) bitchy comment directed towards the competition. I still remember that comment from Sony saying that the 3DS was a silly toy for kids a few years ago. Americans love that fanboy trash talk (just check any forum) but the average Japanese finds those comments extremely disrespectful. Now, less stress for me, I can ignore critics all along and enjoy my Nintendo Direct and my Nintendo Life updates!! Have an awesome day everyone!

mch

#39

mch said:

Hey how comes nobody talks about this: I have been waiting to at least see (more) kick@$$ footage of The Legend of Zelda U ! ..haven't you?
I imagined the presentations a little like: PS4 vs. nextBox vs. Zelda U ..

gavn64

#40

gavn64 said:

@WingedFish its already changed PS4 was revealed on SONY's terms at a one off in New York and the nextbox is being revealed at a one off in may NINTENDO leads and others follow nothing new about this.

Spoony_Tech

#41

Spoony_Tech said:

The way I see it Nintendo has already had a few mini E3s already this year. Just think of what they could show if they held out and didn't announce all they already have this year. I for one don't mind all the info as soon as I can get it instead of someone telling me you have to wait till this date every year to find out the really good stuff! I say they're fine in what they're doing and just keep giving us the info on New games as soon as they like!

Where am I going to get all this money from for all these games anyways!!

Fingeldor

#43

Fingeldor said:

Perhaps Nintendo doesn't feel they have a card to play against all the negative press that will undoubtedly peak during E3. Look at the last several months. It's been one jab after another against Nintendo. If all they're doing is announcing games at E3, it may not make sense to take center stage. The press will say, 'Another Mario game, yawn' while Sony and Microsoft will be lambasting the audience with another loud gun battle and slick, seizure-inducing graphics. In a way, Nintendo doesn't really feel like it belongs there. Mature gamers increasingly adopt the attitude that Nintendo 'is for kids'. I think the company may get drowned out at E3 and many members of the gaming press will dismiss and laugh about Nintendo's offerings.

It may well be the nature of what E3 has become that makes Nintendo wonder if they are really part of the American gaming equation anymore. Whenever I venture into a local GameStop and inquire about Nintendo, the employees look at me strangely. One of them asked me recently, 'You actually own a Wii U?' Nintendo is going through a transition and this may just be the first of many different steps the company plans to take.

Guitardude7

#44

Guitardude7 said:

E3 was losing its touch anyway. I think Nintendo directs are far more informative and entertaining than any E3 presentation ever given. It'll cut the fat of all of those big names walking on stage. those unnecessary rappers and singers and just be straight to the point and effective. Sony and Mirosoft have a history of padding their presentations with mindless irrelevant stuff like this. And thats why I think Nintendo will win E3 this year because Nintendo will get their point across better this way. After all, the internet IS the number one source for information is it not?

DestinyMan

#45

DestinyMan said:

This is a bold and risky move, no doubt about that, but it may pay off in the end. Count me in as one of those who liked the pre-E3 Nintendo Direct with the bananas and Non-Specific Action Figure than the actual press conference last year. That was mainly just about the Wii U hardware, but imagine if they had that quirky humor with a focus on games instead? It would be even more cool.

Ryno

#46

Ryno said:

Oh well, I think we will still get plenty of information from Nintendo at E3 focused on North America albeit not on the big stage.

tanookisuit

#47

tanookisuit said:

E3 pre-conference stuff has been slowly becoming increasingly irrelevant thanks to the internet. With Nintendo putting out monthly 'Direct' conferences the show is entirely pointless for them to get into for some digital 'measuring' contest if you know what I mean. If they didn't have Direct though it would be vital I think as a kickoff. Imagine the recent few they've done with Earthbound, huge 3DS lineup, teasing WiiU things, and so on weren't done they would have a problem. Instead they get this special spotlight once a month unique onto their own as the other two fish don't want to get involved or try and slice them while doing it and it plays to a better group of not just fans but others as it would be the IT news of the day. Having 3 conferences within 24-48 hours it's news overload and you get loss in the mix other than core fanboy bases who jump and cheer. Fact is they're nice and all, but you get little out of it you can't already get on the E3 floor that week with far better breakdowns, detail, media camera feeds and hands on details that beat some sit and watch theater showpiece.

Xiao_Pai

#48

Xiao_Pai said:

...I can't vote apparently...lol.
Anyways I'm going to miss their E3 shows, love seeing new trailers and the audience going crazy from being surprised and everything. xD
I'll see how these "mini E3 shows" turn out.

ViRtUaLbOy11

#49

ViRtUaLbOy11 said:

I agree with everything said in this superbly written article.

I'd only add a perspective I've just attained from reading it, where Nintendo, like you stated here, would be at a full count when it went to bat against Microsoft and Sony's new consoles, touting 'the next era' in gaming, (etc.), and would run the risk of a no-doubt great presentation being over shadowed by the sparkly eyed wonderment of the freshly unveiled hardware of it's competitors.

I feel Nintendo has made the right move in allowing them to duke it out on stage while they sit cloaked on the sidelines, away from the proverbial blood splatter and crazed media zeal that is guaranteed to ensue surrounding those presentations.

It also is becoming more clear to me where Nintendo originally planned to take up residence in this next console race.

They now seem poised to lock down and fill the generational gap it's HD predecessors have hastily left behind while making their respective hyper jumps into the 'futures of gaming'. However, that same 'future' seems overly specialized and under-catered towards an unexpecting, and economically hindered public that may not be ready to shell out a significant amount of coin for.

Their approach towards this years E3 fanfare gives me a new confidence in the sustainability and untapped appeal of the Wii U, and reiterates my already high regard toward the 3DS and it's potential for the future.

Go get'em Nintendo. You've written every single rule and lead every single movement in the world of gaming. No sense in stopping that stride now.

IxnayontheCK

#50

IxnayontheCK said:

After tninking about this like all day, i'm fine with it. It will spare us the cheesy scripted bs dog n pony show and allow Nintendo to get straight to what they want to show. They're just cutting out the fat.

Araknie

#51

Araknie said:

When even Microsoft announced that they will reveal their next console more then half a month earlier and some games with that you can really tell there's something wrong in the E3.
I can admit Last Years E3 were giving space to who paid the most and that's really loved up when a global crisis is hitting big, can't blame them both for wanting more time and space on their own to bring out all the good stuff.
Watch the profanity — TBD

Pit_96

#53

Pit_96 said:

If you have chosen Nintendo Direct to announce their titles there will be a good reason, I trust Nintendo and I can not wait to see the new title of Retro Studios :)

AcesHigh

#54

AcesHigh said:

Pure genius. I love it. And it, again, goes to show how Nintendo are happy to pave their own path - and a path which their competitors will soon follow.

The facts are that Nintendo already communicates directly to their consumers exponentially more than their other two competitors. I personally have been VERY happy with how much and how well they have communicated through nintendo Direct and other briefings.

Also, if you look back, most of their major reveals have been OUTSIDE of E3 keynotes. All the tasty stuff happens on the side. And besides, before everyone gets their panties in a bind, we need to read the article again... they are STILL going to have presentations and announcements before the main keynotes - just like they ALWAYS have. And there WILL be games played and announced. The only thing they're not going to do is the hour-long keynote. And honestly, WHO CARES?! They will still be showing games and they will still be making announcements. Just on their own timeline and their own terms. They are just tossing the useless pomp and circumstance to the side and focusing on the games and continuing to communicate to their consumers in more frequent forums - instead of waiting to spill everything all at one time. I mean, isn't that a GOOD thing? More news more often?

Bravo Nintendo! Lead on.

TeiselBonne

#55

TeiselBonne said:

I fear Nintendo may one day turn into Sega one day. But all we can do is to hope for the best.

klautrec

#56

klautrec said:

I was shocking at first. as always, the media in general, is covering this news in a very odd way, like saying: ''were you expecting Nintendo games this E3? this is why you shouldn't''

After reading Iwata, and most recently NoA press, It may be a good new way.

Also, Nintendo is already making a huge buzz with this "no press conference" thing, I guess this may be a way of getting atention from the media which was concentrated on Sony's and Microsoft's new consoles. If a News like this is getting all covered by game sites, I don't see why big games announcements won't be.

luisterr

#57

luisterr said:

E3 tweeted earlier that there still will be a nintendo conference....this is all really weird!

Dogpigfish

#58

Dogpigfish said:

Nintendo should ditch E3, I'd like to see third party support only. That would be better.

sonicfan1373

#60

sonicfan1373 said:

There is a lot of confusion over this matter. Nintendo said that they will not do a large E3 event because they do not have new hardware to show off. Instead they are going to focus on software for the 3DS and Wii U in smaller E3 conferences still held at the Nokia theatre and they will also put a greater emphasis on the Nintendo Directs. Nintendo also said that aside from doing smaller conferences, they will still bring their games and demoes to the E3 show floor.

I personally think smaller conferences (like the software showcase they did for the 3DS last year and the Nintendo Directs) are better suited for software oriented shows because they can show what they have ready rather than boring the audience by trying to put filler content in a big conference (like their 2008 conference).

Ichiban

#62

Ichiban said:

Been thinking this over, and i think its actually a great opportunity for Nintendo to really stick it to the competition. Imagine sony or microsoft announcing Halo 15 or some other big name title. Nintendo can retaliate instantly.
"New Halo? Well suck on this!" cuts to Smash Bros 4 reveal trailer.

sdcazares1980

#63

sdcazares1980 said:

Usually, when stuff isn't announced in E3 when it normally does, then it is a sign of trouble. But in the age of the Internet, with Nintendo Direct now, I wonder if this will be a good money-saving strategy by Nintendo. Only time will tell.

klautrec

#64

klautrec said:

@sonicfan1373 My thoughts exactly. It is boring as hell to hear about those numbers and things that I don't even know what means.

Also, Nintendo might be traditional when it comes to "making games", but we have to remember this is the company that made NES, Wii and the DS huge sucess consoles, breaking all the traditional formats. You can't expect them to stay the in the same format. Good or Not, they are in EVERY gaming site today.

JebbyDeringer

#66

JebbyDeringer said:

They realize they failed in kidnapping 360/PS3 owners. They needed to make a reason to buy the Wii U. Xbox/Playstation owners are fairly loyal but despite that Nintendo has given them zero reason to switch brands, none whatsoever. The other consoles have been very consistent in their offerings and people know exactly what to expect from them. Nintendo is the same old Nintendo which is bad if they want to expand their market. You can't just say things and expect them to come true, which is what they have been doing with the Wii U. Third parties own the industry now and have for some time you either have them on board or you buy some development houses to churn out some serious exclusives.

Squiggle55

#71

Squiggle55 said:

Seriously this is nothing but bad news. I can't imagine many people watch Nintendo direct if they don't already have the hardware. Nintendo may think they have a good reason for this but it truly sends the wrong message to a lot of different people.

Pierceton

#72

Pierceton said:

Good move IMO I believe if so many companies wants to question if the Wii U is next gen or if it can even compete with upcoming "storm" of new hardware then Nintendo should make a point that they are going to take care of their fans and their market.

Williaint

#74

Williaint said:

@Dpullam New hardware. That's a great time to have a conference.
It's fine, they can spend more talking about the show-floor stuff, and not about a conference that they had. They've also got the private ones.

skjia

#75

skjia said:

I don't understand what the big deal is? It's not like they're not gonna be at e3 with smash bros and a new Mario. They're just not doing a big conference which is pretty smart considering nothing is ever a surprise anymore. Last year the only surprise from any of the conferences was watch dogs. I think it's a smart move. With the Internet people want news much more often and Nintendo's doing that.

MadAdam81

#76

MadAdam81 said:

@HeatBombastic exactly. Ninty are showing they want to show more to the gamer by doing less industry based E3 and more gamer oriented stuff instead.
The industry has a pretty good idea of what Ninty are doing and vice versa - although I expect Ninty might pick up more indy stuff there - and are going in the right direction to strengthen their ties with consumers.

MrGawain

#77

MrGawain said:

At the end of the day all E3 is is an advertisement- and probably a costly advertisement. I don't know how much Nintendo have to pay to exhibit+ their costs to do so, but I'm imagining it's in the millions. There are 3 different paths for them to advertise:

1: Nintendo Direct. This is a relatively cheap way to advertise, but it's only ever really going to connect to the hardcore Nintendo fanbase. It's the sort of advertising you have to go looking for.

2: E3. This is more expensive, and will connect to the general videogaming community, plus a few news channels on tv/magazine/internet that report on it. The problem Nintendo have is they will be predominantly advertising to Nintendo Fans (who probably already know most of their reveals from Nintendo Direct), and Playstation/Xbox fans, that a large percentage of have already made up their minds they want nothing to do with the Wii U. E3 is a half way step looking for customers who are looking for video games across the board.

3: TV/Magazine advertising. This is a lot more expensive than the other 2, but will reach a more general public audience, AS WELL as the hardcore Nintendo and general Video Game Community. It reaches an audience that may not be looking for video games and don't know how desperately they want a Wii U.

To me it seems Nintendo is cutting it's costs trying to convert PS4/Nextbox devotees at E3, in favor of placing that budget into more broader reaching advertising. May be wrong, but will have to wait and see.

PS: Why don't Nintendo use Queen's 'We Will Rock You' in their advertising as 'Wii will Rock U'? It seems pretty obvious.

NintendoPro64

#78

NintendoPro64 said:

Are you kidding me? This is a BRILLIANT move! Think about. Sony and Microsoft will be showing the full features of their new consoles for the FIRST time! Nintendo could come roaring in with all the software they want. They just can't "win" E3. Furthermore, what good IS E3 anyway? E3 is useless. It's not a good marketing event. Anyone who watches it probably likes to inform themselves on the Internet. Casuals couldn't give 3 dimes about it. It's really just become a place to chit chat with investors. Nintendo is being smart. By splitting the event into smaller ones, they won't have to worry about cramming their conference into 1 1/2 hours. They can give the press the demonstrations, show their fans the goods through directs, and save the boring business jazz for retailers and investors. It also gives Nintendo a chance to look this dumb journalists in the eye! (Seriously have seen how poorly this story has been interpreted.) At first I was disappointed to here this, but after thinking about it, it truly makes sense. E3 is not as mainstream with the world as you think Nintendolife. Winning E3 means nothing. Only dedicated gamers care. Casuals will only be reached through marketing and exposure and that will be done through all the smaller events. Smart move Nintendo. Smart indeed. :)

datamonkey

#79

datamonkey said:

I really look forward to the E3 conferences, so thanks Nintendo for dampening my enthusiasm! :(

TheAdza

#80

TheAdza said:

Not looking forward to E3 really. But I still look forward to Nintendo Direct. So it's a win for me, but I'm already a Nintendo fan, with the latest Nintendo consoles. Getting info to the average consumer... That's the downside of not doing a major E3 conference.

AJWolfTill

#81

AJWolfTill said:

I've never been disapointed in a Nintendo Direct Presentation but I have often been disapointed in e3 presentations. This could be great tbh, besides it still clearly states there will be presentation geared at Western audiances, albeit smaller in scale.

GiftedGimp

#82

GiftedGimp said:

This decision would of been made months ago, probably the end of last year, beginning of this year at the latest.
At a time when WiiU sales were good.
Its not a caes of stepping down due to failure or competition, or to save money due to losses.

Nintendo have Nintendo Direct to push, sometimes quite big announcment throughout the year, theres no Hardware to unveil, and making several smaller game press events means they can concentrate on getting the right message put out about the strengths of the games and how they will benifite the WiiU and its Users.

GamerJunkie

#83

GamerJunkie said:

This is horrible news. To me it just sounds like Nintendo has nothing to show in comparison to Sony and Microsoft, so they want to just use Nintendo Direct to talk to current customers and try to get us to buy more games since they don't make profit on the consoles anyway, but on games.

aspexParsec

#85

aspexParsec said:

Really glad that Nintendo is just going to showcase games instead of a big hooplah. Plus we still have those amazing Nintendo Directs, right?
Basically it's a big step up from the childish acts of E3 and gives Sony and Microsoft the chance to kill each other while we play the Wii U.
(Plus Nintendo Directs are like Mini E3s anyways)

Capt_N

#86

Capt_N said:

@Onett: "it was like a holiday, a treat that I looked forward to every year. Sure the NintendoDirect will take its place, but it won't be the same as the stage show and the magic that came with it."

If I was to venture a guess, I'd say this decision is, for now, mainly/particularly affecting this year. Perhaps a permanent decision? But for now, I think this decision is mainly for this year. As a lot here have already said, this year Ms, & Sony will be unveiling their hardware goodies, & I'll add to that saying Nintendo, no matter what games they have, will be overlooked by Sony, & Ms. So, ppl might be interested in what Nintendo is up to, when they remain subtle. Also, for Nintendo to, in the eyes of some, trump e3 at any given year, Sony, & Ms need to fail to have a good presentation. This isn't everybody, but as I said some.

@Squiggle55: Actually, I came to NLife the same day this was written(Yesterday, if you don't count the fact, that I am now writing this coment early Saturday morning.), knowing I'd see some news about this subject, as I had already heard about Nintendo going smaller on e3 this year, from a family member that had seen it, in a daily tech e-mail he gets, & he told me about it. This is also where I heard about the new Zelda title, although I was then under the impression it was a MM remake. Why am I saying all this? To point out that, Nintendo Directs are actually watched by different communities, & groups outside Nintendo's current customer/fan base. These groups are mainly techie groups, I imagine, but the news still spreads across the internet. I would also venture a guess that it's possible, that Nintendo's contemporaries watch, or have someone fill them in, on what Nintendo is doing silently in the background.

banacheck

#87

banacheck said:

Sonys does press conferences and E3 for maximum news coverage on there products, and it works for them. There is only two ways you'll see anything on Nintendo Direct, by owning a 3DS, Wii U or the internet. The average person probably won't even know what Nintendo Direct is, if they don't own any Nintendo products. And the average gamer will not be buying gaming magazines, they'll be buying games from there local game shop or supermarket. Asda where i live Asda doesn't even stock Wii U hardware or software in the store, online only, and when i walk into my local game store you now about the PS4 is coming. The Wii U needs the press coverage, and ads asap.

Henmii

#88

Henmii said:

I am really torn on this! I always preferred 1 big exciting E3 over many small Nintendo Directs! But I seem to be in the minority, so I am not surprised that Nintendo is ditching the E3 press-conference! Besides, last years was boring! And many people are saying that Sony and Microsoft speeches where quite boring for the past few years! I agree that I am not interested in stats and sales-figures, but it’s up to Nintendo (and the others) to not include them in their speech!

Anyway, Nintendo probably could have used a big press conference, especially since the Wii u doesn’t sell and Sony and Microsoft arrive with their new consoles! But Nintendo WILL be at E3 and they will show new stuff! There probably will be a new Nintendo direct, among some other events at e3! Maybe that’s Nintendo’s strategy: Sending the press back and forth on the floor to get all the news, meaning maximum exposure for Nintendo! Hopefully it works!

Maybe you guys from Nintendolife should make one big video at the end of the week wich shows all the footage/news that mattered! You know, as a alternative press conference!!

Capt_N

#89

Capt_N said:

@banacheck: "Asda where i live Asda doesn't even stock Wii U hardware or software in the store, online only, and when i walk into my local game store you now about the PS4 is coming. The Wii U needs the press coverage, and ads asap." I totally agree.

@Henmii: Like @Onett: said, "it was like a holiday, a treat that I looked forward to every year. Sure the NintendoDirect will take its place, but it won't be the same as the stage show and the magic that came with it.", & my point in quoting him, was that I share his feeling. So, I can safely say even though it was cheesy, I will miss E3 this year, to a degree. But then again, Nintendo is going to be there, but I think,... now that I think about it, I think this is Nintendo's way of covering themselves this year, by making it clear now, early on, that their E3 appearance this year, will not be,... grandiose(?)/jaw-dropping(?), at least to the general public. In other words, Nintendo's making it crystal clear their E3 this year will not be a "show", so that any mediocre performances can be written off, as them not intending that as their goal for their E3 appearance this year. Also, this serves to mean that, Nintendo's fans will not be expecting show-stopper moments, & Nintendo can keep face, for a mediocre performance.

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