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Microsoft's Phil Spencer Can't Say Enough Nice Stuff About Nintendo

Posted by Damien McFerran

Thinks Nintendo's first party content is an "amazing asset"

Remember the good old days when video game firms used to say all kinds of nasty things about their rivals to get the upper hand? It would seem the days Genesis does what Nintendon't are long past, as modern companies appear to be increasingly keen to praise one another.

Microsoft and Sony have already shared mutual congratulations regarding the releases of the Xbox One and PS4 consoles, and now Microsoft Studios corporate vice-president Phil Spencer has gone on record to say what he thinks about Nintendo — and unsurprisingly, it's all good stuff:

Nintendo, I think - and there's some argument about this - that their first-party is such an amazing asset. Their first party studios and IP can lead what they do as a company and the platforms are almost in service to the IP - not in a bad way.

They have such iconic stories and this will seem somewhat random, but when we go back and do something like Killer Instinct, a little bit of the history of your franchise can actually be important part of people feeling connected. Obviously the history of Killer Instinct isn't a history on Xbox, but it's Rare's history and I think the reaction when we announced it on-stage at E3 showed that playing to the people's heart, I think Nintendo does that as well as anybody in terms of hitting the franchises and having huge success with them.

What do you think of Spencer's comments? Share your innermost feelings with a quick comment below.

Thanks to Ryan Miller for the tip.

[via oxm.co.uk]

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User Comments (64)

Prof_Clayton

#1

Prof_Clayton said:

They are just looking for positive press for themselves. Even if that was his true opinion, which it may not be, they're doing it so that people notice them in a positive way. (Which is a better new strategy than Nintendo's had in a while admittedly :p)

MAB

#2

MAB said:

And look at the respect Microsoft showed RARE... They ripped out that Nintendo heart and stomped it into the ground ;)

GuitarAnthony

#3

GuitarAnthony said:

They know it's not the same scene as it was 15-25 years ago where it paid off to explicitly insult your competition. It's all roses and marshmallows these days. Maybe it's because Sega doesn't make consoles anymore but they did the best ragging on competition of anyone. I remember the 2 page ad consoling Sony on their PS2 shipping woes in 2000 with a young boy sticking his tongue out and waving his hands about with thumbs in his ears.

'Course, Sony retaliated by showing Sonic looking dejected in a junkyard over Dreamcast sales but I digress...

Kaze_Memaryu

#4

Kaze_Memaryu said:

This doesn't sound all that nice in detail. He's just 'Nintendo is good with their own stuff', but that's not really flattering. It's a compilation of obvious practices - which then sloppily transists into yet another advertisement for killer instinct.

WaveWarlock

#7

WaveWarlock said:

MS & Sony just feel bad for NIntendo since the Wii U is doing pretty dang weak in sales. Last gen it was a whole different ball game with MS & Sony hating on the big N's super successful wii. Besides, they NEED nintendo to be successful, where else are Sony and MS going to get their ideas from. ;) Nintendo is the driving innovative force/leader in the gaming industry, the power housed' twins are just bottom feeders.

MrGawain

#8

MrGawain said:

Does anyone notice that no one from Nintendo has anything nice to say about anyone? Or any comments about the competition at all?

SpookyMeths

#12

SpookyMeths said:

"Nintendo is so great. Remember Killer Instinct on the N64? Yeah, that was a pretty cool Rare game, which we own now by the way. Oh right, and Rare isn't working on the new Killer Instinct. We have them doing a Kinect Sports game."
-This guy

ajcismo

#13

ajcismo said:

There is no need to say mean things when you can have your media subsidiaries like Motley Fool do it for you.

MadAdam81

#14

MadAdam81 said:

Rare were a great 1st party developer for Nintendo, but an average one for MS... I think that alone says a lot - when was MS's last really good proper first party title? MEchwarrior is all I can think of, but of course Activision's Mechwarrior 2: Mercenaries was 100 times better than anything MS made.

erv

#15

erv said:

@MAB true, they corporate killed it and nothing much remained.

This tunes in nicely with the "microsoft thought they had donkey kong" article a while back. Makes me laugh every time :)

element187

#16

element187 said:

@Nintenjoe64 that doesn't even make any sense. Why would an independent PC platform care too much about happens in the console space? Steambox isn't trying to replace anybody, just offer an easier solution to PC gamers, perhaps it will pouch a few gamers who don't want to live in the 30fps ghetto of Microsoft and Sony anymore.

Ichiban

#18

Ichiban said:

As I was just saying to a friend earlier today: say what you will about Microsoft, they brought Killer Instinct back so theyre ok in my book!
Now.....a real Banjo 3 thanks guys:)

unrandomsam

#20

unrandomsam said:

@CountWavula Sony is the only one who never comes up with anything. (Microsoft provided XNA which basically 95% or more of the good indie stuff uses.) Without it there would be loads less. Good account system (Login to someone elses system play your games logout and they are gone - great idea) . Every console being a limited type of devkit.

Volmun

#22

Volmun said:

Is this not the same guy who sed "If your concle is baclwords compatabil you must be backwords thinking" or something stupid like that

S-Miyahon

#23

S-Miyahon said:

They all compliment each other to the press, but I want to see how all three really feel about each other behind closed doors. ;)

bezerker99

#24

bezerker99 said:

You can't publicly say anything that's not Politically Correct these days. Of course he has nothing but nice things to say about Nintendo.

vattodev

#25

vattodev said:

@MrGawain That's because this is business, not kindergarden. Anything that these companies have to say is literally a move for publicity. Just look at EA trying to clean their image in the past weeks, after all that dirty talking with Nintendo, the Wii U and Battlefield 4. IMO none of these should publicly say anything. A whole company should not act like a kid in kindergarden. But they do use those dirty tricks when they think it will be profitable.
And now they are controlling the damage from hype they made. The console wars was a very strong publicity move to push the launch of BOTH PS4 and XBOne. Now they want everyone to buy everything and they need to pave that road. Why split the audience if you can make them buy both?

Rafie

#26

Rafie said:

Some of you are just plain pitiful. When there's actually good news or good things to report about Nintendo from the rivals...some of you still find ways to find ulterior motives. I guess you all are so use to bad news that any good news come along, you pass it off as bad.

The VP of MS showed some respect to Nintendo. Why can't it be just that. We all know Nintendo is the grandfather of this gaming world. It's only right the other 2 see that and respect it. I won't deny that it's probably a motive behind it, but still they showed some positivity towards the big N.

MikeLove

#27

MikeLove said:

@bezerker99

Why would one company criticizing another company have anything to do with 'political correctness'?? It's not like he's making a statement about a group of people or something like that.

MikeLove

#28

MikeLove said:

@Rafie

They also think if their local EB doesn't have any copies of Pikmin 3 it's because Sony or Microsoft must have paid them off not to sell it. There is no pleasing these people.

yuwarite

#30

yuwarite said:

It's a blatant grasp for positive press after an abysmal 2013. Even if it's a 100% genuine comment from him, it's still completely premeditated and bait for game websites to post about in news articles, and then for Microsoft to analyse the comment reactions; it's just all very transparent.

WaveWarlock

#31

WaveWarlock said:

If The Wii U was selling just as great as the wii did, we would be hearing snide negative remarks from Sony and MS. If history repeats itself....ahem, last generation. ;) The Wii U's doing poor in sales, the Big N is the 'little' N as of now at least in terms of the console wars....And those other two twins feel a wee' bit sorry for the little guy, that's all. It's all BS.

FilmerNgameR

#33

FilmerNgameR said:

Wow what an idiot saying something bad about a company that has been on the market longer than a century(well about a century).

TechnoEA

#34

TechnoEA said:

Wait so when Nintendo says something nice and true about other companies, they are amazing and I quote most of you "They know how to pay respects, unlike the other two"

Yet when someone from MS or PS does it suddenly they have hidden meanings or words ?

I'm not sure of Spencer's history so I don't know if he has motives or not.

You do know just because you work for a game dev or company, doesn't actually mean you have to share their views right ?

Hyperstar96

#35

Hyperstar96 said:

Remember the good old days when video game firms used to say all kinds of nasty things about their rivals to get the upper hand?

You mean like the present? When Sony shamelessly insults Nintendo and their fans on a weekly basis, and people praise them for it?

It's good to see that someone besides Nintendo is trying to be nice.

LDXD

#37

LDXD said:

@Rafie problem is why wait this long to show any respect this could have been said long ago all of a sudden its all over the Webb how Microsoft respects Nintendo and Sony when they didn't respect the gamers that supported them by trying to force DRM
All this is is Microsoft trying to make themselves look good after pissing a lot of people off

unrandomsam

#38

unrandomsam said:

@LDXD All DRM is bad. The console DRM's are amongst the worst. (If I have a stack of Wii U downloads why can I not just treat it as a more portable stack of disks and plug it into somebody else's wii temporarily). Steam the only reason I can justify it is the prices being normally at 75% off when I get stuff. Google and Apples way of dealing with things isn't too bad either.
The original Xbox One DRM for me (Shared between 3 brothers presuming they can live in seperate locations) would have worked for me I never buy used and hate finding disks.

BinaryFragger

#39

BinaryFragger said:

@LDXD

Such as the DRM that Nintendo uses to tie downloaded games to the console?
It's not such Sony and Microsoft that uses DRM, you know.

LDXD

#40

LDXD said:

@unrandomsam yeah I'm off steam now had some issues with them after going into offline mode and having everything up too date its GOG (good ol games) from now on only time I get stuff from steam if its dirt cheap I'm talking $2
But the xbox1 DRM they wanted to do was horrible always tied to the internet that's garbage not to mention it still exist on games like killer instinct they have a you tube video about it
I will never support that type of thing ever! I respect Nintendo for not wanting to go that route
As for Microsoft I've owned the original and the 360 but they are dead to me now you tried to **** me I won't ever forget that!

LDXD

#41

LDXD said:

@BinaryFragger dude that is no way near the same thing its not even close man
Do I have to have constant internet connection to play my games? My freaking single player games!!!! There's no defending that don't even get me started on EA and the joke that Sim city is or freaking diablo3 PC and StarCraft!!!

Trickbaby14

#42

Trickbaby14 said:

Is it like this with all companies? Or is it just video game related? I mean at Cocacola.com are people arguing that their soda of choice sold so much more then Pepsi? And at Pepsicola.com are they doing the same thing? It's kind of sad.

LDXD

#43

LDXD said:

@unrandomsam @BinaryFragger with Nintendo I could simply take my console with me to a friends house on vacation whatever games I have on my system is playable I don't have to worry about internet connection my games on my system my physical games can be shared with 100s of friends if need be
Microsoft can't do any of that no internet connection you'd be looking at a $500 brick that's one expensive brick
Pretty soon games will be like Netflix movies just rent them from an app by that time they'll be 2 hr long games anyway the way things are headed . I'll stay retro

divinelite

#44

divinelite said:

@MrGawain yes, Nintendo is busy with reviving themselves (wii u) for now, can't have enough time to think a good way for flattering the other companies

midnafanboy

#45

midnafanboy said:

i think they have pity for nintendo now there thinking nintendo is done they wont come back for another year well its nintendo chance to show them.

the_shpydar

#46

the_shpydar said:

@Rafie
I like you. :)

Thank you for that comment, as it was exactly what I was thinking as scrolling through this comments section. It's a shame that so many people still want to just senselessly bash or find ulterior motives rather than just accept that something positive was said, regardless of the motivations behind it.

And then these same people wonder why people complain about Nintendo fanboys being ridiculous.

MAB

#47

MAB said:

The reality is this is nothing more than an attempt to lure Nintendo gamers to buy a XBone instead of a PS4 to compliment their WiiU by using Killer Instinct like a bone for a dog ;)

Rafie

#49

Rafie said:

@LDXD Whether they show respect today or 10 years from now is still showing respect. Maybe you're right about Microsoft trying to win the gamers over by being the "good guy". However, there's other ways to showcase that you are what the gamers need. MS decided to extend Nintendo an olive branch and publicly tell them that they respect them. I see nothing wrong with that!

All I see here is folks complaining about it. "If Nintendo was doing the numbers the Wii was doing and beating the other 2....we would be hearing negative stuff about Nintendo!" That's pretty much the gist of this comment section. If has nothing to do with DRM, online, games, or anything of that notion. Why wouldn't the other 2 give the highest respect to the gaming company that has started this gaming thing and still around decades later?! Just saying Nintendo fans here always complain about negative news articles and FINALLY a positive one comes up (and it's from the rival camp), and some of Ninty's fans just shun it.

Rafie

#50

Rafie said:

@FutureAlphaMale I'm telling you man it's sad. Sony and MS knows that they need Nintendo to keep this console thing alive and well. It's a healthy competition between the 3. So when both rivals paid their respects to Nintendo, some of their fans sees it as a ploy. Crazy!

Rafie

#51

Rafie said:

@the_shpydar I'm normally the guy that speaks up on the rivals. I've been called a Sony fanboy and such. Not the issue at all. I have all 3, so I'm actually good on it. All 3 have pros and cons. No console is perfect, however each one does something the other doesn't. Let's not forget the games. Nintendo is still in this. Far from being like Sega.

I'm just really tired of seeing the bashing and such. ESPECIALLY on a positive article.

MAB

#52

MAB said:

The problem is alot of interneters put too much effort into caring about what other interneters say... It will only lead to brain complications and heart problems ;)

the_shpydar

#53

the_shpydar said:

@Rafie I could not agree with you more. It's always good to see reasonable, logical people post here. It seems they are sadly becoming a rare breed these days.

LDXD

#54

LDXD said:

@Rafie I guess what I'm saying is I don't really trust Microsoft anymore. I know this is one persons words here but he does work for a company that has broken my trust and I'm sure a lot of people feel the way I do towards them now
I more than likely would have got a xbox1 down the rd but not after what they tried to do and it just seems now that the ps4 is out selling the xbox1 everywhere including in north America that we hear about this and its on every major gaming website how they now have respect for Nintendo and Sony . I don't remember ever reading anything like this since Microsoft has been in the console market
My personal opinion is that its just them trying to seem like "the good guy" I'm sure they do have respect for nintendo anyone in the gaming business should but it seems like they are just pushing the issue, to me at least

LDXD

#55

LDXD said:

@Rafie #52 lol yeah I've been called a PC elitist a Sony drone an xbot Wii tard
I'd like to see gamers grow up and respect each other more the whole console war thing is childish
As you can tell I pretty much loath Microsoft with the decisions they've been making and things they've tried to do but you can't fault me for that

Volmun

#56

Volmun said:

@LDXD 56 agreed the console war is verry pathetic I keep up with Nintendo and Sony (Nothing i want on XBox tbh) but i will say after the Vita iv lost alot of trust in Sony.

Rafie

#58

Rafie said:

@MAB Dude I know you're referring to me. Just call me out! Also, if you think that what you posted is the problem...then maybe you're part of the problem. ;)

Volmun

#59

Volmun said:

@LDXD i got it on relece day and the 3G modle (came to about £340 including accsesorys ect) crashed 5 or 6 times that day and continued like that for about a month crashes are not as common now but alot of the games have little to no replay to them the best games iv played on it and go back to are Soul Sacrfice, Ragnrok Oddasiy, and sortof Tearaway its a grate game but i dont see mutch replay to it (ik ppl will dissagree but if it had online like LBP and a lvl creator itd be better) - ik im sort of iraticlylisting things but the sholder butons are awful for the Vita like the PSP before it.

Rafie

#60

Rafie said:

@LDXD I get that. No one trust any of those big corporation companies (Sony and Microsoft). They always seem to have hidden agendas behind their proposed propaganda to keep the peace. Still, I can give MS credit for at least publicly recognizing the king of gaming company versus just beating a company while they are down.

I come from an era where the SNES and Genesis were the only ones worth mentioning. Forget the others. They were overpriced and didn't really have any games on it. The debates for the SNES and Genesis for great and it never got out of hand. Granted, the internet was just really getting started for society and didn't have forums for others to chat on. I miss those days. Now, it's I have this console and if anyone else says something about my console of choice, then they're a fanboy and/or not worth talking to. Gamers these days are whining little entitled pricks. Expect everything to go their way. Oh hail Sony....hail Microsoft....HAIL Nintendo and burn the heretics! It's ridiculous man.

Gamer83

#62

Gamer83 said:

This guy was saying good stuff about Sony recently too. I don't know what's behind the 'nice' act from MS all the sudden. I've long considered Phil Spencer to be among the worst of the worst as far as higher ups in the gaming industry. Not that MS was ever a very likeable company but I thought Peter Moore, Shane Kim and J. Allard at least gave the company some friendly seeming execs. Don Mattrick on the other hand was horrendous and Spencer was right there with him. I'm sure he's bsing, MS is going way too out of its way these days to try and come off as a consumer and industry friendly company. I'm not buying the act for a second and I certainly don't think anything Spencer says is sincere. This guy is like a politician.

Tobias95

#63

Tobias95 said:

Its great that he aknowleges Nintendos awsomeness, lets hope Xbox fanboys buys nintendo stuff now, let us all go buy only wonderfull nintendo games

Shambo

#64

Shambo said:

Well, for some people it's already too late for positive words to have any effect on their opinion. Recently, in a friendly argument about Wii U, someone said "it's just a cheap update of the Wii, that's over-priced, while the other platforms offer completely new experiences.". I just laughed, as any words would've only frightened him by attacking his One Truth.

Maybe, for such a person, it's always been already too late.

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