News Article

Talking Point: New Ideas, Not New IPs, Are The Key for Nintendo

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Splatoon and Code Name S.T.E.A.M are joined by Captain Toad, after all

Earlier today we reported on an interview given by two of the developers behind upcoming Wii U third-person shooter Splatoon, in which they outlined the creative process that brought us human / squid hybrids rather than macho men with guns, with existing brands such as Mario also considered in the early concept stages. It was just the latest in a host of interviews and statements from Nintendo that emphasized the company's increasing focus on creativity and innovation first, and actual branding later.

Of course, Nintendo doesn't always operate that way. Certain key franchises and brands receive regular updates and releases, which is the norm for every major publisher in the entire industry — innovation in these titles takes place within tighter limits, whether it's anti-gravity in Mario Kart 8 or playful level design in Super Mario 3D World. Yet, with the company under pressure following financial losses over the past couple of years, we're now starting to see more fresh ideas from the big N, eye-catching — perhaps even scruffy in some cases — projects that, in the case of E3, were often focused on promoting the value of the Wii U GamePad.

While the demos themselves said much about Nintendo's current priorities, the branding is also an interesting point to consider. The Splatoon example is naturally prominent, and also a perfect example — the initial ink-based combat and territory idea included the concept of 'hiding' within the ink, though the project went through various designs of new and existing characters. The fact that we ended up with squads of rather cute figures that transform into a squid is driven by how the game works; it wasn't a case of Mario being dropped in to plug a new idea, though that has happened with all those sports and party games, undeniably.

Then we have Code Name: S.T.E.A.M from Intelligent Systems, and it's telling that the unfortunate developers facing press questions were batting away Fire Emblem and Advance Wars queries before they could count to ten. It's a true contradiction among some that follow Nintendo to complain that we often see the same franchises over and over again in one breath, while then demanding more of existing IPs in the next — heck, we still want more Metroid in the Nintendo Life team, to name one example. That's inevitable, in a sense, yet this new 3DS project was another example of a theme and style taking precedence over continuing a popular franchise. The team was inspired by American comic book styles and the art of Jack Kirby and Bruce Timm, to name some influences, and wanted to produce a third-person strategy title with a different approach from a top-down equivalent; again, it seems that the core ideals drove the steampunk aesthetic, and existing brands wouldn't fit.

Yet our point isn't that Nintendo should cast-off established characters in favour of new franchises for the sake of it, but we're merely trying to recognise the trend of some fresher projects being idea first, brand second. Take Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, for example, could become a brand of its own: what started as fun puzzle levels in Super Mario 3D World was identified by many fans — in addition to Nintendo's developers — as a potential idea for a game in its own right. The limited movement of the character and his persona fit the concept, but Nintendo is clearly expanding it in significant ways; levels shown to date range from 3D World-style stages, to larger areas, to on-rail motion controlled shooting and even a boss fight. It's not beyond the realm of possibility that the final product later this year will have more surprises, too. Concepts such as Project Giant Robot and Project Guard are at such early stages as to almost be brand-agnostic — we don't know whether they'll be in a mini-game collection or individual eShop titles, for example. The latter could be linked to Star Fox for Wii U, Shigeru Miyamoto has suggested, yet the anticipated return of that treasured IP is still a mystery, with its "TV-series" style of approach not exactly clarifying matters. Miyamoto-san has spoken about Star Fox not being on Wii due to a lack of exciting ideas, which he believes won't be the case with this Wii U iteration; again, concept takes precedence when working outside of the company's most bankable franchises.

Of course, hard-nosed corporate business plays a part in all this, too, so it's not all whimsical creativity above all else. Let's not forget that Kirby's Epic Yarn began as a game for new character Prince Fluff, before the pink one was drafted in as the star and the new mascot dropped to co-op buddy status; Yoshi's Woolly World will continue that formula, too, though naturally adopting that brand's core moveset and play style. Throughout its history Nintendo has also dropped established figures into relatively generic concepts to spruce them up — say hi, Dr. Mario et al — and boost their marketability; the famous IP doesn't always change the formula, but doesn't exactly harm sales.

Since the Wii introduced Mii characters, too, we've also seen a host of titles — particularly mini-game collections — catered to the little avatars. Yet the Mii is a franchise in its own right now, in multiple cases able to replace Mario and friends in titles that are still rather creative and fun — Nintendo Land showed how Nintendo can blend these characters with other brands for new, clever experiences. The fact they're customisable also gives the big N a valuable outlet for experiences that are tough to transform from a concept into a brand; they work in most genres.

What we hope to see from this current Nintendo, which is currently seemingly engaged in its thoroughly useful 'fightback mode', is a continuation of what we've seen in the past couple of years and increasingly at E3; new ideas first, characters and IPs second. Even the Pushmo / Pullblox games seems like a part of this trend, as soft-looking marshmallow sumo figures are a natural fit for puzzles where jumps are limited yet often require the character to squish under a ceiling while jumping outwards, for example. The image and gameplay fit perfectly.

Perhaps it's us, the gamers, that need to show more imagination, not Nintendo. The company will produce branded games designed to cash-in on Mario, Zelda and others, that will happen, but it also seems open to delivering smaller or entirely new franchises to the world if the concept fits. We ask for a new F-Zero or Wave Race, but perhaps Nintendo's developers have no motivation or stimulating ideas to bring those franchises back. Likewise we demand new franchises, yet ask Intelligent Systems about Advance Wars when it's trying to tell us about Code Name: S.T.E.A.M.

A case can be made that we should care more about what a game is doing and how much fun it is, not the characters posing on the box art.

From the web

User Comments (110)



Rafie said:

Nintendo is going in the right direction with their 1st party games, in my opinion. The new games that are set for release in the later part of the year and next are extremely promising. Splatoon looks like so much fun....and it didn't even have to have real guns and/or blood to do so. Got to hand it to Ninty for finding more ways to make games fun with this shooter infested gaming world today.



ZurrrrBlattTron said:

I'm welcoming all new IP's the reason why I have yet to get a Wii U is because I don't want my game library to consist of boring dead Mario games, A Zelda Remake, Pikmin 3 and Wonderful 101, cause that's all they really have, I would definitely consider Wii U for Christmas though, when everythng I do want is out but it looks like I'll go threw another summer Wii ULess



Bolt_Strike said:

This is what I've been saying all along, and it's something that I think Nintendo had been struggling with this entire generation until now. Most of the games have been incredibly safe, it's very refreshing to see Nintendo finally work with some new concepts, I think it'll breathe a lot of life into their lineup.



Evenmoresteven said:

Oh man. I freaking love Metroid Blast. Seeing that picture, now I just want to go home and play it.



wayneyrob22 said:

i will give you my opinion on nintendo, yes we know they like to be innotive and we love them for that but they need to keep up with the times, for example the wii, very well designed and still looks well now and with a catalogue of mostly excellent gamecube games its worth its money, the wii u is of course backwards copatable with wii but to be honest i would not buy a wii as a stand alone console, yes there are good games on wii but not in the same class as gamecube, the wii u does have some good games, both call of dutys are excellent, marios are well you know everybody loves mario, zelda same as cube but hd, one need for speed mario kart excellent pikmin and so on but you can nearly add them up on both hands, people say the gamecube was in trouble then the wii u is burried already, i`m sure nintendo will have something up their sleeve and of course nintendo do like to make the archatecture of their consoles unique as to encourage developers to work indipendantly with the console which does make sence there is no point releasing a game exactly the same over three platforms, only problem is nintendo seems only to have ubisoft and sega on board at the moment, companys publicly say it`s to do with sales, i don`t think this is the case, maybe nintendo themselves are part of the problem who knows but i`m glad i still got all my gamecube games and with an upscale to 1080p with a little trick of my own, they don`t look too bad!
happy gaming folks!



unrandomsam said:

New IP's are the key. Make it and make it brilliant and make people want it. (Like Rare did).

Project S.T.E.A.M is going to be far better than a sequel to the other two because of the lack of preconceptions which makes any game better.



ZurrrrBlattTron said:

@DiscoGentleman oh yeah, I forgot
Stale sonic games
A sequel to country returns, which has less content then country returns, oh and it doesn't use the gamepad at all
And game and wario



GalacticMario28 said:

"We should care more about what a game is doing and how much fun it is, not the characters posing on the box art."

Yes. This is what I've been thinking for quite a while now. The characters and other things related to the brand do play a role in making a game, but at the end of the day, it's the gameplay that makes a game what it is. If the gameplay is different, it shouldn't matter very much if the brand is the same. Likewise, if the gameplay is the same, it shouldn't matter very much if the brand is different. I hope Nintendo embraces this idea going forward, and I hope gamers are willing to accept this idea should Nintendo choose to embrace it.



Peach64 said:

I think you have to have new IPs. I'm pretty sure Splatoon would not be getting anywhere near as much attention if they'd instead made it 'Mario Paintball'. A lot of people will just see that every generation, the big games on Nintendo consoles are another Mario, another Zelda, another Smash bros etc. I wouldn't recommend for a moment that Nintendo drop those, but there has to be a balance.



GraveLordXD said:

I'd like to see Nintendo dig up some of its old forgotten games and reinvent them, we don't need Mario in everything now do we?



DualWielding said:

Nintendo main problem is that they never break out of certain tropes, cartoony art style, excuse plots and caricature protagonists



WanderingPB said:

I think overall its difficut to balance both…people will always want established IPs and when thy get them they will complain about not having new IPs…and when they give us new IPs people will complain they want more of an established IPs…pretty vicious cycle if u ask me.

@Peach64 Then u also have people complaining about Wii U sales numbers but don't own the console or complaining about people not supporting 3rd party on the Wii U when they themselves dont own the console. I buy a console to play games…i buy games to have fun…i could care less about reviews or sales. Sure being aware of whats going on is good but im more interested in playing good QUALITY games!

Nintendo tries to please fans and pushes different forms of gameplay which is why we have 2D Metroid & 3D Metroid and every other one of its franchises as well. People should just enjoy playing great games instead of nitpicking about things that aren't really relevant because at the end of the day after they play the game the realized it was fun…but shhhhh dont tell nobody it'll be our little secret



Dreamz said:

A combination is best. I love Mario, Zelda, Metroid, etc as much as the next person, but Nintendo can't survive just by spamming those titles alone every year. New IPs bring some much needed new life to the console.



BlatantlyHeroic said:

The thing is, they need to balance out what's released. There are three groups to please so of course the fan base sounds contradictory. When announcing, I have a feeling the best strategy is to announce a remake, a new IP, and a new game in one of their franchises.



IceClimbers said:

One thing that should be mentioned is Kid Icarus Uprising. While not a new IP, it was still a much needed breath of fresh air. New IPs are great, but sometimes old dormant IPs can make for fun new experiences as well. Uprising has become one of my favorite games of all time.

As much as I love Mario and Zelda, I'd love to see more from old IPs that haven't seen the light of day in years (StarTropics anyone?) or new IPs all together.

Seeing Splatoon, Nintendo should definitely give their younger developers freedom more often.



nilcam said:

Nintendo's biggest problem is its success. Despite many Nintendo games introducing new and interesting ideas, when most gamers see familiar characters they assume that the game will play as it always has. I've run into that attitude a lot and it is frustrating. The advantage of new IP is that it forces gamers to look at the new mechanics at play rather than the characters starring in the game. If Splatoon starred the Mario cast, it would not have garnered near as much attention as it did.



Maelstrom said:

Before, S.T.E.A.M. was announced, I just wanted another FE game from intelligent systems. Now, I'd rather have this than yet another FE or AW game.



Darkness3131 said:

I think growing up in a house where I was the only one that played video games really gave me a different perspective on games. My parents had no idea what to get in terms of games, and being a child, I didn't have many ways to find out what games were the best. My childhood collection consisted of obscure titles save a Mario or Zelda, and everything else was shovel ware. When I was able to start looking for myself, there were all these new and amazing franchises I had never really heard of, so I was more focused on gameplay than what character was on the box. I like to think this allowed me to branch out from the typical mold slightly. Of coarse, I still love the next Zelda or anything like the next person, but lots of times, I wasn't attached to the series in any way before playing a middle installment, and I went to explore the series long after I had fallen in love with the gameplay.



FJOJR said:

I know just making a new F-Zero with no new concept or gimmick makes it feel the same but when that sameness hasn't been seen in 10 years then just bringing it back is enough. The tech is leaps and bounds ahead of the GameCube which means that F-Zero would be an amazing showcase of the Wii U power and even online play. The Gamepad is already underused so nobody would notice.



unrandomsam said:

@FJOJR It would be a bad showcase if Nintendo couldn't get it working 4 player at 60fps (Which they failed to do for Mario Kart 8).



Kirk said:

Nintendo has new ideas all the time. Pretty much with every new game it releases. That's not what it needs to address or worry about imo.

What Nintendo needs is fresh new IPs and a couple of new universally appealing characters headlining those new IPs that it can turn into beloved fan favorites it can sell games on the back of for the next 30 years instead of always using the same handful of franchises and characters it's been using for the last 30.

It's still needs Mario, Zelda, Samus, Kirby, Yoshi, Donkey Kong, Star Fox, Kid Icarus, the main Pokemon characters like Pikachu etc PLUS I think it needs one or two brand new soon to be beloved characters imo.

The generic Nickelodeon characters from Splatoon and the forgettable characters from S.T.E.A.M are not those characters.



ManateeBlubber said:

@IceClimbers If Uprising actually continued its status of being of Star Fox game... oh gosh. People would have complained about how it was too different, though.



HollowGrapeJ said:

@Hernandez That's perfectly understandable. You don't have to like everything they give to you. People have opinions and I respect yours. Tbh, It's not what I expected either... I'm gonna give it a chance though when it releases.



Natsu9k said:

Back when the Wii U launched I heard it can have two gamepads synchronized on the same system. Thats right....6 players. They should start implement that.



ManateeBlubber said:

@torotoid64 If those were the only Wii U games, it would have been dead in the water already. Did you even watch the E3 Direct? And there are going to be more this year!



GuSolarFlare said:

@Hernandez well the game doesn't even have a release date yet so the graphics will probably get better later(now if the problem is the style to each it's own, I consider myself to be the weird one for liking it so much)



MrGawain said:

I never got the 'same old same old' Nintendo criticism.

the original Zelda is different to Adv. of Link, with both different to Link to the past which is miles away from Ocarina, which has a totally different play design to Majora's, which was completely different to Wind Waker, which wasn't as dark as Twightlight Princess which was a completely different setting to Skyward. And you can do the same with Mario 1 to US Mario, to 3, to World, to 64, to Sunshine to Galaxy, to NSMB, to 3D World. The characters, music cues, tropes basic story type is the same, but they exist with different engines, dimensions, palettes, and game features.

Glad to see some new IP's, if just to shut people up.



Kirk said:


It's not your fault.

When "you" ask for a new IP you shouldn't have to specify that you want a new IP that's actually broadly appealing and visually compelling etc, it should be implicit, as opposed to a game with a very niche looking art style and niche looking gameplay design too.

Fire Emblem has a pretty universally appealing setting and character designs in general and the gameplay, in terms of how the game is designed and the way it comes across etc (that simple, intuitive grid based gameplay), is also quite broadly appealing for a strategy type game. If they'd managed the same with S.T.E.A.M I'm pretty sure there wouldn't be quite so many people immediately going back to asking where the next Fire Emblem is or whatever.

The fans are not the problem here.

Note: If however you are one of those people asking for totally nice products that only appeals to a handful of like minded gamers who give a crap about steampunk or whatever then you probably are part of the problem because the last thing Nintendo needs right now is to waste it's finite resources on all new IPs that only a few people are actually going to give a crap about, that aren't going to sell in huge numbers and that aren't going to help console sales.



WinterWarm said:

Hmm, very interesting article. What struck me the most is the Intelligent Systems bit, fans demanding two separate things to happen at once really isn't possible. Nintendo fans are the most picky, in my opinion.

Nintendo's doing right as far as first-party games are concerned, I think what alot of fans(especially older ones) want is some kind of reassurance that currently 'dead' franchises(F-Zero) will come back, they've adopted a sort of 'all aboard' mentality, wanting new IPs and experiences, willing to take risks on them, but not wanting to lose anything in the process. Essentially, they want Nintendo to manage the franchises it already has first, before they begin new ones.

As for Code Name: S.T.E.A.M., I, myself as a younger gamer, am extremely excited for this game's release, I've never played Wave Race, F-Zero, or even Star Fox, my first Nintendo console was a Wii, so the franchises I'm familiar with are Zelda, Pokemon, Kirby, Mario(and his many off-shoots), and, last year, Fire Emblem(which quickly became my favorite), so I can't say I understand why so many people are adamant about this franchises return, and as such I'll reserve any judgement until I play them someday.

In closing, it doesn't matter what you want: New IPs or the complete revival of old ones, just pick one and stay with it so Nintendo can find out what the majority of its customers want, Nintendo rarely goes in the completey opposite direction of what its supporters want.



ikki5 said:


you know you can edit your posts right? But yes at the same time I do agree with you. When I saw those two gamepads on the table in the tree house, I was so hoping they would mention or show that they are doing something in that fashion but.... they didn't.



WinterWarm said:


Alright man, chill. We all know WiiU has more quality games than that, Like Arkham, for example, also I noticed you made no mention of the eShop, which is full of amazing titles, don't let your frustration lead you to make intentionally false claims, it will in the end do nothing but embarrass you and as a whole it makes the community look bad.

Nintendo has always been about innovation, and with innovation inevitably comes trial and error. Have patience, have you seen any Nintendo E3 footage? Great games are coming!



Darknyht said:

The problem is that everyone wants their favorite franchise yesterday on a console that should have at least a five to seven year lifespan. Nintendo tends to pump out roughly a title every 4-6 weeks (between eShop and Retail), so that means about 60+ Nintendo titles in the Wii U's lifespan.

That means there is still plenty of room for [insert your favorite franchise] to be produced.



WinterWarm said:


"I find your lack of faith disturbing."

How do you know anything about Code Name: S.T.E.A.M.'s characters besides the tiny amount IS has shared? And Splatoon isn't story-driven, the developers has already stated that.



Farmboy74 said:

Every new generation of hardware needs new IPs to keep things fresh and not go to stale. Myself I would like to see an F Zero reboot but I don't think that is about to happen any time soon.



GuSolarFlare said:

@Kirk I know what I see too and I see more and more people hating on anime-ish games and Fire Emblem's style gets closer to anime every game not to count people that can't take turn based games or fantasy settings without guns(don't get me wrong I love anime and Fire Emblem, just saying it's not more "universally appealing" than any other game out there especially one that wasn't even released yet)



Bolt_Strike said:

@MrGawain None of the NSMB games are particularly different from each other. Neither are 3D Land and 3D World for that matter. In fact, I'd say all 6 of those games are pretty similar, the only real difference between the NSMB and 3D series being that one is 2D and the other is 3D (which doesn't really amount much gameplay wise). Sadly, we've been overloaded with the NSMB and 3D series the past few years, so saying Mario is "same old, same old" lately is pretty justified. I can say the same thing of a few other recent Nintendo games (Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze, Yoshi's New Island, Kirby Triple Deluxe) it seems like from 2010 up until now there's been a lack of new ideas.



Kirk said:


I think you're seeing things very subjectively there. The general 'animation/cartoon' art style is universally popular and appealing to a huge audience, both old and young alike, even the Japanese "Anime" style for the most part and certainly the way it's been used in the Fire Emblem series. It's like Disney cartoons... Pretty much anyone can appreciate then when they're done well despite them being cartoons. That's not the case with the whole steampunk style however, which is a very particular and very niche style. Basically everything about Fire Emblem is certainly more universally appealing than the equivalent in S.T.E.A.M.



Captain_Gonru said:

@Peach64 I wonder about that. You may be right, but walk with me on this for a sec. Imagine a trailer opens with barbed wire, dirty trenches, typical shooter stuff. Then, out of a foxhole, pops Yoshi, Rambo-ed out with twin paintball guns and red bandanna. He grabs a purple acorn, pulls the "pin" with his teeth, and paint-grenades a nearby Bowser in the face. If you did it all in an almost Call of Duty parody mold, I could see some hype. I think at some point it becomes a different game, but maybe billed as a Sunshine follow-up, it could work.



GuSolarFlare said:

@Kirk then it's like I said before I'm the weird one for liking it(codename S.T.E.A.M.)
I don't mind being considered weird



Kirk said:


It not "weird". It's just niche.

Intelligent Systems made a game that aesthetically and indeed in terms of core gameplay and control etc is more niche than their previous games and this is the worst possible time to be doing that imo. They need to be making games that get even more people excited for Nintendo's consoles rather than games that interest less people and especially when it's really only those people who get excited about niche ideas etc.

I think they should have simply picked a more universally appealing overall look and style, rather than this quirky Japanese/American steampunk comic book hybrid, and probably went with controls, gameplay and mechanics that were more immediately understandable and appealing just from watching a trailer etc.



GuSolarFlare said:

@Kirk I get it, so you mean they should have kept this crazy "niche" artstyle for a better moment, if at all? it actually makes sense, people usually aren't willing to try things that are out of common especially when it's a shocking transition from FE style to this(doesn't change the fact I like it, though XD )



Ralek85 said:

The data doesn't lie, just look at Mario, the most innovative and most critically acclaimed Mario games, e.g. SM Galaxy, are the ones that are selling the worst and get trumped saleswise by NSMB XY on a regular basis. Gamers are not as keen on innovation as they pretend to be. It's mostly a case of political correctness. We are supposed to say we demand something new and then when we get it, we ignore it and go for something well-established. Why buy Dishonored when there is a new Assassins Creed ....
I think it's a beautiful sentiment, but for the sake of accounting for the facts, the numbers don't support the idea that there is a broad and deep desire for innovation, not when it comes down to the question what will end up being purchased.



Kirk said:


Yeah, there's a time and place for trying new things that probably won't appeal to a broad audience, like this whole niche steampunk 3rd person strategy game, and it's not when you're under pressure to produce some much needed new big hit games above all else.

The time, money and resources that were put into this game have now basically come at the cost of some other potentially more universally appealing and most likely bigger selling new game that could have been made instead. Now everyone else that doesn't give a crap about some niche steampunk 3rd person strategy game is going to have to wait even longer for that other next game from Intelligent Systems, whatever it might be, because of this decision...



gameboy1975 said:


The thimg is though is that you can say the EXACT same thing about almost every game & franchise out there. From Mario to Infamous. COD follows that mold. Battlefied, Uncharted, Donkey Kong, you name it.

Guess that it's time to stop gaming for you my friend; because there can seems to be not much new going on regardless where you go to play. Especially when you take into account the bigger franchises. Maybe tortoid64 should consider the vacation option as well.



JebbyDeringer said:

That's a totally reasonable statement. They have great even legendary IP's with a strong history. They have been way too safe with some of them (cough cough Zelda). Nintendo is great at creating innovative gameplay, we see it all the time with Mario. Even in Zelda there are some innovative elements but they are sort of hacked into what has become a paint by numbers sort of game. Really few if any of the Zelda games are subpar but there is sort of a missed opportunity with every release and tying the game to a formula really limits where the game can go. Predictability is probably gaming's biggest downfall for me. Look at anything Ubisoft is cranking out and it defines what I hate about the gaming industry today.



TwilightAngel said:

Well now we know with these comments. The new IP that nintendo is making is going to get hated and people will not buy it. Just because is not the majora's mask remake people are going to keep asking for it until nintendo makes it. Give this game a chance.



Bolt_Strike said:

@gameboy1975 And this is why Nintendo fans tend not to play a lot of non Nintendo games. At any rate, it's pretty clear based on this year's presentation that Nintendo isn't out of ideas yet, so I see no reason to go anywhere yet.



MrGawain said:


But my point is to say Mario= NSMB is wrong. You may get sequels to these sorts of games (Galaxy and Galaxy 2), but you don't just get NSMB1 followed by NSMB2 followed by NSMB3, NSMB4 etc....

Whereas series of games like Assassin's Creed, Lego, FIFA, and COD are the same engine and same controls, with a different protagonist and different graphics. But they're the same games again and again. If we saw a 2D Assassin's Creed, or a 3rd person Call of Duty, you could say they were mixing up the formula.

I would argue that NSMB is almost a different IP to SMB3D or SMG because although the characters and setting is similar, they are different sorts of games.



TobiasAmaranth said:

Yeah, didn't read a bit of this, just the topic title. I'd love to see some new ideas applied to the Star Fox genre. Ship combat / dogfights can only go so far on their own. That's why people like the vehicle combat in [CoD type title], it's not ALL there is to them.



DreamOn said:

New IP is hit or miss. Look at W101, I didn't want that game but others here are frustrated (which is perfectly fine) that most people were like me.



Bolt_Strike said:

@MrGawain I never said that Mario is NSMB, nor did I say that Mario as a whole is rehashy. My point is that all six of the NSMB games and 3D World games combined played similarly to each other. Sadly, after Galaxy came out, all but one of the Mario games we've gotten since then were of those two series. If you look at that period of time from about 2009 up until now, then you could definitely say that Mario has been same old, same old lately.



Andremario said:

Yeah but if you look at sales figures which the game theorists explain in an episode that people don't really want innovation THAT bad NSMB series is still selling or had sold good as well as the rest of the NEW series.



siavm said:

I kind of get what this article is saying but new ip is key. They have been pumping to many games with Mario's face and it is helping sales some but it is also bringing down the Mario brand. Zelda brand is kind of going down this path to. The COD every year model is not something nintendo needs to keep doing they have a lot of ip and new ideas can how them come back but nothing brings in people like a new ip.

Splatoon looks pretty awesome. I am glad Mario is not the face of that game. Ideas are cool but if they don't fit they should not use a ip that exist to make it.



3Daniel said:

i think a steady stream of games is nintendo's salvation. they have got to stop with the release a wii u game. wait 3 months for the next nonsense.



Sean_Aaron said:

@Rafie Absolutely. I was well-impressed with the tone and content of the digital event and how fresh some of these things seemed. Really it just showed up more of how safe other publishers have become at churning out the same thing over and over. Without Nintendo, gaming on consoles would just be in a dead end creatively as far as I'm concerned.



aaronsullivan said:

This sentence from the article needs a rewrite or two "What we hope to see from this current Nintendo, which is currently seemingly engaged in its thoroughly useful 'fightback mode', is a continuation of what we've seen in the past couple of years and increasingly at E3; new ideas first, characters and IPs second"



aaronsullivan said:

STEAM has some image problems, but the game is solid and for fans of the genre who watch some of the extended game play footage they are going to be salivating. It's brilliant and hopefully the game play helps people accept the sometimes garish visuals. Even those not used to turn-based tactical games are going to find it more accessible. Definite potential for a word-of-mouth breakout hit. The last Fire Emblem surprised me at how popular it got, too!



JaxonH said:

Yeah, I'm glad to see some new IP's, but rational-minded gamers understand that it's not the character or name that makes a game different, it's the gameplay itself that sets games apart (it's why Call of Duty and Battlefield could be mistaken for the exact same game, despite being 2 totally different IPs).

For me, Captain Toad is as much of a new IP as Splatoon. Hyrule Warriors as much as STEAM. And Devil's Third, Bayonetta 2, Watch Dogs, all these are going to be brand new experiences as well. That's what people want, right? Brand new experiences? Not brand new characters.

And what's great is a franchise could have 20 games out already, BUT, if you have personally never played any of them, then it's just like a brand new IP. I mean, Pikmin 3 had 2 previous entries, but what does that matter if you never played them? Pikmin 3 will be just as new to you as if it were the first Pikmin game ever released.

I just hope Nintendo fans put their money where their mouths are and don't let these new IP's flop like Wonderful 101 did (despite it being one of the best, if not the best, games on Wii U, and despite incessantly clamoring for "new IP's")



aaronsullivan said:

Just wanted to add that the whole Treehouse thing with all that gameplay footage can really help with these new IPs. You know, get past that first impression.



unrandomsam said:

@JaxonH Being rational about it though there are far too many recent Nintendo games that are not different enough. (Or released with entries too close together - If I don't have to learn anything to play the sequel after playing the original once when it came out it is too close together).



brandonbwii said:

Are people STILL debating this topic. This is getting more annoying than the tried and true Nintendo is kiddie debacle.



JaxonH said:

@unrandomsam I disagree about that. Nothing is too close together as long as there's still fun to be had. I buy Assassins Creed every year, and despite the annualization it's still fun. Never have to learn much new either.

With Nintendo games, my only wish is that we'd get sequels more frequently rather than less. I could go for two New Super Mario Bros per gen instead of just one. I beat the game in less than 20 hours. 20 hours for a 6 year generation isn't nearly enough to satisfy my 2D Mario platforming hunger, much less give me fatigue. That's why I like owning their consoles AND their handhelds. Twice as much classic gameplay I love.

Idk, I'm satisfied- everything is picture perfect to me. I've always loved Nintendo, but I feel they've done a particularly great job with maintaining a high quality library on Wii U. Whether it's New Super Mario Bros U or DKC Tropical Freeze, Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate or Wonderful 101, Mario Kart 8 or Pikmin 3, Wii Sports Club or Zelda Windwaker HD... Rayman Legends or even Pushmo World, heck, ESPECIALLY Pushmo World, every game seems to make it's mark on my all time favorites list. But what excites me is that is just the tip of the iceberg. The real slew of games is still ahead of us. From new IP's like Splatoon and STEAM, to 3rd party exclusives like Bayonetta 2 and Devil's Third, to the return of fan favorites like Star Fox U and Xenoblade Chronicles, everything just seems so surreal.



MasterWario said:

The only reasons I strongly want a new Advance Wars is because:
1) There were a few limitations with the level editor in DS, which they
fixed in DoR but I can't stand that game's art style and they took out Megatanks.
2) I wasn't educated when DS launched; when I first picked up advance wars I found DS for $7. If a new game is on Wii U, I'll be able to play it with everyone. If the game is on 3DS, I should be able to convince a few friends to get it by riding on hype.
3) DS is one of my favorite games ever, I have way too many hours on it

Am I upset there was no Advance Wars announcement? No.
But at the same time, no other game has been a more enjoyable and long-lasting co-op + versus experience than this game has (other than maybe League, but that has its own problems), and if a new Advance Wars came out that was better than DS, I would always have a backup video game to play with my friends that is both fun and engaging.
And considering how fast games get old, that means quite a lot to me.



Windy said:

I say make a system bundle with Classic controllers packed in and what it will sell as a test market. I still think people would like to see a price drop with this type of system lot. Those touch screens are expensive. Just an idea to get a lower price alternative out there for peeps like myself who can't afford a Wii-U at this time. Plus the fact Im a big fan of the classic controllers. Make them like old sega Genesis 6 button fighting controller and I will be happy as a clam. I'm going to be real happy if I get a Wii-U this Christmas for one game: Hyrule Warriors looks extremely cool! Then Xenoblade the best RPG ever made! Not kidding it really is the best RPG ever.



kupo said:

Captain Toad is a great example of the point this article is making. They reinvented Toad into a wreckless baddonkey who simply does not give a love, goes around tresspassing, looting, and killing everyone he comes across.

I haven't played Super Mario 3D World yet...based on that game, what kind of difficulty should one expect for Captain Toad? I prefer difficult / challenging games.
Please watch the profanity — TBD



toofish said:

@torotoid64 if you don't like those IPs then don't buy the wii u you'll be getting a lot of that with nintendo console. save your money dude otherwise you'l be commenting everywhere telling how nintendo keep rehashing their franchises. do yourself a favor don't buy what you don't like.



WinterWarm said:

@Kirk Yes, granted you know what you see, but what you or anyone has seen on S.T.E.A.M. is very little. Best to reserve judgement until a a definitive gameplay trailer is released.



Artwark said:

Agreed. We're asking Nintendo to do so much when they can only do it bit by bit. I guess gamers have realized how magical Nintendo's creations really are and that they are simple and fun as well.



Noelemahc said:

People are asking for more Metroid and Advance Wars because Nintendo has been ignoring (or, in Metroid's case, messing with the fans) them for the last generation - no WiiU or 3DS announcements, and there hasn't been a classic Metroid since Fusion (no, Other M doesn't count in the same vein as why Battallion Wars didn't count - it's a different genre).

Much like the demand for more jump-and-shoot-not-JRPG Mega Man and 'classic' Metroidvania, it's a "guaranteed money which the publisher somewhy ignores" situation that continues to baffle me endlessly.



Dizzard said:

I think it helps if it isn't Mario though, I've burnt out pretty badly. I get it, he's a big deal but that doesn't mean he has to be trotted out constantly.

The main reason I love new IPs from Nintendo is that it's generally a guarantee it'll be something new and fresh, whereas with existing IPs they can still feel samey if the idea isn't extremely fresh. It's like in the Splatoon interview where they said they couldn't see any existing characters doing what the squids can do. Like how you couldn't really imagine other Nintendo IPs doing what Pikmin does.

I'm not saying existing IPs are bad, far from it. Nintendo has the best back catalogue around and very rightly keeps going back to them. That said, balance is important too. Creating 1 or 2 major new IPs every 10-15 years is a good thing. Nintendo shouldn't be afraid to do it if it feels right and they're prepared to put their weight behind it. There's no point making a new IP and expecting it to sell itself right out of the gate.

Personally Splatoon was my highlight of E3 and Codename: Steam looks very interesting. So I'm more than ready to lock heads with anyone who thinks they shouldn't exist.



Kosmo said:

IPs give the new idea a solid body to be in. Would Mario Galaxy have been Mario Galaxy with a tasteless mascot? Would Luigi's Mansion have been so cool without Luigi? Would Fire Emblem be as solid as it is without its charismatic characters?

New ideas are all fine, but efforts in that sense are still solidified by known IPs, like Captain Toad, taking the Mario Universe. Ideas have been tried before, and some haven't worked despite being pretty good, like Eleedes, Odama, Geist...



Kosmo said:

@Noelemahc Some developpers want to put creativity before profit, like Nintendo, Capcom and Konami. And some just hatch the same game over and over... HUMEAANDACTIVISIONHUM



alLabouTandroiD said:

I don't think Project Roboto and Code Name: S.T.E.A.M. really were ready to be shown yet. The concept of the latter is quite interesting but it just didn't look any fun yet.
Apart from that i thought the lineup looked intriguingly refreshing.
What was shown did fit the theme of reinvigorating the GamePad - and the Wii U in general - by giving it more of its own identity.
Splatoon's been the cart horse and the others nicely kept up with it.




This is something I've been saying for a long time now. What's the point of a new IP that does the same thing? It's like a fancy new watch that tells the same time as my dingy plastic one.



Datasun_7 said:

@NINTENCHIP absolutely. A new IP is only required when expanding into a new genre. What's the point in having three similar franchises, all the same genre, when they could all be varying entries in the same series. Things like that get a free pass just cos they have a new name in a slightly different coat of paint



Kirk said:


Well it's not your fault when those new IPs simply aren't designed to appeal to more than a niche crowd. If that's how they are designing these games then no one should be surprised when the only sell in niche numbers. Just like The Wonderful 101. They need to start making new IPs that the large majority of core gamers actually want to play again, like they did back in the NES and SNES era with basically all of their big games, franchises and characters etc. That's why people still play and talk about the likes of Mario, Zelda, Donkey Kong, Kirby, Star Fox, Metroid, Pokemon etc now, 20-30 years later and why basically no one will be talking about The Wonderful 101 in 20-30 years time.


I've seen around 20 mins of HD quality direct gameplay footage on IGNs E3 gameplay demo with the game designer detailing exactly how everything works, why they designed things the way they did and what purpose it serves in terms of function and in serving the gameplay etc. I've also seen a 50 minute long Nintendo Treehouse Live presentation that showed off the full intro cutscene and start of the game and very clearly showed off the overall art style and general approach they are going for too as well as going into lots more detail about how the game plays and how everything works etc. I highly doubt there's much that remains a mystery in terms of how the basic game actually looks and plays and that's what I'm judging here. From everything I have seen and read the game looks pretty solid, I mean it looks well made and probably decent fun, but at the same time it looks like it's going to be a pretty niche title imo.



Noelemahc said:

@Kosmo I'd say Megaman ZX Advent had plenty of creativity, but there somehow is no Megaman ZX3. Or 3D. I'd even accept ZX DDD at this point.

And yes, I'm one of "those" people that didn't like Lords of Shadow.
But I DID like Castlevania 64.



Kosmo said:

@Noelemahc I liked ZX and ZX Advent too. But Megaman went right out of the road and into the wall, it seems, which might explain that...

And I didn't like Lords of Shadows at all either.



Nico07 said:

@torotoid64 What you suggest is part of the problem. As has been mentioned in this article and has been said by others, but most gamers don't want innovative new IP. Most of us say we do, but when it comes to what games we will ACTUALLY buy we want them to have Mario on the cover or the phrase Call of Duty. Nintendo is great at producing content and then matching it to a new or existing IP.

In my opinion, the Wii U has a lot of great content. Sure it doesn't have Smash Brothers or a new Zelda yet, but I have over 30 games for the Wii U. The Mario games (including Mario Kart 8) are great bringing fresh "New" level design and gameplay. The addition of an onscreen map and inventory as well as updated HD graphics for Wind Waker are great. But some of the games I have most enjoyed are NintendoLand, Game and Wario, ZombiU, Rayman Legends, the four Lego games, Most Wanted U, Pikmin 3, and even Tank!Tank!Tank!. Most of these games that are available cross platform offer great features on Wii U such as seperate screen multiplayer for Lego games. Also controlling Murphy in Rayman Legends is by far easiest on the Wii U as his stages were clearly designed for the Wii U. Clearly some of the games I have listed (and several I haven't listed) aren't for everyone, but that's my point. We often exclude games because we discredit the characters in them as too childish or whatever other reasons we gamers use instead of giving new and unfamiliar IP a try.



FJOJR said:

@outburst That would be cool to include in the game. After a much is over, you see Mario coming in and cleaning everything up. Maybe include him and a team that has FLUDDs and just have a battle with a team that wants things dirty and others that want it clean.



OneBagTravel said:

Call me crazy but the early alpha demo's that Miyamoto demo'd at the tree house were pretty bad and felt like gimmicky original Wii games.



WiiLovePeace said:

"A case can be made that we should care more about what a game is doing and how much fun it is, not the characters posing on the box art." This. So much this. I absolutely adore all the Super Mario games for example, because each is completely different to all the rest, including the NSMB series. Different levels & powerups means different experiences which means different fun & excitement. Same characters inbetween games does not mean same gameplay inbetween games.
I feel sorry for those who only pine for new I.P. while amazing game experiences wait for them wrapped in a friendly, familiar box. Conversely new I.P. doesn't guarantee new experiences either. Gameplay first, characters second. Always.



Turbo857 said:

@Noelemahc @Kosmo

I thought Curse of Darkness for the PS2 was a grossly underrated Castlevania. I liked the Castlevania 64 games too.

The Megaman ZX series is a good series but I'd wish they'd go back to X. Characters in that series were the best.



coolaggro said:

I love the direction nintendo is headed and that they keep it fun and develop based on how fun the gameplay will be.
That being said, it would be cool if they had some great story in a game sometime. I would prefer an RPG but it doesn't have to be. All their games are incredibly fun to play but none have truly wonderful story telling. That's fine, but I wouldn't mind seeing more story. Only ones that got close are fire emblem (and the most recent advance wars).
The more I think about it the more I am emanated with the idea of Nintendo doing an RPG.



WinterWarm said:


I wouldn't exactly call it niche. Steampunk's very popular with younger p
people(such as myself), and subsequently, that's Nintendo's target demographic.

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