The Humble Friends of Nintendo Bundle, now in its final few days, has demonstrably been a success. Unlike 2015's Humble Nindie Bundle it's been available in multiple territories around the world, with a mix of retail and download-only titles tempting eShop gamers to part with case. The Humble Bundle's blend of outrageous bargains and charitable giving has been a success across multiple platforms for a number of years, yet Nintendo is still the only of the big three hardware manufacturers to take part. In fact, it's now done it twice.

We spoke to Humble Bundle co-founder John Graham in 2015 about the first bundle, so decided to catch up with him once again. To say he has a sunny disposition about the performance and future potential of the Nintendo collaboration is an understatement.

This is the second Nintendo Humble Bundle, arriving a little under a year after 2015's Nindie bundle. Can you talk about when it was first proposed and how it initially came together?

I think right after the first promotion ended, and we had seen over $750,000 come in for developers and charity across 82,000 purchases in two weeks, we began trading ideas and plans for the next promotion.

In this case it's a truly global bundle, was that the priority after the first edition was North America only?

The first promotion was a great initial experiment, but in looking at customer feedback it was clear that we were missing out on fans around the world by having to zone the promotion to North America.

Nintendo is super easy to work with and like us wanted to listen to fans and their feedback from last time.

What kind of logistical challenges did that global release pose? For example were you working with both Nintendo of Europe and America concurrently, or was there one primary team and contact with Nintendo?

Nintendo is super easy to work with and like us wanted to listen to fans and their feedback from last time. I think the fact that we've set a new Nintendo bundle record this time around with $1,318,912.29 in sales and 134,926 bundles sold with a few days still left in the promotion speaks for itself.

This bundle also includes some retail games; can you tell us about how partners such as Capcom and SEGA became involved?

Humble Bundle is blessed to have grown strong relationships with companies big and small all around the gaming industry. We try to run our new initiatives by all of our major partners, and Capcom and SEGA definitely get credit for their courage and willingness to try new things. I think they very nicely complemented the content we curated into this promotion.

There are a few eShop exclusives in the line-up, was that a priority in order to give this bundle extra appeal?

Yes, with Nintendo's help, we wanted to dig deeper and create excitement across major Nintendo platforms and on the eShop itself.

Looking at the sales so far, are you happy with the bundles sold and money raised?

Yes, I'm so excited to see that we have bested our previous Nintendo bundle by over half a million dollars in sales and over 50,000 purchases.

The average purchase, rather like the Nindie bundle last year, is a little under $10. Is this still above average for a typical bundle?

Gaming bundles tend to have averages that range from $5-10, so you are right that this is on the higher side. I think it speaks to the generosity and excitement of fans in the Nintendo community.

I think by opening up to Europe, we've unleashed the excitement of an international swarm of Nintendo fans.

How have purchases been split between developers, Humble Bundle and the supported charities? Are those that edit the distribution still edging towards giving more to the charities?

We generally don't like to publicly reveal the total splits for our promotions because we don't wish to create popularity contests about whose slider or sub slider moved where over the aggregate of a promotion. We tend to find that the slider defaults have a fair bit of inertia but that there's usually also a slight bias towards charity.

Have you had a sense that the eShop audience has been excited about this bundle; how would you quantify the level of 'buzz' around this one?

More buzz than a hive full of Mega Beedrills. I think by opening up to Europe, we've unleashed the excitement of an international swarm of Nintendo fans.

Last year we spoke about the potential for bundles like this to attract a different audiences to Nintendo's eShop; do you think that's a factor this year?

Humble Bundles, by their very nature, are a bringing together of different parts of the gaming industry in such a way that audiences from one group can discover content in another. So I definitely think we're seeing that play out here with the Nintendo eShop as well.

Nintendo's still the only console platform holder (outside from PC / Mac / iOS / Android) to support game bundles. Why do you think that is?

Nintendo is showing that they are forward thinking in their approach to digital distribution. I think if they maintain this attitude that they are likely to become the fastest growing of all the console providers.

Do you hope to run annual Nintendo bundles, or is there even scope for them to be more frequent?

I think we now have irrefutable evidence of the excitement that Nintendo Humble Bundles cause, and I'd love to see this continue to blossom into a more frequently recurring tradition.

Nintendo is showing that they are forward thinking in their approach to digital distribution. I think if they maintain this attitude that they are likely to become the fastest growing of all the console providers.

In 2015 we asked about whether you can envisage a day when eShop games will also be sold at conventional prices via the Humble Store. Do you think that's a possibility, and is that an arrangement you'd be interested in exploring?

Our Humble Store sells premium gaming content of many different types. Now that we can see with certainty how much Nintendo love there is in our audience, I think this would be a great to try out one day if possible.

Finally, with the Humble Friends of Nintendo Bundle heading into its final stretch, what's your overall perspective on its success levels and impact this time around?

My expectations have been exceeded. I'm so happy we were able to put it together with the help of Nintendo and our awesome game developer and publisher partners. And I can't help but feel like this is just the very start of even more awesome things to come.


We'd like to thank John Graham for his time. What have you thought of the Humble Friends of Nintendo bundle? Let us know in the comments.

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