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Topic: The competition for Nintendo if it's a portable (poll included)

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skywake

I asked this question on a PC gaming forum and included a poll, so I figured I'd ask the same here. See what the difference is. If there's a difference. Here's a bit of an explanation on a few of the options you might not know about

A Portable Steam Machine
There's a company already making one of these, they won't be the last. Effectively it's a PC with access to the library of games on Steam. But you can pocket it. If you have a PC you can also stream full, AAA PC games from it over your local network.

An NVidia Shield style Android portable
Basically the same idea as the portable Steam Machine except it's Android based. You get access to the library of Android games to play with buttons. It can also stream from your PC but you have to have an NVidia GPU for it to work

Now that you've read it, here's the poll:
http://strawpoll.me/5188886

Some good Aussie musics: King Gizzard, Pond, TFS
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

Jmaster

Well, this seems like a good place to continue our fantastic discussion...
So about those portable Steam machines, I really don't see it happening. When I think of PC games I think of games that I can really only enjoy when I'm playing them sitting in a chair and using mouse and keyboard. Games like Bioshock and Civilization come to mind. Aside from that, we still have yet to see a successful portable Steam Machine as I said in the other topic, bit the same can be said for the Nvidia Shield-type I guess,so that doesn't apply here.
Finally, I don't think Sony is going to stay in the portable market. The Vita serves a small niche which Nintendo can easily take over, if they play their cards right.

Jmaster

skywake

@Jmaster:
I agree about Sony but I had to include it. You can't not include it if that's the question you want to ask.

Anyways, I personally don't see PC games as some entirely different kind of gaming. There really isn't that much of a difference between what exists on the 3DS and Vita (especially the Vita) and what does exist on Steam. There are plenty of remakes of older classic titles. There are strategy RPGs, 2D platformers, racing games and so on. For every title I have on my 3DS that isn't matched by Steam, and there aren't many, I can think of something that's on Steam that would work on this particular portable concept that my 3DS doesn't do. It's just a platform and there is quite a lot of content there already. Before the idea of a portable console that can play those games even entered anyone's mind.

Such a device wouldn't have Nintendo's first party content, that would be it's main drawback. But it'd have a lot of other content. On paper at least it would be a far better competitor in the portable space than Sony was. It'd cover part of the market that mobile won't ever take. I'd argue that the only thing it won't be able to do is beat Pokemon.

Edited on by skywake

Some good Aussie musics: King Gizzard, Pond, TFS
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

NinChocolate

In the case of 3DS, one difference is Point of Sale and retail availability for both hardware and software. This also affects who is buying, and in the case of gift purchases, who is playing the games to certain extent. Another related difference is brand establishment. 3DS shares it's branding with the previous generation DS launched 10 years back. That's a decade of a continuous brand at retail. Once you get to the individual software, you can also factor in franchise brands that cross over to other systems. In the case of 3DS software, Nintendo has Wii U and still in many retail locations is Wii software. In the analysis of market competition, I'm sure that visibility of brand and product as well as availability is going to stack against any similar/rival product entering the market.

NinChocolate

iKhan

@skywake
What is the approximate cost of these "portable steam machines". Because I think Nintendo's logic in the market of offering a small size, low power, but affordable portable system is still king.

Currently Playing: Steamworld Heist, The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask

-Green-

@iKhan: I believe they said the Steamboy would cost around 300 dollars.

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IceClimbers

I think the big question is how much people want portable Steam machines. It could take off and do really well, or it could not take off despite the inevitable numerous attempts. It'd obviously have a massive library available immediately, which is a huge plus, but at the same time it doesn't have Nintendo's 1st party output, especially Pokemon, as well as 3rd party franchises like Monster Hunter and Yokai Watch (those 3 franchises will keep handhelds alive for as long as possible in Japan).

I should also point out that Nintendo has an advantage in that they are the undisputed king of handhelds, with a several decade-long reputation to boot.

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iKhan

Aromaiden wrote:

@iKhan: I believe they said the Steamboy would cost around 300 dollars.

Yeah that's too much. People don't take portable game systems around that much anymore, playing much more at home than they did 10-15 years ago. So a 300 dollar purchase for a portable system is a hard sell when, for just a bit more, you can get either a home console or a smartphone.

Currently Playing: Steamworld Heist, The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask

Therad

iKhan wrote:

Aromaiden wrote:

@iKhan: I believe they said the Steamboy would cost around 300 dollars.

Yeah that's too much. People don't take portable game systems around that much anymore, playing much more at home than they did 10-15 years ago. So a 300 dollar purchase for a portable system is a hard sell when, for just a bit more, you can get either a home console or a smartphone.

If you already have a big steam library it might be more compelling than a console or smartphone.

Therad

skywake

iKhan wrote:

@skywake
What is the approximate cost of these "portable steam machines". Because I think Nintendo's logic in the market of offering a small size, low power, but affordable portable system is still king.

I don't think it's fair to say one price or another. It would be like saying what price smartphones or tablets are based on the price of one particular model. There's a whole range of them. I suspect it'll be the same with this idea if it takes off. For example, Intel has a product on the market ATM called the Intel Compute Stick. For $150US. It includes a copy of window and it's a full PC in something the size of a little chromecast. Reviews about it have been average because of performance and the lack of I/O. But it's $150 for a PC the size of a chromecast with a copy of windows.

Yes this particular one that they've come up with so far is $300US at launch. But someone else could easily make a lower powered one for $200-250US. A few years down the road it'll be even easier to do that. Especially as the idea becomes less of an experiment where you're paying mostly for the R&D. Even moreso if you're not paying for a Windows licence.

Some good Aussie musics: King Gizzard, Pond, TFS
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

iKhan

Therad wrote:

iKhan wrote:

Aromaiden wrote:

@iKhan: I believe they said the Steamboy would cost around 300 dollars.

Yeah that's too much. People don't take portable game systems around that much anymore, playing much more at home than they did 10-15 years ago. So a 300 dollar purchase for a portable system is a hard sell when, for just a bit more, you can get either a home console or a smartphone.

If you already have a big steam library it might be more compelling than a console or smartphone.

That's assuming you either have a significant number of unplayed, low-power in your steam library, or you mostly want to replay your steam library games. And even then is the ability to play those on the occasional road-trip worth $300?

Currently Playing: Steamworld Heist, The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask

Therad

iKhan wrote:

Therad wrote:

iKhan wrote:

Aromaiden wrote:

@iKhan: I believe they said the Steamboy would cost around 300 dollars.

Yeah that's too much. People don't take portable game systems around that much anymore, playing much more at home than they did 10-15 years ago. So a 300 dollar purchase for a portable system is a hard sell when, for just a bit more, you can get either a home console or a smartphone.

If you already have a big steam library it might be more compelling than a console or smartphone.

That's assuming you either have a significant number of unplayed, low-power in your steam library, or you mostly want to replay your steam library games. And even then is the ability to play those on the occasional road-trip worth $300?

I gave a reason why some might want it. It can probably also work as a steam link, so you can stream from your main gaming computer. Being able to play away from the computer might be compelling for some.

Personally, I think portables are more or less dead. Smartphones has killed the killer feature of portables. As you said yourself, most play them at home anyways, so way pay the premium of having it portable? Especially if you already have a phone? A phone that soon will have nintendo games on it...

Therad

skywake

Well from my perspective portable gaming still has a place. Not just because of the ability to take it on the road but also because of the way you can consume that content at home. Sometimes I don't want to turn on the TV or sit behind my computer to enjoy a game. Sometimes I want to enjoy games in the same way that I'd read a book or listen to music. Lie in bet or sit on a comfy chair in a quiet corner of the house and just immerse yourself in it.

I don't see mobile replacing that experience. Ever. I don't dive into frogger clones in the same way that I might dive into Shovel Knight or a remake of a classic game from the late 90s. Portable gaming is to mobile what reading a book is to skimming through the newspaper. Something that can play games from Steam? That could do as good a job as Nintendo has done. Especially if you include game-streaming. Even if it's a niche product. I don't know about $300US but... I would happily pay $200US for such a device. Maybe $250.

edit:
BTW, looking at how people have voted on this here and on the PC gaming forum? There isn't much of a difference. Infact the only difference so far is that over there there's a bit more support for the idea of a portable Steam Machine. Over here there's more support for Nintendo. But Nintendo is in the lead on both polls and the Nvidia Shield and Mobile are both equally as unpopular. With Sony somewhere in the middle there.

Edited on by skywake

Some good Aussie musics: King Gizzard, Pond, TFS
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

erv

@skywake: I get your point, but the quality of games on my iphone increases by leaps and bounds. The challenge becomes more about other things: how to provide a channel that allows you to discover the great stuff separated from the rest, as great games are hardly visible between the bite sized ones, but also about how to enable distraction free gaming. I want to receive a phone call, sure, but that's it. Nothing breaks a great experience more than a notification somewhere saying something else is up.

So I agree with the immersion thing being a challenge as well as the quality of the average title - even though slowly but firmly, that quality is now less of an issue and more something about an app jungle. If the ios platform starts providing a "phone call & message only" do not disturb mode for some games and a channel becomes available that really knows how to generate access to the immersive experiences, well, consider competition in a different place...

That said, a dedicated gaming device will almost always guarantee a premium gaming experience and that market is definitely not going to erode. Some of its demographics may shift a bit, though.

Edited on by erv

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skywake

@erv:
I'd point out that buttons actually make a huge difference in the type of games you can play. However the fact that "mobile is enough" is the least picked option both amongst you guys and the PC gamers over in the other place? I suspect I'd be preaching to the converted.

Edited on by skywake

Some good Aussie musics: King Gizzard, Pond, TFS
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

erv

Very true, buttons make a difference. But watch the next appletv linked to your ios account play the same games extended with a controller. The challenges mobile has to mature into an ecosystem are something it can overcome. What dedicated portables need is a clear differentiator. Play on the go in a less ideal situation but at home in an instantly playable environment? It's a good sell.

I'll be playing on my nintendo consoles any day, mind. But if NX isn't at some point a complete service, we'll see some market shifts in a couple of years as competition will well and truly come to facilitate this type of experience.

There's no quality gaming like nintendo machines to me, though.

Switch code: SW-0397-5211-6428
PlayStation: genetic-eternal

Nintendo Network ID: genet1c

skywake

@erv:
The point I'd make is that games for mobile are usually built for mobile. With those limitations. I can buy Geometry Wars 3 on Google Play but I'd really want to have a controller in order to play it. And until a device comes out that is successful at pushing that sort mobile gaming it'll always be the exception to the rule. It's more of a novelty than anything else.

Squishing a PC gaming device down to the size of a 3DS or Vita? There's already a lot of content there. You can already put a PC under your TV and treat it like a console. Even if it's a fairly low end PC you can plug in a controller and play a whole bunch of games. And sure you won't be able to play something like Shadow of Mordor or Batman on a portable anytime soon... but it's not going to appear on Android either. Basically what I'm saying is that the content on Steam is a better natural fit for portable gaming than mobile is.

Edited on by skywake

Some good Aussie musics: King Gizzard, Pond, TFS
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

CM30

My personal opinion is that Android microconsoles just won't work, ever. The type of games you find on mobiles and the type you find on home consoles are often too different, with far different target audiences. The people who buy Android games (or pay money for microtransactions in them) aren't usually interested in dedicated hardware, and the people who like console games want something a bit more impressive than a TV connected smartphone system.

And no, PC style games do not usually work on mobile. They were done on the Vita, but guess what? That's one of the reasons the system failed. The games weren't right for a handheld. Perhaps also why the 3DS itself has sold a bit less than the DS or other previous handheld systems. People don't want stripped down home console experiences on a handheld.

Hence I doubt either would be major competition, and the same arguably goes for smartphone games.

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