"Uh oh..."

Nintendo president Satoru Iwata said last year that Nintendo is not interested in producing free-to-play software, displeasing Ben Cousins, director of free-to-play software company Ngmoco.

Speaking to Develop, Cousins discussed his belief that console manufacturers are frightened of free to play games:

The only platform where freemium isn’t making a huge impact because the console holders, as I understand it, are scared of it. There will be a perception within these companies, because they are very inexperienced in this area, that if they allow a high-quality free-to-play experience on their console it will eat into sales of premium games.

It's clear why Nintendo might be concerned that free throwaway entertainment would deter users from shelling out $40 on the next Mario game, but Cousins thinks the company should embrace free games despite Iwata's staunch objections:

Some of the things Iwata says makes me really fear for the future of Nintendo. I think there is a cognitive dissonance at Nintendo in terms of getting their heads around what’s actually happening to the industry, which is such a shame because they make such fantastic games.

Nintendo's management has more experience leading the industry than following it, but where do you stand on the free-to-play question? Should Nintendo embrace gratis gaming or would that devalue its worth to gamers the world over?

[source develop-online.net]