Talking Point: Does Nintendo Finally 'Get' Digital?

Now that Nintendo’s got the announcement of financial losses out of the way, it can look ahead to plans for the coming year. Follow-up statements to investors revealed that Nintendo's 3DS retail games will be available to download later this year, with Wii U games hitting both digital and retail from day one. It'll all kick off with a little game called New Super Mario Bros. 2 in August, as it’ll be available both as a physical boxed release and as a direct download. The devil is in the detail, however, so Nintendo Life has a look at what was said, and how the digital sales will work.

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2338d ago Replies(1)
CaptainN2338d ago (Edited 2338d ago )

After reading the article and then reading the comments on it it boggles my mind how people never really understand what they read.

First many gamers are complaining that they don't want to pay the same price for digital copies as they do for retail copies. Ok, I get it....your not getting the actual game, the box, instructions,and there in no S&H cost involved so it should be cheaper. Well, if you read what Nintendo said they were doing, you would understand how pricing is going to occur. Nintendo will charge stores, EX (Best Buy) the same price for a digital or retail copy. The store has final say on the final price of both the digital and hard copies. Nintendo charges a flat fee to retailers for the actual game itself regardless of format. So its the stores that control the final price of a digital copy not Nintendo. The store is saving on S&H and the store is saving extra retail space to sell other products. They can pass the savings to the customer if they choose to.

Next, people are complaining about only being able to download a digital copy to one device. Well, yes that makes sense. It stops something called piracy. If you could download it to any device you want, that means only 1 person has to buy it and then put it on as many 3DS's as they wanted. That's not a good thing. People think if they break their 3DS or want to buy a new one the game will be lost forever. Do you honestly think Nintendo won't let you transfer the game if there is an extreme incident. Didn't they allow DSi owners to transport games to 3DS.....arent you able to tranfer 3DS E-shop games at least once with a system transfer? What makes everyone think just because Nintendo is locking your digital game to one system you will get screwed if some happens to your 3DS?

Then everyone is saying the digital games need to be linked to individual accounts. Um, that's what Club Nintendo is for! If you link you 3DS to your Club Nintendo account, guess what.....everything you buy gets stored on your account. This is how Nintendo keeps track of everything you have. Plus, we already know Wii-U will have individual accounts so everyone really needs to just relax.

ThomasBW842337d ago

You're half right, but I think you're missing a couple of points that I included in the article:

The article quotes Iwata giving an indication that Nintendo doesn't necessarily believe in retail downloads being cheaper than boxed equivalents. That suggests that the offering on eShop, which will be there, may be the same as the standard RRP. Of course, stores set their own price, so maybe they will; again, acknowledged in the article.

Secondly, locking the game to one device IS draconian. It is possible to allow two or three devices, as some services do. The example of Super Mario 3D Land is one: it's a game with three save profiles, but while you can pass a game card around for another two players, you'll have to share the system itself with the download. Balance is given by saying that Nintendo does need to counteract piracy, and that it's not an easy thing to do. Again though, it's a valid issue and will be a turn-off for some.

As for your final point, yes Wii U seems to have individual accounts, but complaints in the article about single account issues related to 3DS specifically.

With a number of comments on the article of course there are plenty of different views, some of which are applicable to your observations. Maybe if you read the feature though, and it's various arguments, you wouldn't tar it with the same brush.

CaptainN2337d ago (Edited 2337d ago )

I personally don't think its draconian to lock games to one console. Yes, a game may have multiple save slots, but let's be realistic. If you willing to lend a friend or family your game catridge, why would it be a big deal to lend them your 3DS. Yes, it may not be as convienent, but its a portable. By your theory, since a game has 3 files you should be able to put it on three 3DS's. Who would normally own three to begin with? And if a person has three in their houehold, we all know that all of them aren't the same owner. The max someone would have is two, either because one broke, one was an upgrade, or someone wanted a new color. Those don't justify Nintendo having to give you a game for each unit.

The whole point of locking a game to a unit is to avoid piracy and/or just giving the game to your friends and family for free. What would stop me from taking my friends 3DS and giving him my copy of New Super Mario Bros 2?

As for the personal accounts, the point was everyone can have one already with Club Nintendo. That is a personal account system. Having a seperate or 3DS specific account isn't really neccessary. That's why the 3DS registers with your Club Nintendo. Its keeps track of every game you bought. I brought up the Wii-U just because it shows Nintendo will be doing this in the future. But that has to be done, because let's face it, the home consoles needs a user name....not friend codes. I wouldn't be surprised that when Wii-U comes out, that 3DS also gets seperate accounts.

Of course the more features the better, but at the end of the day you have to look at things from Nintendo's side. Everyone always says they want this or Nintendo should do that. But no one looks at it from Nintendo's business prospective. Its not logical to give away more than one copy of a game, that's a loss of profit. Individual accounts for both the 3DS and Wii-U may also confuse many gamers.....unless they become one in the same. And if that happens we are right back where we started with Club Nintendo accounts.

As for the price Nintendo will charge for games on E-Shop, yea they should be cheaper than the retail version. I'm sure they will price adjust when they see that customers will value owning the physical copy more than digital if they keep them the same price. Honestly, they should be about 5-10 dollars cheaper. How much could producing a cartridge, case, instruction manual, and S&H be. That's all the consumer could save money from.

2338d ago