I want to talk about Social Media, OK!
So it’s 14 months in and Nintendo have recently addressed shareholders of their slashing of Wii U sales projections and profits.
All four corners of the internet have colluded to have four different epiphanies of which all explain assuredly, the reason why Wii U has so far failed to make – at the very least – a profitable income; and all prodigal individuals involved await Nintendo head hunters appoint them CEO.
But there is no single reason, and there is no single panacea (‘make a more powerful machine’, they scream incessantly from the north western quadrant; ‘that’ll fix it’.)
The truth is that there’s a catalogue of errors – avoidable or that born of an evil star – which have led Nintendo and the Wii U down this road, thusly. Endeavour not, so say I, as this very can of worms procures the right of its own, very.. very lengthy post!
But whilst the usual witless fanboy flame wars have kicked on, I’d like to think I’ve taken a backseat for some months and nurtured an unaffected perspective, which barely, if ever, have I seen discussed in any detail.
If you take the catalogue of error from Wii U’s launch to current day, and divvy that up in to the, let's say, ‘Pie Chart of Remiss’, it is, in my opinion, that one of the largest slices might be labelled “Social Media Failings”; on the flip-side I would follow that up by suggesting the biggest slice of Microsoft and Sonys’ ‘Pie Chart of Launch Triumph’, would be labelled “Social Media Success (A++)”.
Now that I’ve brought this to your attention - and if you’re someone who follows gaming and gaming community news - I perhaps wouldn’t need to expand on this notion any more at this point. But let’s – just a little.
MS & Sony both have their online social media standard-bearers, respectively, in Major Nelson (twitter.com/majornelson) and Shuhei Yoshida (twitter.com/yosp). Between them, these two infamous characters in the gaming scene have used Twitter and Facebook as the ultimate free advertising platform; a hype production-line on overdrive; and the online social media version of a student labour driven Foxconn-of-rebuttal-and-spin on overtime.
And what of Nintendo?
... ... ... ... ... Yep... ... nadda! Nintendo have handled social media like feckless meek parents in charge of a gaggle of children they can’t control, and let get away with bloody murder. The internet at large (AKA – the gaggle of children) have taken great advantage of this situation and allowed free reign to run rampant with rumour, convenient legend, and most importantly, the good old... anonymous sources - uhhhhhhhhhhhhh! Where Sony or Microsoft would have stepped in with clarification or down-right spin, Nintendo have just rolled over like a cold glassy eyed fish on the fresh counter in ASDA (read: Walmart).
The Wii U isn’t a bad console, and it has enough quality games to justify its current averaging price – with more on the way this year. But what it has suffered from GREATLY, is a positive image on the internet. The Internet is God. And Nintendo are sceptical agnostics at best. Social media and the internet is the first port of call for any new product launch. Get it wrong and you compromise all other efforts. So who could be Nintendo’s social media standard-bearer? Ummmmm... who could it be??? Well, I haven’t got the foggiest </sarcasm>. But it is sad that Hideki Kamiya of Platinum Games (P*) has so far offered more of a social media backbone on Nintendo's behalf than the whole collective personnel at Nintendo put together!
All I can say is: come on Nintendo,