This is a complex question that I think can be answered very simply, and can also be answered in a long drawn out article. I have decided after thinking about this for a bit, and talking to a few people, I will do both. The simple answer to this question, in my own opinion is a resounding Yes; Absolutely I think they are. In this article below I will give a few reasons why I think this is so, and explain where I think they will head in the future, or at least where I hope they head in the future.
In April of this year, when Nintendo unveiled the release window for their next home console, code-named Project NX, a lot of people were befuddled about why they would release it after the busy holiday season of 2016, and launch in a very barren time in March of 2017. I will admit I had some of those thoughts myself, however I have faith that they knew what they were doing and even wrote an article about Project NX. Nintendo has shown me I was right to place my faith in them, so far.
After May came and went, and we heard news that Nintendo would not have any Project NX information at E3, a lot of people were again left befuddled as to why they wouldn’t at least announce the console, and some games for it; Instead they focused on their games for the Nintendo 3DS and some games for the Wii U, including the upcoming Legend of Zelda title.
Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. These titles always bring a lot of hype, a lot of media coverage, and a lot of sales for Nintendo, regardless of what console or handheld it is on. Nintendo fully unveiled the title at E3, also announcing it would be releasing on both the current gen Wii U, and the next-gen Project NX. That’s hype brick number one in Nintendo’s steps back to the top, and what a mighty first step that is for a company that has struggled for the past few years.
Nintendo didn’t get much help from other developers in the hype department for the NX, besides longtime allies, Ubisoft stating that they would fully support the console and announcing Just Dance 2017 would be making an appearance. While this isn’t much to gloat about, the Just Dance series have always been big sellers on Nintendo platforms.
E3 generated much-needed hype for long time Nintendo fans for Project NX, but did it do much for the media, casual gamers, and people outside the general game media sphere? This is where Nintendo missed a little bit. Just Dance 2017 generated a little noise for Nintendo in the casual gamer and outsiders department, but not nearly enough, imo. What could Nintendo do?
Nintendo jumped into the ring with a mobile social media game, called Miitomo. Motions was a game where you can make a Mii, or digital representation of yourself, and talk to friends, talk to yourself, play games, and take photos. It hopped onto the scene with somewhat high fashion, but tended to fade pretty fast. It wasn’t a huge win for Nintendo, but it did get the Nintendo name out onto the tongues of people who probably wouldn’t have worried with it otherwise. Brick number 2 for Nintendo’s Steps.
Now we get to modern-day, Nintendo decided at point in the past to leverage their biggest gaming property and turn it into a mobile game; and also got bricks number 2 through 100 out of it. Nintendo, and Niantic released Pokemon Go in mid-July, and the world has been talking Nintendo ever since. The game quickly rose to the top of both the iOS App Store, and the Google Play Store, becoming the fastest gaming app to ever reach number 1 and it hasn’t stopped. Nintendo’s stock value has more than doubled since it released, and everyone is talking Nintendo. From gaming outlets, to social media outlets, to news stations, Pokemon Go has even jumped into brick and mortar stores using the game to bring customers in.
Pokemon Go has been a huge success for Nintendo so far, and has and will continue to bring them a lot of money, but it has done something else for them, it is making the name Nintendo and Pokemon a household name again. I think this is the biggest victory of Pokemon Go.
So what could Nintendo do after Pokemon Go to continue the hype train? It would seem as if nothing could be done, nothing needed to be done, and nothing would be done for a bit. That was, until Nintendo announced a throwback console called the NES Mini.
What could this little box do for the hype train that Pokemon Go didn’t do? It’s simple, not everyone knows what Pokemon is. Yes, everyone may be talking about Pokemon Go, and it may be becoming a household name again, but not everyone knows what it is.
Enter the NES Mini, with 30 classic games that people who have not played video games for years may, and probably do know. With a wide variety of titles on the NES Mini, it has something for everyone to play and fall in love with that Nintendo magic all over again. A lot of people may say Nintendo lives off Nostalgia, but is that such a bad thing? People loved those games for a reason, and Nintendo hasn’t really lost that.
So, what’s left for Nintendo to do to continue the hype movement for Project NX? On top of the success of Pokemon Go, there are two more Pokemon games coming out for the Nintendo 3DS that will continue some hype. I feel however, it’s time for some predictions. Predictions in number format at that, isn’t that cool?
Prediction #1) The first, and the biggest will be Nintendo does a full reveal of Project NX at a Nintendo Direct in the middle of November, shortly after the NES Mini launches.
Prediction #2) To the people who purchase the NES Mini, will also be able to download select games from the new Project NX App Store. I highly doubt Nintendo would let you download any of the titles on the NES Mini, but it’s possible.
Prediction #3) Nintendo will announce, in August or September that they have entered into a timed partnership with select third-party companies, most likely SEGA, to produce future games exclusive to Nintendo platforms. A new Sonic game? Maybe.
Prediction #4) Another mobile game, I’m not sure where they would go with this but I would look at it coming in October. A tightly held secret that no one will be expecting, to get their name back in the media in time for the NES Mini’s launch and the unveiling of Project NX.
Okay, so those are my thoughts on where Nintendo is headed and why I believe they are headed in the right direction. As well as four predictions of where they are headed in the near future before March of next year. What do you think of these reasons for my opinion and predictions? Let us know in the comments section, and as always, feel free to like us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter.
Update: We fixed an error on the announce date of the March 2017 release window.