Nintendo releases a trailer for Bravely Second with new job classes designs and their functions on the battlefield. The game will be released in Europe on February 23 and in America on April 15.
Nintendo releases a trailer for Bravely Second with new job classes designs and their functions on the battlefield. The game will be released in Europe on February 23 and in America on April 15.
Nintendo announces that Iwata has died due to bile duct growth.
Pages are released from Nintendo’s Character Guide, showing various aspects of well-known characters, as well as color guides and official descriptons. For example, the Guide reveals that Yoshi’s full name is “T. Yoshisaur Munchakoopas”, and that Mario’s overalls must be Pantone 293 while his cap is Pantone 485.
At first glance, the man we have come to know as “Mario” might appear to be a fairly easily defined character. Call him a madcap plumber who was born and raised in Brooklyn and seems to be forever in search of the oft-kidnapped Princess and you’d be right But you would also be leaving out a lot of the whole story. Let’s take a closer look at Mario.
Iwata addresses public concerns about his gaunt appearance post-surgery via Twitter.
I saw many worried comments over how thin I’ve become. The truth is that after a major operation, I lost weight, but during these past two and a half months, thankfully my weight has stabilized, and I’m progressing well. I would truly like to thank my doctors, the hospital staff, and everyone who has assisted me.
Nintendo announce a new version of its 3DS handheld. The new pair of 3DS models appear to be literally called “New 3DS” and “New 3DS LL (XL),” but more on that head-scratching name later. Each features an upgraded CPU, a new small analog nub above the SNES-recolored buttons, and additional shoulder buttons next to the current ZL and ZR buttons. It supports sliding custom covers and will have better 3D than previous models as well.
Nintendo accepts the ALS challenge and nominates all of the Nintendo staff.
YouTuber TheJWittz posts a tweet saying that the Pokémon Trading Card Game is coming to iPad. A Pokémon representative confirms it is true to Polygon but says they do not have a set release date.
— Josh Wittenkeller (@TheJWittz) August 15, 2014
Nintendo announces via Japanese Hyrule Warriors Twitter account that the upcoming Zelda will not feature online multi-player capabilities.
D’Ron Maingrette, a Super Smash Bros announcer, tweets a list of the sponsors for the 2014 Evo fighting game tournament. The list includes previous sponsors like IGN and Xbox, but this is the first time Nintendo sponsors the event. It marks a change in attitude from 2013’s Evo tournament when they attempt to block Super Smash Bros from being streamed from the event.
— D'Ron D1 Maingrette (@xD1x) July 6, 2014
Nintendo files a patent for a device that enables 3D viewing on 2D displays. Other features of this device are sense of smell and virtual wind. Using a tracking system, the hypothetical device determines the position of the player or where the player is looking, and determines the player’s viewpoint. This would produce a parallax effect, where images in the foreground move faster and further than images in the background, creating a sense of depth.
Shareholders vote for Satoru Iwata to remain Nintendo’s president at the 74th Annual Shareholder’s Meeting. He is not able to attend due to a recent surgery:
I understand that I have to prioritise my medical treatment and to recover as soon as possible so that I will again be able to do my best to help the company to grow. I hope that you understand.
Nintendo issues Iwata’s statement on his absence on E3:
Thank you very much for your continued extraordinary support of us. I am Satoru Iwata, President of the company. Today, there is one thing that I would like to share with you…Recently, as the result of one of my routine physical examinations, an issue was detected. Following a more detailed examination, a growth was found in my bile duct.In general, it is said that a bile duct growth can be difficult-to-treat, partly because of the difficulty of detecting it early. In my case, luckily, it was detected very early and I had no symptoms. I was counseled that removal at an early stage would be the desirable medical option. Therefore I had surgery last week, and I came through it well, as predicted. I have already resumed my business by email and by other means, but it is anticipated that a little more time is needed for me to return to my regular work schedule. As a result, I have no choice but to miss the company’s very important activity, the Annual General Meeting of Shareholders, to be held this month. As the president of the company, I regret that I cannot attend the meeting. However, I understand that I have to prioritize my medical treatment and to recover as soon as possible so that I will again be able to do my best to help the company to grow. I hope that you understand. Best Regards, Satoru Iwata
Shigeru Miyamoto, game developer and manager of Entertainment Analysis & Development at Nintendo, tells Kotaku that in the future, Nintendo may release games that work both on a console like the Wii U and a handheld like the 3DS:
I would say that, five years ago, I would never have thought that a game that I could play on my DS should also run on my Wii. Or that a game that ran on my PSP should also play on my PS2. But, more and more these days, I feel that the game that I play on my 3DS should also play on my TV or that the game that I play on my TV should go with me.
Shigeru Miyamoto and Shinya Takahashi, managers of Nintendo’s Analysis & Development and Software Planning & Development departments respectively, tell Kotaku that they are interested in bringing Minecraft to Wii U or 3DS:
We’ve always thought internally that using the [Wii U] GamePad would probably make for a Minecraft that’s very easy to play. And, of course, if we were to do something with Minecraft on the 3DS, similarly we would probably do it where it would be easier to play and could probably reach a lot of kids.
However, they do not give any details regarding negotiations with Mojang or a timeline for release:
Maybe we’re meeting with them [Mojang]! Who knows?
Phillips wins a lawsuit against Nintendo for infringing on motion technology patents. Although a Dutch company, Phillips is suing in the U.S., Germany and France. Nine Nintendo products violate Phillips’ first patent, which include the Wii, Wii Remote and Wii Remote Plus controllers, Nunchuk, Balance Board, Wii U console, Wii U GamePad, Wii Mini and Wii MotionPlus technology. Two products violate a second patent, which include the Wii U and GamePad console.
Nintendo plans to appeal the decision and says the two patents for recognizing hand gestures and motion are invalid. A third patent violation pertaining to modeling a user in a virtual environment was in question, however Judge Colin Birss rules for Nintendo.
Reggie Fils-Aime, president of Nintendo of America, says in an interview with Kotaku that, though the Wii U sales are lower than expected, he believes the console can still recover:
We believe the Wii U has a very long life ahead of it. It’s got great content coming that will help define the platform. For us, we think the 3DS is a very illustrative example. It wasn’t just the price cut. It was having great content that started with Kart 7 and 3D Land and then progressed and created a larger and larger footprint.
Following the release of Mario Kart 8 for Wii U, Nintendo and McDonalds partner to distribute Mario toys in Happy Meals. The Happy Meals are set to include one of the eight different toys. The toys run out in less than a day: Locations have lines stretching outside or in upstairs areas, and sell out quilckly. Signs offer to buy customers burgers if they purchase the Happy Meals only for the Nintendo toys. Some individuals, however, are buying the toys to re-sell them online. To discourage this behavior, various Korean websites will place members on a 30-day ban if they attempt to resell the toys.
Nintendo announces a 2015 release for Mario Maker for Wii U. Mario Maker will allow users to create then play their own levels using their stylus. Users will be able to create using the graphics of the original 8-bit Super Mario Brothers game or an updated style.
Judge Richard A. Jones rules that Triton’s patent does not describe a complete invention and dismisses the case. Triton alleged that the Wii’s motion control technology infringes on their own technology patents. The lawsuit has been in process for four years.
We are very pleased with this result. Nintendo has a long tradition of developing unique and innovative products, while respecting the intellectual property rights of others.
O’Brien tackles the highly-anticipated video game by Nintendo, Super Smash Bros. for Wii U in his website’s online segment, Clueless Gamer. Along with associate Aaron Bleyaert, the TV talk show host plays the game while making humorous comments about its characters, design, and gameplay. He decides to try out the game’s multi-player mode and calls on staff members Matthew Kramer and Sonia Movsesian to join in. On his review of the game:
I think that this is a fantastically imaginative game. I myself wish it were simpler. I wish it involved a guy taking a walk and trying to find a cookie. I wish it had one button, there was “Go forward” and another button that was “Eat cookie”.
It is announced that for the first time in 8 years, Sony sells more consoles than Nintendo. In the 2013 fiscal year, 18.7 million Sony consoles including the Playstation 4 and Playstation Vita are sold compared to 16.31 million Nintendo consoles like the Wii U and Nintendo 3DS.
The game company will close its European headquarters in Großostheim and consolidate its operations in Frankfurt.
The intended measures will sadly have a direct effect on some of the employees based in the Großostheim and Frankfurt offices in Germany and would lead to the release of approximately 130 permanent employees.
Iwata will not attend E3 this year due to an unnamed health condition.
He’s been instructed by his physician not to travel overseas in the immediate future, and so he will not be making the trip to Los Angeles…Please understand that it is business as usual for Mr. Iwata, and he continues his normal duties as president of Nintendo Co., Ltd. while he remains in Japan. As always, he will be actively involved in all of Nintendo’s activities at the show.
Nintendo allows Wii U owners to upload gameplay footage directly from their console to YouTube. The advertising revenue is shared between Nintendo, YouTube, and the content provider. Before this point, Nintendo does not allow users to receive any advertising revenue from gameplay footage uploaded to YouTube.
Philips files a lawsuit against Nintendo for infringement on the patents “Virtual Body Control Device” and “User Interface System Based on Pointing Device.” The company alleges Nintendo was aware of the patents in 2011, and that various Ninendo products that use motion control and remote control devices are in violation. The company requests an amount for damages and a ban on the Wii U system.
Nintendo apologizes for not including gay relationships in its game Tomodachi Life.
We apologize for disappointing many people by failing to include same-sex relationships in Tomodachi Life . . . We pledge that if we create a next installment in the Tomodachi series, we will strive to design a game-play experience from the ground up that is more inclusive, and better represents all players.
Nintendo reduces its expected sales for the Wii U to 2.8 million units, less than a third of what was originally projected. It also slashes the expected sales for the 3DS from 18 million to 13.5 million. They expect an operating loss of ¥35 billion (over $335 million) this year, making it the third year in a row they operate at a loss. Nintendo’s president, Satoru Iwata, speculates that a new business model may be needed to improve sales:
We are thinking about a new business structure. Given the expansion of smart devices, we are naturally studying how smart devices can be used to grow the game-player business.
Hulu Plus is released for the 3DS, 3DS XL, and 2DS consoles. Users can watch shows on the top screen of the device and browse for more content using the bottom screen. Hulu Plus for DS also integrates with the application for Wii/Wii U so that users can begin watching a show at home and automatically pick up where they left off later using the DS. A post on the Hulu blog says:
We worked closely with our friends at Nintendo to build a unique app that seamlessly blends together both the Hulu Plus and Nintendo user experience. Now, Nintendo 3DS and 2DS owners can enjoy current season TV and our vast library of commercial-free kids shows through an optimized viewing experience that takes full advantage of the systems’ dual screen option.
The Nintendo 2DS is released as a cheaper alternative to the 3DS. It costs $129.99, compared to the $170 3DS and $200 3DS XL. It supports 3DS games but it lacks the 3-dimensional features that the 3DS has. It also looks more like a tablet than a 3DS because it lacks a hinge. Nintendo explains the features of the device:
The system features a distinctive fixed, slate-type form factor. Nintendo 2DS maintains many of the same hardware features as Nintendo 3DS: dual screens, game-play controls and touch-screen features. The system also has backward compatibility with the existing library of more than 2,000 Nintendo DS games, as well as access to wireless connectivity features like multiplayer online game play, fun Nintendo Video content and great digitally delivered games in the Nintendo eShop.
The price of the Wii U Deluxe model is dropped from $349 to $299. The console comes with a 32GB hard drive, a Zelda-themed GamePad, a digital copy of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD and a digital version of the Zelda Hyrule Historia book for that price. Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime explains the price drop:
The price decline is pretty straightforward. Really, the focus on heightening the value for Wii U is now that we are in a position where we’ve got a regular pace of great software. Now’s the time to make the Wii U even more affordable and heighten the value.
Hiroshi Yamauchi, the man responsible for shifting Nintendo’s focus from trading cards to video games, dies of pneumonia. He runs the company from 1949 until his retirement in 2002. Rob Crossley, associate editor of Computer and Video Games magazine, says:
You cannot overestimate the influence the man had on the games industry. He spearheaded Nintendo as they moved into the arcade business, with hits such as Donkey Kong. This man was the president of Nintendo during the NES, the SNES, the N64 and the Gamecube – the first two were transformative pieces of electronic entertainment.
Nintendo releases the Wii Mini, a cheaper version of the Wii that lacks WiFi capabilities and Gamecube compatibility. It is released around the same time as the $299 Wii U at a price of $99. Cindy Gordon, the company’s Vice President of Corporate Affairs, says:
We understand that different systems and games appeal to different people, so we wanted to provide enough value and variety to make it easy for shoppers to find something for everyone on their list.
The Wii U is released in North America. 400,000 units are sold in the first week, generating $270,000,000 in revenue.
Foxconn admits that 56 underage workers as young as 14 work at its Yantai plant in China, where the Wii U is being tested. Foxconn fires the underage workers and promises to take measures so this does not happen again. Nintendo says:
Nintendo is in communication with Foxconn and is investigating the matter. We take our responsibilities as a global company very seriously and are committed to an ethical policy on sourcing, manufacture and labor.
Fils-Aime clarifies his previous statement re ‘garage developers’
These are talented developers. That’s different from the person who envisions themselves as a developer, but actually hasn’t necessarily created anything, who doesn’t necessarily understand what it takes in this business to create compelling content. That’s where we draw the line.
I’ll tell you, if someone calls us tomorrow who has no experience in the gaming industry, but has a passion and has a great idea, our perspective would be, ‘Great, but get some experience. Understand your craft, and then come back to us.’
Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime says in an interview with Gamasutra that he is not interested in releasing games created by hobbyists for Nintendo devices:
I would separate out the true independent developer vs. the hobbyist. We are absolutely reaching out to the independent developer. Where we’ve drawn the line is we are not looking to do business today with the garage developer. In our view, that’s not a business we want to pursue.
The Nintendo 3DS is launched in Japan. Lines up to 2,000 people long are reported at certain retailers.
The Wii is launched at $250 per unit and sells out of many stores almost immediately. People wait outside stores for up to a week to get their hands on the console. It features a motion-sensitive controller, called the Wii Remote, that allows players to control the characters they are playing by moving their bodies.
The console comes packaged with Wii Sports, a game in which people can use the Wii Remote to play games like tennis, baseball, golf, bowling, and boxing. In order to achieve the low price point, the Wii lacks several features that are present in competitors like the Playstation 3 and Xbox. Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime explains the decisions they made:
Tough choices about not including a DVD player at the start, tough choices about not including high-definition capability at the start. That’s because we wanted a mass-market price, and we believe the market will validate those decisions come launch day on this Sunday.
Nintendo of Korea is established to distribute Nintendo titles in the country and localize titles into Korean. Nintendo invests ¥300 billion in this division of the company in hopes to capitalize on the thriving gaming community in South Korea.
The Nintendo DS Lite is introduced to North America during a launch party at the Nintendo World Store in New York. The company explains the improvements made to the original DS:
It’s less than two-thirds the size of the original Nintendo DS and more than 20 percent lighter. Its two bright screens can be adjusted to four levels to adapt to different lighting conditions and to extend battery power. The microphone sits in the center of the unit, and the LED lights are clearly visible whether the unit is open or closed. The stylus is 1 centimeter longer and 1 millimeter thicker than the stylus of the original, and slides into a side storage slot. The Start and Select buttons were repositioned for easier access.
Reggie Fils-Aime is promoted from executive vice president of sales and marketing to president and chief operating officer for Nintendo of America. Reggie is popular among Nintendo fans for a speech he makes at the E3 conference in 2004:
My name is Reggie. I’m about kickin’ ass, I’m about takin’ names, and we’re about makin’ games.
Nintendo opens its first store in the Rockefeller Plaza in New York City. The store replaces the Pokemon Center and contains merchandise from many Nintendo series. George Harrison, Nintendo of America’s senior vice president of marketing and corporate communications, says:
Today’s opening of Nintendo World is a milestone in our history. We know fans from near and far will want to come to New York City to experience a retail destination like none other in the world.
The Nintendo DS, Nintendo’s first dual-screened hand-held console, is released at $149.99 per console. One million devices are produced in North America and demand is very high for them. Reggie Fils-Aime, the executive vice president of sales and marketing for Nintendo of America, explains:
Retailers began calling for more Nintendo DS units even before the first ones arrived. They’re reflecting the demands of game players for entirely new ways to enjoy games – not just playing the same old games on a different platform. It really comes down to delivering a new experience and that’s what we’re doing.
Nintendo launches the Super Nintendo (SNES), a sixteen bit system upgrade to its original Nintendo console. The Super Nintendo comes bundled with Super Mario World and costs $199. Nintendo eventually sells 49 million systems worldwide and thus broadcasts to the world:
Now, you’re playing with power. Super Power.
Nintendo launches the Super Famicom in Japan, its 16-bit gaming console to update the 8-bit Famicom. Released in the United States as the Super Nintendo, the Super Famicom (priced at ¥25,000) sells out its first shipment of 300,000 units in five hours. Kenji Taskashi describes the original secret shipment of Super Famicoms:
On a night in the Fall … with the wind blowing through the Kyoto Basin, adding a considerable chill, an unusually large number of over-sized ten-ton trucks congregated at a warehouse in the city. Workmen quietly loaded the trucks, which then disappeared, one by one, into the darkness of the sleeping town and onto the state highway….
Nintendo sells a total of two million Super Famicoms in six months, and over four million in one year.
Nintendo releases its second handheld gaming device in Japan. On a screen displaying four shades of gray, gamers play titles like Tetris, a puzzle game that tests speed and ability to align rapidly falling rectangles into their correct spaces.
Game Boy is the most successful video game system ever released. Since its introduction in 1989, Game Boy has sold well over 150 million systems worldwide. Originally bundled with the game, Tetris, this little handheld became an instant phenomenon.
Nintendo launches its entertainment gaming system with seventeen games in the United States. Players can choose from Duck Hunt to Gyromite, and the system is compatible with a handheld Zapper light gun and a Robot to play select games. Nintendo’s first run in the U.S. lacks Super Mario Brothers and the company did not sell as many consoles as it would have liked, but the Japanese company’s introduction to the American market introduces the world for the first time to a viable successor to Atari. Nintendo:
Introduced in 1985, the NES was an instant hit. Over the course of the next two years, it almost single-handedly revitalized the video game industry. Selling over 60 million units, people brought games like Mario and Zelda into their homes for the first time on the NES.
The Nintendo Family Computer (Famicom) is the original Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) released in Japan, an 8-bit cartridge gaming console. Designed by Masayuki Uemura, the Famicom (at a price of ¥14,800) is an instant success in Japan, but Nintendo was not sure it would be a success:
I was in the arcade-game development department, and the president at the time [Hiroshi Yamauchi] sent us a missive to ‘make something that’ll let you play arcade games on your home TV.’
The Famicom sells over two and half million units by the end of its first year, and the popularity of the system allows Nintendo to expand its product internationally.