Nintendo may be headed into E3 week looking forward to previewing its next-gen console, and Sony may be hoping nobody asks embarrassing questions about hacking, but Microsoft is getting things started early with the claim that it has revolutionized the "long tail" of how long consoles typically keep their shelf freshness. In a period where PS3 sales are slowing, Microsoft claims the Xbox 360 has seen a 29-percent year-on-year increase in sales.
Nintendo is arguably the most beloved game company in the world. For years now, it has delivered lovable characters, like Mario and Link, outstanding hardware, like the SNES and Wii, and some of the best games to hit store shelves. Its fans are dedicated to the company, and with each new device it launches, they’re more than willing to stand in line to get one.
In the video game industry, there have always been debates among gamers over which company delivered the best hardware on the market. Years ago, that debate raged on between Sega and Nintendo fans. After Sega was knocked out of the market, the attention shifted to Nintendo and Sony.
Nowadays, we have our work cut out for us. We need to decide which console -- the Nintendo Wii, Sony PlayStation 3, or Microsoft Xbox 360 -- is the best of this generation.
Nintendo has dropped the price of its Wii console to $150. The move is yet another in a long line of strategies on Nintendo’s part to try and ramp up the once-astronomical demand for its console.
The only issue is, I don’t see a $150 price tag on the Wii helping out all that much. The console will undoubtedly see a short-term boost in sales, but this is a long-term game. And over the long-term, I simply don’t see any way for Nintendo to maintain high demand for its console.
Nintendo may have the Wii replacement coming next year - tipped to be the Wii 2 "Stream" - but it still has to sell the first-gen console if it wants to turn its dire 2010 financial performance around. In that spirit the company has slashed the suggested retail price of the Wii to $149.99, and as of May 15 will be bundling Mario Kart along with a Wii Wheel accessory.
At the E3 gaming expo later this year, Nintendo will take the stage and finally unveil its long-rumored (and much-needed) Wii successor. Over the last couple weeks, we’ve been hearing quite a bit about the device, including the possibility of it coming with more powerful specs than the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Rumors also suggest that a new controller is in the works that could feature a 6-inch display.
The Wii 2 may be off in 2012, but Nintendo is also talking about its current range, including sharing sales figures for the 3DS. According to the company's latest financial results [pdf link], Nintendo sold 3.61m 3DS along with 9.43m games to play on it; that pales in comparison to the DS, which Nintendo sold 17.52m of and almost 121m games.
Nonetheless, sales for hardware and software overall were down in comparison to the previous year, with net sales for the twelve month period up to 2012 being 1,014 billion yen, down 29.3-percent, and net income of 77.2 billion yen, down 66.1-percent year-on-year.
Nintendo has announced [pdf link] it will release its next games console, the successor to the Wii, in 2012, with the first preview of the new hardware at E3 2011 in early June. Confirmed in a new investor note, the unnamed console - referred to in rumors as the Wii 2 - will seemingly drop sometime after March 2012, given Nintendo has not included it in its current financial forecasts.
Leaked details aplenty around Nintendo's next-gen console to replace the Wii, believed to be codenamed Project Cafe, with IGN reporting on rumors that the Wii 2 will use innovative controllers with integrated "Screen Stream" technology that can stream games direct to an integrated color touchscreen. Mock-up images of the potential hardware - which may reach the marked as the Nintendo Stream, it's suggested - have been discovered by NeoGAF, meanwhile, showing a somewhat retro, SNES-style console that's said to be around the size of an Xbox 360.
It's been nearly five full years since Nintendo released the gaming system that busted a thousand television sets and set millions of hearts on fire with the desire to play video games with their arms instead of their thumbs. Now we're well on our way to a second iteration of this massively successful gaming system, and it's looking like it's going to be landing by June! And what'll it be? Certainly not glasses-free 3D, that's for sure.
The PS3 and Xbox 360 get plenty of case mods, but the smaller Wii - perhaps because, in its compact monochrome pleasantness, it's already relatively slick - seems to miss out on most of the more ambitious tweaks. No more, however; Martin Nielsen - "Angel OD" on Bit-Tech - has taken the Nintendo console and turned it into the Wii UNLimited Edition, a wall-mounted, water-cooled, aluminum-milled slice of beauty.