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Monday, August 08, 2005

Nintendo Revolution: Free Online Service

Nintendo Revolution: Free Online Service

"Nintendo's public image, Reggie Fils-Aime spoke about Nintendo's plans with their next console. Reggie is also the former senior vice president of marketing at VH1 has been helping push Nintendo back into a frontrunner position and translating Nintendo president Satoru Iwata's cryptic statements on innovation into a language for the common gamer.
Let's start off now with Revolution by getting to the online side of things. How that going to be different from what's already out there? Microsoft had it pretty well handled with Xbox Live.

RFA: As we get into the Internet space, the first way we're going to get there, obviously, is with Nintendo DS, which is going to be having wireless-enabled games for this holiday season. So principles that we're applying for DS are the same principles we're going to apply for Revolution, which is, we want to make it easy and included for the consumer. We want our games to be, if you will, optimized for online play. We want it to be free, so that there are no cost barriers, but we want it to be an overall fun experience so that there's also no what I call experience barriers.

By doing all that, we believe we can drive up our participation rate of online play to be well in excess of about the 15 percent you see today. And the 15 percent comes from a number of industry sources, but if you think about it, 15 out of every 100 consumers who buy an online game actually go and play it online. That's pretty small. Versus what we want to see, for example, with Mario Kart, is we want to see 80, 90, 95, near 100 percent of folks who actually enjoy the experience so much, who have access to the experience, to go do it online.

That, philosophically, is quite different than what our competitors do. There's going to be no subscription fee; we're not looking at this as a profit-driven program. We're looking at it as a way to bring more enjoyment and satisfaction to the game. And we think with what we're doing on Kart, what we're going to be doing on Animal Crossing, what we're going to be doing on future Revolution wireless Internet games, we think that's a fundamentally different model than what's being done today.

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