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Thursday, September 29, 2005

Nintendo challenges gaming basics

Nintendo challenges gaming basics

"Nintendo's next generation games console, the Revolution, has no intention of becoming the living room's digital media hub.

The upcoming Microsoft Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 will vie to be the home's gaming and media hub, as part of the strategy to widen gaming's appeal.

But Revolution aims to shake the basic formula of gaming to attract new people to the world of gaming, says Nintendo.

Microsoft starts the next-gen console war on 22 November in the US.

Sony and Nintendo follow with their wares in 2006.

Changing basics

Although there are scarce technical details about the Revolution, Jim Merrick, senior marketing director for Nintendo, told the BBC News website that it would offer new possibilities and a completely different experience by changing gaming's basic formula.

"By following conventional wisdom of making bigger, faster games, we were narrowing our audience more to hardcore gamers," he said.

A decision was made to change that thinking and "reach out" to non-traditional potential gamers.

Image of Microsoft's Xbox
The Xbox plans to be a digital entertainment hub
This is in line with what Sony, Microsoft and the wider games industry wants to do. By reaching out with gaming gear and titles that appeal to more people, more money is made.

Each of the next-generation consoles promise to change the gaming experience too.

But Sony and Microsoft's strategy differs from Nintendo's. The Revolution is not intended to be a digital entertainment hub housing all your digital content that can be accessible throughout the home.

"Our core business is not about the electronic distribution of content. Our expertise is making great games," said Mr Merrick.

Revolution does aim to take a comfortable spot in the living however: "It has to fit your lifestyle," explained Mr Merrick.

But the games industry has to do more to provide a platform that demonstrates a compelling reason why a next generation of gaming technology is needed, said Mr Merrick.

"The Xbox 360 is a technically delicate machine," he added.

"It has good processors and graphics, but it is a Xbox on steroids. They have not changed the basic formula at all," he argued." [more]

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