Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has announced that Mario Kart 8 will release for the Wii U this May. The tentative release (originally scheduled for early Spring) for the eighth iteration of the Mario Kart franchise was mentioned by Iwata during Nintendo’s investors briefing, which is currently taking place as of the writing of this post.
More as this story develops from the briefing.
[Update] - Iwata’s presentation slides have been posted at Nintendo’s Japanese website. On the second page, one slide shows the supposed final box art for Mario Kart 8.
As Nintendo’s latest financial earnings continue to further paint a “gloom-and-doom” future for the company, Satoru Iwata reiterates that they currently have no plans to release their key franchises on smartphone devices. In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, Iwata mentions how smartphones will not be the end of home console gaming. However, Iwata states that the key to success is to use smartphones in a way that will encourage consumers to pick up the console versions of Nintendo franchises.
The spread of smart devices does not spell the end of game consoles. It’s not that simple,” President Satoru Iwata said at a news conference Friday. The key is to figure out a way to use smartphones to make people aware of Nintendo’s games, and encourage them to try out the console version of the games, Mr. Iwata said.
“It doesn’t mean that we should put Mario on smartphones,” he said.
In the meantime, it is worth noting that Nintendo is beefing up its research and development budget, and that Mr. Iwata promises to surprise game players in the future. While there are plenty of unknowns, Nintendo isn’t saying game over to consoles just yet.
It’s apparent that Nintendo will be changing their business model to ensure that the company has any long-term success with the Wii U and 3DS. Just this past weekend, Nintendo slashed its projected fiscal year sales forecast for the Wii U from 9 million units to 2.8 million.
Now, if Nintendo were to delve into some form of applications or even a retro title or two for smartphones, how would you want them to do it? Tell us in the comments below.
Much like Hiroshi Yamauchi, Nintendo President Satoru Iwata isn’t afraid to admit about failure.
While speaking to the B Dash Camp held at Osaka, Japan, Iwata delved into several topics ranging from the recent death of former Nintendo president Hiroshi Yamauchi to pushing the Pokemon in the Americas. Iwata later mentioned in the interview about Nintendo’s longevity and how the company hopes to continue surprising the industry and its legion of gamers.
“If you do the same thing as others, it will wear you out. Nintendo is not good at competing so we always have to challenge [the status quo] by making something new, rather than competing in an existing market.”
You can read the entire Iwata interview here.
What do you have to think about Iwata’s comments about Nintendo’s future? Tell us in the comments below.
During today’s Nintendo Direct, Nintendo announced that one of their key Wii U titles for the holiday season, Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, has been pushed back to February 2014. Developed by Retro Studios, DKC: Tropical Freeze was originally scheduled to launch on the Wii U on December 6, 2013. Satoru Iwata reaffirmed that the delay for the title is meant “in order to optimum gaming experience for fans.”
You can read Iwata’s statement during the Nintendo Direct below.
“In order to deliver the optimum gaming experience for fans, Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze will now launch in February 2014. Developed by Retro Studios, the series’ first Wii U installment stars Donkey Kong, Diddy Kong and Dixie Kong as they go head-to-head against invaders from the northern seas who have taken over Donkey Kong Island. Featuring intense side-scrolling action with dynamic camera angles, cooperative play for up to two players and beautiful HD graphics, Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze is the coolest Donkey Kong Country adventure yet.”
How do you feel about Tropical Freeze’s delay into early 2014? Will this delay be costly for the Wii U’s hopeful holiday surge? Tell us in the comments below.
Nintendo recently held its 73rd annual stockholder meeting this past week, and the company was able to share on its Japanese website the following questionnaire. The topics asked by fellow investors touched upon the possibility of Virtual Boy titles on the Virtual console (try saying that three times fast), the whereabouts of the Wii Vitality Sensor, and even the state of the food served at Nintendo’s own cafeteria. The questions were answered by company president Satoru Iwata and famed designer Shigeru Miyamoto.
One of the first questions asked by investors discussed Nintendo’s limited E3 presence.
[Iwata] At the start of the E3 show this year, we announced our Wii U software lineup until 2014 mainly through Nintendo Direct, rather than holding a large-scale presentation as we did in previous years. However, we did not announce all of the games to be released during this period.
[Miyamoto] When it comes to the scale of software development, Wii U with HD graphics requires about twice the human resources than before. Please allow me to explain that we may have underestimated the scale of this change and as a result, the overall software development took more time than originally anticipated just as we tried to polish the software at the completion phase of development. However, we are almost out of this phase, and we are also trying to create something unique utilizing an easier development approach called “Nintendo Web Framework.”
You can read the full transcript of the questionnaire after the jump.
Speaking during an E3 analyst briefing, Nintendo President and CEO Satoru Iwata hopes to revitalize the Wii U platform not just only with first party titles, but, hopefully, with more third party software. Iwata didn’t disclose what third party software would be coming to the Wii U; however, more and more titles would come once they renew interest. Iwata’s quote below:
“When it comes to third-party software, this slide shows a list of games that have already been announced. It is not my position to mention which titles each third-party developer will release in the future. However, more unannounced titles will come. We hope to revitalize the platform with our strong first-party lineup, and then an enriched third-party software lineup will follow.”