Nintendo admits online failings

Iwata recognises company "can do better" as Netflix link-up is unveiled for the US

Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has acknowledged that the company's online services must improve, and has stated that there will be a raft of improvements coming with the launch of the 3DS.

Speaking during his GDC keynote, Iwata stated his belief that the new handheld's connectivity options would "will make owners want to carry their 3DS systems around with them, just to find out what new game elements have been passively transferred to them."

But he conceded that so far, the company's efforts had been disappointing.

"I must admit that in the overall area of wireless communication and digital downloads Nintendo can do better," he said. "To date our WiiWare and DSi services have not operated as well as they should."

During the keynote, Nintendo of America boss Reggie Fils-Aime announced two key partnerships for the US in an attempt to boost its offerings, with 10,000 AT&T wireless hotspots to be created, while Netflix members will be able to stream movies and other content via the 3DS platform.

Additionally, he noted, 3DS owners will be able to seamlessly transfer their viewing from the handheld to their Wii console and big screen, should they so desire. A new 3D Super Mario title was also teased, with more information set to follow at this year's E3.

The Nintendo 3DS launches in the US on March 27 - shortly after Europe - with a retail price of $249.99.

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Latest comments (8)

Stephen McCarthy Studying Games Technology, Kingston University5 years ago
i hope it be better for DLC on the 3ds.
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Andreas Firnigl senior designer, Cohort Studios Ltd5 years ago
First thing's first. They need a store-front UI that doesn't look like it's been designed by the intern.
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Andrew Goodchild Studying development, Train2Game5 years ago
Then they need to replace friend codes with something usable, like profiles. And actually support them in all games. After going through the whole friend code thing on Monster Hunter tri, we found that the friend codes did nothing and you had to add each other as friends in game. We only managed to coordinate this as we had our xboxs on purely to use party chat.
But aren't they using friend codes for 3DS? Shows how much they are listening there really.
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Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.5 years ago
Andrew, the friend codes on the 3DS are system specific, not game specific. Once you add them, it's applicable to all games. Also, if you play local mutliplayer with anyone, their friend code is automatically imported for you and added.

You could say the 3DS friend codes work like a profile just with a number instead of a name.
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Andrew Goodchild Studying development, Train2Game5 years ago
@jimmy, that is an improvement, but I can remember what my xbox live username is, I can remember my psp psn id, even though I set it up yesterday, and I can give them to people, but I can't remember a 16 character random code with no personal significance, so why not let me register a name alongside it. Also, allowing seperate profiles for my son, with parental controls applied to his account, not mine, and so he could have a seperate friend list would be nice.
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Robert Smith Studying BTEC- Games tech, University of the West of England5 years ago
Well u can browse the web, watch BBC Iplayer, and download loads of games and stuff from the Wii store what more do you want! The Ui may not look great and Voice on the Wii is pretty poor compard to PS3/ Xbox but you don't use yer wii to play online you use it with yer freinds and family all in front of the TV,
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Andrew Goodchild Studying development, Train2Game5 years ago
You play it with your friends online if you like monster hunter.
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Haven Tso Web-based Game Reviewer 5 years ago
@Andrew. Yeah I must agree that the whole game specific friend code was really annoying. People should be able to use their Mii as profile to just jump in to any games. I tried to play online with friends on my Wii e.g. Monster Hunter Tri and eventually I use my PS3 for online gaming more because it is just so much easier. A pity for Wii because games like Monster Hunter Tri and Animal Crossing are good for online gaming, but the Nintendo way of handling this just didn't cut it as intuitively as PSN.
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