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Third-parties flocking back to Nintendo

Publisher support for 3DS is "more than we dreamed of"; screen convinced partners of potential, says Fischer

Nintendo has said that one of its major objectives with the release of the 3DS handheld is to gain the support and enthusiasm of third-party publishers and developers.

The firm has been criticised in the past for not offering enough support for third-party game makers on the DS and Wii, while those that did dedicate significant resources to previous Nintendo formats have been burned by a diminishing market.

But Laurent Fischer, MD of marketing in Europe for Nintendo, told GamesIndustry.biz the company has been overwhelmed by interest and support of the new handheld, which wowed industry professionals as E3 last week.

"One of the major objectives of our E3 was to stress that it's important for Nintendo that we get this level of support from partners," said Fisher, in an interview published today. "Of course we're happy about it, but it's more than we would have dreamed of with such support from our partners at this new time for consoles."

"The best way to summarise that is I did a quick check, and it's not an official number, but I gathered information from all publishers and as of now I've seen around 70 different titles announced for the 3DS, including first-party titles of course.

"For hardware that started its public life only days ago that's amazing, and what I was pleased with was you can see very, very strong support from everyone. You can see from the line-up that we have huge titles that no other publisher is doing, without us thinking twice about it. I couldn't see any publisher that isn't very motivated by the console so we're really pleased by that," he added.

Activision, Konami, Ubisoft and Capcom are already pledging some of their biggest franchises to the 3DS with DJ Hero, Metal Gear, Assassin's Creed and Resident Evil, although last week's E3 show mainly consisted of trailers and demos, with Fischer explaining that content partners have only recently been hands-on with the system.

"It's quite recent, in general. As we explained, it's very important to us that we have their support and all the Nintendo teams have been dedicated to our partners and spend the time with them.

"What is important is the surprise effect that the 3D can give on the screen, it was one of the best tools to convince publishers to work as soon as possible with the hardware. They wanted to get hold of it immediately."

The full interview with Laurent Fischer, where he also discusses the use of online in the 3DS strategy, the problems with marketing a new console and more, can be read here.

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Latest comments (7)

Antony Cain Lecturer, Teesside University11 years ago
Let's hope these 3rd parties learnt their lesson with the DS. Quality not quantity with the 3DS please!
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Kingman Cheng Illustrator and Animator 11 years ago
Amen to that Antony, looking forward to a lot of the lineup so far, hope that carries on with future software.
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Josef Brett Animator 11 years ago
Everyday the 3DS news gets me more excited (and impacient).
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Show all comments (7)
Arnold Bennett Studying Journalism, University of Sheffield11 years ago
It scares me to think how successful the 3DS will be when you combine this renewed 3rd party support and Nintendo's own stellar 1st party output. And people wondered why Sony didn't debut the PSP2 at E3.
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Robert Huebner President/CEO, Nihilistic Software11 years ago
It seems like every time there is a new Nintendo platform, there's a surge of "This time it will be different" in terms of how third parties participate. Every one of them was meant to mark a "new era" of widespread support.

But then after a while, with only Nintendo titles putting up big sales numbers, it becomes a race-to-the-bottom again.

Not clear what has fundamentally changed with the 3DS to break that cycle. Nintendo "gets" their audience better than third parties. They have the franchise firepower to create the breakout hits and "must buy" titles.

Its not like they're cheating or anything, they're just damn good at satisfying their base to the point where there isn't enough un-met demand for third parties to grab.


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Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.11 years ago
Robert, I think the point this time is that the base will also be broader than just the Nintendo core and casual. If that's part of the goal from the onset, publishers will enjoy great success. And to me their involvement from day ensures that the audience is broader. The build up and launch determines most of the direction a console will take. The build up for the 3DS is very different than the build up for DS and Wii.
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Haven Tso Web-based Game Reviewer 11 years ago
As Anthony said, they need to put out quality titles not just flood the market with shovel ware and ports, which is the situation with Wii and DS at the mo. Everytime Nintendo put out an idea and sold with first party games, a lot of third parties just build clones of those games and hoped to cash in. Of course they will get burnt.

As for those "original" IPs seriously, how many of those are good? RE: Umbrella Chronicles (good), RE: Darkside Chronicles (bad), Dead Space: Extraction (bad), House of the Dead: Overkill (fun); Conduit (boring) are all the same genre. Okami is a port, Dead Rising: Chop Till You Drop is a washed down port, Mad World apart from the visual is not good, No More Heroes 1 was good but the second game was just laborious. Red Steel 1 and 2 were not good either. Raving Rabbids was good in the first game but then became a milking franchise that lacks imagination. It takes a lot more for a new IP to sell instead of just being a new IP.

So sometimes third parties should really think about what they are doing instead of just complaining.
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