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Miyamoto: Rivals face "big challenge" with new motion controllers

Doesn't believe digital distribution will ever replace traditional retail

Nintendo's competition face a "big challenge" getting new motion controllers into the hands of consumers, Shigeru Miyamoto has said, since the difficulty lies not just in creating a natural controller, but in delivering it.

"We have sold millions of controllers at a good price point. And we have that delivery system successfully already implemented. For other companies starting from zero and trying to figure out how to get it out there at a decent price point is a big challenge," Miyamoto told Mercury News.

He also spoke about digital distribution, saying that while it offers developers opportunities, it won't replace the traditional retail model.

"Personally, I'm one of those guys who, even if I have all the songs from iTunes, I want the CD as well. I feel more reassured with that physical media.

"Entertainment is something that will not just become digital. If I look at Wii MotionPlus, this is something that you're not doing via digital distribution.

"The thing for us is we really don't see the future of videogames being merely confined to digital distribution or moving solely or even to a majority of our products being distributed that way," Miyamoto stated.

On the subject of the economic downturn and its impact on the Nintendo business - the company recorded a 60.6 per cent drop in profits for the first quarter of 2009 - Miyamoto says that while the situation is bad for everybody, Nintendo can call upon one of its biggest strengths: its ability to create products that people want to buy.

"(We're) thinking of how a family spends their budgeted entertainment money. Rather than a dad going out and buying something that he wants, (we're) creating something that we can present to them as something the whole family will use," he explained.

"We're really just concentrating on creating something that people want. I think that's one of Nintendo's strong points, that ability to focus on that next challenge."

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Kath Brice