In an interview with James Brightman from the website GamesIndustry International, legendary game designer Shigeru Miyamoto discussed his thoughts on the Wii U sales struggle, as well as why Zelda U never made it to E3.
Miyamoto began the interview by answering questions about his thoughts as to how Nintendo was fairing at E3 this year, and how the decision to not hold their own press conference impacted the company. Miyamoto’s answer was that Nintendo wanted to stand out from the other two companies and do something different:
“What you described about the media being invited to play games was really an effort to do something that was different and show what is truly unique about Nintendo through the games, […] Because if all we’re doing is the exact same things the other companies are doing, you just all start to look the same.”
The father of Zelda was then asked about whether Nintendo would alter the Wii U’s price of $349 to challenge the price of the PS4 at $399. Miyamoto said that Nintendo is not trying to compete in price, but rather in uniqueness. He feels that making the Wii U different and fun will be enough to convince fans, not just the lower price. When Zelda U was brought up, Miyamoto merely hinted at further news some time after the release of The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker HD, and a promise that the development team is hard at work on the new title. Miyamoto also pushed that Nintendo fans should try to look more at the games that are going to be released within the next few months, like Pikmin 3:
“Development on the new Wii U Zelda game, we’ve pretty much determined our direction on that and the teams are working hard on that. In fact, we actually did consider showing it at E3 this year but we were worried that if we showed the new Wii U Zelda game then that would attract all of the focus, and really what we want people to be aware of and pay attention to here at E3 are the playable games like Pikmin 3 that we have coming in the immediate future, because a lot of fun is with the games that are coming out this year. So that’s why we decided not to show it this year at E3, but it’s certainly something people can look forward to.”
Miyamoto also cleared up any misconceptions about his retirement plans in the interview, of which he says he has none:
“The one thing I want to say is I’m not actively thinking about retirement, but the thing is you look at my age and you have to naturally take into account that a time may come when I’m no longer there.”
Miyamoto also feels that when he does leave, the staff of Nintendo, young and old, will be ready, thanks to the past few years of him keeping away from any active involvement in most of the games. That doesn’t mean that Miyamoto is not involved in any upcoming Nintendo exclusives. His involvement and hopes for the success of Pikmin 3 are prevalent throughout the interview.
As the interview came to a close, Miyamoto was asked if Nintendo is in trouble after missing its sales forecasts and if Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata will need to step down in the near future. Miyamoto found the concerns silly at best:
“Because of the waves in the entertainment industry and the way the cycles move, personally I feel that aiming for a specific numerical goal is almost silly, and instead our focus should be on doing our best to create something that’s new and unique […] So all of this talk of ‘Oh is Nintendo going to hit its numbers? Is Mr. Iwata responsible?’ and all these discussions I think are just silly ones to have because Mr. Iwata is managing our company and I don’t think there’s anyone better to manage it than him.”
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