The initial response to Metroid Prime: Federation Force at this year’s E3 probably wasn’t what Nintendo had anticipated. However, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime says that the company has no problems transforming beloved franchises and making them feel new again. Reggie also said that fans shouldn’t worry about Metroid Prime: Federation Force and asks them to trust him and the company to ultimately deliver a great game.
“We’re taking our great IP and transforming them and making them new again — making them fresh and appealing for the fan who feels they know the franchise. But we’re giving them new things to enjoy.”
“What the fan at home saw was something in the Metroid Prime universe that they weren’t expecting. The reaction has been negative. There’s no sugar coating it.”
“This is an example where fans who aren’t able to get their hands on the game may be at a bit of a competitive disadvantage. Everyone who has played what we are showing regarding Metroid Prime, they’ve come across really pleased,” he continued. “My ask is that fans trust us.”
“Mr. Aonuma has said that he is challenging many of the conventional wisdoms of Zelda gaming in this new Zelda, and that’s what we do. We believe we have to do that to keep the franchises fresh,” Fils-Amie said.
“We believe that in order to propel the franchises forward, we have to be the ones to constantly challenge the paradigms, challenge the conventional wisdom, challenge what we thought was the essence of the particular franchise, and a particular form of gameplay.”
Fans have been clamouring for Nintendo of America and Nintendo Europe to announce Mother 3 for the Wii U Virtual Console. Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime says he hears fans cries but says that the company is “constantly thinking about the investment and then return for a game like that.” We’ve got Earthbound and Earthbound Beginnings so who knows? Maybe we will get Mother 3 in the future.
Fils-Aime: Look, again, I think this is an example that demonstrates we’re constantly listening. We’re hearing what the fans say. And we thought it was great to bring back the very first Mother, Earthbound Beginnings here in the market. It’s been out for sale and doing quite well in the eShop. Again, we’ll never say never, but there’s nothing to announce right now.”
Totilo: “Of course not. But Earthbound, when that came out about a year ago [Note from Stephen: whoops, make that two years ago!] on Virtual Console, did you guys have an expectation about how that would do? Did that exceed expectations and perhaps influence the decision to release this one?”
Fils-Aime: “The Mother/Earthbound series is quite niche. And so for us it’s constantly thinking about the investment and then return for a game like that. There is quite a bit of localization to be done and we just need to make sure that volumetrically there’s enough volume to offset that investment.”
Totilo: “Is it safe to assume that you guys are pretty happy with how Earthbound was received last year and that helped motivate and get Mother 1 out?”
Fils-Aime: “That’s exactly right. “
One of the biggest requests on social media is a brand new entry in the Metroid Prime series developed by Retro Studios. Instead, we received Metroid Prime: Federation Force which wasn’t really what the fans had been hoping for. Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime says he is completely aware that the fans want a traditional Metroid title by Retro but basically can’t say anymore than that. It seems as though a new entry to the Metroid series would be on NX.
Totilo: “And I’m not… Next Level Games is making it, and I believe in them, because Luigi’s Mansion Dark Moon is fantastic. Mr. Tanabe has overseen many a great game. I think the question for me, which is a little different than what I’ve seen from some of our readers, I’m not so convinced that this game is going to be bad just because it doesn’t look like what I want. But my curiosity is: Do they [Nintendo] know that people still want a Samus Aran adventure?
Totilo: “I was surprised there was no messaging that said, ‘Don’t worry, we know you’re interested in this as well….’”
Fils-Aime: “Look, we know that the fans want a straight Samus Aran game. We also know that the best way to launch a game like that is to surprise and delight them, to give them a launch date, in an environment like this let them play it vs. what other companies do which is to announce a project that you may not see for five, six years. It’s just not the way we do things. We know the community wants to see a straight-up Metroid game. We know it.”
We were all pleased to hear Nintendo president Satoru Iwata acknowledge the strong feedback from Nintendo fans regarding the Nintendo E3 Digital Event. However, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime says that it wasn’t by any means an apology. He says it was simply that the company is continuing to meet our expectations.
“It was not an apology. It was not a statement about the content we’re showing, essentially it was an ‘I hear you’ message. Mr. Iwata is in Japan and what he’s trying to do is help explain to consumers in Japan what’s going on at E3. The correct translation of his message was: ‘Thank you for your feedback. We hear you and we are committed to continuing to meet your expectations,’ was essentially his message.”
“(Concerning the reaction to Metroid Prime: Federation Force) One of the things I find interesting is that if you look at E3 historically for Nintendo, typically what happens is a press briefing happens or our digital event happens and then over the course of the next couple of days people see the games get to play the games and the appreciation and understanding of what we’re doing increases over those three days and continues to build into the holidays.”
“Splatoon is a game that people are loving right now, but if you rewind to E3 last year, Splatoon was being viewed as, ‘Yes, it’s innovative and it’s different, but the controls are a little hard and I don’t understand the mechanic of turning into a squid and going through the ink.’ There were all of these complaints. But now you look at the finished product and the satisfaction is huge. For us, our goal is to make sure we announce the content, help people understand the content, but most importantly get hands on with the games. I haven’t heard the feedback (for this year’s Best Buy demonstrations), but I think the feedback is going to be quite positive because what we do is make great games and they show well and they really lead to consumer excitement.”
Yes, it’s true, Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime should be coming to your Nintendo 3DS in Mii form via StreetPass Plaza. Reggie’s Mii has a rather fetching Bowser hat and asks whether you prefer “Fish or Zombies.” You might be confused about this, but he’s actually referring to the two new StreetPass games, Ultimate Angler (Fish) and Battleground Z (Zombies).
Thanks, Nintendo Impact Gaming!
Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime is hopeful that Splatoon will eventually revolutionise the action shooting genre in the same way as Mario Kart shook up the racing genre when it was released back in 1992 on the Super Nintendo. Reggie is obviously very confident about the colourful shooter and judging from the previews he probably has a right to be. Splatoon is released on the Wii U in May.
Speaking to us directly on what the title means to the company, President Reggie Fils-Aimé noted that it was “aiming to do for action shooters what Mario Kart did for racing.” He went on to note that it was a “major” new IP for Nintendo, and that the game is “not just about kills. It’s designed to be fun no matter what your skill level is.” We’ll see how major it is sales-wise come May, but for now, it does have a strong niche following on paper.
Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime still remains extremely confident in the future of the Wii U and its video game business in general. Reggie says that it’s ultimately software that will shift hardware and with the content they’ve got coming they’re sure to keep the Wii U afloat. If they decide to bring their content to the iPhone then they will lose out on hardware sales and they don’t want that.
“In this games business, the axiom is that software drives hardware, and we’ve seen that over our 30+ year experience in this category,” Fils-Aime said. Put the software somewhere else, like the iPhone, and the hardware loses, the theory goes.
“And in the end it’s going to be placed on our ability to have these unique compelling experiences that stand up to time.”