The Japanese company has recently presented a system of missions and rewards that is not convincing
I have known Nintendo for many years now. The Japanese company has always boasted of its capacity for innovation. In particular, from the launch of the Wii and Nintendo DS, under Satoru Iwata, the company focused on sailing in a blue ocean, avoiding the competition in a direct confrontation. The strategy has given him some disappointment (Wii U), but also many joys, the latest being that of Nintendo Switch, which is breaking all records. In a nutshell, those in Kyoto have lately been working on create trendsrather than follow them.
This is part of Nintendo’s philosophy. When they asked their own Shigeru Miyamoto, always replied that he did not like to get involved in projects similar to those that others were already doing. However, although this way of thinking makes sense in the field of console design and software development, it loses more of its meaning when we look at the world of marketing. You just have to look at how outdated Nintendo Switch Online has been since its launch, an aspect I criticized in a recent column.
We live in the year 2022 and there are aspects to which the company has not adaptedDoing things your way is always very laudable. However, introducing features that are far below the competition and doing so years later shows little interest in your relationship with the user. The latest proposal has been to propose missions consisting of performing various tasks with the console, ranging from playing online, to making use of saving data in the cloud or playing a game of the classic Super Mario Bros. In exchange, points are offered platinum that can be redeem for icons to customize your avatar.
No need to explain what the problem is. Microsoft Rewards has been offering a similar rewards service since 2013, with the ability to get discounts for buying games on the Xbox digital store. Let’s not talk about the Xbox 360 achievement system, introduced in 2005 through the popular gamerscore. Even today, Nintendo users are still waiting for a system that resembles it. Some time ago, Bill Trinen (Marketing Manager) commented that Nintendo wasn’t opposed to achievements, but they didn’t like to tell you how to play to get some reward.
I can understand the approach. However, Nintendo itself contradicts itself. There are already plenty of games on Nintendo Switch that have internal achievements. Super Mario Odyssey rewards you with them for doing things like getting a certain number of hats or coins. Fire Emblem Warriors has a badge system for defeating enemies, overcoming all battles in the game, or reaching a high level of experience with your units. Luigi’s Mansion 3 also has a series of small missions consisting of finding well-hidden ghosts, among many other ideas.
In short, there are many Nintendo Switch games that have this system, but for some reason Nintendo refuses to implement achievements in a similar way to Xbox or PlayStation. An implementation that makes sense, that is worked, that offers a certain value to the user. There are several reasons that lead me to think that either they do it their way… or they don’t do it at all. In 2015 they filed a patent on the subject, and there are indications that they are still working on it. However, it is a system so popular among players that absolutely nothing would happen if Nintendo copied it directly. And when I say “copy”, I mean take the best… not the worst.
And that’s where we are. Nintendo creates great video games and this 2022 is going to be a great year for its console. There is no better user service than giving good games, but we also live in the year 2022 and there are aspects to which the company has not adapted. I think that the loss of Satoru Iwata and the departure of Reggie Fils-Aimé have been strongly felt, and not infrequently I reflect on whether the Big N lacks that great figure that looks more for users, similar to that of phil spencer. Someone who generates loyalty and studies what aspects can be improved to improve their experience with the brand. What do you think?
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