Nintendo has cautiously entered the world of online gaming this morning. Announcing its online gaming strategy, slated to begin later this year, the company once again echoed the sentiment that it is "compelling and highly affordable" gameplay which will endear people to the concept of online gaming. Towards the backend of the year, the company will launch a v.90 Modem Adapter and a Broadband Adapter, both retailing for a suggested retail price of $34.95, and the GameCube's first online games will be Phantasy Star Online Episodes I and II. Episode I is the equivalent of PSO V2 on the Dreamcast, while Episode II is believed to be a proper sequel. While Microsoft and Sony have both attacked online gaming with all of their respective might, Nintendo has not created an enormous server farm and multiplayer hub system to rival Xbox Live. Nintendo will also not be taking a royalty cut from revenue generated by a publisher's online games. Some will label this softly-softly approach too soft, but others still will point to Nintendo's previous assertion, that widespread broadband uptake is conducive to a dedicated online gaming business model, and that we won't see that for another few years. In essence, this online gaming plan allows developers and publishers to do what they want without too much restriction. If they want to make an online game which only works with broadband connections, they can do that. If they want to make a game for everybody, they can do that too. But it's their lookout. What Nintendo will do with it however, remains to be seen. (Metroid Prime Online, please.) The company's press release says only that the facility for online play will be used to tempt big name developers and publishers to the format. Related Feature - E3 to showcase Nintendo's online plans
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