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Nintendo not interested in "garage devs"

"That's not a business we want to pursue."

Nintendo is fully behind independent developers, but it won't do business with what it calls "garage developers".

Nintendo boss Satoru Iwata shocked many when he expressed his fears over the future of "high value" games at the Game Developers Conference.

His keynote was seen by many observers as a thinly veiled attack on Apple's App Store - and the many thousands of games available to download from it.

Explaining Nintendo's position to Gamasutra, US boss Reggie Fils-Aime defended Iwata's surprisingly strongly worded presentation.

"I would separate out the true independent developer vs. the hobbyist," he said. "We are absolutely reaching out to the independent developer. Where we've drawn the line is we are not looking to do business today with the garage developer. In our view, that's not a business we want to pursue."

"Look at the music industry," he continued. "There are certainly highly talented people who work other jobs and have a passion to be in the music industry. They work at it. There are reality TV shows that revolve around this concept.

"I love it when there's a game that's found that captures people's imagination, just like that... singer toiling in a factory."

Despite most taking Iwata's kenote as an attack on Apple, which has disrupted the handheld gaming market with its hugely successful iPhone and iPad devices, Fils-Aime said his boss' comments were not aimed at a specific company.

"When we talk about the value of software, it could be a great $1 piece of content or a $50 piece of content," he explained. "The point is: does it maintain its value over time or is it such disposable content that the value quickly goes to zero?

"We want consumers to see value in the software, whatever that appropriate value is. And we want to see that value maintained over time."

Angry Birds maker Rovio hit the headlines last week when boss Peter Vesterbacka said console games were "dying".

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About the Author

Wesley Yin-Poole avatar

Wesley Yin-Poole

Deputy Editorial Director

Wesley is deputy editorial director of ReedPop. He likes news, interviews, and more news. He also likes Street Fighter more than anyone can get him to shut up about it.


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