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Nintendo: Wii wasn't intended as a casual console

Failed to "gain adequate consumer understanding."

It was never Nintendo's intention that the Wii and DS be tagged as consoles primarily for casual gamers, the platform holder has explained.

CEO Satoru Iwata admitted to investors last week that it had failed to adequately inform customers that there was much more to both systems.

When asked about Nintendo's current market strategy Iwata explained that it still aimed to pursue "gaming population expansion", but added that releasing games for "casual or light users" isn't the only way to go about it.

"There was a misunderstanding that Nintendo was dedicated to such games at some stage of the lifespans of the Wii and the Nintendo DS," he said.

"We have made efforts to develop video games that are in tune with various consumer tastes; however, we have not been able to gain adequate consumer understanding regarding our intentions, while in the common perception there are no or few core users playing Nintendo platforms, which is not the case."

He went on to insist that Nintendo plans to develop games that "can be accepted by a wide variety of consumers, irrespective of age, gender or past gaming experience."

"As it is natural that Nintendo alone cannot provide every kind of software, we would like to achieve our goal in cooperation with various developers."

Elsewhere in the presentation, Iwata revealed that the pressures of maintaining four separate platforms at once means that it has had to outsource titles that it might normally have developed itself.

"The time always comes when we must prepare for the next platform. When that time comes, rather than trying to do everything by ourselves, we must try to narrow down what we really have to do inside the company and think of how we can best collaborate with people from other companies.

"For example, the teams led by Shigeru Miyamoto of Nintendo's Entertainment Analysis & Development Division have already been cooperating with external developers in order to create titles which would have been developed internally at Nintendo in the past.

"Now that we realise there may be times when we need to take care of four platforms at once, we are initiating these new challenges, and I believe that such a fixed notion as, 'we have to do everything by ourselves,' has faded inside the company to a large degree."

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Fred Dutton

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Fred Dutton was Eurogamer's US news editor, based in Washington DC.

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