Shigeru Miyamoto says Vita isn’t a strong product?

It’s technically not 3DS news per se, but it’s interesting enough that I think it warrants a bit of coverage on the site.  Shigeru Miyamoto has been interviewed recently, and his comments on the Playstation Vita are kind of interesting.  He says about the console:

It’s obviously a very hi-spec machine, and you can do lots of things with it. But I don’t really see the combination of software and hardware that really makes a very strong product

I’d say he hit the nail on the head here.  Indeed, you could say this one comment has been the cause of the problems that plagued both the 3DS and the Vita at their respective launches; they’ve got a lot of neat technological features but few actual games to give people an incentive to buy them.

Yet while the 3DS has made a decent recovery after a strong line up of games being released later in the year (The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time 3D, Star Fox, Mario Kart 7, Super Mario 3D Land, etc) and into the next (Kid Icarus Uprising), the Playstation Vita has generally faltered due to a lack of them.  See it’s constant decline in sales in Japan for evidence of that.

Indeed, more companies should take Miyamoto’s words to heart here, because there seems to be an increasingly common obsession with technology as a gimmick and too much focus being put on console hardware rather than games.  Is it because they seem like they’re desperate to become the next Apple and hope they’ll miraculously attract a crowd of hipsters who buy anything with their logo on it?  Maybe, but they need to understand that it’s a mix of the hardware and software which sells a video game console, not the former on its own.  No one gives a damn how many ‘apps’ your console has built into it, whether it has an internet browser, whether it can take photos or whether it can play DVDs.  Those are additional bonuses that people can turn to once they’ve stopped playing a game for a while.  To focus on the hardware and built in features alone is to literally doom your system by competing with every single gadget in existance, the very same basic extras can be found on literally every computer, phone and games console in existance now…

Miyamoto himself explains it better than even I could:

When we launched the 3DS hardware we didn’t have Super Mario 3D Land, we didn’t have Mario Kart 7, we didn’t have Kid Icarus: Uprising. We were striving to have all of these ready for the launch, but we weren’t able to deliver them at that time.

We were kind of hoping that people would, nevertheless, buy into the product, find 3DS hardware promising, but looking back we have to say we realise the key software was missing when we launched the hardware.

Every system maker ever should learn to never, ever do this.  Games are key, and if Sony can understand that they can save the Vita in the same way that Nintendo saved the 3DS.

Also, on another note, people tend not to buy handheld consoles to play games they can play at home or on computers.  That’s something I’ve noticed the current Playstation Vita game line up is failing at, the games seem to generally be the exact same kind you’d get on the Playstation 3 or Xbox 360.  Except played on a tiny screen on a console where battery life is actually a concern.  See the problem here?

But do you agree with Shigeru Miyamoto’s comments on Sony’s game console?  Is it following a similar path to the one the 3DS was originally following?


UnchainBlades ReXX; More Screenshots!

Here are some very, very nice screenshots of UnchainBlades Rexx.  Not sure exactly where they’re from, but they look superb none the less.

The last one is probably official art, but it looks even better than the standard screenshots.  All in all, this game is looking fantastic, and a game which definitely looks to be a great game.

Ubisoft aren’t done with Rabbids; Rabbids Rumble coming soon

Presumably to a Nintendo platform, and likely the Wii U or 3DS at that.  It’s not as bad as it was previously, I mean Rayman’s actually getting regular new games rather than being ‘replaced’ by the rabbids like he was in the early Wii and DS days, but it’s still potentially one more Rabbid game than we need.

Not to mention, where exactly can they even go for this series now?  The rabbids went home in their last Wii game, and the whole mini game collection gimmick has long outworn it’s welcome (you can sort of blame the sheer amount of shovelware on the Wii for this).  The premise sounds a bit like a fighting game of some sort, although whether anyone would want to play as the Rabbids in such a game is rather debatable.

Still, a new Rabbids game looks like its coming, and it might be for 3DS.  What do you think?


Is Kirby’s Pinball Land now coming to eShop?

Nothing confirmed by Nintendo yet, but the Australian ratings board for video games or OFLC have just rated Kirby’s Pinball Land for Australian release.  Obviously it got a G rating (presumably the equivalent of the American E rating or PEGI’s 3+ one, given the content in the Kirby series), but the fact we seem to be getting this game quite soon is cool enough in itself.

Kirby’s Pinball Land is a pinball spinoff to the Kirby series, with about three or so tables, mini games on each one and some boss fights in there too (apparently King Dedede is the villain in this game, like in the original Kirby’s Dreamland).  It’s not a game I’m particularly with, but Wikipedia does say that it got decent reviews, and various people online seem to think of it as a pretty good game.

With this game possibly coming to the eShop/3DS Virtual Console soon, you have to admit Nintendo has kind of done everything right in regards to the quality of the games available on the service.  Kirby games, both Super Mario Land games, three out of four Wario Land games, Tetris and various others, you can’t ask for much more than that.

Did you like Kirby’s Pinball Land, and would you want to play it on 3DS?


Is the cover for Paper Mario 3DS?

Someone on the forums at Nintendo 3DS Community found it on a GameStop website, and while it looks partly like placeholder artwork, some interesting things seem to jump out at me… namely the characters (figuratively and literally).

Because you see, there’s no confirmation of Luigi even being in the game.  Nor any artwork for the Chain Chomp, or even Mario in that pose.

This gives it a tiny bit of credibility seeing how the artwork seems to be brand new, and possibly something a bit beyond the realm of possibility for GameStop to mock up as mere placeholder art.

More interesting still is the source, the Norwegian version of GameStop’s website.  Nowhere else on the internet is this box art listed as the official box art for the game (not EB Games, not GameStop, no GAME…).  Makes me a tad skeptical about its authenticity, although I’m baffled about where all this art is coming from.

So what do you think?  Is this the real box art for Paper Mario 3DS?  Or is it a very well done, interestingly designed mock up.