Nintendo Moves Into The Educational Market

from the whatever-happened-to-burgertime? dept

While Sony and Microsoft duke it out with price cuts on the Playstation 3 and the Xbox 360, Nintendo keeps chugging along in the background, with the Wii continuing to sell well despite still being hard to find at many retailers. A big part of the success of the Wii, and Nintendo overall, has been the company's focus on creating products and games that appeal to a wide audience, and don't rely on sheer processing and graphics power, but rather innovative and creative game play. This is the sort of strategy that EA's new CEO recently alluded to, when he said his company has become stagnant and caught in an endless loop of franchise title updates, and isn't doing enough to court casual gamers and other non-traditional market segments. Even more so than the Wii, Nintendo's DS portable console reflects its strength in this area. It started with things like Brain Age, which attracted an older demographic by blurring the line between learning and gaming, but now the DS is becoming a platform for reference materials and educational programs in Japanese schools. The DS is an attractive device for the schools because it's relatively inexpensive (compared to laptops), and it's easy to use, while its touchscreen and voice-recognition functionality provide a useful platform. Nintendo trumpets the fact that 60% of DS buyers don't consider themselves videogamers -- and it's by catering to this market that Nintendo is finding a lot of success, rather than by rolling out expensive, yet powerful, consoles that focus on complex, involved games.


Reader Comments (rss)

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  1.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 11th, 2007 @ 12:57pm

    All I have to say is...SWiiT!!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 11th, 2007 @ 1:11pm

    Nintendo may not by the "best" but they are at least trying something different. Now if only I could actually find one in a store...it would be unbewiivable.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
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    Killer_Tofu (profile), Jul 11th, 2007 @ 1:13pm

    Re #2

    Oh, they are the best =P

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
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    Nasty Old Geezer, Jul 11th, 2007 @ 1:19pm

    Re: Re #2

    The best for.......because.........

    I am not a gamer at all (IMHO all video games are a waste of time) but I am really tired of fanbois asserting their personal favorite is "the best" without giving the decision parameters.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
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    Bah who needs one, Jul 11th, 2007 @ 1:25pm

    Seems there's a few little wii puns here today.

    Anyone know what's become of Mike Masnick? Or if there's a better place to post questions about the site itself than the comments for the most recent article? (I can't find one, and i know email to webmaster@ will either bounce or simply be ignored, since that seems to be the industry standard behavior nowadays.)

     

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  6.  
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    Overcast, Jul 11th, 2007 @ 2:06pm

    IMHO all video games are a waste of time

    But that is a bit contradictory.

    I mean - Is the 'XBOX vs. WII' debate any different from 'My Hobby is ok, but your hobby sucks' debate?

    I do play my share of video games, but I also have a project car I work on. Honestly - I think the games are a bit more of a time waste, but the car's certainly more of a cash waste...

    True - I can always re-sell the car, but I'll never get out of it, what I put into it. Percentage wise, the car's a better return, but video games don't cost $300.00+, like a set of Chrome Valve Covers do either... heh

    TV... ehh, other than a couple old shows I DVR, I don't really watch much of the tube.

    It's ALL just a matter of personal taste :)

    If the XBOX was the ONLY system out there, well - then the choice would suck. I only play PC games though - I personally dislike console games and their cost. The TV is just too resolution for me and I just like the mouse and keyboard better.

    But the games I like are more involved. I don't really care for simple games at all.

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 11th, 2007 @ 2:26pm

    Re:


    If the XBOX was the ONLY system out there, well - then the choice would suck.


    If any one of the current gen systems were the only choice (PS3, Xbox, or Wii) it would suck.

     

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  8.  
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    Paul, Jul 11th, 2007 @ 2:41pm

    But

    It would suck most if PS3 was the only current gen system.

     

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  9.  
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    Nasty Old Geezer, Jul 11th, 2007 @ 3:11pm

    Re:

    Overcast -- I really did mean "in my humble opinion". If you choose to spend some leisure time on video games -- enjoy! I take no offense at your fun, as long as I am not expected to participate.

    The point of my post is that there really is no one best anything. Best must be stated as the most fitted for a set of decision criteria.

    Wii is "the best" if your criteria are initial price and appeal to an entire family.

    XBox is "the best" in a gamer cafe environment, since Sony restricts the rental of game units under their licensing.

    PS3 is "the best" if you play a single-platform title that is not available for Wii, XBox, or PC.

    None of these is "the best" if you desire a game device to carry on an airplane.

    So whether you are talking about game devices, cars, or whatever -- none is "the best" for every situation or set of criteria.

    PS -- I prefer the cast aluminum valve covers, more stength to avoid gasket pinches and leaks. Alas, my project car has been gone many years.

     

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  10.  
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    Charles Griswold, Jul 11th, 2007 @ 4:02pm

    Re: Re: Re #2

    The best for.......because.........
    Because in addition to controlling the game by pushing buttons, you get to control the game by waving your hands around like an idiot. It's fun.

     

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  11.  
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    Charles Griswold, Jul 11th, 2007 @ 4:10pm

    Re: But

    I am happy to see three gaming consoles competing for market share. Multiple competing products is always good for the consumer and monopolies are always bad for the consumer.

     

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  12.  
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    PhysicsGuy, Jul 11th, 2007 @ 4:13pm

    Re: Re: Re #2

    nintendo is the best because they have the most experience in the gaming market, and they know how to make and cater to games with good game play as opposed to just fancy graphics.

     

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  13.  
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    PhysicsGuy, Jul 11th, 2007 @ 4:16pm

    Re: Re:

    except that when people refer to nintendo, they're not just referring to the wii. nintendo isn't the best company out there just because of the wii, or even the ds.

     

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  14.  
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    despotic, Jul 11th, 2007 @ 4:38pm

    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

    Im a gamer, i love ps3 but that wont make me less interested in playing wii or x-box or Pc. cmon if you are dedicated you can play all.

    Hommo Ludensis concept we learn playing.

     

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  15.  
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    Buzz, Jul 12th, 2007 @ 10:27am

    everything = waste of time

    I play video games quite often, and I agree that video games are a waste of time. However, what I don't like is how people tend to give video games special treatment over other extremely wasteful activities. When I have kids, I will much rather they play games than watch TV. With video games, at least the brain is active. Problem solving skills are developed, reflexes/timing is improved, and hand-eye coordination solidifies. On top of all that, games can be paused, saved, resumed later, etc. I will never return to TV subscriptions until it is purely video-on-demand (and inexpensive). Looking back on the years I wasted on TV, I remember how silly it was trying to sit down at the right time to see the show start (my mother was almost always using the VCR to record something, so setting timers for MY shows was out of the question).

    For now, I live off YouTube for my TV 'needs', and I commend Nintendo for what they have done to revolutionize the video game industry. While they may not offer the BEST educational software, they are at least offering it on an interface that is quickly becoming familiar around the world. I know I would have been MUCH more enticed to do my homework if I were able to do it with my NES controller. Today, I own a Wii, and I'm lovin' it. :)

     

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  16.  
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    Killer_Tofu (profile), Jul 13th, 2007 @ 8:12am

    Re: Many

    When I said Nintendo is the best, I was looking at it from the perspective of time and how well they have stuck with it through all the years and including their current success with the Wii. Not necessarily any specific game or system. It appears (for now, not going to exclude future possibilities) that the Wii will win the "next gen" (how can it be next if they are all out now? Should be "current gen") console war.
    I myself am a PC gamer primarily, and do not even own a Wii. When I FINALLY get around to getting a current gen system, it will probably be the wii with how everything currently adds up. But that probably won't be for over a year still.

    And Buzz Post #15, very well said, very well indeed. =)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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