Looking back on the Nintendo Wii U: Nintendo’s last true Home console

So the topic I want to discuss today, is the Nintendo Wii U Nintendo’s last true home console? I’m sure I’ve dabbled on this in the past and I’m probably going to talk about it more in the future but this is just sort of a brief look back.

With the release of the Nintendo Switch people are saying that Nintendo future is bright and some people are saying their future is in doubt. But I don’t think Nintendo’s future has ever been in question to me. They’ve been in pretty good financial shape since they released the Nintendo DS and honestly Pokemon.

So if the Nintendo Switch is a true hybrid console then the question is does it count as at home console and that’s what I want to consider.

I’ve owned every Nintendo Home console since the NES so for me I have a lot invested in Nintendo’s success because they keep making products that I enjoy buying. However I have not owned every Nintendo handheld I’ve never owned a 3DS and I’ve never owned a Gameboy Advance SP or a GBA micro. I have owned Nintendo DS, Gameboy Advance, original Gameboy, Gameboy Pocket, and Gameboy Color, but I’ve never been a huge fan of the handheld’s my main problem is the screens are too small. I have bought most of them for a couple of games and mostly for road trips. I rarely just sit and game on a handheld.

So to me I don’t really think of the Nintendo Switch as a Home console I do have the doc but I never got it and I don’t hook it up to my TV I almost exclusively play in tablet mode with the joy cons attached. No it’s not that I haven’t tried it in console mode I have I played breath of the wild in console mode but most of the games that I have don’t really require being on the big screen and they don’t really gain anything from being on the big screen the tablet screen is good enough and I like to multitask so I usually will have my movies or TV shows playing on the TV while I’m gaming on the tablet this was the one feature I really enjoyed about the Wii U I could sit and play Nintendo games on the Wii U tablet while still watching a show.

A few years ago I was in a discussion board on a Nintendo fan site and we were talking about what Nintendo should do following up the Wii U and I had suggested that they should just make a tablet with buttons that has HDMI out that can connect to a TV for me personally I felt that a product like that would you not both of Nintendo’s core demographics their shrinking console market and they’re consistently loyal handheld Market. For me it seemed like such a no-brainer that I thought if they did anything other than that I was going to be disappointed and not be interested in buying the product considering how disappointed I was in there last two home consoles.

So for me I was very excited when I saw the Nintendo Switch reveal and learned it in fact was a tablet with buttons and HDMI connecting to a TV the best part is the controller’s word attachable that wasn’t something I had consider Nintendo doing as a tablet I kind of feel like maybe Nintendo could put a little more into some of the apps at least get a few multi media apps but I think Nintendo smart to stay focused on the gaming demographic if they were to take Apple head on or Google, they’d probably lose.

So let’s answer the question what to me makes a Home console. Well I’ve always maintained that in order to be a home game console it has to play video games on your TV that’s the core of it the Switch does not play video games on the TV not in its base mode it don’t you have to connect it to a separate piece of Hardware that connects that to your TV so to me that does not qualify the Switch is a true Home console to me it is a mobile device that connects to your TV not a true Home console.

So then to me that makes the Wii U Nintendo last true Home console assuming that the Switch moves forward as their new business model that looks like that’s going to be the plan. So I want to do some Reminiscing on the Nintendo Wii U as Nintendo’s last Home console. I’m going to briefly run down the things that I did not like about the Wii U first and then I’ll end on talking about the things that I did like. The very first thing I dislike about the Wii U was the name I hated the Wii I don’t make that a secret and I did not like the fact that the Wii U was the replacement of the way I wanted them to get away from the Wii brand the we name the motion controls in the little Mii Critters and they didn’t do that.

Some people can look past the name and I was able to do that as well but it was a hard sell. The second thing I didn’t like is how it force you to create a me I didn’t like the Mii’s on the Wii and I didn’t like having to use them and I don’t like being forced to I’ve never liked when any company video game website or anybody forces you to do something I like toys I like options if you give me the choice to do something I might choose to do so if you tell me I don’t have a choice then I don’t want to do it.

The interface was exactly the same as the Wii but there was a slight alteration and had to really annoying me verse and me Plaza and you couldn’t turn them off I didn’t like that either it was just a little reminder that you had a TV screen full of means running around chattering and that Mii gibberish language.

Looking back on it the only other thing I didn’t care for was how you had to load it into Wii mode in order to access the Wii stuff but now that I think about it, the one benefit to that is it allowed you to continue accessing the Wii virtual console and we download games which I did continue to do.

I don’t want to get to negative on it because I did buy the system and I did enjoy it I understand why other people didn’t but it was fun it had some fun games so let’s talk about the things I did like I loved the tablet in the off TV play being able to sit in my recliner and playing a game on the tablet while watching a Netflix show on the TV I enjoyed that.

I also liked the Pro Controller it was better than the classic controller on the Wii. I like the eShop it was easier to navigate the search function was a lot more useful it had a lot more games and it had a few non-game apps that Wii didn’t have as many of those.

I did like the web browser better on the Wii U and once they finally got profiles I liked using the Netflix app on the Wii U better than using it on the Wii which to be honest I never used it on the Wii but my sister did so I know what it was like and I didn’t care for it.

That’s enough about features a game console is only as good as its games so now I want to talk about the games. To a non Nintendo gamer the Wii U was a Barren Wasteland that’s a fact. Fortunately for me I am a Nintendo gamer and it had quite a few games that I really enjoyed.

The first game that I enjoyed the most with Super Mario 3D World I played this game a lot and I even showed it to people and recommended it to friends.

I also played Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, Captain Toad, both New Super Luigi U and new Super Mario Brothers U, Smash Bros. U, Dr. Luigi, Pikmin 3, Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures, the Wonderful 101, Hyrule Warriors, The Legend of Zelda Wind Waker HD remake, The Legend of Zelda Twilight Princess HD remake, Mario versus Donkey Kong game, Splatoon, and Super Mario Maker. I had a few eShop titles like Shovel Knight, Pier Solar, a few others I can’t remember them all. Overall I was mostly satisfied with the games that I had I like most people there were a lot of games I didn’t enjoy those were the games I never bought and there weren’t very many games to choose from so they weren’t a lot of options.

I know some people will disagree with this but I’ll remember the Wii U a little more family than the original Wii but not as finely as the Nintendo GameCube I think I’m going to put it on par with the Nintendo 64 which is the system I like just a little tiny bit more than the Wii.

I think the end of the day it was a good system it had some good games it just had some marketing issues it had a few technical flaws that Nintendo couldn’t overcome and the biggest problem was it was a full HD console it was Nintendo’s first full HD consult and they didn’t know how to develop HD games.

Looking forward I think Nintendo is going to have a better time getting games out for the Switch because they’re going to be in the middle there going to be a little bit better and 3DS games but not quite as good as PS4 games and I think that’s Nintendo’s comfort zone.

The way you did have an assortment of accessories just not a crazy number like the Wii, but I didn’t own enough of them to really comment on that. The Nintendo GameCube was the last time I tried to make a Nintendo console my only console so I had a Wii U but I also had a PS4 and a PS3 so I didn’t really feel like I was missing out on anything I do think if you are a Wii U only console gamer you probably didn’t have a very good generation.

I think maybe in time I’ll start to appreciate it more for what it was and maybe Overlook some of its claws and maybe discover some of the hidden gems although I don’t think there’s that many hidden gems to discover cuz there’s not that many games.

I don’t want to speculate on what could have been or should have been or how it could have been improved I’ll just say that I had fun with it I’ll keep it around and I’ll be able to go back to it from time to time and reminisce without too many negative thoughts. At the time my biggest gripe continued to me the system being overpriced for what you got

When I bought mine Nintendo was running a special if you bought the deluxe edition it came with 3 games and any digital game you bought in the eShop you got like extra bonus points so I got a lot of free games just by buying the system so it worked out for me but I still think it was overpriced.

The games that I don’t own that I still want to pick up I can’t think of any maybe Paper Mario Maybe Star Fox I don’t care for Animal Crossing I don’t care for the Wario games and I won’t buy any of the games and have the Wii name in them, or depend heavily on the Mii’s.

I do have Nintendo Land but that’s because it came with the system and I’ve just never played it and I’ve never saw fit to sell it.

The rest of the games unfortunately if they’re on Switch like Mario Kart 8 Deluxe I just bought for Switch I think I’ll get them on the Switch I’m not interested in going back to the Wii U at this point. I guess there’s a couple of Sonic games that I haven’t played and I think there’s a Rayman game on the Wii U but I’m not 100% I think some of those games are coming to Switch.

I guess that’s all I have to say on it I’m enjoying the Switch and I know all look finally back on the Wii U in time. I don’t think it had as much potential as some of Nintendo previous consoles I think it was held back tremendously by the hardware and it was also held back by some of the Wii stuff but it was a good system not their best certainly not their worst.

“You are all my children now.”

In the 1980’s there was a trifecta of different styles all blending together in a perfect storm of outrageous thematic elements that would soon dominate the entire fringe culture, and even cross into mainstream. Going a decade back the roots of this movement were beginning with the rise of the Dungeons and Dragons tabletop RPG game. The theme was medieval fantasy. It had firmly taken hold of video game culture by the middle of the decade with games such as Legend of Zelda, Final Fantasy, Ghosts N Goblins, Gauntlet, and even Castlevania taking the horror/fantasy genre to mainstream status. On the music side bands like Alice Cooper, Dio, KISS, and many others, were using D&D, horror, fantasy, and medieval art mixed with Gothic imagery. While Hollywood itself was slow to jump on the bandwagon, indie filmmakers like George Lucas, Stephan Spielberg, Jim Henson, and John Carpenter were all making variations of this theme. And best of all they blended together perfectly. Horror movies would reference D&D usually with a gamer depicted or borrow heavily from medieval mythologies, while having a strong heavy-metal soundtrack, which in turn contained lyrics that referenced D&D either directly or indirectly often as the horror movies would. So if you were a fan of medieval fantasy, Gothic imagery and music that told stories set in these thematic worlds, then the mid-to-late 80’s was your decade.

During this time nothing blended these three elements together better than Wes Craven’s Gothic horror masterpiece “A Nightmare o Elm Street.” While the first film itself doesn’t really contain too much in the way of medieval fantasy, it does have a very strong fantasy component, the music is very fitting for the mood, plus it also contains some of that D&D-esque metal rock sprinkled in to ensure it hit all of the notes. In some ways the movie is a murder mystery, you know almost  detective noir-style with Nancy trying to solve the mystery of the masked villain killing her friends one-by-one. It also has a little bit of Gothic horror with Freddy acting as a zombie, a vampire, and a serial killer all while tormenting his victims not with his own dastardly schemes, but using their own fears against them. In some ways it is also a psychological thriller.

The film opens with an abstract scene in the basement of some factory or plant with an unseen man crafting a glove containing sharp razors as extensions of the fingers. Immediately the tone of the film is set, the killer is unseen, hiding in the shadows, nobody knows who, or what, he is or why he is killing these seemingly random teenagers. During the course of the film there are references to Shakespeare, including a quote from Julius Cesar about nightmares, fitting as in the play he dreamed of his demise before it happened, much like the victims in the film.

I won’t spoil the movie for those who haven’t seen it. I am not under the impression that just because it is old everyone knows what takes place, I will say anyone that has any interest in mythology, fantasy, horror, vampires, zombies, the undead, D&D, or heavy metal music should check out the entire franchise. Each film has it’s own strengths and weaknesses.

The sequel, often criticized but still worth watching, goes in a different direction. Instead of a murder mystery where the kids are trying to survive by figuring out who the killer is and how to defeat him, part two, subtitled as “Freddy’s Revenge,” takes on a more haunted house, possession story line. Again it has some moments fans cringe at but it also has a few of the iconic moments that the franchise is well known for. There is even scene that takes place inside of a Gothic night club, further tying the franchise into this whole theme.

Of course if you really want proof the Nightmare films are really D&D-inspired look no further than the third entry. Regarded by many, myself included, as the best in the franchise second only to the original to some, it’s a masterpiece in many ways and proof that a sequel can outdo the original. But there are so many more D&D elements and fantasy themes in this movie. For starters the subtitle is now “The Dream Warriors.” It centers on the survivors of the previous two films, the “Last of the Elm Street teenagers.” something you just have to watch the movies to understand. It also features a kid who prominently plays D&D in the movie, even going so far as having an actual scene depicting, fairly accurately unlike most movies, a portion of game play. In the dream world however things get weirder, this character becomes a wizard with super powers and another character takes on a Gothic/Punk look even meeting Freddy face to face in an alley. There is an Alice in Wonderland feel to the third installment, a D&D type maze/dungeon at the end where they come together as a team, a cleric type, a sage type, a fighter type, and even the silent stealthy bard/thief type, who all have to face the final boss, Freddy, at the end to win the treasure, their right to live, and go back to living normal lives at the end of their mythic quest. It truly is the one film in the series the most similar to an actual game of Dungeons and Dragons, from the very opening scene to the very end credits. It even brings in a fleshed out back story and mythology to the character and his origins are explored in a very medieval Catholic mythology sort of way.

Part four sort of keeps the notion of dream powers, introduces new concepts like the Dream Master, the films subtitle, and ends in a final battle with a new powered up girl in a church where at the end she ends up well I won’t spoil it but it’s very much in line with the theme I been repeating.

Part 5 and 6 are where the franchise takes a turn for the worse. Number 5, the Dream Child, is more of a comic book movie, Freddy is even depicted as a comic book villain and his nemesis is his own mother, resurrected to take him back to hell or something I guess. The movie has a more action movie, comic book vibe and style to it. In some ways that is refreshing, in other ways it can be off putting. Part six is, to put it bluntly, a parody of the franchise. It’s basically a Warner Bros. cartoon making fun of the whole concept, and yes it even features Bugs Bunny and Wizard of Oz references and heavily relies on the 3-D gimmick. It does flesh out the mythology quite well, and features a really great cameo by the dark master himself, Alice Cooper, again really mixing the themes in a way that ensures fans will find something to enjoy. It’s the worst of the films by most accounts but still worth watching for a few things, those cameos and back story plus a surprise I won’t spoil.

Part 7, Wes Craven’s New Nightmare, gets back to the Gothic horror theme by basically putting Freddy into the Hansel and Gretel story. There isn’t much else to say it’s almost a remake/reboot of the original film with a twist but it’s one of the scarier films in the series, still worth checking out. I won’t go into either Freddy Vs. Jason or the 2010 Remake as they both stray so far from the original their best left in their own world. I enjoyed them each, in their own way, but neither of them live up to the source material. Freddy vs. Jason is made for the Playstation crowd and the remake was too dark and had no ties to the fantasy mythology that the original had. Worse of all, it wasn’t even about a child murderer freed on a technicality, it was a sick perverted child molester that had no motive for murdering his victims in their dream world, which also had no fantasy elements at all, instead it was trying too hard to be dark an edgy where it really just ended up being creepy and uncomfortable.

What can I say, I enjoy Gothic music and themes, I play Dungeons and Dragons extensively and I thoroughly enjoy the fantasy-themed horror series of A Nightmare on Elm Street. Netflix recently added the original film to its streaming service, Part 2 and New Nightmare had been there before but they are not the actual best movies, the first and 3rd films are really the two to watch. Part 4 is pretty good, 5 and 6 are laughable but somewhat entertaining and the rest are different degrees of bad or too dark for my taste.

I also really enjoyed the documentary on Netflix “Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy” that really delved deep into the behind the scenes of the movies.

My personal ranking, with scores, best to worst:

  1. A Nightmare On Elm Street 5/5
  2. A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors 5/5
  3. A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master 4.5/5
  4. Freddy vs. Jason 4/5
  5. A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child 3.5/5
  6. A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge 3.5/5
  7. A Nightmare on Elm Street 6: Freddy’s Dead, The Final Nightmare 3.5/5
  8. A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010) remake 3.5/5
  9. Wes Craven’s New Nightmare 3/5

Since I consider both New Nightmare and 2010 to be remakes, I prefer the full on reboot over the half-baked soft reboot. I know others will disagree but I just never cared for the breaking the fourth wall and taking Freddy into the “real” world making everything that came before just a movie, inside of a movie, too meta for my tastes.

There you have it, my general thoughts on the Freddy Krueger character and the films he appears in.

Does the Switch success actually hurt Nintendo?

Right now the entire internet, at least the segment of the internet that pays attention to video games, is paying close attention the Nintendo’s newest gadget, the Switch. I have to say since November when they first showed off what the Switch was capable of I have been taken in. Full disclaimer, I love Nintendo and I typically do buy their machines. But I can safely say my buying habits do reflect the larger gaming audience as a whole so I will use that as a measure to make my point.

Each subsequent home console generation from NES, to Game Cube, Nintendo seems to lose some of their market share. As I have previously pointed out, while their home console base has shrunken over the years, their overall base has grown, partly because they have continued to find success in their handheld divisions. They had 1 outlier, the Wii, which was the first time they not only increased sales, but surpassed their previous record holder, the NES. This was a big deal for the industry because it proved that Nintendo’s philosophy they weren’t competing directly with Sony or Microsoft could be true.

Here is where my question comes into play. I already assume the Switch will be a success because it combines the handheld market with the home console market, obviously that is part of the draw. The reason that could spell success is not because you can take the home console games on the go, that IS NOT a new concept there have been plenty of other systems that did just that. The first notable one was the Turbo Express which let gamers play their Turbografx-16 console games on the go. Then there was the Sega Game Gear which had a converter that allowed you to play Sega Master System games on the go. This was followed by two more portable home console devices from Sega, the CDX which was a sort of, portable Sega CD player, it could connect to a portable screen if you had one, and the Nomad a truly portable Sega Genesis complete with 6-button layout.

Then there is the reverse, which has many gamers also excited, playing portable games on the big screen. This has a big draw because hand held games tend to be reminiscent of retro or classic games. Typically handheld machines were running on last gen hardware or two gens back. The Game Boy was sort of NES hardware and was released during the NES lifespan, but it was black and white only and ran on a much smaller resolution, so compromises had to be made. Game Boy Advance, released at the same time as the Game Cube, PS2-era power, was basically running on SNES levels of power with slight tweaks. Even the Nintendo DS, released just before the Xbox 360-era, was running on essentially N64 hardware in portable mode. This is key because to keep costs down developers have had to make compromises. This means that mobile games running on Switch don’t have to be targeted towards lesser hardware, but they can be tweaked for the mobile experience. I suspect Switch will attract those typical mobile and handheld games that have made past Nintendo handhelds so popular among their target audience. But again playing mobile games, or handheld games, on the big TV is also not new.

In the mid-90’s Nintendo themselves first dabbled in putting portable games on the TV via the home console, they did is with the Super Game Boy cartridge that ran on SNES hardware. They perfected this in the Game Cube era with the Game Boy Player which ran the ENTIRE Game Boy library ranging from Game Boy, Game Boy Color and the then current Game Boy Advance. Sony has even found some limited success with this by putting TV outputs as an option on their PSP and PS Vita devices, especially if you look at the PS Vita TV. So putting portable games on the TV is nothing new, and taking the home console games on the go is nothing new, then what does excite people about the Switch?

This is where it gets messy for Nintendo. Most gamers are banking on the Switch being IT from now on. The belief is Nintendo will merge their portable and home console divisions into a single development platform, they have already stated this as having been done. The reason this is exciting is simple. If you look at a Nintendo release schedule in a given year, they make a TON of great games and attract a TON of great 3rd party and indie support. They do, just not on a single machine. If you divide their handheld and console into TWO machines, releasing separate games and having two divided release schedule you force gamers to make a choice, buy the less expensive, lower powered portable expecting it to have the games that will satisfy you. Another option that fewer people have been making, buy the home console machine for the grander experiences and sit through long periods of droughts with nothing to play. The third option, something fewer people do but what Nintendo really loved, buy both systems to get the entire library. This is key because typically, or traditionally that is, the portable games differed greatly enough from the console games you really had to chose which experience you preferred. Starting with Wii U Nintendo began merging the two libraries. First instead of releasing separate versions of some games, a home versions and a scaled down entirely different portable version, like Super Mario World vs. Super Mario Land, Donkey Kong Country vs. Donkey Kong Land, Kirby Adventure vs. Kirby’s Dreamland, etc. This time they gave you ONE game and released it on both systems. They did this with Super Smash Bros., NES Remix 1 and 2, Super Mario Maker, and a host of others. Another reason the Wii U failed was the library was too similar to the 3ds, which was selling much better and had far superior support. Super Mario 3D World didn’t really offer much different of an experience as Super Mario 3D Land.

So what happens if Switch just gets ALL the games going forward does that automatically mean it will get ALL the gamers going forward too? Here is my pause for concern. If you take this through logically it can mean only 1 thing. Nintendo has basically given up on the true home console market and doubled-down on the portable scene. Their hedging their bets on a dedicated portable machine that can connect to a TV. A few years ago I suggested Nintendo should just make a gaming tablet that used real buttons on the sides and could connect to a TV via HDMI out and I was called crazy for that. My logic was Nintendo’s consoles suffer from lack of releases because Nintendo cannot support two machines, they do not have the resources, money, man power, tools, etc, to do that. If they had all of their teams making all of their games for one system, then they will have the BEST software library in the world and could dominate the gaming industry. They did this twice before, the first time was with NES, they had 90 percent of the entire gaming market during those years. Granted the market was smaller and vastly different then, they dominated because they had so many great games on the system. It was beginning with SNES they had to split their attention between developing games for two machines. It wasn’t as noticable then because the Game Boy was basically just a watered down NES, they could get their summer interns to port NES games down to the Game Boy while sparing a smaller team here and there to pad the schedule with original games. If you look at the classic Game Boy library it really was just an NES port machine those first few years. Even if Super Mario Land was a truly original game, that was about it, and even that was very small scale compared to their console games. Also console games didn’t require as much of an investment to make.

This split wasn’t really noticeable until the N64 and Game Boy Pocket years. This was when Pokemon gave the Game Boy line a second life, remember Nintendo’s intention was for the Virtual Boy to replace the Game Boy, when that failed to take place they scrambled to double-down on saving the Game Boy to stay in business. Then N64 games took a much larger level of investment and a longer time and manpower commitment to get made. They were GRAND, they were large, epic masterpieces, for the time, that rivaled the games Sony and friends were making. The problem was they took so much effort to develop instead of having 7 teams working on 5 console games and 2 portable games, you had 2 teams working on 2 console games and 2 teams scrambling to work on 1 portable game. These numbers are not exactly literal, I don’t know the inner workings of Nintendo, but I DO know from reports at the time and talking to developers over the years, they did consolidate teams and if you read the end game credits you start to see proof of this. N64 was desperate for games so Nintendo handed out licenses to so many partners to help out, which is why you had Rare, Hudson and even Midway making games for Nintendo using their characters, they had no choice they were understaffed and over worked. Thing’s only slightly improved with the Game Cube, droughts were less common partly because Nintendo designed the Cube with their developers in mind, to make developing as easy as possible to streamline the process, they also purchased some new developers to pad the schedule and reached out to even more 3rd party partners to get Nintendo games made using their characters but made by other companies. This time they had Namco and Sega and even Square and Capcom helping out. This was even noticable on the portables when Nintendo handed their most prized IP, the Legend of Zelda, over to Capcom! This was all proof Nintendo couldn’t make enough games to support their systems by themselves.

The issue came about as console sales declined, they couldn’t continue justifying paying developers for support and as costs increased due to going HD and games becoming more complicated and advanced, developers had to be more cautious where they put their money. Again it takes even more resources to make games in HD than SD, even the same exact scope of a game, so that is where Switch comes in.

IF Nintendo can once again consolidate all of their teams to making games for just a single machine, effectively killing off the home console division and merging the two into a single portable first with TV play as an option, then they have succeeded in solving their BIGGEST issue, release droughts. Even now the Switch is seeing fewer games up front than Wii U did, it does have more games announced and in development then Wii U did during the same time frame and from the looks of it, many more 3rd party partners are on board. The key is portables sell better and are easier to develop for and don’t directly compete with the other home consoles, so this allows Nintendo do finesse developers to make games locked to a console, say an exclusive like SF5, because if the contract says console exclusive they could argue Switch is not a console it’s a portable, they have done this in the past, Sony and Microsoft have allowed their games to be released on Nintendo portables at times neither of them had portables in the market. Sony moved away from this once PSP and Vita came along, but even companies that never make games for the home console, still make games for the portable because 1, its cheaper, and 2, the sales potential, thus profit margin, is greater.

In the short term this could spell great success for Nintendo, a unified machine that does everything, gamers have been wanting this ever since PC gamers got their wish with the coveted gaming laptops and even the rise of gaming tablets. This is where the concern comes about, can Nintendo compete directly with Tablets and Laptops and Mobile Phones if say Sony decides to make PS5 a dedicated gaming tablet with multi media features, 4K output, and a Blu Ray disc support? History has indicated that in direct competition Nintendo handhelds do better than Sony while Sony consoles do better than Nintendo, but that is because Sony has ALL the 3rd party support while Nintendo just does well on their franchises and key 3rd party support while being cheaper. In a scenario where Sony had all their games on a machine that was equal parts home console, Playstation dominance, and equal parts portable, PSP tablet but with Playstation support, and instead of asking gamers to chose which machine to get, which they chose the Sony console and Nintendo portable, largely because the Sony portable mostly plays the same games as the console, this could backfire on Nintendo.

In direct head to head competition with hardware parity, 1 device that plays ALL the games no separate machines, and all the franchises land where they land, Sony wins because a dedicated gaming tablet that has Playstation controllers and Playstation level of games and Sony levels of multimedia, would KILL Nintendo because let’s face it, Nintendo survives on their franchises alone but they struggle to get 3rd party support. If Nintendo finds success with this model, Sony does have the resources to play the same game but this time could win. Here is why.

PSP struggled to take out DS despite having better hardware not because it was too expensive or the market just preferred Nintendo but BECAUSE the PSP library was not different enough than PS2. Even though it has a few select exclusives, basically every game on PSP is just a perfect or near perfect portable version of the same Sony Playstation home game. Basically what the Switch is but PSP had to also compete with PS2 and PS3 not just DS. DS was it’s own thing, it played entirely different games or different enough versions of franchises it would stand on its own. It didn’t directly compete with Wii, it complemented it. Switch replaces the home console basically putting all of their eggs in one basket. This could eliminate the edge that makes their portables so attractive. It already removed the SINGLE most attractive selling point, low cost of entry, because it is trying to be both a console and a portable.

Sony could easily out do them, they already have years of developing mobile tech and making a truly dedicated gaming tablet, even higher priced say $399 or even $449, people would buy. I think a single Plystation device that doubles as a portable would sell more than a Nintendo device that does the same thing, when you consider how the Sony machine will get ALL of the games and Nintendo will just have their games and select partners. Nintendo’s portable machines would start selling less each generation and Nintendo loses the edge they had. This is of course assuming Sony follows up with a Switch-like device. I think Sony would do better to stick with home consoles and concede the portable market to Nintendo, a return of the favor Nintendo just handed them the home console market.

See with Nintendo, the other Japanese developer out of the home console space, Sony wins by default. Japanese gamers and console gamers that enjoy Japanese games have had to chose get the Sony machine first and pick up the Nintendo second down the road when price comes down, pick up the Nintendo machine first for the 1st party games and get the Sony machine for the 3rd party stuff later when price comes down, or do what MOST people do anyways, get the Sony console and Nintendo handheld. In a world where every gamer buys a Sony home console AND a Nintendo portable, Microsoft either loses or is forced to compete harder. Sony can handle Microsoft but in a world with a united Nintendo core base, 100-200 million strong die-hard loyalists, Sony would be facing trouble. So Nintendo needs to concede the console space to Sony and concentrate entirely on making Switch a TRUE 3DS successor and let the Wii U and console line rest in peace.