Nintendo needs new leadership

Strategic planning is an academic discipline. People research it daily. A ton of publications exist on the subject. The Nintendo Wii was released in 2006. The Wii introduced innovative new controller types into the console space. Microsoft started to introduce the ability to interact with the Xbox Kinect using video back in 2010. Nintendo as a corporation could have mixed video interactions with the Wii controllers. That would have been a novel type of interaction. It could have opened up the door to augmented reality interactions that would have changed the gaming market forever.

Something strange happened with the Nintendo corporation. The company elected to focus on controlling hardware vs. driving the software forward. People invest a lot of money in phones. Video consoles from both Sony and Microsoft are driving 4k content forward.

My very personal and strongly emotional views on Nintendo are highly bimodal. A ton of hours during my childhood were spent playing games. An unreasonable amount of nostalgia abounds for the original Nintendo and Super Nintendo. The Nintendo Wii was interesting and eventually disappointing. I actually gave the one I had away at one point.

Today I tried to buy a Nintendo Classic edition. The good folks at Nintendo yet again failed to make enough of a product. Scarcity is interesting it should not be a product strategy. Creating scarcity through poor planning for a product launch is disappointing. It would have been easy for Nintendo to take pre-orders and scale up to build the right number. That plan was not the direction the company elected to go. Instead executives at Nintendo steered the ship into the rocks yet again.

People have heard me talking about Nintendo missing the smartphone boat for years. It should be easy to purchase classic games. Every Android device should be chalked full of Nintendo’s intellectual property. Android has been estimated to be used by 1.4 billion people. Nintendo could have dominated that market with just legacy titles.

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