Bloomberg is reporting that Nintendo has been ordered to pay inventor and former Sony employee Seijiro Tomita $15.1 million dollars for infringing on the technology he created that was allegedly used for the 3DS hand-held gaming device. The $15.1 million represents about half of the $30.2 million Tomita was awarded by a jury when he won his lawsuit against Nintendo in March of this year.
Speaking to CVG, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata dismissed the suggestion that the reason the Wii U is performing so poorly at retail is due to its price tag. Instead, Iwata blamed a lack of software as the issue behind Wii U's lost momentum. He comes to this conclusion based on the fact that the Wii U Basic model is not selling better than the Premium model at retail.
Nintendo of America has filed a lawsuit against HackYourConsole.com, a web site that - Nintendo claims in its complaint - promotes selling unauthorized copies of Nintendo titles and game copying devices such as the R4. The website does sell R4 devices, but on its Frequently Asked Questions page, it highlights the fact that using software with the R4 device is probably illegal:
According to GoNintendo, Nintendo has sold an impressive 654.12 million consoles and hand-helds worldwide over the last 30 years. On the home console front, Nintendo has sold 268.97 million systems - from collective sales of the NES (Famicom), SNES (Super Famicom), N64, GameCube, Wii, and Wii U. The rest of the number is made up of hand-held device sales. Nintendo has sold 385.15 million hand-helds to-date. That number comes from cumulative sales of the Game Boy, Game Boy Advance, DS, and 3DS.
There's a petition for everything it seems. For example, there's currently a petition on Change.org to make playable Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime in the upcoming Super Smash Bros. game for Wii U and 3DS. The petition directed at game producer Sora Sakurai and Nintendo has already garnered 7,752 supporters as of this writing. Here's a bit from the petition appeal:
The next Super Smash Bros. for the Wii U and 3DS will not have a Story Mode because of... the Internet. Yeah, apparently Super Smash Bros. creator Masahiro Sakurai said in his bi-weekly column in Weekly Famitsu that story mode and CG cutscenes would be eliminated from the next game because the movie scenes from it were uploaded onto the Internet. Yeah, that's really the reason for it.
In Episode 60 of the Super Podcast Action Committee, hosts Andrew Eisen and E. Zachary Knight talk about the latest SHIELD Act, the many letters of Treehouse Avatar Technologies, Nintendo's EVO misstep, Square Enix's bad idea to deal with jailbroken iOS devices, and fake geek girls. Download Episode 60 now: SuperPAC Episode 60 (1 hour, 13 minutes) 59.1 MB.
According to the South China Morning Post, the Chinese government is preparing to lift the 13 year long ban on game consoles in the region. Such a move would be good for the industry, but first console makers such as Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft would have to kowtow to the demands of the government. Apparently efforts to eliminate the ban are strongly supported by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang.
Nintendo president Satoru Iwata recently told investors that reducing staff may be a good way to lower overhead costs in the short term, but it also comes at the expense of developer morale and productivity in the long term.
"If we reduce the number of employees for better short-term financial results employee morale will decrease and I sincerely doubt employees who fear that they may be laid off will be able to develop software titles that could impress people around the world," Iwata told investors.
Nintendo announced that Club Nintendo, its member rewards site in Japan, has been hacked. The security breach was discovered when Nintendo noticed a large number of access errors on July 2. This prompted Nintendo to conduct a deeper investigation. Looking further into the issue, Nintendo found 23,000 instances of unauthorized log-ins (with 15 million attempts) between June 9 and July 4 on Japan's Club Nintendo site. The security breach does not apply to Club Nintendo sites in other countries, according to Nintendo.
Nearly 10,000 fans have signed a petition on Change.org asking Nintendo to end region locking on Wii, Wii U, and 3DS, according to IGN. The petition begins by citing Microsoft's recent change of heart on DRM and region locking related to the Xbox One and Sony's plans to make the PS4 region-free as well.
The World Intellectual Property Organization has ruled in favor of the current domain holder of WiiU.com in a case filed by Nintendo, according to Fusible. The website was first registered in 2004.
When Sony announced at E3 how much better it was than Microsoft, it reaffirmed that the PS4 would be region free. When Microsoft was sufficiently humbled and reversed its anti-consumer ways, it announced that its console would be region free too. This means that games purchased anywhere in the world would be playable on their respective consoles everywhere else.
Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime said that if game developers and publishers are worried about used games cannibalizing new games then they should simply make better games. He also said that it is important to support the used games market because the sale of a used game usually goes towards the purchase of a new game.
The best way for console makers to deal with the used games market is to ensure their games are so good that people don't want to trade them in, he told Polygon. But supporting used games is also important, he added.
Legendary Nintendo designer Shigeru Miyamoto says that used games are less of a concern than the elephant that has always been in the room: piracy. Speaking to CVG Nintendo's most prominent and prolific game creators said that piracy is a bigger threat to his company's business than the used games market.
While Playstation 4 gamers will not have to worry about Online Passes for Sony's first-party games, it appears third party publishers are free to employ used game DRM as they see fit.
With the kind of fanfare you'd expect from a Nintendo Direct video presentation streamed over the Internet, Nintendo got right to the business of showing off new games for the 3DS and Wii U that would appear in some fashion at its E3 booth this week in Los Angeles. All of the games shown during today's event were first-party.
Nintendo today revealed the list of Best Buy stores that will offer hands-on demos of various games the company plans to show during E3 week in Los Angeles next month. The demos will be available at select Best Buy stores (supposedly 110 of them) in North America on June 12 and June 15. Obviously Nintendo did not reveal what titles would be playable at these stores because it has not announced them yet.
If you missed Episode 53 while it was being recorded live on Google +, you can catch it on YouTube now or find it on iTunes. During the show Andrew Eisen, E. Zachary Knight, and James Fudge talked about the latest GamePolitics poll, Nintendo's monetization of "Let's Play" videos on YouTube, the continued trials of Wii U, and Xbox One's various positives and negatives.
Nintendo has a novel way of getting gamers (who do not already own a Wii U) excited about the games it will be showcasing at the Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles next month. At participating Best Buy stores consumers will be able to get hands-on time with pretty much the same game demos as the press gets access to from the E3 show floor. The announcement was made by Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime today during a Nintendo Direct presentation.
Say the name of an Electronic Arts title you'd like to see come to the Wii U. Okay, now let me break the bad news to you as gently as I can: There are no games from Electronic Arts coming to the Wii U in the foreseeable future. Not one title. Not even a Sims game.
"We have no games in development for the Wii U currently," company spokesperson Jeff Brown told Kotaku yesterday.
Nintendo says that first-party game sales for the Nintendo 3DS were very strong in the first four months of 2013. The company claims that within that time period it moved more than 2.1 million units of first-party Nintendo 3DS software in the U.S, an increase of 52 percent over the same time period last year. In 2012, it took 30 weeks for Nintendo 3DS to sell 2 million units of first-party software, according to Nintendo. In 2013, the platform accomplished that same feat in 18 weeks.
Nintendo has decided to target "Let's Play" videos on YouTube with "content ID match" claims, according to multiple reports this morning. By making these claims it allows Nintendo to either block content or monetize the video. This is not sitting well with Let's Play video makers like Zack Scott whose videos have been targeted by Nintendo.
The U.S. Federal Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C. has sided with Nintendo in a patent lawsuit filed by Motiva LLC in 2008 alleging that the Wii console infringed on technology that facilitated "a system to track player position and movement." In its ruling the court gave the plaintiff a scathing rebuke while rejecting its appeal, noting that litigation was "Motiva's only activity that could be related to commercializing the technology."
Kotaku reports that the same sex relationships enjoyed by male characters in the Japanese game Tomodachi Collection: New Life have been patched out. Last week it came to light that male characters in the cutesy Japanese life sim for the 3DS could have relationships with each other. Nintendo promised a patch but many had hoped that the game would patch those same kinds of relationships for females into the game.
Last week I asked if Nintendo should exit the hardware business. 571 of you chimed in with an opinion and 56% of you think Nintendo should keep producing consoles while 13% say Nintendo should drop the hardware business, go third-party and focus on outputting software.
Of course, 4% of you (25 people) think Nintendo should pack it in altogether. Man, a world without Nintendo. That sounds horrible but as Alfred Pennyworth said, "Some men just want to watch the world burn."
Episode 50 of the show is certainly a milestone for hosts Andrew Eisen and E. Zachary Knight (and myself) - which just happens to mark nearly a year of the podcast to boot. So, yay for us! On this week's show we discuss the prank on pirates played by the maker of Game Dev Tycoon, the Nyan Cat / Keyboard Cat- Warner Bros. lawsuit, the latest poll over at GamePolitics, and some other fun stuff. Download Episode 50 now: SuperPAC Episode 50 (1 hour, 15 minutes) 68.6 MB.
Here's some more bad news for Wii U owners that might also be Madden NFL game fans: you won't be getting the popular football franchise on your platform of choice this year, according to this Ars Technica story. More importantly, what does EA's decision not to support the Wii U with one of its biggest sports franchises say about the current perception of Nintendo's struggling console system?