Saturday, April 13, 2024
HometechnologyNintendo looks to power-up Mario after not-so-super Wii U

Nintendo looks to power-up Mario after not-so-super Wii U

Nintendo, facing a third year of losses, is getting lots of unsolicited advice on how to squeeze more out of its Mario franchise and revive its fortunes after admitting that its Wii U game console has been a flop.

The company has given few clues on its new management strategy, due to be announced on Thursday. One thing, however, is certain – it will have to burn through a lot of its cash pile in the years it takes to try again with the Wii U's successor.

The Nintendo Wii USource: Nintendo | Facebook

The Nintendo that emerges could well be a more efficient company – better at marketing its beloved characters, but still wedded to its basic strategy of making hardware as the vehicle for software developed in-house.

Most analysts do not expect a bolder change of direction, such as making its back catalogue available via an online subscription service or allowing its games to be played on smartphones – despite some saying they are the future of gaming.

The Kyoto-based company has been slow to move online, falling behind Microsoft Corp and Sony Corp, which will launch a cloud-based streaming service this summer enabling users to play the same game across numerous platforms.

(Read More: Nintendo CEO: 'We Are to Blame' for Poor Wii U Sales)

Taking Mario to the cloud would be a big step for conservative Nintendo.

"Online is big and Nintendo is notorious for not having a great online system," said Jean Snow, a Tokyo-based gaming expert.

The company faces no imminent existential danger. With 850 billion yen ($8.3 billion) in cash and its own shares at the end of last September it can survive a few years of losses.

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