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#1 Posted by ghost_protocol (5 posts) -

In the latest bombcast Brad says that the days of top tier titles releasing with new hardware is over, specifically, "The days of Super Mario World releasing with the SNES are over". Why? What is preventing a hardware developer today  from delaying a console launch until at least one AAA title is ready to go?

I cannot imagine the Wii 2  launching without a blowout title.

#2 Posted by mnzy (2916 posts) -

Well, he says why. One big point is just install base. A new console, even if it sells well, will not have many potential costumers. And time is another big one.

#3 Posted by MattyFTM (14420 posts) -

Companies aren't going to devote a massive marketing budget to a game when the install base is relatively small. Not when they can devote that money to marketing a game on a console with a much larger install base and will thus sell more copies.

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#4 Posted by SlightConfuse (3963 posts) -

The amount of time it takes to make a game with superior quality is hard to match when you are figureing out hardware.

#5 Posted by louiedog (2335 posts) -

Those big titles take a lot longer to make now than they did in the 16-bit days. Why would the company making the hardware delay a console launch for a piece of software when they're going to sell out immediately anyway? Look at the 360 and PS3 launch titles, they weren't great but the hardware remained difficult to find for awhile.

#6 Edited by SaturdayNightSpecials (2417 posts) -
@ghost_protocol said:

  I cannot imagine the Wii 2  launching without a blowout title.

Really?

Nintendo hasn't cared about system-selling launch games since the N64 (and considering how the N64 launched with literally 2 games, maybe that's a good thing)

Personally I can't imagine Cafe launching with anything bigger than Mario Kart.
#7 Posted by Dany (7887 posts) -

It will start over when the next generation comes. At least for third parties

#8 Posted by TooWalrus (13240 posts) -
@ghost_protocol said:
I cannot imagine the Wii 2  launching without a blowout title.
I don't see how that is a stretch in any way.
#9 Posted by mfpantst (2574 posts) -

because people like me will take two years to buy the next console (two years post release)

#10 Edited by Underachiever007 (2468 posts) -
@ghost_protocol said:

 I cannot imagine the Wii 2  launching without a blowout title.

Nintendo really hasn't had blowout titles for its system launches for a while now.
#11 Posted by WinterSnowblind (7617 posts) -

Look at the 3DS, is it really hard to believe that Project Café won't have any big hitters?

A couple on months in, the 3DS still has nothing worth playing on it, and won't until mid next month when we get a port of an N64 title.
#12 Posted by Delusibeta (68 posts) -

I dunno. I expect Skyward Sword to be another Twilight Princess, in that it serves as both a last hurrah for one console and a AAA launch title for the next console. For Microsoft and Sony's consoles, however, I expect he's right.

#13 Posted by Kjellm87 (1728 posts) -
@Underachiever007 said:
@ghost_protocol said:

 I cannot imagine the Wii 2  launching without a blowout title.

Nintendo really hasn't had blowout titles for its system launches for a while now.
More like showcases what the new console can do, Luigi's Mansion, Wii Sport, Pilotwings.
#14 Posted by MysteriousBob (6272 posts) -
@ghost_protocol said:
I cannot imagine the Wii 2  launching without a blowout title.
I can. Easily. Mostly because Nintendo haven't done it since the N64.
#15 Posted by WinterSnowblind (7617 posts) -
@Delusibeta said:
I dunno. I expect Skyward Sword to be another Twilight Princess, in that it serves as both a last hurrah for one console and a AAA launch title for the next console. For Microsoft and Sony's consoles, however, I expect he's right.
Skyward Sword is coming this year though and the Nintendo system isn't until the end of next.
There's no way they're going to delay Zelda again, especially after the flak they got for delaying TP just to do the simultaneous release.
#16 Posted by MattBodega (1907 posts) -

Developers don't necessarily need to devote the hugest budget to a launch release. A big game release is only as good as the install base of the hardware; if there aren't enough people who can use the product in the first place, then why bother to release the game?

Not to mention the fact that the number of console units shipped is always going to be small at first, given the expense to produce the console at the outset. Consoles become cheaper to manufacture over time and manufacturers can ship more consoles as time goes on.

Also, console software launches are generally successful enough on their own because consumers are so starved for content that they tend to buy a lot of that early software, as I understand it.

Just think about the launch lineup of the current generation of hardware: the Xbox 360 certainly launched with some high profile titles (Call of Duty 2, Perfect Dark Zero), but those were hardly the system sellers. Major software would come later in the form of Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter, Oblivion, and Gears of War.

The PS3 was similarly shipped without the top tier of software (the original Resistance being the major standout of the launch lineup).

You could make the argument that, by shipping with Wii Sports, Nintendo did release the most important game on the system in time for the launch. You would be hard pressed to make that same argument for Twilight Princess, a game that was, for all purposes, a straight GameCube port.

#17 Posted by Underachiever007 (2468 posts) -
@Kjellm87 said:
@Underachiever007 said:
@ghost_protocol said:

 I cannot imagine the Wii 2  launching without a blowout title.

Nintendo really hasn't had blowout titles for its system launches for a while now.
More like showcases what the new console can do, Luigi's Mansion, Wii Sport, Pilotwings.
Yeah, those are the kind of first party games I expect from the Cafe launch. Maybe a version of Skyward Sword.
#18 Posted by RE_Player1 (7566 posts) -

Also why would a company devote so much money making a game when they know it will sell well during launch. Look at Red Steel. Did it sell well because it was a good game? No. It sold well because people buying a Wii the first month had a choice between it and a couple other games.

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#19 Posted by Scarlet_Rogue (501 posts) -
@ghost_protocol said:
 I cannot imagine the Wii 2  launching without a blowout title.
Really? Cause the Gamecube launched without one.
#20 Posted by Bass (692 posts) -

The argument against the above points is: Isn't it in a first-party's interest to provide a killer app at launch in order to promote the growth of the install base? 

Sure, 3rd party companies don't want to put a huge marketing campaign into an unproven platform, but why won't the 1st party (in this case, Nintendo) put in some effort to make their hardware more appealing. 
#21 Edited by ProfessorEss (7451 posts) -

I don't know about this comment, at least not in the blanket style it was made. Every console released from here to infinity will have an individual strategy based on timing and competition. Even though most aren't likely to launch will killer line-ups I wouldn't be surprised to see the killer launch line-up used as a strategy for some release, some day.

Frankly I think it would be a good strategy for Microsoft next generation. They don't have that fan-base that dives in head first because the box says Microsoft on it, not like Sony does anyways and certainly nothing like what Nintendo has. Launching with a killer app could be what gets people buying that console. Or for Sony: Say they're planning to release six months after Microsoft, if they announce that they have a killer app or two at launch it could cause people to hold off on buying an XBox for the sake of that game.

@MattyFTM said:

Companies aren't going to devote a massive marketing budget to a game when the install base is relatively small. Not when they can devote that money to marketing a game on a console with a much larger install base and will thus sell more copies.

Remember it's not as crazy an investment if it's first party, or if the console maker is footing the bills.
#22 Posted by Enigma777 (6081 posts) -
@MysteriousBob said:
@ghost_protocol said:
I cannot imagine the Wii 2  launching without a blowout title.
I can. Easily. Mostly because Nintendo haven't done it since the N64.
This
#23 Posted by keyhunter (3207 posts) -
@528seven said:
@ghost_protocol said:

  I cannot imagine the Wii 2  launching without a blowout title.

Really?Nintendo hasn't cared about system-selling launch games since the N64 (and considering how the N64 launched with literally 2 games, maybe that's a good thing)Personally I can't imagine Cafe launching with anything bigger than Mario Kart.

It will launch with Animal Crossing DS "HD"
#24 Posted by Tally_Pants (594 posts) -

As much as I'd love to see a big launch title with the new system, I know its just not gonna happen. Everyone's comments about money are totally correct, its what everything boils down to, it always has. But having said that, I would agree with the comment of launching the next system with the new Zelda title along with its Wii launch. That's how I played Twilight Princess, I actually owned the game before I owned a Wii... took me til mid-march or so to finally find a store with a Wii in it when I showed up!

#25 Posted by JokerSmilez (1293 posts) -
@Bass said:
The argument against the above points is: Isn't it in a first-party's interest to provide a killer app at launch in order to promote the growth of the install base? 
Sure, 3rd party companies don't want to put a huge marketing campaign into an unproven platform, but why won't the 1st party (in this case, Nintendo) put in some effort to make their hardware more appealing. 
Because they believe that while having a AAA title available at launch will increase initial hardware sales, it won't be by enough to justify the cost of developing a AAA title.
#26 Posted by Jimbo (9881 posts) -

It depends.  If the hook of your hardware is "Check out this crrrrrazy technology!" (3DS, Kinect) then no I guess you don't really need a particularly standout title to sell your hardware - curiosity will sell it for a while.  I don't think that works if your hardware is just a better version of something people have already seen.

Unless the next Nintendo console has some crazy magic tech we don't know about yet, then I would expect it to have a massive standout title at launch.  Ditto the NextBox and PS4.  I think it still even makes sense for a third party to deliver it, if they know they're going to be the only game in town at a system launch.

#27 Edited by ghost_protocol (5 posts) -

 

The question I asked in my OP should have gone something like this: “What is preventing a hardware developer today from delaying a console until a AAA 1st party title is ready to go? I thought the previous quote about Super Mario World on the SNES was enough to get the point across, but perhaps it wasn’t clear enough.

 For example (and more to the point), what forced Nintendo to launch the 3DS before Kid Icarus or Super Mario 3DS was ready? Why couldn’t they have waited a few months to unveil 3DS initially, and release it a few months later with a brand new, quality, first party title? What is the rush when the same company is developing the hardware and the software? That’s what I don’t understand. It’s not like Kid Icarus and Super Mario 3DS are YEARS away from being done. It seems like it would be in Nintendo’s best interest to only launch systems with a system seller to blow up the install base right from the start (which they did do with Wii Sports, regardless of how we feel about what makes a AAA launch title – it did everything a AAA title is supposed to do, and then some.)

When I look at the Wii 2, I expect Nintendo to treat its launch the same way they treated the Wii’s launch. That is, give us a brand new first party title that demonstrates what the system is designed to, which, in the case of the Café (assuming there’s any shred of truth to all of the rumors) is going to a much more powerful system than the Wii with a high tech controller. That being said, I expect a balls out, high def, first party, attractive and interesting title that a lot of people want to play. I sense that Nintendo is not specifically targeting the “casual” audience with this new system (as they did initially with the Wii), and I feel that, in general, they’re slowly starting to trend back to focusing on core games for gamers. I cannot believe we won’t see some awesome high tech core Nintendo game launching with this thing. It wouldn’t make any sense to move into the HD/high tech direction unless you’re ready to go all out.

 Also, we know Retro Studios was the first (or one of the first) developers to get a dev kit and have been working on something…..

#28 Posted by danimal_furry (1453 posts) -

Twilight Princess was a huge release with the Wii.

#29 Posted by Hizang (8532 posts) -

Because they will make more money putting it on a console thats already out, Pokemon Black/White is a great example, came out just before the 3DS came out when that easily would have been a great launch tittle for the 3DS. But yeah I miss the likes of Super Mario 64 being the first game you try out on your new console, fuck off DS!

#30 Posted by High_Nunez (218 posts) -

I have nothing productive to add to this topic. I just felt impelled to express my total contempt for the term "AAA" games.

#31 Posted by ghost_protocol (5 posts) -
@High_Nunez: I don't either, but it's convenient and everyone knows what it means.
#32 Posted by iam3green (14390 posts) -

it takes a while for games to become that great.

#33 Posted by Vexxan (4623 posts) -
Hope things will turn around, I don't see why they bother to release the consoles without having proper games at launch.
#34 Posted by Toms115 (2316 posts) -
@Dany said:
It will start over when the next generation comes. At least for third parties
you heard it here first. this guy. ^
#35 Posted by Chris2KLee (2337 posts) -

I can't remember the last piece of launch software that blew me away. Wii Sports might be the closest thing, but even then, I don't think that's something on par with Super Mario Bros or Halo.

#36 Posted by wickedsc3 (1046 posts) -

An easy example would be, at launch only 60,000 consoles sold so the most copies you could sell would be 60k.  A couple months later there is 200k consoles sold.  Hence more people to buy the game.

#37 Posted by cstrang (2381 posts) -
@MattyFTM said:

Companies aren't going to devote a massive budget to a game when the install base is relatively small. Not when they can devote that money to a game on a console with a much larger install base and will thus sell more copies.

This is the best answer.  AAA games are very costly to develop these days, and, with audiences/consumer-bases so small at the launch of a console, it doesn't make fiscal sense to release blockbuster games on the outright.
#38 Posted by Mr_Skeleton (5147 posts) -

Didn't you listen to him he was very clear. People will buy the console no matter the game and only after the whole new console thing wears off you need to provide games so other people will also buy it.

#39 Posted by Brodehouse (10104 posts) -
@ghost_protocol: I don't think they do, because most people seem to have it confused for 'great games' when it actually refers to 'high budget' games.
#40 Posted by Yanngc33 (4496 posts) -

Because new hardware is tough to master

#41 Posted by ghost_protocol (5 posts) -
@cstrang: It does if you are a hardware AND software developer. I posted again after my OP to clarify my position. I don't know if you saw it.
#42 Posted by ghost_protocol (5 posts) -
@Mr_Skeleton said:

Didn't you listen to him he was very clear. People will buy the console no matter the game and only after the whole new console thing wears off you need to provide games so other people will also buy it.

No, they won't, which is why everyone is talking about how disappointing the 3DS launch was (sales wise, and software wise), including Nintendo. They didn't have a killer app ready and they're paying the price for it. They should have and could have (SINCE they're the ones making the damn games) waited for Mario or Icarus before they launched the system. A console launch is the first and possibly best chance one has to impress potential customers with something they've never seen before (i.e. the best chance to jump start the growth of your install base). You need quality software to do it or no one is going to care. Software sells consoles more than consoles sell consoles.
#43 Posted by iAmJohn (6128 posts) -
@Scarlet_Rogue said:
@ghost_protocol said:
 I cannot imagine the Wii 2  launching without a blowout title.
Really? Cause the Gamecube launched without one.
Uh... Melee?
#44 Posted by Xsheps (114 posts) -

I can see where Brad is coming from on this point.   I remember reading some article where they said the 360 is the first console we turn on just wanting to play some XBOX, rather than a specific game.  Thats the whole idea behind the 360, to be easy to develop for, and to just be a really powerful gaming machine.  In the 360's original release video on MTV they were saying something along the lines of, here it is, do whatever you want with it.   And most games now are multiplatform, so a console is going to sell on its hardware and interface and not a specific game.   Hell I even bought my PS3 without having a specific game in mind, although that was a decision to regret.

#45 Posted by TehFlan (1944 posts) -
@ghost_protocol said:
@Mr_Skeleton said:

Didn't you listen to him he was very clear. People will buy the console no matter the game and only after the whole new console thing wears off you need to provide games so other people will also buy it.

No, they won't, which is why everyone is talking about how disappointing the 3DS launch was (sales wise, and software wise), including Nintendo. They didn't have a killer app ready and they're paying the price for it. They should have and could have (SINCE they're the ones making the damn games) waited for Mario or Icarus before they launched the system. A console launch is the first and possibly best chance one has to impress potential customers with something they've never seen before (i.e. the best chance to jump start the growth of your install base). You need quality software to do it or no one is going to care. Software sells consoles more than consoles sell consoles.
Even if it was a disappointing launch, they've sold more systems than they would have if the system wasn't out yet, and the titles for it are enough to show that the tech works. People aren't exactly disappointed with the 3DS itself, just the lack of games, which means once the big titles for it hit, more systems will get sold. Anyone that needs a good game to buy a system (like me) is just going to jump on board once games start actually being released, but there's still no downside from Nintendo's perspective to release it earlier.
#46 Posted by Grumbel (910 posts) -

I think the main reason is simply development time. Developing a new modern IP for a new console takes extremely long these days, i.e. minimum three years, often even longer. Thus development has to already start when the hardware isn't even available. It is only after the hardware has been available for a while, all the tools, level editors, etc. have been written that developers can crank out a sequel in a year. That's why all the launch tiles you see on a new console generally don't look all that good, as they are essentially ports of last-generation games that moved to the new console, not games that where designed for the new console, these only come month or years after the console launch.

The other reason is of course money, consoles these days launch at quite expensive prices, reducing the already small audience of a launch game even further and without audience to sell your game to nobody is doing the gigantic investment that a real system seller title would take.

That said, Project Caffee could have in theory the chance to break that, as that is essentially a "this generation" console released late in the cycle and Nintendo would have had more then enough preparation time. But given how lack luster their 3DS handling is, I kind of doubt it.

#47 Posted by Otacon (2209 posts) -

because they know schmucks (like me) will buy the system at launch regardless of games to play on it, then further down the line when the install base is larger, release the stuff thats worth playing and attracts more customers to the system.

#48 Edited by MysteriousBob (6272 posts) -
@iAmJohn said:

@Scarlet_Rogue said:

@ghost_protocol said:
 I cannot imagine the Wii 2  launching without a blowout title.
Really? Cause the Gamecube launched without one.
Uh... Melee?
bzzzzt wrong. Not a launch title.

This reminds me of how everyone refers to Sonic as a Mega Drive launch title even though it didn't come out until '91, two years after the console was out.
#49 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -
@mfpantst said:
because people like me will take two years to buy the next console (two years post release)
I never buy on launch.
#50 Posted by iAmJohn (6128 posts) -
@MysteriousBob: Dude, it was released two weeks after the system came out.  Same fucking difference!