Former Nintendo America president Reggie Fils-Aimé recently had a chat with CNET about his new book Disrupting the Game.
While the usual batch of Nintendo-related questions popped up, Reggie had a little extra to share on this particular occasion. Firstly, he doesn’t expect Nintendo to revive those “mini consoles” like the SNES and NES classics now that it’s got a strong way to deliver legacy content via the Switch Online service.
In his opinion, he thinks Nintendo should focus its energy and efforts on the delivery of “more” N64 content, and perhaps even some other legacy systems like the GameCube and Wii, and really take advantage of this aspect of Nintendo. Here’s part of the exchange:
On the NES Classic, SNES Classic and whether mini consoles will come back
Reggie: “Will it come back? Will there be other physical boxes with legacy content? I don’t think so. If I were back at Nintendo for a day, I would be much more focused on: How does the company leverage all of its great content, deliver it to the consumer through that Nintendo online experience? Which they are doing… they’re putting out some N64 content, they’re working with other platform holders to bring out some of that legacy content. But that’s where the opportunity is. Nintendo still has more N64 content to leverage.
They’ve got GameCube content to leverage, They’ve got Wii content. I see this future of digitally delivered content to you, the consumer, as just this burgeoning opportunity that I would want to keep taking advantage of.”
The last time we checked in on the SNES and NES Mini, combined sales of the systems had surpassed the ten million mark. While it’s quite an amazing feat for the re-release of two legacy consoles, Switch Online is admittedly generating a lot more interest, with subscriptions (as of last November) exceeding 32 million users.
The system itself also has shifted more than 107 million units as of March 31, 2022 – meaning Nintendo Switch Online and Expansion Pack subscriptions will likely continue to rise.
What do you think about Reggie’s comments regarding Switch Online? Should Nintendo be monopolising on now-classic systems like the GameCube and Wii, in addition to the N64? This follows the news Pokémon Snap will be coming to the N64 Switch Online library next week. After this release, the only other known games scheduled for this library include Custom Robo and its sequel, which are currently exclusive to Japan’s NSO service.
I doubt that even GameCube games will be enough to get me to subscribe to NSO. I have “other means” of playing those games, and the GameCube controller adapter that came with Smash for Wii U works like a dream.
Super Mario 3D All Stars was a step in the right direction and I’d love to see more releases in that vein, as minimalistic as that may have been.