January 14th, 2006, 14:01 Posted By: wraggster
Great games have been fueling the DS' advance on the marketplace in 2005, culminating in "sold-out" status in Japan this holiday season. That's great momentum for the DS as it heads into 2006. But what does the future really hold for the dual-screen wonder? We place our bets below.
DS Prediction #1: Titles that take advantage of the DS will increasingly come from Japanese developers. Cultural differences aside, lazy North American developers will increasingly produce lackluster content for the DS. Expect more ports and retro projects from America's best when it comes to the DS. But, never fear, the Japanese developers are here. They will continue to push the envelope and develop games that demand the DS' talents. We may just have to wait until 2007 for the next batch of revolutionary games to hit Western shores.
DS Prediction #2: No price drop. It seems like a no-brainer that we would see a price drop for the DS in 2006. But we won't. Even in the face of a PSP price drop, Nintendo knows that it has the momentum and knows that it has a portable game library that is second to none. Nintendo isn't branching out beyond games (and into the world of multimedia, for instance). You can expect Nintendo to hold their current price point in a market where the only real competition for portable gaming comes from the Gameboy Micro.
DS Prediction #3: The DS will show off some unique connectivity capabilities with the Revolution. Think streaming. Think about streaming Goldeneye from your spankin' new Revolution to your DS, whever it is in your house. Retro games are coming your way, wherever you are. Wirelessly. Sweet.
DS Prediction #4: No DS redesign until 2007. Yep, this could be proven wrong on Monday. I just like to make myself vulnerable like that. But, the fact is that the DS won't see a redesign until 2007. Sure, you may see an announcement on a redesign sooner, but you're not going to be buying new product for at least a year. The DS is selling like hotcakes (it's sold out in Japan, for example). Why mess with something that you can't even keep in stock? And the Revolution is headed our way in Spring/Summer. Why release something that will compete directly for the gamer's dollar in the exact same timeframe? Nintendo will bide its time on this one.
DS Prediction #5: There will be a sequel to Nintendogs this holiday, but it won't be Nintencats. Think Nintenpets. You'll get to manage a household of canaries, hamsters, cats and your favorite imported canine. They'll interact with you and they'll interact with each other, leading to new ways to play and new challenges to overcome. New animal AI research has been going on for sometime.
There you have it, 5 predictions for the ages (or at least 2006). Agree, disagree? Have your own predictions? Join the fun and comment below.
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