February 15th, 2007, 18:57 Posted By: wraggster
A recently translated interview with Nintendo figurehead Shigeru Miyamoto outlines the game design icon’s stance on a variety of topics, including his take on the competition, game violence, innovation and positioning Nintendo to take the lead with the Wii.
CNN’s TV show Talk Asia conducted the interview in early December, just before the launch of the Wii last year (the show was just translated today), but much of what Miyamoto said is still relevant to what Nintendo’s strategy is today with the Wii and DS.
“I do think we are too conscious of competition,” he admitted. “There are many companies today that can be compared to Nintendo. But I think that Nintendo should be unique and become a company that cannot be compared with the other corporations… I don't think there is a company equivalent that has the know-how or skills with the technology behind the games, or has the history and experience in the entertainment industry, and or has such abundant and motivated staff… And as long as we maintain that edge, we will always have an advantage over other companies.”
Miyamoto also said that risk-taking is engrained in Nintendo’s culture. He said that “It is always fun to try something new,” adding that risk-taking is key to opening up new markets. “I feel strongly that we can have a chance in taking the lead in that market,” he said.
Nintendo also hasn’t been known for creating violent games, that is, unless you consider a nasty butt-stomp violent. Miyamoto said that “there are a variety of ways to entertain people.” He continued, “Nintendo has many ways of entertaining people without the use of violent expression. So I do not have to worry in making such [violent] games.”
Although the audience for videogames has grown older, Miyamoto’s approach toward the medium is still focused on children, particularly when it comes to the representation of violence.
“My personal thought is, and I think it is the same with Nintendo, that before thinking about how to handle violence in videogames, I think it is important to think about pain people feel. For example, you would not laugh at people with disabilities. There are bullying problems in Japan.
“Looking at the overall picture, it is important to understand and feel the pain that people might have. We make our games based on that philosophy, using means other than violence. But we also have to take a careful approach, even in the circumstances when we are not portraying direct violence. I think it is always important to give children a product with a careful approach,” he said
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