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Industry Vet: Nintendo to Become Third Party Publisher

Is Nintendo about to become a software-only company? At least one industry insider believes that Nintendo will go the way of Sega. “I think Nintendo’s already on track to become primarily a software company,” Bing Gordon, the former COO of Electronic Arts, told GameIndustry.biz. Despite the comments, Nintendo is set to release their new Wii U console this fall.

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Gordon made the comparison to Sega, a once dominant hardware player that competed with their Genesis system against the Super Nintendo, among other systems such as the Saturn and Dreamcast. Gordon sees pressures building toward households only owning one console rather than multiple systems. He also noted increased competition from smartphones on handhelds like the Nintendo 3DS.

“I think Nintendo’s already on track to become primarily a software company. We saw that with Sega back in the day; Sega made some missteps and became primarily a software company. Nintendo hasn’t really made missteps, Nintendo probably has better creative talent and better leadership now than Sega did,” Bing argued. “It’s got the most robust business model, the best creative talent; Miyamoto’s still the best in the business. So far, when Miyamoto makes a perfect game, in his career he makes games worth $200–it’s worth buying a system for.”