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One of the highlights from Nintendo’s investor briefing today was the confirmation of DS support for the Wii U Virtual Console. You can find out what president Satoru Iwata said about the functionality below.

Satoru Iwata’s comments on the state of Wii U coming from Nintendo’s investor briefing are now available. You can find them below.

As a platform in its second year, Wii U is currently in a very difficult position. I would like to begin with what we are going to do with Wii U.

Obviously, under the current situation where the company has to report an operating loss, simply executing a price reduction as a way to defuse the situation is not an option. In the short-term, Nintendo will focus on thoroughly enriching the value of the most significant feature of Wii U, the Wii U GamePad.

Unfortunately, as the current situation of Wii U shows, we have not been able to fully communicate the value of the GamePad. We also realize that we have not been successful in answering consumers’ questions such as, “What is the difference between Wii U and the previous platform, Wii, and what is the benefit of upgrading it?” By looking at the current sales situation, I am aware that this is due to our lack of effort. What’s even worse is that there even appear to be not a small number of consumers who think the GamePad is one of the accessories for the previous platform, Wii.
It is more challenging to convey the appeal of the GamePad to consumers who do not engage with video games that often since they do not actively gather information about video games. Therefore, we intend to take on this challenge, and I would like to have this solved before the year-end sales season.

In order to do this, it is obvious that

Our top priority task this year is to offer software titles that are made possible because of the GamePad.

We have managed to offer several of such software titles for occasions when many people gather in one place to play, but we have not been able to offer a decisive software title that enriches the user’s gameplay experience when playing alone with the GamePad. This will be one of the top priorities of Mr. Miyamoto’s software development department this year.

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The Wii U Virtual Console will be receiving DS support, Nintendo has confirmed.

Nintendo hasn’t shared concrete details, but the company suggested during its investor briefing today that the GamePad will split the game action in half – at least based on the image above.

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Nintendo’s latest investor briefing is about to begin. And, per usual, analyst David Gibson is tweeting live from the event. We’re rounding up all of the bits shared at the conference below.

– 11.61m Pokemon XY sold in 9months, 3.52m for Animal Crossing: New Leaf, 2.57m for Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon, 2.18m for Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
– 1.94m for Super Mario 3D World, 1.74m for New Super Mario Bros. U, 1.51m for New Super Luigi U, 1.24m for Wii Party U, and 1.15m for Zelda: Wind Waker HD
– Mario Kart Wii still sells 1m in the 9 month period, sales reach 35.26m life-to-date
– Iwata’s focus today: won’t change how hardware and software combined is the strategy, won’t put games on other platforms, but company has learned lessons from past
– Nintendo will continue R&D on hardware in the future
– Need to identify new opportunity and create new market
– President Iwata apologizes for the big cut in its full-year guidance, bows for three seconds
– Iwata isn’t pessimistic about the game console outlook
– No change to game console being the center of its strategy
– Iwata insists the company will not be abandoning its hardware business
– Iwata says Wii U’s weakness is the GamePad, recognition is low
– Price cut isn’t an option for Wii U
– People think GamePad is an accessory for Wii
– Iwata concedes adapting to change is necessary, but he highlights the company has gone through drastic changes in its 125-year history, starting from Hanafuda cards to now game consoles
– Nintendo needs to put a balance between what it’s going to continue doing and the drastic change it needs to undergo
– GamePad needs titles to take advantage of the controller
– GamePad is Nintendo’s highest priority
– Nintendo will NFC titles at E3
– Plan highspeed startup
– Iwata says he needs to revamp its marketing for this year’s holiday season
– Iwata says the company has overcome technological hurdles to making virtual consoles
– GamePad profile to be increased
– Mario Kart 8 to be released in May
– Iwata says he’ll make sure this won’t be just a one-off boost in momentum
– Fast start up of GamePad designed so can play without TV quickly
– Iwata wants to change the definition of the platform, previously it’s been devices-based, 3DS and Wii U are not compatible and users separate
– Nintendo Network ID is important, also used for future handheld and console, will now include smart device, but won’t put Nintendo games on smartphones
– Nintendo will “actively” use smart devices to “make connections with customers”
– Will use smart devices as a catalyst to encourage customers to use its Nintendo platforms
– Won’t optimize software for smart devices, thinking of launching service sometime this year, an on demand service
– Service is ID based and not device based, account relationship with customer, more users play game the lower the price
– If play with friends then perhaps lower price
– Will experiment with this model on Wii U, changing attitude to licensing IP and will seek partner to expand exposure
– Nintendo may not be releasing its popular franchise on other platforms, but Iwata says the company will license Nintendo game character rights to new partners
– In emerging markets plan to push into in 2015, want to establish user relationship, understand prices need to be lower
– Mr. Iwata now going into how Nintendo is going to expand into new fields. He looks back the past 10 years of his tenure, saying he’s had some success in expanding the gamer population by bringing Wii and DS to people who may not have played games in the past before.
– Iwata defines entertainment as improving quality of life (QOL) in the next 10yrs is to improve this, first area is health, want to find blue ocean
– QOL could do wearable devices but wants to leapfrog that to non wearable devices by Nintendo, want to propose healthy structure for day2day
– Thinks there will be synergies between games platform and QOL platform
– Iwata focusing on quality of life through entertainment for the next decade; key world is health, Nintendo is trying out something completely new: non-wearables to monitor your health.
– QOL platform will roll out in April 2015, integrated with games, business plan details in 2014, business impact in fiscal year March 2016
– For those of you wondering what non-wearables are, Nintendo will unveil the details of its new business during 2014 and launch it for the fiscal year through March 2016. Mr. Iwata’s speech is now over. And now the Q&A session is starting.
– Smart device service application is not designed to make money, but as communication to users, act as a channel to users
– Smart device service just advertising is not enough, it needs to be fun and engaging, connect with what people are talking good about
– Iwata says he’s not aiming for short term revenue boost but the smartphone service app is aimed at building a bridge with customers and bringing more information on Nintendo. But he admits it’s hard for people to use the apps on a regular basis if it’s just for marketing purpose.
– Nintendo is increasing its investment to overcome weakness but not intention to continue current investment into next fiscal year
– Marketing will rise as proportion roof revenue but type will change and especially for smart devices
– Iwata says the big boost in capital spending plan is for Nintendo to tackle areas that it’s not good with. So where is Nintendo’s soft spot? That’s a secret, Mr. Iwata says with a grin.
– 3DS will be driver for next fiscal year, Wii U will not provide big profit but software titles will drive restoration
– License character IP= will now be more flexible, won’t license everything, consider competitiveness or if undermine then not do
– Already in discussion for licensing arrangements, no budget set, make profit in not so distant future
– Miyamoto saying WiiU impacted by lack of key franchises, think is resolved, games are not boring, strong reviews for 3D World
– It is single player that is weak and communication about games, reviews have been very strong
– Think franchises can be upgraded in more stable manner working with external developers
– Answering another analyst’s question on how the company plans to return to profitability, Mr. Iwata says the DS will be the main driver for profit for the next fiscal year and the firm will focus on more efficient marketing. Expectations also high for two popular games lined up: Mario Kart and Super Smash Bros.
– To another question that was a bit too long to recap here, Mr. Iwata says he’s never considered quitting. “My conviction and passion have not been shaken,” he says, though adding he took the pay cut because he did feel he does need to take responsibility.
– Admits Nintendo land was not sell explanatory, admits WiiU had vacuum as year, it’s not about volume but quality that’s important
– Iwata’s admits WiiU had vacuum last year
– 3DS dominates in Japan so 3rd party want to develop for, overseas console dominates with developers focused on console and not portable
– But thinks with 3DS having 10m installed base developers are more interested, WiiU rebound will see 3rd party follow
– On the response of software makers, Mr. Iwata says there is still strong support from makers of content that is popular with Nintendo’s main customer base of children and families, but enthusiasm is lower among other software makers. For now, Nintendo will focus on increasing its user platform so that more software makers can come on board, Mr. Iwata says.
– Iwata – next time propose hardware will utilize what has been done on Wii U, cannot have console and portable separate systems, they are brother/sister
– Nomura analyst now asking why Nintendo revamped its organizational structure to merge consoles and portable devices. Mr. Iwata says there was a huge technological gap in developing consoles and portable games in the past since portable devices run on batteries, but technological advances have narrowed the architectural difference between the two. He adds he doesn’t know yet whether the two hardware will be merged in the future, but the two will become more like “brothers.”
– On licensing: says won’t do further San Rio model, prefer to not follow another’s model, might be able to get sticker or wallpaper on smartphone
– Would consider cancel stock, when say non-wearable means something not just have in living room, but want to remain mysterious now on this
– Mr. Iwata says he won’t deny the possibility of carrying out M&As by using the shares the company will buy back, saying its business is facing a transition point. But he says there’s no specific deal that is moving forward that he can talk about for today.
– For those of you wondering what “non-wearables” for health means, here’s the one clue he’s giving out for today: it’s not necessarily something you will use in the living room.
– Iwata: is sharing philosophy with another company and aligning with them, cannot do alone.
– On the possibility of tie-ups, Mr. Iwata says Nintendo can’t do everything on its own and will be “flexible” in considering its options. But he says there’s something that Nintendo will stick to: the creation of products that are unique and not comparable to anything else. “We’d like to work with other companies where necessary while maintaining our unique identity,” he says.
– Wii U sales while weak in USA or UK they were strong in France and currently studying why that was the case
– Iwata: saying entertainment needs to give surprise, this is bigger with hardware and software together, Nintendo integrated has more options
– Integrated can amplify surprise for consumers, hence more of an advantage, not want to give profit target yet
– Responding to a reporter’s question as to why sales were weak overseas while relatively strong in Japan, Mr. Iwata says the company’s marketing got divided between pushing for 3DS and Wii U console and in the end both never “exploded.” “This was the worst year-end shopping season since I became president. We need to rebuild as soon as possible,” he says.
– another discussion of why Nintendo is keeping both the console and software. “By combining the hardware and software, we can amplify our strength,” Mr. Iwata insists.
– Internally call free to play as free to start, just because can make money doesn’t mean have to put games on smart phones
– Want to present entertainment in a different way on smart phones, session over and most leave.

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Bits from Satoru Iwata’s press conference in Japan continue to emerge. Nikkei has a few more quotes about 3DS and Wii U sales, which are as follows:

In the american video game market a high share of the portable console 3DS is ensured, but during the Christmas shopping season last year sales weren’t explosive as expected. With the delay of software releases for the home console Wii U, it can’t recover while momentum is lost. While it’s necessary to rebuild another dimension, we don’t think that we can overcome this situation by applying a large price cut.

Earlier today we heard Iwata stating that a Wii U price cut is unlikely. The comments above specifically mention “a large price cut”, but perhaps something smaller is still a possibility?

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Nintendo president Satoru Iwata commented on a few topics ahead of the company’s investor briefing set to take place later today.

Of Nintendo’s buyback initiative, Iwata said that Hiroshi Yamauchi’s heirs will have to pay inheritance taxes and may need to sell shares. He also remarked:

“That won’t merit shareholders, that’s why we decided on the buyback. But that’s not all the reason. We’ve been rewarding our shareholders mainly through high dividends, but we cannot generate as much profit as we used to make.”

As part of its latest financial results released today, Nintendo has announced plans to acquire its own shares.

Up to 10,000,000 shares will be acquired in total by March 31, resulting in a purchase of up to 125,000,000,000 yen. Nintendo will be looking to buy back close to 8 percent of its stock.

Through the acquisition, Nintendo hopes to “improve capital efficiency as a flexible capital policy in accordance with changes in the business environment.”

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Back in July 2011, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata announced that he would be taking a 50 percent pay cut following poor 3DS sales. With the Wii U now facing a similar situation, Iwata is making a similar move.

Iwata will once again take a 50 percent pay cut, it’s been confirmed as part of Nintendo’s most recent financial results. Japanese publication Nikkei reports that his salary will be reduced from the period of February until June.

Nintendo’s two other representative directors, Genyo Takeda and Shigeru Miyamoto, will be taking a 30 percent cut as well. All other board directors, including Tatsumi Kimishima, Kaoru Takemura, Shigeyuki Takahashi, Satoshi Yamato, Susumu Tanaka, Shinya Takahashi, and Hirokazu Shinshi, will take a 20 percent reduction.

According to Iwata, Nintendo will evaluate future salaries based on the business environment at that time.

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This week’s European Nintendo Downloads are as follows:

Wii U Retail

Wii Fit U – €34.99 / £29.99

3DS Download

Brilliant Hamster – €9.99 / £9.99

Special Offer: Super Indie Connection Sale

With the Super Indie Connection Sale you can save 60% on selected independent games — but only until 13/02/2014 and only on Nintendo eShop for your Wii U!

The developers of the five participating games love each other’s games so much, they’re offering you their own game at 60% off the regular Nintendo eShop price if you have already downloaded any of the other four games on your Wii U!

If you haven’t downloaded any of the participating games yet, you can also buy one from Nintendo eShop on your Wii U during the Super Indie Connection Sale to be able to get the discount on the other games.

Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams – €5.99 / £5.19 (regularly €14.99 / £12.99)
Mighty Switch Force! Hyper Drive Edition – €3.99 / £3.59 (regularly €9.99 / £8.99)
Runner2 – €4.79 / £3.99 (regularly €11.99 / £9.99)
Spin the Bottle: Bumpie’s Party – €2.79/£2.39 (regularly €6.99 / £5.99)
Toki Tori 2+ – €5.99/£5.19 (regularly €14.99 / £12.99)

Special Offers

Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate (Wii U) – €35.99 / £29.99 (until February 6; regularly €59.99 / £49.99
Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate (3DS) – €26.99 / £23.99 (until February 6; regularly €44.99 / £39.99)

Renegade Kid has pulled back the curtain on Moon Chronicles, its new first-person shooter for the 3DS eShop.

Here’s what we know about the game, courtesy of IGN’s report:

– Episodic model
– Season one is a remake of the original DS game
– Pricing structure:

Episode 1: $8.99 (contains chapters 1 – 4 + 6 VR Missions: ~4 hours of gameplay).
Episode 2 (as DLC): $1.99 (contains chapters 5 – 8: ~2 hours of gameplay).
Episode 3 (as DLC): $1.99 (contains chapters 9 – 12: ~2 hours of gameplay).
Episode 4 (as DLC): $1.99 (contains chapters 13 – 16: ~2 hours of gameplay).

– Second season will likely come next year
– This will feature brand new content that takes place after the original

“We’re big fans of TV shows like Lost. We love shows that really cement the feeling where you watch an episode, you have a cliffhanger, and you absolutely need to watch the next one.”

“That’s our plan for season two and beyond, [for us] to approach it in a similar way. ‘What’s the whole point of the season? Where do we start and where do we end up?’” – Renegade Kid co-founder Jools Watsham

– Rebuilt from the ground up to take advantage of the 3D screen
– 60 frames-per-second (with/without 3D)
– Re-touched detailed geometry and graphics
– Circle Pad Pro support
– Out in spring 2014

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