In addition to comments regarding a new budget-friendly Nintendo Switch model reportedly coming this fall, Nikkei shared additional comments from their source who talked about the company’s software approval system and VR business. [Thanks, Hachima and Ninten-Switch.]
Nintendo has continued its business of developing two types of hardware with portable and home consoles for a good part of the last 30 years, but the company will be revising its strategies they’ve used up until now, and they’re also looking into unifying their software development branches, according to Nikkei’s source with knowledge on the matter, who added that the in-house competitiveness between development branches is slowly becoming a thing of the past.
Back when former president Hiroshi Yamauchi was in charge, Nintendo was split up into numerous development lines and they let them go all out and compete against each other. The reason for this was because at the time all it took was a good idea that got approval from Yamauchi-san, which made it possible for even the younger developers to make their games become a reality, so long as they had ideas that could come to fruition. This pushed the developers to work harder back in the day.
However, since the era of the late president Satoru Iwata, the development departments gradually became more unified. Since his passing, Nintendo focused more on consulting within the company to work more as a whole. In order for a new game to get the pass, it must now get approval from several higher-ups and executives, rather than a simple idea that was approved by Yamauchi-san.
One example for this is the recently released Nintendo Labo Toy-Con 04: VR Kit, which was Nintendo’s first VR game. There were actually plans for a VR game about three to four years ago, however, it ended up being put on the backburner after not getting enough approval from above. Many voices from within and outside the company said that this was due to Sony having already released high-end VR games, so it would’ve lacked the sense of innovation for Nintendo to go with it at the time.