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Nintendo 'Not Interested' In Free-To-Play Model

Nintendo's president Satoru Iwata says the company has "no intention" of delving into the free-to-play gaming boom, as he believes, as a company, it should "try to maintain the overall value of video games."
Nintendo says it has "no intention" of delving into the free-to-play gaming boom, as it believes it should "try to maintain the overall value of video games." Speaking to The Wall Street Journal's All Things Digital, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata explained that the company is not interested in developing free-to-play titles, and would rather make games that are "appreciated by the consumers." "Nintendo is not interested," he said. "We have no intention to provide a property to any other platforms, or making them available in a mode that does not require consumers to pay at all." "Nintendo is a company, which is trying to maintain the overall value of video games. If we were simply going to say OK, the only the way we could sell more products is by decreasing the price, then there wouldn’t be a bright future and the entire industry will fold." "When we look at the entire system of freemium, it’s not always that everyone is happy with the offers." he mused. When questioned about the success many companies are having with the free-to-play model, he explained, "There are great examples of advertising and doing the microtranscactions, and several companies who have come up with that kind of system." "But on the other hand, if you ask me, is this a system that can be sustained for the long time? I don’t know the answer. And, my point is that I’m not willing to go that direction, as well." At the Game Developers Conference earlier this year, Iwata expressed similar sentiments towards the industry's move to Facebook games and free-to-play social and mobile titles. "For [mobile and social platform holders], content is something created by someone else. Their goal is to just gather as much software as possible, because … that is how they profit. The value of video game software does not matter to them. … The fact is, what we produce has value, and we should protect that value," he said at the time.

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