Sometimes it’s hard to remember that, outside of our gaming world bubbles, our celebrations and disappointments can translate into real money gained or lost for the companies involved.
Case in point: while last night’s Nintendo 3DS press conference seemed to have some interesting news about release dates for Mario titles, a couple Japanese-centric weirdo games, and titles like Monster Hunter 3 and 4 that we thought would make Japanese gamers piss themselves with sheer excitement.
Turns out we weren’t thinking with our business hats. Nintendo stock took a five percent dive after the conference, with investors still believing that the company is missing the point by not finding ways to actually compete with cheap or free mobile games, according to a Reuters article.
“…analysts and investors dismissed the line-up as lacklustre and largely irrelevant in the face of cheap or free games played on the likes of Apple’s iPhone and iPad and Google-powered Android devices,” the article notes.
“I don’t think the new games will make any difference…Nintendo succeeded by pulling in people who weren’t gamers and their needs now are no longer being filled by Nintendo, they are happy playing games on their mobile phones,” Mitsushige Akino, chief fund manager at Ichiyoshi Investment, is quoted as saying.
Another analyst, Makato Kikuchi, the CEO of Myojo Asset Management, believes that Nintendo’s financial salvation lies in abandoning handheld gaming—the market they basically invented—entirely: “The only possible way for Nintendo to revive would be to stop concentrating on mobile games and switch to Wii-type games for the whole family…However, at the moment, I can’t see this change coming.”
But here’s where things get crazier. The 3DS’s poor showing isn’t just hurting Nintendo’s stock, but it’s even causing the stock of its software providers to tank. Reuters reports in another article that shares of Capcom, the publisher of the Monster Hunter franchise (which we all figured would help the system’s image bounce back in Japan) tumbled 8.3 percent, while Square Enix’s support of the 3DS with its forthcoming Bravery Default Flying Fairy and rhythm-based Final Fantasy titles saw its stock fall by 3.9 percent. This comes after Square Enix’s stock already fell over 10 percent after it announced new Dragon Quest titles for the Wii and Wii U.
Ultimately, though, if gamers buy the system and the games, the stock will come back up, simple as that. Nintendo fans better hope that these analysts and investors aren’t quite as in touch with people’s gaming habits and passions as they purport to be.