Miyamoto says Nintendo “underestimated” challenge of HD games

Nintendo has published its most recent shareholder Q&A, during which participants had the chance to quiz president Satoru Iwata on all aspects of the business.

During a question relating to Nintendo’s challenge in growing its business and continuing to deliver innovative games, Shigeru Miyamoto was brought in and discussed the struggles of making high-definition games.

“When it comes to the scale of software development,” he said, “Wii U with HD graphics requires about twice the human resources than before. Please allow me to explain that we may have underestimated the scale of this change and as a result, the overall software development took more time than originally anticipated just as we tried to polish the software at the completion phase of development. However, we are almost out of this phase, and we are also trying to create something unique utilizing an easier development approach called “Nintendo Web Framework.””

Miyamoto also addressed concern and criticism that the company’s E3 showing this year lacked original IP, stating: “When some young in-house developers come up with an idea of a new franchise, I say that creating a new character does not necessarily mean creating a new franchise. In my view, a new way of playing or new use of media is necessary for a “new product” and creating a character is not the first thing to do. In this sense, “nintendogs,” “Brain Age” and “Wii Fit” are all new franchises. Few people see it this way because these games have no symbolic “character” like the existence of Mario, but they are actually contributing to our sales.”

Elsewhere in the talk, the full transcript of which can be read here, Iwata maintained that Pikmin 3 is of quality “only Wii U can achieve” and explained the hiatus regarding the Wii’s Vitality Sensor.

“The Wii Vitality Sensor is an interesting device,” he said. “And we did various experiments to see what is possible when it was combined with a video game. But, as a result, we have not been able to launch it as a commercial product because we could not get it to work as we expected and it was of narrower application than we had originally thought.”

In any case, its launch has been pending because we decided that the Wii Vitality Sensor’s current result is insufficient as a commercial product.

He even addressed concerns regarding… the cafeteria.