Weekend Confirmed 83 - Batman: Arkham City, Forza 4, Skyrim

by Garnett Lee, Oct 21, 2011 11:00am PDT

Like millions of gamers, the Weekend Confirmed crew jumped all over Batman: Arkham City when it came out this week. There's an abundance of love for the game, but Garnett does take exception to the move that put Catwoman out of the reach of gamers without an Internet connection. Along with the two Jeffs--Cannata and "Indie"--and with our second Play For Japan charity auction winner, Eric Hwang, they're just getting started. Forza 4, Skyrim, Orcs Must Die, and Dungeon Defenders all commanded attention over the past week. And the group also weighs in on the rising cumulative cost of games with DLC season passes, the Vita's launch outside Japan, whether the "core" audience is perhaps shrinking, and more before wrapping it all up with Finishing Moves.

Weekend Confirmed Ep. 83: 10/21/2011

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Weekend Confirmed comes in four segments to make it easy to listen to in segments or all at once. Here's the timing for this week's episode:

    Show Breakdown:

    Round 1 00:00:00 – 00:30:15

    Whatcha Been Playing Part 1 00:30:48 – 01:03:00

    Whatcha Been Playing Part 2 01:04:06 – 01:33:17

    Featured Music Break: 01:33:17 – 01:36:40 The Collective – 'Supernatural Love'

    Listener Feedback/Front Page News 01:34:41 – 02:03:23

4942 The Collective is a collaboration of A+ music production minds as ONE entity. We have come together with the knowledge that we can do more together than alone!

Get a FREE download of 'Supernatural Love' and other tracks on the official 4942 the Collective site.

For more, follow 4942 the Collective on twitter.

Original music in the show by Del Rio. Get his latest Album, The Wait is Over on iTunes. Check out more, including the Super Mega Worm mix and other mash-ups on his ReverbNation page or Facebook page, and follow him on twitter delriomusic.

Jeff Cannata can also be seen on The Totally Rad Show. They've gone daily so there's a new segment to watch every day of the week!

Follow the Weekend Confirmed hosts on Twitter! Garnett Lee @GarnettLee, Jeff Cannata @jeffcannata and Xav de Matos @xav.

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  • Nintendo's recent loss is a perfect example of the dangers of putting aside one's core consumers in favor of a casual, mainstream market.

    The core market, in any industry, are the missionaries for your brand. They are passionate about the product, about product quality, and will share that passion with friends, neighbors, on blogs - basically to whomever will listen.

    The casual market is larger and therefore potentially more profitable, but they are fickle. Their interest in the product is generally passing, and they can easily be swayed away by the latest and greatest fad, greater convenience, or many other factors.

    Obviously companies MUST try to capture mainstream markets if they wish to grow and prosper, but they must strike a balance between engaging the mainstream market, and pleasing their core consumers.

    Nintendo treated their core market so badly this generation, they just stopped caring. Without the drum beat of hardcore Nintendo fans serving as the backbone of Nintendo's word-of-mouth, and faced with an even more accessible, convenient alternative (in this case iOS), Nintendo's cherished market of youngins, seniors and non-gamers just stopped caring too.

    And the first always precedes the latter.

    Thread Truncated. Click to see all 4 replies.

    • 1) I find it a little disingenuous to call the casual players "fickle" when the hardcore gamers are the ones spazzing the fuck out over Catwoman DLC, Dante's Haircut, the Real Money Auction House, or really, whatever the global injustice of the week happens to be.

      The amount of vitriol spewed at Nintendo over their alleged mistreatment of gamers is almost a parody of itself at this point.

      TO BE CLEAR, if their output as a manufacturer no longer meets your interests as a consumer, there's absolutely completely nothing at all wrong with moving on to someone who does. It's the most rational, logical, practical option, and I have no quarrel with anyone who'd rather play games on a system that caters to their own tastes.

      That said, it's the hardcore that abandoned Nintendo, not the other way around. They had their reasons, and I respect that, but it's more than a little self-entitled to equate a lack of being catered-to as mistreatment. Also, the common line about how Nintendo is "failing" because they lost the support of "core gamers" reeks of self-satisfaction.

      2) It's not that the casuals don't care anymore, it's that they're not blindly lured by the gleam of shiny new gadgets. Just because they aren't buying new games and new hardware doesn't mean they aren't gaming.

      It's anecdotal at best, but when I ask casuals why they haven't upgraded from a DS to a 3DS, the most common reason is that the regular DS is still getting the job done for them. The hardware specs mean nothing to them. Likewise, they bought smartphones because they needed a phone, and that's been getting the job done as well.

      Admittedly, in terms of profit and market growth, it kind of amounts to the same difference.

      3) Nintendo's "core audience" is the Nintendo fanbase, and that's how it's been since the N64.

      You might not be interested in another Mario and another Zelda and another Pokemon and another Animal Crossing... and again, there's nothing at all wrong with losing interest in those things and moving on, but there are still lots of people who are ready and eager to eat up those experiences, and those are the people Nintendo caters to.

      And while you and I might agree that Skyward Sword looks like the latest in a tired and over the hill formula, (honestly, I've never been a Zelda fan) there are no shortage of kids out there for whom it'll be their first Zelda, and it'll blow their tiny minds.

      Nintendo hasn't abandoned their core audience, if anything, they could be accused of catering too exclusively to their core audience.

      So no, I'd have to disagree about this being a lesson in "the dangers" of putting aside your core audience in favour of a mainstream, casual audience. It's proof positive that the Wii and DS were in the right place at the right time to pinch a cultural nerve, and that it's not very savvy to expect that kind of success to be quite so easily replicated. What comes up eventually comes down, and all that.