Nintendo doesn’t separate indie games from the other games in its online eShop. While that’s a choice that may seem puzzling, a few Nintendo representatives have come forward to explain how the choice might help actually promote indie games more than other storefronts.
Yusuke Soejima and Seong-sa Park, the two heads of indie games on Nintendo platforms, recently sat down for an interview with Entertainment Station (via Siliconera), where the two explained Nintendo’s reasoning behind the lack of separation.
One of the primary reasons, Park explained, has to do with how indie games are viewed in Japan.
“Japan has a lower recognition of indie games than overseas, and so first we’d like to have our consumers recognize the attractive points of indie games,” Park said. “We don’t want to ‘differentiate’ based on the fact that it is an indie game.… For example, if we do create an indie game store, and customers start to think that there are only bad games there, then they will stop looking at the store. If it comes to that, it’s possible they would stop looking at any game just because they are ‘indie.'”
In other words, Park recognizes that there’s a higher chance for unknown studios to churn out some truly bad games, with much less supervision than typically goes into AAA games. He doesn’t want the few inevitable bad apples to taint the reputation of the rest of the bunch. So, instead, he pointed out that Nintendo actively adds more good indie to the games to the store to help boost indie games’ reputation, citing Snipperclips: Cut It Out Together and Shovel Knight as two examples of indie games published by Nintendo.
“We would like to be a platform that developers choose to make their game for,” Park said, explaining how indie games can sit next to some of Nintendo’s own best-seller games.
“When a title sells quite well, and gets recognized as an IP, it would great to see it become an IP that lasts in the minds of consumers,” Soejima added. “Increasing the number of these sorts of titles in the indie scene is something the game industry in general, and not just Nintendo needs to think about… the connections between people are very important, and we would like to continue to treat that preciously.”
Recent statistics have shown that the Nintendo Switch is on track to have a far larger game library than any other console, so hopefully the system will continue to provide a platform for both big-budget and indie games can flourish.
Source: Entertainment Station