APRIL 1--In the world of underdogs, few are getting as little respect as Nintendo's upcoming console, code-named Revolution. An overwhelming majority of industry analysts have stated that the favorite to win the next-gen console battle will be the PlayStation 3, with the remaining experts saying that Microsoft's Xbox 360 will take advantage of its head start to market, making it tough to beat.
However, Thomas Runte, a self-proclaimed analyst who frequents message boards under the handle "Miyamoto_Mojo," thinks differently.
"We expect Nintendo's Revolution, based on its price and immense catalog of downloadable games, to be the market leader by 2010," Runte told GameSpot News. "Nintendo is going to be one heck of a competitor for the gaming pie, and from the looks of it, I think they are going to get a rather huge slice."
Runte sees the ongoing concern over prices of consoles and games as the major factor in his analysis. The Revolution is almost guaranteed to be the cheapest console when its hits the market, with some projections going as low as $199 for the system.
"Sony and Microsoft will have game development costs much higher than that of the Revolution. The higher costs to develop for [the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360] will be passed on to consumers. This isn't the case with Nintendo's Revolution," said Runte. "I wouldn't be surprised if its games, first- and third-party, were $39, or even cheaper. If you had the choice to pay $40 or $60 for a game, which would you choose? Nintendo is rocking the game industry. They've got the right idea. Soon their superior strategy will pull them ahead."
Innovation is also a key selling point for the console says Runte. The console's controller, which is shaped like a TV remote, uses motion sensors to effectively simulate swinging a sword, casting a fishing line, or shooting a gun.
"I've heard about the controller and some of the projects that Nintendo is working on. It's really very impressive and should tap heavily into the non-gaming market. The possibilities [with the controller] are almost limitless, and I heard from a source that there are already early builds of the Revolution's handwriting-recognition technology. Gamers will eventually use the controller to 'write' answers, allowing Nintendo to bring its popular Brain Training games to the Rev. That'll definitely move systems in Japan. [Nintendo president Satoru] Iwata is a genius--pure and simple."
Runte also thinks that timing favors Nintendo. The Revolution will be able to play games from Nintendo's older consoles, the Sega Genesis, and Hudson's TurboGrafx-16.
"Remember, today's gamers grew up playing Mario Bros. and Zelda, some of the best games of all time. They're out there now as the industry's main consumers. The ability to play thousands of games, all priced in the five-dollar range, without leaving the house is very attractive. Gamers don't want to buy a PS3. They prefer a good system with nostalgia over a system with prettier graphics. Games are meant to be one thing--fun."
Runte says it's not only that Nintendo has "superior strategy" and is "totally awesome"; it's Nintendo's rivals' weaknesses that give the Revolution the advantage. He dismisses the competition as a non-factor and had particularly harsh words for Sony.
"Sony has yet to come out of the pit stop after the first lap. Folks, when this race started, naysayers said Nintendo would not have enough under the engine to compete with Microsoft and Sony. Trying to one-up Nintendo like they did with them wanting to make a Revolution-style controller after it was revealed and oohed and aahed over... Sony won't let anyone else have time in the light. Down with Sony. I am going to take a bat to my PS2. Nintendo is back in a big way. I think Nintendo will own them all. I believe they are on the path to domination once again. I think they finally are giving people what they want and continuing to give them things they never thought of."
Runte wasn't done touting Nintendo's future after the phone conversation with GameSpot News. In a follow-up e-mail, he wrote, "OMG!!! Zelda on teh DS roolz!!!11!1!!1!1 Chrono Trigger downloadable? :) Nintendo >>>>> M$ and Sony. They don't stand a chance! W00t!"
One pro-Sony analyst, who wished only to be known as "Devil_Dante420," responded to Runte's comments. He told GameSpot News, "Whatever. Runte is such a noob. The PS3's graphics are far superior to the Revolution games. Gamers are getting older, they want a machine that caters to an older, mature audience. Zelda is like totally lame. Final Fantasy, now that's a series that can carry a console."
Steve "4Runner" Downes, another self-proclaimed "analyst," is still sticking with his original projection that the Xbox 360 will dominate the next generation. "The Xbox 360 is just better than the lame PS3 and Revolution. I don't care that they're not even out yet, the 360 is just better. Just watch noobz, the world will stop when Halo 3 is released. [Sony and Nintendo] should just give up now."