Miyamoto confirms Wii 'demo play'

Nintendo's famed designer tells USA Today that in-game walk-through system will debut this holiday with New Super Mario Bros. Wii.

401 Comments

GameSpot may get a commission from retail offers.

Nintendo's strength during this generation of gaming consoles has been its ability to appeal to mass-market audiences by propagating a more intuitive control scheme with the Wii Remote and catering to alternative genres with games like Wii Fit. In January, the publisher tipped its hand on one more way it hopes to open gaming up to the masses, introducing an in-game walk-through system called the "Kind Code" by way of a United States Patent and Trademark filing.

A concept sketch for demo play.
A concept sketch for demo play.

Speaking to USA Today as part of a post-Electronic Entertainment Expo interview, Nintendo's top designer, Shigeru Miyamoto, confirmed that the helper system, tentatively titled "demo play," is indeed on the way and will debut this holiday season with New Super Mario Bros. Wii.

"In New Super Mario Bros. Wii, if a player is experiencing an area of difficulty, this will allow them to clear troubled areas and take over when they're ready," Miyamoto said of the system through his translator. "And yes, we're looking into this for future games, too."

As detailed in the USPTO filing, the demo play functionality lets players pass through a particularly challenging area of a game or see the conclusion of a lengthy story by surrendering control to prerecorded footage. Gamers would be able to jump into and out of the action when they so desire, which would be facilitated by a scene-selection menu. Nintendo's patent noted that the system was specifically for games that fell into the role-playing, action adventure, and action role-playing genres.

The patent also noted that the saved-game data would be served through a network, making it "unnecessary to include the digest saved-data in the game program" and "possible to reduce a storage capacity necessary for a storage medium."

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

Join the conversation
There are 401 comments about this story
401 Comments  RefreshSorted By 
GameSpot has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to toxic conduct in comments. Any abusive, racist, sexist, threatening, bullying, vulgar, and otherwise objectionable behavior will result in moderation and/or account termination. Please keep your discussion civil.

Avatar image for MegaXtreme
MegaXtreme

208

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 49

User Lists: 0

Nintendo.....I can no longer stand the fact that you are the same company that saved gaming from the clutches of death when Atari screwed it up. You're not the same company at all, and I refuse to believe otherwise. The very fact that you went from making such intuitive, challenging, and incredible games to actually holding people's hands through them is despicable. Gaming isn't meant for everyone, and it never was. If you're really not willing to try it yourself and make it through on your actions and thoughts, then how will children ever learn the concept of problem solving? This'll only teach them to turn to others for help all the time. Having something like this right in reach takes any challenge any game on the Wii will ever have right out of it and throws it out the window. I'll never use it. I know that for a fact. Why? Because people who truly enjoy a challenge and are willing to actually TRY at a game with any sort of willpower will get the most rewarding experience from any game. Anyone that needs their hand held through the game should just put the controller down and walk away, because quite simply, you weren't meant to play video games.They're not for everyone, and this "demo play" will only draw the line between casual and hardcore gamers ever so thicker. Bad idea, Nintendo. Yet another bad idea.

Avatar image for lightning_kf
lightning_kf

620

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 170

User Lists: 0

It's one thing to hear about this "demo play" but it's another to SEE what it's all about. I'm gonna wait and see what this is going to be BEFORE I make a comment about it.

Avatar image for skullboy950
skullboy950

348

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

This "demo play" has got to be one of the worst things the industry has ever thought of. This defeats the purpose and defies the concept of challenge.

Avatar image for Gamingcucumber
Gamingcucumber

5611

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 12

User Lists: 0

And gone are the days when you could spend a year trying to figure out a game. I spent so much time on Super Mario Bros 3 and Zelda Links Awakening when I was a kid. Then came the cheat magazines, the game genies, after that the gamefaqs, the video walktroughs and now the "solve itself" mode. Am I the only who doesn't mind a challenge when I play a game?

Avatar image for fluffy_kins
fluffy_kins

2553

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 8

User Lists: 0

calm yourselves. If you don't need to use the demo play... then don't. AMAZING concept, isn't it? But I'm sure you'll all still whine and moan about something that isn't even being forced on you... *eye roll*

Avatar image for hatieshorrer
hatieshorrer

1275

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

So the future of gaming is to have the game play itself? What happened to "Id prefer if people bought my games to for the sake of playing the game." Miyamoto your a brilliant game designer but I think this is one of your few bad ideas.

Avatar image for PostedOval
PostedOval

256

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 0

This is a FANTASTIC idea...and one that I wish more twitch-based games supported. Right now I am furious with Jak 3 and a particular mission I must have played a 100 times and failed. If this was available, I'd simply switch it on, get passed the trouble spot and continue enjoying my game!

Avatar image for S_Pac_316
S_Pac_316

439

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Wow...this's stupid... If people suck this badly at games that they need the Demo-play to help them, then they shouldn't be playing video games in the first place! I will not use this feature no matter what.

Avatar image for RyoSpark
RyoSpark

25

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

I could be very wrong but this thought crosses my mind when I read this. When you think about it, even thought Nintendo was generous enough to give us the Virtual Console, you know that one of the main reasons why they have that feature is to prevent piracy. It's easy to go online and download ROMs of NES and SNES games, yet we all know it's illegal to do so. Maybe Nintendo is trying to prevent something else. If you are playing a game and come to a difficult point, all one has to do is go on YouTube and look at other people play the same parts. And that's even easier then finding a ROM, plus it's legal. (At least I'm pretty sure.) Again I could be wrong. Just an opinion for people to think about.

Avatar image for Caer_Death
Caer_Death

231

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

So... now I just wanna take X RPG an set it to grind all night so that I can wake up the next morning and all of my characters'll be 45 levels higher, hopefully have full sets of Erdrick equipment and be able to summon Odin four times in a row for free, and thanks to my new 4x Cut materia, I'll be able to cast Quick and take down the final boss in one turn! Thank you Nintendo. ... ... ... :P

Avatar image for rostam93
rostam93

130

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

contoller to hard for ya? have no worry, you can play with this stick! the stick is too hard for ya? have no worry, we'll play the game for you and you can sit back and melt your brains away!

Avatar image for Mugoots
Mugoots

25

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

I guess this might be a good thing for the casual gamer, but isn't trying to beat the game and losing a few times part of the experience?

Avatar image for maaly81
maaly81

756

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 19

User Lists: 0

how dumb. If I cant beat a super mario game then I deserve to get my fingers cut off and dipped in barbeque sauce. I dont need no help for no game. If I cant pass a stage I keep trying till I do. Whats the use of playing if you can just set it on auto and it finish itself?

Avatar image for nirow
nirow

45

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

And it will be very nice...thinking about Final Fantasy, that always had something about 15 endings... Instead of playing the whole game, and have to watch just one boring ending...you can buy the game, skip the whole Sh*t, and watch all 15 in a row.... WOW, that will save at least 1200 hours of gameplay, and let you live the real life out there....

Avatar image for dragonball3900
dragonball3900

8511

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

If you don't want to use the demos then don't use the demos...its simple logic and it doesn't detract from the games value if they have demos that you never have to use.

Avatar image for foxhound_fox
foxhound_fox

98078

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 13

User Lists: 0

@BatrozX: Its called "demo play" because it plays demos of how to beat the game for every section in every level. And from how it explains it, it sounds like all you have to do is press a button and let the game play itself while you watch. I can understand if it shows you how to do it and then makes you do it... but from what I gather, its just a "WIN!" button. I don't think this has anything to do with game demos.

Avatar image for nirow
nirow

45

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

As I keep posting in all news I read about nintendo! Wii Sux and Myamoto is Crazy and Greedy!! Retire both of'em!

Avatar image for Phazevariance
Phazevariance

12334

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

So, it demo's how to beat a part in a game, any part in any game... so the point of playing those games is?...

Avatar image for Slaughtahouse
Slaughtahouse

507

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 5

User Lists: 0

wow whats next, nintendo is going to chew our food for us?

Avatar image for BatrozX
BatrozX

358

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

So...the point in this article is? Will there be downloadable game demos or not? And if that's it...why's it called 'demo play'?

Avatar image for Loucetios
Loucetios

1693

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Welcome to Metroid Other M, start demo play and enjoy the show!

Avatar image for umbrae
umbrae

701

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 8

User Lists: 0

"The patent also noted that the saved-game data would be served through a network, making it "unnecessary to include the digest saved-data in the game program" and "possible to reduce a storage capacity necessary for a storage medium." So Ninteno will enter the age of "you must have a network connection to play". This is a sad trend indeed. Although, I can see the benefit of this system for "non-gamers" the implementation seems horrid.

Avatar image for foxhound_fox
foxhound_fox

98078

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 13

User Lists: 0

So gone is the days of NES games that were basically impossible to beat without days of practice and memorization and come the days where you push a button and you can win the game without doing any work. But what would I know... I've just been playing games my whole life and found more fun in a challenge than in a cakewalk.

Avatar image for rock_solid
rock_solid

5122

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

this is so noob

Avatar image for Ovirew
Ovirew

9168

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 3

User Lists: 16

By the way I think I will still get New Super Mario Bros. Wii, because it looks fun, but I am NOT using this rediculous feature.

Avatar image for ShiOokami
ShiOokami

64

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 3

User Lists: 0

boooo!! I want to play not watch a movie!

Avatar image for KhargAtla
KhargAtla

178

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

I've often wondered to myself what kind of games my grandchildren would be playing. Seeing as I'm at least thirty years away from having grandchildren, I figured at least they'd be more advanced. Graphics that will blow today's away. A-list celebrity voice-acting will become ubiquitous. All these things are good, but I never imagined that the PS15 generation would get to just sit back and let games play themselves. Ridiculous.

Avatar image for Vhial
Vhial

484

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

New catch phrase. "Come check out Wii Play. Hey!...put down the control...didn't you hear me?...it's Wii Play..not You Play"...I'm sold!

Avatar image for Ovirew
Ovirew

9168

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 3

User Lists: 16

boo hiss

Avatar image for megarobotoman
megarobotoman

28

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

This is the modern day Game Genie or Game Shark. Hurray, i guess?

Avatar image for tenfour
tenfour

25

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

I'm glad they patented this, so Microsoft and PS3 won't be tempted to destroy the industry by copying them. I have really enjoyed first party Wii games. But the Wii's starting to look like a sinking ship for gamers--it's part toy already. This will help Nintendo permanently alienate their original customers and only be able to sell to bored soccer moms.

Avatar image for DarkSaber2k
DarkSaber2k

105

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Nintendo continue to pander to casual gamers so casual they might accidentally club themselves to death with the wiimote.

Avatar image for SchumiF1
SchumiF1

6044

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

This is pretty interesting. But depending on how hard the part is, completing something challenging is kind of rewarding

Avatar image for smcaudata
smcaudata

88

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

People here are comparing this to the older games where you would have to restart if you failed. Those games took all of 3 hours to play through at most. The difficult ones that took a while did have rather generous replay features. If games today were 3 hours long and really hard, then people would complain about how short they are. If they are 15 hours long and have a punishing death feature then people would complain about having to repeat 8 hours of play with a death. All I see here is a bunch of whiners who seem to see their personal gaming prowess as an identifying personal characteristic. These are video GAMES. Games are supposed to be fun. Even unskilled players may have fun playing through 90% of a game while needing help with a small portion of it. Once again I address the whiners... GET A LIFE!

Avatar image for double_a73
double_a73

510

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 0

I thought they were announcing that wii owners could download demos of games like on Ps3 and 360. What they actually announced is gay

Avatar image for iamthespd
iamthespd

44

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Wii games: Player optional? I mean, seriously?

Avatar image for volcomstoner180
volcomstoner180

4410

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 8

User Lists: 0

this sucks every game is now easy on the wii no challenge...thanks a lot nintendo

Avatar image for Merex760
Merex760

4381

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 2

User Lists: 0

What a joke.

Avatar image for Gewbur
Gewbur

66

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

This truly has the potential to revolutionize and bring video games into the 21st century, not only by making them more accessible to everyone, but also by turning them into a complete and utter waste of time. I'm looking at you facebook and twitter.

Avatar image for peetowser
peetowser

333

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 7

User Lists: 0

The feeling of satisfaction when you actually get through those hard parts is optional now I guess if you got a Wii. Why would they undermine the playing value of a game like this is beyond me... Some games require so much skill it could be likened to a sport... Some require so much time invested in them it almost becomes a second career... Maybe not a lot of those on the Wii, but they exist. What Nintendo is doing here is trying to offer to some casuals (read here those that suck at actually playing, not all of them) the same experience hardcore gamers will get out of a game. Nothing wrong with that in itself. Until you take into account the fact that nobody will spend the same amount of time on a game that "solves its own puzzles & beats his own bosses" than on a game that mercilessly beats you until you "get it". And I know some people (and most kids) like to have it easy... Living at their parents, no job, not paying rent, daddy paid for the car, mommy paid the Wii... Good for them if that's what they want, I just laugh at the fact games we were playing when I was 5 make them curse their god today still.

Avatar image for Onyx79
Onyx79

86

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 11

User Lists: 0

Why not enable that feature if and only if you fail to complete a section over a certain amount of time? That way it will let the player actually try before getting a helping hand. Just a thought...

Avatar image for roflmuffins8
roflmuffins8

155

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 14

User Lists: 0

I'm going to appreciate this feature alot when the next Zelda game comes out. No more running back and forth between computer and Wii for walkthroughs. :)

Avatar image for CPM_basic
CPM_basic

4247

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 1

User Lists: 0

This is what we've become as a society... every things put into our laps. I'll be telling me kids... "back in my day we had to not only had to figure out the tricky parts ourselves... but then we'd have to restart the level and sometimes the game when we died too much." There are no more consequences in games.

Avatar image for pwnzord
pwnzord

177

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 2

User Lists: 0

What is a video game but an interactive series of challenges. By adding in a system that allows a player to circumvent it so conveniently placed within the game itself you take away a large part of what makes the game different from being any other type of media. Consider using this on say the second boss where mastery of specific skill is the key to winning. You just weren't able to master this ability and therefore wanted to move forward. What happens when you're continually met with challenges that require the use of that skill? If you keep skipping this everytime it comes up what would be left? For some people yes this will be a great system. This will (hopefully) allow plenty of people to gain some fulfillment or entertainment from a game that may have otherwise left them frustrated. Thus once more I will reiterate from the business standpoint of this era's Nintendo it is a great idea. For those of us who do have a vested interest in this hobby may be concerned with larger issues than using (or not using) an optional system, such as what impact it may have on the design choices within the game. I've seen quite a few people out here say they will be able to make harder games now, I just don't see why they would care. How easy is it to sell a hardcore game that has a built in walkthrough to your hardcore crowd? Nintendo wants a broader appeal, plain and simple. Sadly this will give it to them.

Avatar image for eternalcube
eternalcube

287

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

This is actually a good thing. I think Nintendo is having problems with satisfying beginners and veteran players. With demo play as optional feature, they can create harder games to satisfy us while also encouraging the casual gamers to learn how to play. I know some people who abandoned a game (it was metroid in my case) because they felt it was too hard, while it is easy for my taste.

Avatar image for slyfox_28
slyfox_28

204

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Really all this story tells me is the New Super Mario Bros. Wii should prove to be a very challenging game. I'm pretty sure this "demo play " thing is more for those older casual players than it is for me.

Avatar image for togo2828
togo2828

384

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 7

User Lists: 0

@everyone who keep saying you will be paying 50 for a game that plays it self. The answer to that is. If you suck that much at a game you need it to play itself entirely... then yes. Yes you buying a game that you can't play not even a little bit so it plays itself for you.

Avatar image for insom187
insom187

946

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

gay

Avatar image for Thing2
Thing2

282

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

yes, because that's the point....

Avatar image for Durhamster
Durhamster

859

Forum Posts

0

Wiki Points

0

Followers

Reviews: 6

User Lists: 0

So we pay 50 dollars for a game that just plays itself?