Xbox boss Phil Spencer has been a champion of gaming for a while, and has often celebrated many different elements of the industry outside of his purview. Just this week he has been seen talking about Nintendo, and how the Wii helped pave the way for them today.
As transcribed by Video Games Chronicle, a US-only show has appeared on Crackle known as Playing With Power (which our sister site Nintendo Life has wonderfully covered). The series looks into Nintendo’s history and features many industry officials, Spencer being one of them.
Spencer mentioned that Nintendo is a company the industry should cherish, and how he could never have designed a system such as the popular Wii. But its impact gave Xbox a “real jolt” to not follow the industry and come up with their own ideas.
“I remember seeing it and I’ll tell you, I could have never designed the Wii… I don’t have that in me. I don’t know if I’m not brave enough or whatever as a platform holder now to go and do something as just completely different, and to be just so all-in on a new paradigm was just amazing to see. It gave us a real jolt that we can’t just be great at what others are doing, we have to have to some unique things that are important for our platform, and the Wii was just a perfect example of that.”
Despite his love for Nintendo and admiration for what they do, one thing he simply cannot get his head around is the Nintendo 64 controller, which he says he just doesn’t understand.
“I still don’t understand the controller, just being honest. I guess it’s multiple controllers in one, but you needed three hands to play that!”
A report recently came to light which said that Microsoft once tried to acquire Nintendo back in 2000, but were laughed out the office at the proposal. All these years later, the two companies seem to have a good relationship, with games such as Ori and the Will of the Wisps appearing on the Nintendo Switch, or even Banjo-Kazooie joining Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
Spencer also recently praised The Legend of Zelda series as it marked its 35th anniversary. He described it as an “iconic franchise that has brought joy to so many people over the past 35 years”.
Do you agree with Phil Spencer’s comments about Nintendo? Let us know in the comments below.
I never understood the hate for the N64 controller and you certainly didn't need 3 hands to play it.
The kinect was miles better than the wii... Shame it never caught on
@__jamiie I have nightmares over that controller. But my hands are small; the Dreamcast controller and the Duke were also painful.
Nintendo especially with the Switch are masters of selling you more.
The console £280. Extremely weak power.
If you want a decent controller, another £60 for official wireless pro controller.
Storage Memory even a 128gb around £30 for official one.
I’m now at £370 and not forgetting I’m now where
Near at a Series s or x power and storage memory capacity.
Yeah Xbox and Switch are a great combination. If you’re not bothered about Sony exclusives you’re pretty much completely catered for at that point.
Me neither. Great controller at the time, even if it’s obviously been surpassed now.
I never would of liked the Nintendo Wii, I can't stand motion controls.. I love the Nintendo Switch though.
I'm sure if MS had a similar corporate culture to Nintendo, he'd have thought of something along the same lines as the Wii. He was with MS for years by the time Wii came out, so he'd probably already have made some wild stuff in his time (wilder than the stuff he worked on in our timeline). But I guess that's immaterial.
I guess what I'm trying to say is maybe he would have but it's not like he's in a bad place now.
@electrolite77 I fit in the demo that does fine with an Xbox and a Nintendo system. Although I view Xbox as my secondary console, contrary to many here. Works great for me, to your point.
@Dezzy70 A friend of mine at the time did an anlysis about what accessories you really needed to buy for a Wii to get the complete package, and ended up calculating that it was actually the most expensive console of the time - even surpassing the meme price of PS3!
I pretty much went from Gamecube, and skipped the Wii and Wii U as they didn't appeal to me. Too gimmicky for my tastes.
The Switch however has been a brilliant secondary console. Starting to show its age now, but hopefully Nintendo get a Pro version out to prolong the life a bit more.
The wii came out when I was about 13. I remember being super excited with it for the first year but the gimmick ran dry really quick for me. I was also getting into more mature games that the wii didn’t have. So playing world at war having to hold my controller like a gun for hours wasn’t too enjoyable. It sold me instantly but the star power didn’t last long for me. Looking back at it, the console was a revolution for the time. And a great emulator now 😄
@mousieone I love the Dreamcast controller. Even the cable being in the wrong place doesn't bother me. And I actually bought a Duke for my OG Xbox from eBay a couple of months ago.
The Dualshock 1, 2 and 3 are still my least favourite controllers ever. They were far too cramped and symmetrical for the sake of it. Poor triggers and sticks. I prefer my Atari Jaguar controller to those abominations.
@StylesT Kinect totally caught on! MS hit like 25mil units by the end of 2013. People only remember it in the X1 gen where it (and the X1 itself) was kinda doomed from the start.
Q) Do you agree with Phil Spencer’s comments about Nintendo?
A) Well I'm always pleased to hear praise get thrown towards the Wii, my favourite game console, though I've never understood the confusion with the N64 controller. Also always nice to see the higher ups of these companies being friendly towards their competition.
@Trainer don't forget to mention that the switch has sold 80 million units in 4 years compared to the xbox ones 49 million in nearly 8 years.
So the cost of the switch is definitely not a problem, if a console has quality in terms of what it does and has quality games then it will sell even if it is highly priced
@StylesT I would love a Kinect 3.0 for the series x
You still have my respect, but you kinda lost me there when you mentioned not "getting" the N64 controller...
As for people not buying the Wii and/or Wii U, I can understand to some extent people skipping those. The Wii was too inclusive if you will, trying to get EVERYONE and their granny to start playing video games, and sure enough, even in the care center where my grandmother used to live, they had a Wii in the main room next to the TV, so that certainly didn't garner much interest from core gamers who were either looking forward to a GameCube HD, or were already slightly disappointed with the whole GameCube era to begin with.
And then there was the Wii U, which was just a complete mess of mixed messages and horribly bad marketing, but at the same time, as a proud owner of both consoles, I can confidently state that those people that did skip those consoles, missed out on some truly wonderful and unique games and experiences.
The Switch has become somewhat of a Wii U repository of sorts, so the missing out of those titles has somewhat diminished, but there's still plenty of titles that were not ported and some titles that are just SO much better with two screens, that even a better looking or potentially smoother running Switch version still can't compete.
One of my personal favorites is LEGO City Undercover. Using the GamePad as police radio was simply brilliant and really added to the experience.
Didn’t the guy that came up with the basics of the Wiimote tech first try selling it to Microsoft?
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