Though I try to abstain from fanboyism, I’m addicted to the console wars. And I’m not talking about insults flung around by loyal customers; only official company statements from Microsoft, Nintendo and Sony will do. The more ridiculous, the better.
Spin factor is always high, but the latest remarks on the Nintendo DSi by SCEA director of hardware marketing John Koller are even more satisfying, because they’re false.
Here’s his statement, in part:
“If Nintendo is really committed to reaching a broader, more diverse audience of gamers beyond the “kids” market that they’ve always engaged, there isn’t much new with the DSi to support that. Significant gamer demographic groups are being ignored … Compare that with the PSP platform, where we have many blockbuster franchises from our publishing partners launching this year, representing a wide variety of genres and targeting diverse demographics.”
I want to focus on the idea that the DS is for “kids,” while the PSP is apparently for everyone. Let’s put aside anecdotal evidence, such as the recent release of Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars for the DS, because then you’ve got to subjectively compare entire game libraries.
Instead, let’s look at what Sony’s Koller said to Edge magazine last September as he explained why the PSP was losing support from third-party publishers. Koller himself said the PSP’s demographics had shifted younger since launch, and publishers weren’t grasping that fact because they kept putting out mature games that sold poorly. To wit:
“When we launched the PSP it launched at a 28-year old, heavily male, New York subway [demographic], and that slowly trended down. Now we’re in the mid-teens with a lot of tracking even younger than that. Our research shows that in the next 12 months young moms actually are set to have the highest propensity to purchase the hardware and software for their young children.”
Isn’t this the “kids” demographic Koller was alluding to this weekend, or was he trying to say that Nintendo DS owners are primarily young goats?