Nintendo’s ‘Nindies’ man Damon Baker wants more players to try out indie games and take risks in the eShop.
Talking to gamasutra, Baker – senior manager of marketing in Nintendo of America’s licensing department – said that they wanted to “surprise a bunch of people” with Nindies@home over E3, that lets players download and play demos of upcoming indie games for a limited time.
Nindies@home follows in the wake of the Humble Nindie Bundle, the target of which was to “really to reach a wider audience, and let as many people know about this great indie content as possible.”
And it paid off. “We promoted those same Nindies for the two weeks in the eShop, and their full version prices of those games were actually increased in sales.”
Talking about the kind of games that perform well in the eShop, Baker went on to say “It seems like a lot of the Nintendo fans and consumers they gravitate towards nostalgia, they gravitate towards platformer and puzzle action games.”
“If I had one wish to be fulfilled, I would love to see Nintendo fans and consumers take more risks on eShop.”
Comparing Microsoft’s Summer of Arcade and Sony’s Spring Fever to Nintendo’s indie promotions, Baker said he was “green with envy.”
“We’ve done these super indie sales, [but they are] primarily driven by the developers — but we put a lot of support from first party behind it. I definitely have a vision of doing bigger grander promotions and activities.”
Addressing the question as to whether Nintendo would ever invest in indie developers, like Microsoft and Sony, he said, “We’ve given lots of thought to it. Nintendo is pretty famous for being pretty tight with our money; we want to be efficient with our funds. We continue to look for other ways to promote that key content, and that stuff we consider to be priority.”
“We’ve given a lot of consideration and we may have programs that we may offer in the future but nothing we can confirm at this time.”
But ultimately, it’s up to indie developers to get involved with the community and drum up interest in their own games. “The content that performs best on our platforms are the developers that have already been really proactive in creating a community and a lot of buzz.”
Commenting on the developers that look to Nintendo to do this for them, Baker added, “there hasn’t been a lot of examples of where that’s been a successful relationship.”