Doug Bowser has provided a more concrete answer on the new Zelda’s price increase and insists the Nintendo Switch is not done yet.
With the likes of Sony and Microsoft already raising prices on their games, it’s perhaps only a matter of time until Nintendo follows suit. In fact, it was assumed that Nintendo would jump on the £70 for games train with The Legend Of Zelda: Tears Of The Kingdom, thanks to an early listing.
Nintendo shared a new trailer for the game shortly after said listing was spotted (and deleted) and, surprisingly, it made no mention of a price rise here in the UK, where it’s sticking to the same £59.99 price tag as its predecessor. It is, however, slightly more expensive in the US, at $70 (an £8 increase from the previous standard of $60).
At the time, Nintendo explained that this wasn’t the beginning of a new trend for the company. Nintendo of America president Doug Bowser has now further elaborated, saying that the company believes Tears Of The Kingdom offers enough content to justify being $70.
He seems to suggest that this is the company’s approach to all its first party games. Rather than just selecting a single price that applies to every game, it looks at each one individually and decides on the price that best matches what the game offers.
This does match up with the prices on Nintendo’s website and digital storefront. While The Legend Of Zelda: Breath Of The Wild has remained at £59.99 since its 2017 launch, it’s more an exception rather than the rule.
Most other first party titles, like Splatoon 3 and Pokémon Scarlet & Violet, cost £49.99 whereas something like Metroid Prime Remastered (a remaster of a 2002 game) costs £34.99.
When asked by Associated Press why Tears Of The Kingdom costs $70 in the US, Bowser answered: ‘We look at what the game has to offer. I think fans will find this is an incredibly full, deeply immersive experience. The price point reflects the type of experience that fans can expect when it comes to playing this particular game.
‘This isn’t a price point that we’ll necessarily have on all our titles. It’s actually a fairly common pricing model either here or in Europe or other parts of the world, where the pricing may vary depending on the game itself.’
Could this mean then that Tears Of The Kingdom will offer even more content than Breath Of The Wild? The latter was already huge and a major time sink if you were aiming for 100% completion, so the idea of the sequel might be even larger is somewhat overwhelming.
Bowser was also asked what Nintendo’s sales goals are for the game, which he obviously didn’t provide. Our guess is that they’re very, very high – since Breath Of The Wild has sold over 30 million copies and is by far the most successful entry in the series.
Unsurprisingly, he was pressed about the next Switch console and although he gave a typical Nintendo non-answer, he did reiterate how the current hardware still has plenty of life in it.
‘As we enter the seventh year for the Nintendo Switch, sales are still strong. I think we still have a very, very strong line up coming,’ he says. ‘As [Nintendo president] Mr. Furukawa said recently, we’re entering uncharted territory with the platform.
‘It’s exciting to see that demand is still there. So nothing to announce on any future console or device, but we are still feeling very bullish about Nintendo Switch.’
Given it’s commonly believed that a Switch 2 could launch either this year or next year, perhaps Nintendo intends on supporting both alongside one another, at least for a few years.
Bowser adds that part of the reason why Nintendo isn’t ready to replace the current Switch yet is because ‘it is still truly that unique device that you can play in a variety of ways, at home, on the go.
‘One of the things we look at always is how can we surprise and delight. How can we introduce new unique ways of playing. That’s always in front of our mind.’
Whether this means the Switch 2 will be radically different is anyone’s guess. Nintendo has typically tried to innovate with each successive console, but the Switch’s ongoing popularity means deviating too much with a successor is a huge risk.
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