Nintendo’s first trailer for the Switch was a change in its norm. Instead of showing various ideal, nuclear families having fun on the couch with first-party titles, it showed a number of independent adults fitting the Switch into various parts of their lives, whether it was at a rooftop party or playing a basketball game after basketball practice. It seemed to pivot the company in a more adult-oriented direction and, according to developers, Nintendo is following through with that pivot when it comes to courting game releases.
The Wall Street Journal reports that with games like Doom, Nights of Azure 2: Bride of the New Moon, and Shinobi Rifle: Senran Kagura coming to Switch, developers feel more encouraged to release adult-themed games on the platform. Inti Creates cheif executive Takuya Aizu said he was surprised by Nintendo’s reaction to their pitch to release their adult-themed arcade shooter Gal Gun 2. “I thought it wouldn’t be possible to release such a game for the Switch, but surprisingly, Nintendo gave me positive feedback,” Aizu told The Wall Street Journal. Other developers have also noted Nintendo seems to be less passive when it comes to getting adult-oriented games on the console.
For its part, Nintendo acknowledges the change in direction, and has adopted the view that games can be for all different kinds of people. “As with books, television and movies, different content is meant for different audiences,” Nintendo told The Wall Street Journal. Nintendo isn’t stopping at adult-themed games, however. The company has been making inroads with the independent scene as well, creating its “Nindies” program that highlights upcoming indie titles.
Both approaches seem to be working out. The recently-released Switch version of Flame In The Flood, a year-old game, outsold the day-one sales of every other version. Similarly, the Japanese Switch version of Nights of Azure 2 sold 6,317 copies, which a Koei Tecmo executive told The Wall Street Journal was “not bad.”
I’m not totally sold on Nights of Azure and Senran Kagura being the showcase “adult” games here, but hey, the more variety of games on the console, the better for everyone. Hopefully Nintendo can keep up the momentum and break Nintendo’s cycle of their consoles being for their own first-party games and little else.