The Wall Street Journal has reported that Nintendo, long known for its family-first approach, is now encouraging developers to bring their adult-themed games to Switch.
The report highlights Gal*Gun 2, recently confirmed to be headed to Switch this winter, as a primary example of this shift in thinking. Takuya Aizu, chief executive of Inti Creates, said he was surprised Gal*Gun 2 was green-lighted by Nintendo.
“I thought it wouldn’t be possible to release such a game for the Switch, but surprisingly, Nintendo gave me positive feedback,” Aizu said.
Gal*Gun 2 is one example in a much larger trend that dates back to Nintendo’s Switch Reveal Event in mid-January.
Bethesda’s Doom and Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus, both of which feature violence and mature themes not usually found on Nintendo consoles, are a more mainstream example. Several Nindies titles, including Travis Strikes Again: No More Heroes, follow in that same vein.
The WSJ report claims this shift in thinking reflects Nintendo’s goal to ensure that Switch is seen as a platform for all audiences. That has been Nintendo’s plan since the beginning, reflected through their advertisements and even in their first party titles.
Comparing the Switch ad campaign to the Wii U’s makes the shift in thinking impossible to ignore. Rather than children asking for the newest Mario game and the whole family getting involved, Switch showcases adults fitting gaming into their everyday lives.
On the first party front, Xenoblade Chronicles 2, set to release Dec. 1, has been criticized by some for the design of Pyra. Nintendo of America has been known to censor just about anything, and as of now they haven’t altered Pyra’s design. Even The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has embraced older audiences through its high difficulty curve. With a renewed commitment to the Metroid series as well, Nintendo’s decisions line up the The WSJ’s conclusion: Nintendo is actively striving to make the Switch appealing to mature audiences.
For years experts have pointed out that while Sony and Microsoft duel for the hearts of the hardcore fan, Nintendo watches on the sidelines and does its own thing. By reaching for gamers they lost during the Wii U era, they are naturally putting themselves in direct competition with Sony and Microsoft.
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This post was originally written by Tyler Kelbaugh.