How the Asian region failed (and what it could have done better in the first place)
Written by Kyo on
When the Nintendo 3DS was first launched in Malaysia, many of us thought that this was the start of Malaysia getting official Nintendo support for the region. (and lucky for Middle East and Singapore as well) Malaysians craved for a support such as Microsoft's Xbox having official presence and support in Singapore. Complete from hardware, to software, to even Xbox Live support.
Unfortunately, what became was a big giant mess that Malaysians were not used to. Insane prices and quotas placed on the console, very very weird support and even weirder pricing issues made Malaysians felt turned off by the Asian offering. Suffice to say, it sucked bad.
So, with Nintendo now scrapping Club Nintendo (which is probably the biggest motivator to get US region copies instead of Asian), and a new one one on the horizon (which seems to incorporate not just Nintendo consoles, but also Nintendo offerings on smartphones and the NX, the next big Nintendo hardware), I would like to make some suggestions that would make things slightly more universal for Nintendo to consider:
Larger scale inclusion into the E Shop (US only will do)
One of the cries I have had before was "Why Malaysia doesn't have it's own E Shop? (Sony Malaysia does have this)". The solution for this? Do it like Steam did, make Malaysian currency as an acceptable currency. This may seem far fetched, but, frankly, Nintendo doesn't have E Shops that help cover a whole region of countries. And setting one such as that can be troublesome, not to mention even costly as well. Ideally, something like what Sony Hong Kong does for the whole South East Asian region is the best option. but considering that the Official Malaysia, Singapore and UAE region is ours, the sync will have to be direct to the Nintendo US E Shop offers.
Larger scale inclusion into the new membership program
The cries are similar to the E Shop. Malaysia wanted it's own Club Nintendo without any of the hassle of the previous one. And it's understandable really. Who doesn't want to own cool Nintendo merchandises? But just like how it is stuck to Europe, US, Japan, and Australia, this is pretty hard. But on an easier scale would be digital redeemables. It's still fun to get some digital redeemables, or even translate the Smash soundtrack into MP3 form without having to think of the shipping costs for the CD. But, before we get to the hard and fun stuff, lets try and make Pokemon sales above the 300,000 mark like what happened in Australia recently. After that, then we can start talking about getting the cool stuff. (if based on speculation, Malaysia ought to be around 4000 for ORAS since last year)
Market it all properly
You want to market the Asian region to Nintendo fans? Sure. That can be workable. Do you want me to do it? Sure. I can do that for you. In sending the message and communicating to others. But, what is going to be your benefits for the Asian region? Will it be hardware warranty support that can be done in the region? (The current one is slightly clunky) Or will it be proper software pricing that is similar enough to the US pricing that it doesn't deviate nor increase as time went by? (and the currency inflation had nothing to do with this at all even) We don't even need much of the Club Nintendo goodies. Frankly speaking, if it all starts with better support and better clarification on how it works, then the Asian region can be a hit. (I can only do so much from my end to be honest.)
May I suggest moving your production factory into Malaysia maybe? I feel that is a more solid way of doing things rather than letting your production run in Japan. We have a free trade zone and agreements even if you want to consider. And our currency is much cheaper. The taxation can be worked out even compared to Japan. The only thing is, what say you?
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Senpai will probably pretend to not notice this :(