Companies are always attempting to innovate and capture customers’ interest. This means taking risks with technology, never knowing if things will or won’t pull through for them. It also ends up resulting in some pretty serious missteps. To err is human, so naturally our favorite developers and publishers mess up every once in a while. Sony, Nintendo, and Microsoft are all guilty of this. Fortunately for them, their biggest screw ups can lead to their greatest revivals.
Sony is currently in the midst of such a renaissance. Remember the PlayStation 3? That console was probably the company’s greatest mistake. It was difficult to develop for. The architecture meant that multiplatform games, say like Skyrim, ran horribly compared to the Xbox 360 version. You couldn’t multitask and play music and games at the same time. It didn’t make an effort to cater to indies. But look at the PlayStation 4 now! All of those mistakes were fixed between last generation and this one! Sony now has one of the best systems, capable of all sorts of tasks at once, and a wide library with exclusives, multiplatform games that run well, and indies.
Nintendo is at a point where it is trying to make amends for past mistakes. It really failed with the Wii U. The marketing was unclear, with some people unaware it was a different console than the Wii! The Wii U tablet was a battery guzzler. It didn’t get enough games or support. It was a flop, which was odd given the revolution the Wii was! Yet now, the Switch seems to be fixing things. It’s taken the Wii U tablet idea to make a console that can be played at home or on the go. Since its launch, there has been at least one major, AAA game released every month. Like Sony, it is catering to indie games, with Wonder Boy and the Dragon’s Trap selling better on the Switch than any other system. The only real problem now is keeping it on store shelves, but even those supply issues seem to be waning.
Speaking of supply issues, the NES Classic Edition is another case of Nintendo making a huge mistake, then bouncing back from it. Anyone who tried to get this plug-and-play system in 2016 knows what a disaster it was. You couldn’t find the systems anywhere! Scalpers were marking up ones they could find. Stores were only getting two or three at a time. Nintendo only sold them for a few months. The list of errors goes on and on. Yet, they will be making a comeback in summer 2018! Nintendo is listening to customers and making things right by selling more systems. Not only that, but also pledging to not make the same mistake with the Super NES Classic Edition.
Finally, we come to Microsoft. Microsoft is a company that has made some really big mistakes recently and not rectified or bounced back from them. One was the Kinect. It attempted to get majorly into motion controls after the Wii. Except, the fad was over. The peripheral never took off and, while the Xbox One originally shipped and had one, it has been quite some time since any game has gone out of its way to require a Kinect. As for the Xbox One itself, the company is floundering. Exclusives, indie support, and strong performance all made the Xbox 360 great. But the Xbox One frankly falls behind both the PlayStation 4 and Switch when it comes to the game library. The Xbox One X is the most powerful console out there, but that means nothing when there are no must have, only on Xbox One games to turn to.
Companies have to constantly keep looking at their past when moving forward. A few mistakes won’t sink them. And innovation and attempting new things is important. We have seen Sony and Nintendo grow. They try new things, realize what they did wrong, then come back stronger than before to make amends. Microsoft is currently in a dark place, but one can only hope they will bounce back and recover soon too!