By Jonathan Charles | Jul 02, 2012 01:09 PM EDT
During Nintendo's annual shareholder meeting, Nintendo (Worldwide) president Satoru Iwata said that Miiverse - Nintendo's online service for the upcoming Wii U video game console - will not require a subscription. Nintendo hasn't revealed much about the functionality of Miiverse, even regarding how users will access content.
Iwata said, according to Andriasang, Nintendo isn't against the idea of a subscription, but added when considering Nintendo's users - probably more casual players, especially those who bought the Wii - a subscription model isn't the best option. A reason the Wii was successful is because it was affordable, unlike the originally-priced $599 PlayStation 3.
The Wii is also free to play online, though the online service is significantly more limited than Xbox Live or PlayStation Network. Microsoft is the only company to offer a paid online service.
"By having everyone use the Miiverse together, word of mouth will more easily spread. This will lead to greater hardware and software sales," Iwata added. Though Nintendo is beginning to offer DLC to its games post-launch: New Super Mario Bros. 2 for Nintendo 3DS is getting a Coin Rush mode as DLC, which includes three stages and continues the theme of collecting as many coins as possible New Super Mario Bros. 2 is based around.
Iwata was also asked if there will be additional 3DS models outside of the Nintendo 3DS XL and the original 3DS. He said there's the risk of introducing confusion with the introduction of new models and there would be concerns over production efficiency. He also said the 3DS XL was born out of the need for a larger screen, and recent hands-on previews showed the significantly-bigger screen.
On third parties - and "supporting the industry," as the question was phrased - Iwata said Nintendo has been sharing information with third parties externally. Iwata also cited the partnership with Namco Bandai Games, who are co-developing the Wii U and 3DS Super Smash Bros. titles with Nintendo.
Wii U details were reportedly being revealed in Japan this fall, which may give some indication to when the West will get details. Nintendo has said the console will arrive by the end of 2012, but didn't reveal a precise release date or price at E3 2012.
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