Nintendo: Natal is not a Wii killer

Posted by Aharon Etengoff

San Francisco (CA) - A top Nintendo executive has denied that Microsoft's Project Natal will pose a serious threat to the Wii. According to Shigeru Miyamoto, the company has already sold "millions" of controllers at a cost-effective price point.

"One of the challenges is not just to create a natural controller, but how do you get it into the hands of the people? How do you do that cost effectively? And I think we've accomplished that," Miyamoto told the Mercury News. "We have that delivery system successfully already implemented. For other companies starting from zero and trying to figure out how to get it out there at a decent price point is a big challenge."

Miyamoto also commented on the rampant skepticism surrounding the over-touted Vitality Sensor.

"Ideally we would have been able to talk about this in terms of the software implementation rather than just the sensor itself. I don't have any indication for you (of what we have in the works) other than to say that we have lots of very creative ideas," said Miyamoto. "We understand the challenge before us, and we have met these challenges in the past. We just ask that people have confidence in us."

Nintendo Wii

Miyamoto's assessment drew support from Jim Sterling of Destructoid, who opined that Nintendo had the controller market "cornered."

"I'm not usually one to agree with Miyamoto's passive-aggressive swipes at the industry, but he's right about motion control. Nintendo has that market cornered and the rather sad attempts to copy it have a good chance of failing," wrote Sterling. "The so-called 'casual' consumers already have the Wii. Why would they need anything else?"

However, Miyamoto's comments regarding the Vitality Sensor were questioned by a number of journalists, including the Examiner's Tim Rinehart.

"The best guess is that a version of WiiFit would use this sensor for cardio workouts," opined Rinehart. "I can't see a use for this game outside of the health category, but if they can make people pay $90 for what many call a glorified bathroom scale with some gyros inside, then they can sell a ketchup popsicle to a woman in white gloves."