Satoru Iwata, Nintendo’s CEO, has announced plans for Nintendo to enter the digital market. Don’t worry, though, this doesn’t mean that they will stop selling their games through traditional means. All this seems to entail is that major released will also be sold via the digital platform, so it just gives gamers one extra place to purchase a title.
Iwata said, “In principle, starting from this software, the company will offer the software titles that Nintendo itself publishes in both packaged and digital download formats so that our consumers can choose the way to purchase them.
“Since the packaged and the digital download formats both have their own merits, we would like to offer both of these options to our consumers.
“For the Wii U, we will start the digital download sales of packaged software that I just discussed, so our consumers can choose either the packaged version or the digital download version of the same software from day one of the Wii U’s launch.”
Nintendo has also said that these digital copies will also be sold via brick and mortar stores as well as online, which is a decision I definitely approve of. It doesn’t seem confirmed how exactly the retail digital copies will be sold, but it has been suggested that it will work in a similar way to Xbox Live Gold Membership’s coded cards.
A very interesting piece of information, though, is that while Nintendo will be setting the prices for titles within it’s digital library, retailers will be able to set the prices for their own digital downloads which of course could lead to them discounting the titles.
Iwata did say that the Wii U will launch with this feature, but there has been no confirmation on whether or not it will be a worldwide launch.