All About Symbian - Nokia (S60) and Sony Ericsson (UIQ) smartphones unwrapped

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  #1  
Old 04-09-2009, 03:41 AM
Tzer2 Tzer2 is offline
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What the heck is Nokia up to with N-Gage?

We're a bit puzzled by what Nokia is trying to do with its gaming strategy, because they don't seem to have one right now. They're sending out so many mixed signals at the moment, it begs the question as to whether there is any kind of method in the madness. More details below.

Read on in the full article.
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  #2  
Old 04-09-2009, 04:07 AM
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I read somewhere on the Arena that Ikona too, has left Nokia. Thats why some other person is posting on the N-Gage blog nowadays.

Have to admit tho, morale is low over on the N-Gage Arena. Noone knows wtf is going on lol.

  #3  
Old 04-09-2009, 06:04 AM
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That might have been me clintonjeff. Ikona HAS left Nokia and they are trying to find a replacement. This explains the lack of updates etc. As for what else is going on with N-Gage...I have no idea yet.

Jon
http://www.N-Gager.co.uk

  #4  
Old 04-09-2009, 09:08 AM
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Last time I passed comment of the state of N-Gage you almost banned me from the site, so please forgive me if I'm a little nervous about posting here again. However, it has to be said...

Nokia should do exactly what Apple did and simply make gaming a part of the Ovi store. I once asked the N-Gage product manager if it was a difficult decision to resurrect the N-Gage brand name and I could see by the look on his face as he answered that it surely was a topic of hot debate at Nokia HQ. It was massive mistake in my opinion, there was no value left in that name and if Nokia don't get their Ovi act together next year they'll be no value left in that brand name either.

Sorry to sound so negative, but I played Modern Combat this morning on my iPhone, highlighting for about the 100th time this year just how far behind Nokia really are when it comes to mobile gaming.

Ps. I am not a troll and I wouldn't appreciate not being banned from the site for speaking my mind on this matter. ^_^
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  #5  
Old 04-09-2009, 09:08 AM
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"What's the point of releasing more games on a platform while simultaneously ceasing promotion of it?"

If those games have been in development for a while and are now ready, then it would be a waste to just bin them.

If new game development for a platform is being started then that would create a more puzzling question?

"What is the point of starting to develop new games for a platform whilst simultaneously ceasing promotion of it?"

  #6  
Old 04-09-2009, 10:27 AM
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So is it possible to change the brand name? N-gage brand seems to be going nowhere.

  #7  
Old 04-09-2009, 11:52 AM
Tzer2 Tzer2 is offline
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Quote:
Last time I passed comment of the state of N-Gage you almost banned me from the site, so please forgive me if I'm a little nervous about posting here again. However, it has to be said...
I don't recall anyone ever threatening to ban you Jaggz or any other kinds of threats either. Disagreements over opinion aren't threats.


Quote:
Sorry to sound so negative, but I played Modern Combat this morning on my iPhone, highlighting for about the 100th time this year just how far behind Nokia really are when it comes to mobile gaming.
You really don't get it do you?

Here's what you sound like when you say that:

"Sorry to sound so negative, but when I travelled first class last week I got a great meal, fine wines and an all-round great experience. Why does anyone bother travelling by economy class? I would never use economy class, so why do they bother having economy class seats? You'd have to be a bit of an idiot to travel anything but first class."

or to put it another way:

"Let them eat cake"

The iPhone costs FIVE TIMES the price of a typical Ovi Store phone. The vast majority of people who use mobile phones will never ever be able to afford an iPhone, and even those who could theoretically afford one probably don't care enough about phones to spend that much money on one.

I could afford the best electric toothbrush if I wanted to but I don't bother because the cheaper ones do the job adequately for my needs.

Ovi Store is meant to be for phones that ordinary people can and do buy. iPhone has sold what... 35 million over two years? Nokia's sold something like 800 million in the past two years, most of which are mid or low end phones that are far cheaper than the iPhone.

If Nokia just did the highest end hardware on Ovi Store it would be cutting off the vast majority of their customers. Maybe you'd be happy to see that happen, but I wouldn't.


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Quote:
If those games have been in development for a while and are now ready, then it would be a waste to just bin them.
I didn't say bin them, they could be released on Ovi Store instead. Or on whatever platform Nokia replaces N-Gage with, if it does so. N-Gage is basically just a wrapper for the S60 platform, I'm not suggesting that they get rid of S60.



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Quote:
That might have been me clintonjeff. Ikona HAS left Nokia and they are trying to find a replacement. This explains the lack of updates etc.
It doesn't quite explain the lack of updates, how long would it really take one of the mods just to post "Guitar Hero out now" and put a link?

  #8  
Old 04-09-2009, 02:34 PM
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I remember in when the N97 was launch; a Nokia manager was interviewed and stated HD N-Gage games will be out on the N97 before year end...

Anybody know what happened to that statement?

  #9  
Old 04-09-2009, 03:07 PM
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hmm

Quote:
Sorry to sound so negative, but I played Modern Combat this morning on my iPhone, highlighting for about the 100th time this year just how far behind Nokia really are when it comes to mobile gaming.

Quote Tzer2:
You really don't get it do you?

Here's what you sound like when you say that:

"Sorry to sound so negative, but when I travelled first class last week I got a great meal, fine wines and an all-round great experience. Why does anyone bother travelling by economy class? I would never use economy class, so why do they bother having economy class seats? You'd have to be a bit of an idiot to travel anything but first class."

--------------------------

Nope, he doesn't. Sounds like he's saying iFone ;-) games are slicker than Nokia ones. Or in other words, a PS3 (or X-Bochs if you like) vs say a Megadrive.

I think you're getting on the defensive on behalf of Nokia for no reason. Whilst ipHoNe owners can be boastful and appear irratating, let's not forget its human nature to show off. They've acquired something expensive and are still quite pleased with it. Whereas the poor souls that got Nokia stuff are being rewarded with buggy outsourced software.

The fact of the matter is, Nokia ARE behind. Ask around ;-) I'm an avid games player, until mobile gaming reaches the level of PSP quality, I'm not interested. I'm not missing the point, the original Nokia Snake on the 6100s was a fun addition to pass time, but today Nokia somehow think they've got a viable gaming platform.

It's irrelevant how many models Nokia have under their belt or how many phones they've sold. Nokia thought their 'multimedia computers' are capable of games, old 8-bit platform types, ok.... but other than that Nokia games are slow and sluggish lacking polish. With the hardware platform being underpowered what do you expect?

BTW, can you guess which fone I own? And do I sound like a fanboi?

  #10  
Old 04-09-2009, 04:57 PM
Tzer2 Tzer2 is offline
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Quote:
Nope, he doesn't. Sounds like he's saying iFone ;-) games are slicker than Nokia ones. Or in other words, a PS3 (or X-Bochs if you like) vs say a Megadrive.
No, it's more like saying the Neo Geo is slicker than the Mega Drive. How many people actually bought the Neo Geo? Very few compared to the Mega Drive mainly because the Neo Geo was so flipping expensive. They were out at the same time, the Neo Geo graphics were far superior, but everyone bought a Mega Drive.

Your analogy is comparing a console from 1989 with a console from 2005. That's not really getting to the nub of the issue, because it's not dealing with things that are sold side by side.

The issue is this:

Nokia phones now are sold alongside iPhones, and Nokia phones outsell them by quite a wide margin. How can that be if iPhones are so much better? Well the main reason is that iPhones are so expensive. that very few people are able or willing to buy them.



Quote:
It's irrelevant how many models Nokia have under their belt
It's not about how many they have under their belt, it's about how many people are buying their phones right now, today and in the near future. If you think userbase is irrelevant then you have no grasp at all of how the gaming industry works.

If it wasn't Nokia it would be Samsung or Sony Ericsson or any other manufacturer that makes phones which cost under 100 euros unlocked, because the average selling price of a mobile phone is under 100 euros unlocked. That's how much most people actually pay for a phone once you strip out all the subsidies and other costs. Very few people pay 500 - 600 euros for a phone.

I'm not saying that because the word "Nokia" is on a phone it must succeed. What I'm saying is much more fundamental and unchangeable than that: the only mass market phones are the ones that have a low price, which means low-end hardware. As soon as you restrict yourself to high-end hardware you are restricting your market to a small niche.

Even games consoles tend to have surprisingly low end hardware when you think about it, because they only really get into a large percentage of homes once their hardware has fallen behind what cutting edge PCs are capable of. The reason that consoles have to fall behind like this is to allow the high end hardware to become cheaper and more affordable. One reason why the Wii has succeeded is that Nintendo cut out this waiting and went straight to the cheaper hardware, which meant a cheaper price straight away.

There are about a million Nokia phones sold every day of the year, that's in a totally different league to the iPhone. Far more people actually use a Nokia than an iPhone. Nokias sell in a month what iPhones sell in two years.

The only possible way that Apple could get close to that is if they brought out budget models that cost less than a fifth of the iPhone's price, but so far there hasn't been any word of that happening (and it's difficult to see how it could possibly happen with the iPhone's current interface which is dependent on high end hardware being present). If Apple brought out a mass market phone which retailed for less than 100 euros unlocked and came with an app store, then I'd start seeing them as a direct rival to Nokia and Ovi Store. Until they do that, they're not really in the same market, in the same way that first class tickets aren't in the same market as economy class tickets, they're aimed at different people.



Quote:
With the hardware platform being underpowered what do you expect?
I'd expect something like the Commodore 64 or Sinclair ZX Spectrum which were underpowered compared to 16-bit machines of the 1980s, yet managed to become the best-selling gaming platforms in the world.

The reason the 8-bits triumphed in the early to mid 1980s was because they were cheap enough for ordinary people to buy, whereas 16-bits didn't become that cheap until the late 1980s/early 1990s.

You really don't know the history of gaming if you think highest-end hardware makes for more successful game platforms. It's all down to hardware that people can buy which creates userbases large enough to attract third party publishers.

Even now which is selling better, the Wii or the PS3?

Which sold better, the Xbox or the PS2?

  #11  
Old 04-09-2009, 07:17 PM
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The problem as I see it is that Nokia/Symbian ecosystem doesnt have
A) Games with good GAMEPLAY. Nokia phones can be compared to SNES alright (hardware wise) , but they don't have playable titles with repeat play value. At all.
B) A proper distribution system in place. The man on the street hasn't heard of ovi and even if he does visit, I can bet my right arm he'll not want to visit it again. No seriously, I speak from experience.
C) Ok lets face it. Nokia phones are nowhere close to revolutionizing the gaming scene because they do lack the hardware. Plain and simple. The market is stratified. Not everyone wants to play plain Jane tetris or snakes or bounce. Nokia needs to offer them something seriously wow. Look at the major hits even on the consoles recently - Crysis, God Of War, etc. All need solid graphics and effects with the solid gameplay. Point is, hardware is essential for a superb experience. And a good experience is what will draw consumers.
Imo, what needs to be done for gaming to beta hit on Nokia ecosystems is -
1. Single channel of distribution, with simple user interface and with heavy offline promotion.
2. Games with solid good gameplay.
3. More powerful hardware (like I said, market stratification etc.) and good games that take advantage of that.
4. Ngage client preinstalled on all phones.

It's surprising that Nokia could mess up a successful launch of a brand with wide presence like this. Lack of a coherent vision and too much red tape within the organization? Yeah maybe. This is what happens when you have too much on your plate and get the priorities wrong.

  #12  
Old 04-09-2009, 07:27 PM
Kulin
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Also it is worth pointing out the importance of developing markets like India.
A) Nokia has the biggest presence in India. Given the population of India, it is safe to assume the market is definitely bigger than NAM or UK, combined.
B) Nokia is a respected brand, according to the latest Consumer Survey 09. Meaning, people will buy what Nokia will sell. Without sceptisism. Again, huge market = lots of early adopters = immense word of mouth potential, if everything is done correctly.
C) The market is pristine. Apple has failed to make any sort of headway in India. There is a vacuum and it needs to be filled. Only portable gaming device with any sort of popularity is PSP.
D) Internet/mobile internet penetration is barely 5%. So online distribution will NOT work here. No 3G as well. So again, offline is the way to go.

  #13  
Old 04-09-2009, 08:52 PM
Tzer2 Tzer2 is offline
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Quote:
The problem as I see it is that Nokia/Symbian ecosystem doesnt have
Most of the games on Ovi Store are Java or Flash Lite so they have almost nothing to do with Nokia or Symbian development ecosystems.


Quote:
A) Games with good GAMEPLAY. Nokia phones can be compared to SNES alright (hardware wise) , but they don't have playable titles with repeat play value.
Yes there are some really good fun games. Click on the Ovi Store and N-Gage games link at the top and select the Recommended section for our favourites.

As for length of game, you're not comparing like with like: SNES games cost about 40 each at the time, Ovi Store games cost about 0 - 4 each.


Quote:
Ok lets face it. Nokia phones are nowhere close to revolutionizing the gaming scene because they do lack the hardware. Plain and simple
Revolutionising ANYTHING has never been about high-end hardware:

http://www.allaboutsymbian.com/featu...Smartphone.php

The revolution happens when the hardware that used to be high-end becomes low-end, because that's when everyone can buy it.

Hardware that fails to become low-end fails to revolutionise anything. Concorde for example was supposed to revolutionise air travel but it never became cheap to operate so it didn't really move beyond a niche audience.


Quote:
Internet/mobile internet penetration is barely 5%. So online distribution will NOT work here. No 3G as well. So again, offline is the way to go.
What are you suggesting, pre-loaded memory cards?

It would be a lot cheaper and easier to set up 3G networks than to set up an offline physical distribution system for thousands of games.

  #14  
Old 05-09-2009, 03:26 AM
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N-Gage will die and be reborn as Ovi Gaming (though seemingly without some of the fancy SDK features that N-Gage currently enjoys).

A few more N-Gage games will continue to come out since their pipeline is quite long and may have been in development for years.

  #15  
Old 05-09-2009, 06:51 AM
Sack Tzer2
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Christ, Tzer2 talks utter shite who is this repressed, depressed, defensive and deluded weirdo??!! Get an Iphone mate like the rest of us and live in gaming Nirvana :-)
Can't afford an Iphone/Ipod touch? Get mummy to buy u 1 for Christmas, get a new job, and start enjoying ur life instead of spending ur life backed into a corner getting paid to fire blanks at people with cannons :-)
 

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