Hey folks, we're here in chilly Moscone South to bring you up-to-the-minute updates from Miyamoto's Keynote. It should be starting here soon, so get your refresh buttons handy (everything will just be in this one post) and stay tuned!
10:37: Crecente chats up a guy in a robot helmet.
10:46: Still no Miyamoto, but what do you think they're going to announce today? Wii Home? Post your guesses in the comments.
10:59: Miyamoto's coming up, being introduced by Jamil Moledina. *Raucous applause*
Jump time! And be sure to check the gallery to see more pictures.
11:03: Just like Sony's Harrison used the PS3 to give his presentation, Miyamoto's using the Wii Photo Channel to do his.
11:05: Back in 1998, gamers had an innocent image. Goldeneye was a hit game, and nobody had any notion of games corrupting children.
11:06: Since then, sales have gone up, but the reputation for the gaming industry has gone down. There seemed to be only one way forward, with the gamers only wanting one type of game—violent or action ones.
11:07: Would [Miyamoto's] style of gaming and vision survive in this market?
11:08: Here are three areas that Miyamoto and Nintendo have been focusing on. First, is the "Expanded Audience", or the "Wife-o-meter".
11:10: Here's a personal anecdote. All the important gaming moments, like Tetris, Mario, and Link had no effects on [Miyamoto's] wife. When Ocarina of Time came out, she became an observer. When Animal Crossing came out, she actually touched the controller.
11:14: Nintendogs actually raised the Wife-o-meter quite a bit, but it was Brain Age that integrated gaming into her everyday life. And now, she has the Wii.
11:16: And now? His wife has become a hardcore gamer, challenging even [Miyamoto] at gaming.
11:19: The second focus? Balance. Miyamoto stresses that it wasn't just him, but a group effort that's created the popular consoles at Nintendo.
11:21: Balancing different teams like the hardware team (that wanted many different input devices), the software team (who were dreaming up different game styles), and third-party relations, who made sure third-party games worked with the Wii.
11:23: Designing the Wii Remote was an arduous process, consisting of many prototypes (check the gallery for a few), before finally deciding on a remote-styled controller.
11:30: Miyamoto's talking about a DS-based Poetry Museum in Kyoto. Check Kotaku for Ashcraft's visit.
11:30: The third focus: Risk. Both the DS and the Wii took risks in both gameplay and design. The Gamecube was "really a half-step" into reaching a broader audience. Making the A button green and huge was to make it easy for new gamers to pick up. But even this was too hard. Hence, the Wii.
11:33: When was the moment he knew the risk was worth taking? At E3, when gamers finally played it.
11:41: The focus of all Miyamoto's game designs is on the face of the player. Is the player having fun?
11:45: Communication was a big idea, even back in the first Zelda game on the NES. Communicating with other Zelda players, communicating with yourself, trying to figure out how to solve the puzzles and dungeons.
11:46: This communication idea led to Animal Crossing, which was based solely on communication. Not only did this non-violent game (which didn't have the best graphics or audio) appeal to casual gamers, they appealed to hardcore gamers as well.
11:49: Prioritization. The example of prioritization, or parsing of limited resources, is evident in Wii Sports. Instead of going for realism in a game like baseball, they put all their efforts into pitching and hitting instead of stadiums, licenses, or character models. This effort allowed people who didn't play games to pick it up faster.
11:54: Back on the NES disk drive system, Miyamoto thought it would be fun to create faces of people you knew (Check the gallery for screenshots). This was coupled with a "scenario disk" so you could animate the faces.
11:57: Years later, Miyamoto came up with another animation studio for the N64 disk drive. After that, there was the Game Boy Advance, which also had a similar game.
12:01: Still, after all these iterations of the same idea and even the final implementation on the Wii, everyone still questioned whether character creation would be fun, or a game by itself? But they decided that these wouldn't need to be actual games, but stand-ins for yourself in other games.
12:04: Miyamoto's working on a new Mii channel comparing Miis you've created and to hold popularity contests among users.
12:05: So what happened to Mario 128? There was a tech demo on the Gamecube to show how Mario could be on new hardware. So where's Mario 128? Parts of it was actually Pikmin. The rest: Super Mario Galaxy. Which is coming soon.
12:10: Miyamoto says, it's just a matter of time before everyone becomes a convert.
12:11: "If we can convert my wife, I believe we can convert anyone."
Thanks for reading! The gallery is still updating, so keep on refreshing there to see the latest pics. No hardware announcements, unfortunately, but still a cool keynote. See you all later today!