Wii will be profitable and region-free?
If only we could. Still, Nintendo appear to be following Microsoft's approach with region-locking, it emerges today, revealing that it will not impose region-locking across the board for software on the new Wii console, instead leaving the option to region encode games down to third-party publishers. MS have a similar approach with the Xbox 360, with first-party titles remaining unlocked whilst many third-party titles face restrictions.
Wired News apparently unturfed this tidbit during an interview with Nintendo of America vice president of marketing Perrin Kaplan after the recent New York unveiling of the console. Ninty also revealed that DVD playback will be excluded from the Wii package, arguing that standard players are now so cheap there was no need to make their own machine more expensive by including the feature.
The Big N had previously planned to release an external device adding DVD playback, perhaps in a similar move that made gamers buy the remote control to enable DVD functionality on the original Xbox console.
In other Wii related news, reported this morning by Eurogamer.net, Reggie Fils-Aime yesterday took a moment to have a wee pop at MS and Sony's business model, telling conference attendees in New York that every Wii console sold will be profitable for Nintendo. By contrast, both the Xbox 360 and the PS3 are and will be sold at a loss as the platform holders look to build-up an installed basis.
"We will make a profit on the entire Wii proposition out of the box - hardware and software," Reuters quote the Ninty boss as stating. "That really is a very different philosophy versus our competitors. We are a company that competes only in the interactive entertainment space, so we have to make a profit on everything we do."