Originally Posted by sage11x
I want to add something to my previous post.
A lot of Wii fans like to use the argument of: Nintendo isn't about graphics. I just want to say that this statement is complete BUNK-- Nintendo has ALWAYS (previous to the Wii) been about graphics! Lol!
Starting with the NES and then the amazing Super NES (arguably my favorite gaming console, RIP sNES... RIP), Nintendo was the standard for the industry. The N64 is now retroactively considered a graphical poop slide (as all early 3d is) but at the time the system was way ahead of it's competitors: the Sony ps1 and Sega Saturn. I'll still argue that the GameCube was one of the best looking consoles-- games like RE4 and Windwaker were jaw dropping the first time you saw them-- way ahead of the PS2 and at least on par with the OG Xbox. Speaking of the Xbox, here's a system that's only purpose to exist was to create a console graphics arm race and the cube showed it up several times throughout their respective life spans.
I dispute your addendum! First of all, saying Nintendo has always been about graphics implies that gameplay is a secondary concern for them, which simply isn't true. Wii U aside, Nintendo's usually perfectly happy continuing to make games for their current console, and only drag themselves to the next gen when prompted to by competitors. Secondly, you have the Gameboy, DS, Wii, and now 3DS as Nintendo consoles that were clearly inferior technically to their respective direct competition. Put this against the NES, SNES, N64 and GC, which at the very least makes only half of Nintendo's consoles "about graphics." And frankly, the NES barely counts, as it hard barely any competition to speak of when it came out. SNES, yes, looked better than the Genesis, as it should as it came out two years later. The N64 was superior on paper to the PS1, but with a few exceptions it rarely shook out that way in reality, as cartridge limitations ended up in a lot of games looking like smeared poop. The GC, as you say, was technically inferior to the XBox, and naming a few games you thought looked better than Xbox games hardly indicates Nintendo has primarily been focused on graphics.
To sum up, that's four consoles that were definitely graphically inferior, two that were superior but under special circumstances, and two that were arguably slightly superior but mostly on par. Doesn't really sound like they were chasing the latest and greatest graphics tech to me.
I think a better indication of where Nintendo's priorities lie is by looking at each console's controllers, especially the N64, DS, Wii and (to a lesser degree) GC. Whereas their competitors almost always focus on just stuffing the latest and greatest tech specs into a box, Nintendo takes each new console generation as an opportunity to design a controller with specific, new GAMEPLAY possibilities in mind. Now note how the PS1->PS3 and Xbox->360 controllers essentially stayed the same. Then think about how Nintendo introduced shoulder buttons, analog sticks, force feedback, touchscreens and motion controls to the mainstream console market. Yeah, that doesn't sound like a company that's "always been about graphics" to me.