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Nintendo Details Nintendo Network

Personal accounts coming to Wii U. Nintendo considering download sales for package games.


Word of a "Nintendo Network" leaked out last week from dummy boxes for Theatrhythm Final Fantasy and Dynasty Warriors VS. Today, Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata detailed the new initiative to investors at an earnings briefing.

Nintendo Network is the name of Nintendo's new network platform. It will be used on 3DS and Wii U.

Different from the current Wi-Fi Connection service, Nintendo Network is a wholly inclusive network platform that will offer such things as communication amongst users and sales of digital content.

We already saw some elements of Nintendo Network in Mario Kart 7's "Communities."

Nintendo's Tobidasu Purikura photo decoration app, released as a 3DS download on December 27, will be the first title that will offer paid add-on content. Paid content will be available for this title in the near future, Iwata said.

For package software, Square Enix's Theatrhythm Final Fantasy, due for release on February 16, is expected be the first game to offer download content sales. Players will be able to purchase music tracks.

Nintendo is also considering digital distribution for package software. This concept was built into the design 3DS, said Iwata, and the infrastructure is already in place. The same infrastructure will be prepared for the Wii U.

Iwata stressed, however, that Nintendo has not decided on concrete timing for starting digital download sales for package software. The decision will be made by taking into consideration the relationship with retailers and wholesalers, and consumer concerns regarding memory card capacity.

Wii U will have a personal account system that will be compatible with Nintendo Network, Iwata also announced. With this, Nintendo believs it will improve the ease with which multiple family members can use the system.

See Iwata's statements in full here.

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