Sega stirs up hornet’s nest with Wii remarks

June 15, 2007

Scott Steinberg, vice president of marketing for Sega of America, caused a bit of a stir with his remarks questioning the long-term appeal of Nintendo’s Wii video game console.In an interview with Reuters Thursday, Steinberg said Sega was still expecting that Sony’s PlayStation 3 would end up with more market share against the Wii and Microsoft’s Xbox 360. He also wondered if the Wii’s motion-sensing controller would lose appeal down the road.The comments were interesting because game publishers and media have been going ga-ga over the Wii’s success. They also inspired a spirited debate on several gaming blogs, with some commenters defending Steinberg’s views as right on the money and others suggesting he doesn’t understand the degree to which the Wii is changing the industry.Sega, alarmed at some of the negative commentary, sent over additional remarks on Friday noting that the company was one of the earliest third-party supporters of the Wii and has announced seven Wii titles in the works and “many more” in development. Steinberg: SEGA has fully supported the Wii since day one and we continue to do so its no secret that we are close partners. Nintendo has done a masterful job of selling its vision and expanding the market. That said, its a shared responsibility and opportunity for the whole industry to take advantage of the possibilities of the Wii. If we dont realize its true potential, we will have missed a great opportunity to expand creatively and that is what I was cautioning against in the Reuters interview. Im not just putting the responsibility of innovation on Nintendo. Its on SEGA and all the publishers and developers as well to carry that flag.”

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