Pokémon Company CEO didn’t anticipate success of Nintendo Switch

The Nintendo Switch has been a smash hit for Nintendo thus far, selling out across North America and actually outpacing the sales of the PlayStation 4 in Japan, but one executive didn’t believe the system was going to succeed. Pokémon Company CEO Tsunekazu Ishihara was pessimistic about the portable hybrid console, believing that handheld gaming systems were a thing of the past.

“I told Nintendo that Switch wouldn’t be a success before it went on sale, because I thought that, in the age of a smartphone, no one would carry around a game console,” Ishihara told Bloomberg. “It’s obvious I was wrong. I came to realize the key to a successful game — software with absolute quality leads sales of hardware. Playing style can be flexible if the software is attractive enough.”

It’s peculiar that Ishihara would be so candid about his earlier skepticism, as the Pokémon Company is partially owned by Nintendo and, up until Pokémon Go, had released its most successful games on Nintendo systems. A few other titles, such as Pokémon TGC Online have also released, but they haven’t attracted the same attention as the main role-playing portable games.

“Currently [Nintendo Switch] is popular among the early adopters, and there needs to be one more step to attract the wider audience. I see more potential is Switch, but one shouldn’t overestimate its potential,” Ishihara added.

For the first time in the series, the next installment will launch on a home console — if that’s what you consider the Switch to be — though a release date and other details for the haven’t been revealed yet. Before it arrives, Pokémon fans can try out the Switch fighting game Pokkén Tournament DX in just a few weeks, while Pokémon Ultra Sun and Pokémon Ultra Moon hit the 3DS later this year.

The Pokémon Company’s other major title, Pokémon Go, continues to grow on iOS and Android with the addition of features like raids and “legendary” Pokémon, but problems present in the game since its 2016 launch have angered fans. A fan festival held in July by developer Niantic was labeled a “disaster,” with connectivity issues prompting attendees to boo CEO John Hanke as he took the stage.

Gaming

Niantic promises to make Pokémon Go less troublesome for homeowners

Niantic is looking to settle the lawsuits filed by angry homeowners who were affected by hordes of Pokémon Go players trespassing on their properties. Niantic promised to resolve complaints within 15 days, among other things.
Gaming

You're not a true fan without these Nintendo Switch exclusives

Who doesn't love a good Nintendo game? If you're looking for great first-party titles for your Nintendo Switch, take a look at our list of the very best exclusives available right now.
Gaming

Buy a new Switch console and get a $35 eShop gift card at some retailers

Multiple retailers are currently offering the Neon Blue and Red Nintendo Switch console with a free $35 eShop gift card. The system still costs the standard $300 and includes Joy-Con controllers and the dock.
Gaming

Nintendo 2DS XL vs. Nintendo 3DS XL: Which handheld reigns supreme?

The 3DS family of systems hasn't shown any signs of letting up in the age of the Nintendo Switch. With the New Nintendo 2DS XL in the picture, let's compare the newcomer to the New Nintendo 3DS XL.
Gaming

Thrive in the nuclear apocalypse with our Metro Exodus survival guide

Metro Exodus is a difficult shooter, especially if you're new to the series' blend of stealth, action, and scavenging. Here is what you need to know to survive the nuclear apocalypse.
Gaming

Here's where Xur is and what he has for wares this week in Destiny 2: Forsaken

The weekly vendor in Destiny 2: Forsaken always brings Exotic weapons and armor, some of the toughest loot to find in the game. Here's everything you need to know to track down Xur: Where he is, when he shows up, and what he's stocking.
Gaming

How do the revised Xbox One and PlayStation 4 consoles stack up?

Microsoft's new Xbox One S and Sony's PlayStation 4 "Slim" have bucked the generational gaming console trend. But which of these stopgap systems is worth spending your paycheck on?
Gaming

Here's our Champion's guide to picking the best character in Apex Legends

Apex Legends' use of heroes with different abilities helps separate it from other battle royale games. To help you choose your legend, we've put together a legend guide detailing their abilities, strengths, and weaknesses.
Gaming

Transport your Nintendo Switch in style with these nifty cases

The Nintendo Switch, which boasts both wired and handheld modes, needs a good case to ensure it doesn't get beat up while you're on the go. We scoured through dozens of Switch cases to bring you the best ones.
Gaming

These are the best weapons for taking down mutants and bandits in Metro Exodus

Metro Exodus is a very difficult game, and choosing the right weapons is key for surviving the post-apocalyptic Russia that 4A Games has created. These are the best weapons in Metro Exodus.
Gaming

Exotic Masterwork Weapons are in Destiny 2. Here's how to upgrade

Destiny 2's new Masterwork gear offers a number of special bonuses. Here is what you need to know about it, including how to find the gear in the game and even create it yourself.
Gaming

How to keep a PS4 in your pocket with the PlayStation Mobile app

Sony built the PlayStation 4 with smartphone and mobile integration in mind. Take a look at our guide for connecting your smartphone or tablet to a PS4, so you can get the most out of the system while on the go.
Gaming

Your PlayStation 4 game library isn't complete without these games

Looking for the best PS4 games out there? Out of the massive crop of titles available, we selected the best you should buy. No matter what your genre of choice may be, there's something here for you.
Gaming

These are the must-have games that every Xbox One owner needs

More than four years into its life span, Microsoft's latest console is finally coming into its own. From Cuphead to Halo 5, the best Xbox One games offer something for players of every type.