Nintendo (OTC BB: NTDOY.PK) has been on fire, Fools. While powerful next-generation consoles such as Sony's
Get ready for the excitement level to escalate. I'm sure you're familiar with that superstar plumber called Mario -- he's Nintendo's bread and butter. (I wonder where he finds the time to unclog drains, considering he's always off on some fantastical adventure.) You've most likely heard of Sonic the Hedgehog, too; that spiky little guy was the crowned-jewel asset of former hardware star Sega. Well, both of these characters are in massive training right now, because according to reports, they will be teaming up for a Wii title based on the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Many of you out there have been waiting a long time for this event. Nintendo and Sega are aware of the passion that a game with both Mario and Sonic in it will inspire in many console fans; the companies are also aware of the sales potential that such a combo represents. The Olympics angle is a smart thing for a few reasons. One, by tying in with the Beijing games, Nintendo can tap the usual Olympic hype. Two, the sports genre is perfectly suited for the Wii and its controller; everyone knows by now that interacting with the Wii is not a passive affair, since it promotes a bit more kinetic action on users' part when compared with competing consoles' controllers. Third, the Wii is suitable for group play thanks to its controller's quick, intuitive learning curve -- an Olympic backdrop will take full advantage of this element.
If the initial Mario/Sonic joint venture is a hit, we'll surely see other iterations featuring the duo -- an epic role-playing game would certainly be interesting, as would seeing Sonic in Mario's mushroom-laden world. Nintendo is doing gangbuster business with the Wii, and it's cheaper to develop products for this platform than for other next-generation technologies. That's why publishers like Activision
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Microsoft is a Motley Fool Inside Value recommendation. Philip Durell is a cheapskate. We mean that in a good way -- he finds companies that are trading at prices below their true value. Check out his current scorecard by trying Motley Fool Inside Value out for free.
Fool contributor Steven Mallas owns shares of Activision. As of this writing, he was ranked 9,822 out of 25,268 investors in the Motley Fool CAPS system. Don't know what CAPS is? Check it out. The Fool has a disclosure policy.