Earlier this week Nintendo and the vacation cruise company Norwegian Cruise Line agreed to expand their existing contract, which was set up in 2007 and already included access to Nintendo consoles on their fleet ships and lots of games for patrons to play. Hit the jump to see the details!
For six years now, the people enjoying vacations on the Norwegian Cruise Line ships have had the ability to play Nintendo games with family, friends and complete strangers turned new friends or bitter rivals. In what I think is a great marketing ploy combined with networking, Nintendo has agreed to equip the cruise liners with Wii U systems and a plethora of games for the patrons to try (and eventually love so they buy a Wii U when they get home). But this deal is not so one-sided as you might think; the cruise company is benefiting as well by offering a wider variety of entertainment, particularly family entertainment, for those who prefer not to go ashore or can’t afford it.
Norwegian Cruise Line’s vice president of entertainment, Richard Ambrose, is pretty stoked to hear about the changes coming their way, and he expressed his satisfaction with the arrangement with a recent statement:
“The Wii consoles have always been extremely popular among our guests. The new Wii U systems are guaranteed to take gaming on board to the next level, and will surely be a hit.”
Needless to say, the Nintendo management is ecstatic at the opportunity to let so many people experience the Wii U first hand. I have heard many stories where actually sitting down with the console easily overcomes any prejudice born of sub-par marketing or the rumor mill. Just see here what Nintendo of America’s executive VP of sales and marketing had to say about the deal:
“Wii U provides one of the most social video game experiences you can have, whether you’re playing with family members or friends. The ships in Norwegian Cruise Line’s fleet give people a great opportunity to experience Wii U for themselves, have fun playing Nintendo games and make some new friends.”
If all goes well this could end up being the big shove in the pants that Wii U has needed since its launch. Word of mouth was one of the main driving points for the Wii’s success, and if people like the Wii U as much as Nintendo hopes they will, then this deal is pure gold. For the sake of continuing to promote Nintendo’s breaking of console barriers, I hope it does, and that the Wii U sees a lot more action than it has since its release.