Nintendo's Wii game system has attracted hordes of casual gamers and presented the venerable company with an unusual problem: how to stay attractive to its new users without making hard-core gamers feel spurned by the abrupt shift in focus. Unable to appease one crowd without alienating the other, Nintendo announced a new feature that will allow serious players to take on ever more challenging levels while soothing soccer moms: the Kind Code.
Based on a Nintendo patent filed long ago and forgotten, the Kind Code is a game-play system that essentially turns a video game into a movie; when the going gets tough, players can sit out and watch as the game plays through the difficult spots. The system also offers in-game hints to help frustrated gamers. (When in use, the "save progress" function is disabled, in order to maintain the challenge for the more daring.)
Nintendo will roll out a version of the feature in its latest Mario game, New Super Mario Bros. Wii, the cooperative multiplayer sequel to the hit Nintendo DS game of the same name. In an interview with gaming blog Kotaku, Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto confirmed that some form of the difficulty-altering system would be present. If true, it could change the way games are played and fix Nintendo's identity crisis once and for all.