Rallying around the idea of a North American Nintendo Wii on-demand video service

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It must be pretty darn easy being an analyst at one of those fancy Wall Street firms. Take this story, that Nintendo may well launch an on-demand video service for the Wii here in North America next year. Japan’s Nikkei reported the same thing nearly two months ago, but it’s only now that someone at Lazard Capital Markets has officially predicted such a store for the North American market.

Here’s what the analyst said, two months after the Nikkei said the same thing:

We expect Nintendo to continue experimenting with content delivery and eventually to launch a service in the U.S., establishing a family- oriented media hub in the living room, and providing a more competitive option to Xbox Live and PlayStation Home.

The Wii is a really strange system, no? Nintendo as a whole, too. While Microsoft and Sony welcome and promote violent games like Modern Warfare 2, Nintendo goes out of its way to promote New Super Mario Bros. , a game that’s going to be huge, yes, but is for a totally different audience.

Nintendo’s hasn’t really jumped onboard the online bandwagon, either. There’s no Xbox Live or PSN you can point to, downloadable content is rare (excepting the Virtual Console, which I wouldn’t really consider DLC in the traditional sense of the phrase), and there’s no emphasis on “extra” features, like Netflix, Facebook, Twitter, etc.

All well and good, yes, but I have one question: where’s the new Zelda? Surely I’m not the only person who looks at Nintendo systems as Zelda/Mario-to-TV adapters.

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