Sonic and Mario may be friendly enough to co-star in the Olympics, but there are some dissenters in the upper ranks of Sega who think Nintendo's console reign will soon end.
"I am a little concerned about the creative depth of the Wii pool. I'm not sure if they will top out in 2008 or 2007," said Scott Steinberg, VP of marketing for the U.S. unit of Sega Sammy Holdings Inc., in an interview with Reuters. "The Wii will start to look really dated in a couple years when developers get more value from the 360 and learn more and more about the PlayStation 3."
Steinberg seems to be equating creativity to graphical horsepower, a notion that runs counterintuitive to Nintendo's party line. "How much value can developers and creative folks get out of this wrist motion two years from now, or 5 years from now, or 10 years from now? ... How can they design products that aren't too derivative of what's already out there?" he said. Those are strong words, though we aren't sure what parallel dimension he lives in where the PS3 and Xbox 360 are immune to a multitude of derivative titles, themselves.
To be sure, Steinberg does not oversee any of the development and production decisions -- he's a marketing guy. However, with Nintendo currently riding high on sales charts and a once-unimaginable friendship existing between the two companies, is Steinberg being short-sighted or prophetic?
[Update: Responding to some of the negative reaction to his comments, Scott Steinberg has shared additional remarks with Reuters Blogs. His new comments can be viewed after the break.]