iQue

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iQue
IQue logo.png
Founded December, 2002[1]­
First Mario Game Super Mario 64 & Dr. Mario 64 localization (2003)­
Latest Mario Game Super Mario 3D Land & Mario Kart 7 localization (2012)

iQue Ltd. (神游科技 Shényóu Kējì) is a Chinese video game company founded in 2002 as a joint venture between Nintendo and Chinese–American scientist and entrepreneur Wei Yen.[1] It became a 100% Nintendo-owned subsidiary after Wei Yen left the company.[2] It localizes and distributes Nintendo consoles and games for the mainland Chinese market, under the iQue brand.

History[edit]

This section is under construction. Therefore, please excuse its informal appearance while it's being worked on. We hope to have it completed as soon as possible.

iQue Ltd. was founded with a registered capital of $30m in December 2002 and established its headquarter in Suzhou, China in May 2003. Investment from both parties (Nintendo and Wei Yen) include capital, technology, patents, software copyright and other intellectual properties.[1] According to some former employees, iQue stayed independent in its financial and marketing in the first few years,[3] and was a cooperation partner of Nintendo instead of a subordinate agency.[4] Prior to iQue, Nintendo had introduced the Game Boy Advance console to China via a Hong Kongese sales agent named Mani (万信)[5], but faced several challenges such as the rampant piracy among Chinese game retailers and the government's ban on video game consoles, which led to the partnership with Wei Yen to solve these issues via localization. (Mani remaining as Nintendo's agent in Hong Kong and Taiwan uptill the DS era.)[6]

On November 17, 2003, the highly-localized iQue Player (神游机), based on Nintendo 64 but with anti-piracy mechanism, was released. The iQue Player was unique that all the components were inside the controller and that it loaded games from a single, 64MB flash memory card with digital signatures instead of tradeable cartridges. Games for the console must be digitally purchased and written to the flash memory cards, at first through "iQue Depots" (神游加油站) – interactive kiosks in big cities where the player could bring their flash memory cards and iQue Tickets (神游票) to download, buy, store, retrieve games – and since October 2004 through an online service called iQue@Home (神游在线), which provided the same services to players at home via cilent software and the Internet. There were also multiplayer accessories (共游盒 and 共游机) for family gaming. According to Shigeru Miyamoto, the design has to do with the low income, undeveloped logistics, and rampant piracy in mainland China.[7]

The iQue Player did not become a commercial success as expected, having only sold 8,000 to 12,000 units instead of the 1,000,000-unit goal Wei Yen claimed internally. Nor had the promise that "hundreds of games will be launched soon", printed on the back side of the packaging box, been fulfilled due to low speed of government approval (although the released titles had been praised for good localization).[8] The "神游盒子" console, which was going to be a localized version of the Nintendo GameCube, was also canceled.[9]

On June 8, 2004, the iQue Game Boy Advance (小神游[10]) was released. Unlike the iQue Player, it had no regional lockout or anti-piracy mechanism, featuring interoperability with Nintendo's version of the Game Boy Advance. Four months later, the similar iQue GBA SP was released, followed by several new designs and official contests.[11] The iQue GBA series sold well, reaching 200,000 copies in 2005.

Localized consoles[edit]

Localized Mario games[edit]

Console Game Chinese title Release date Official website
iQue GBA Super Mario World: Super Mario Advance 2 超级马力欧世界 Chāojí Mǎlìōu Shìjiè
Literally "Super Mario World"
March 15, 2006 in Chinese
iQue GBA Yoshi's Island: Super Mario Advance 3 耀西岛 Yàoxī Dǎo
Literally "Yoshi Island"
March 2, 2006 in Chinese
iQue GBA WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgame$! 瓦力欧制造 Wǎlìōu Zhìzào
Literally "Made by Wario"
July 4, 2005 in Chinese
iQue GBA Super Mario Advance 超级马力欧2 Chāojí Mǎlìōu 2
Literally "Super Mario 2"
June 30, 2004[12] in Chinese
iQue GBA Wario Land 4 瓦力欧寻宝记 Wǎlìōu Xúnbǎo Jì
Literally "Wario's Treasure-seeking Journey"
June 30, 2004[13] in Chinese
iQue Player Super Smash Bros. 任天堂明星大乱斗 Rèntiāntáng Míngxīng Dàluàndòu
Literally "Nintendo' Stars: Great Melee"
November 15, 2005 in Chinese
iQue Player Paper Mario 纸片马力欧 Zhǐpiàn Mǎlìōu
Literally "Paper Mario"
June 8, 2004 in Chinese
iQue Player Yoshi's Story 耀西故事 Yàoxī Gùshì
Literally "Yoshi Story"
March 25, 2004 in Chinese
iQue Player Mario Kart 64 马力欧卡丁车 Mǎlìōu Kǎdīngchē
Literally "Mario Karting Car"
December 25, 2003 in Chinese
iQue Player Super Mario 64 神游马力欧 Shényóu Mǎlìōu
Literally "iQue Mario"
November 17, 2003 in Chinese
iQue Player Dr. Mario 64 马力欧医生 Mǎlìōu Yīshēng
Literally "Dr. Mario"
November 17, 2003 in Chinese
iQue DS New Super Mario Bros. New 超级马力欧兄弟 New Chāojí Mǎlìōu Xiōngdì
Literally "New Super Mario Bros."
July 2, 2009 in Chinese
iQue DS Super Mario 64 DS 神游马力欧DS Shényóu Mǎlìōu DS
Literally "iQue Mario DS"
June 21, 2007 in Chinese
iQue DS Yoshi Touch & Go 摸摸耀西-云中漫步 Mōmō Yàoxī: Yúnzhōng Mànbù
Literally "Touch Yoshi: Strolling in Clouds"
February 14, 2006 in Chinese
iQue DS WarioWare: Touched! 摸摸瓦力欧制造 Mōmō Wǎlìōu Zhìzào
Literally "Touch Wario Made"
July 23, 2005 in Chinese
iQue DSi Dr. Mario Express 一下下马力欧医生 Yíxìaxìa Mǎlìōu Yīshēng
Literally "A little bit of Dr.Mario"
April 8, 2010 in Chinese
iQue DSi WarioWare: Snapped! 照照瓦力欧制造 Zhàozhào Wǎlìōu Zhìzào
Literally "Picture-taking Wario Made"
Mar 11, 2010 in Chinese
iQue DSi Mario Calculator iQue DSi计算器 红白机马力欧款 iQue DSi Jǐsuànqì Hóngbáijī Mǎlìōu Kuǎn
Literally "iQue DSi Calculator Famicom Mario Edition"
Feburary 11, 2010 in Chinese
iQue DSi Mario Clock iQue DSi时钟 红白机马力欧款 iQue DSi Shízhōng Hóngbáijī Mǎlìōu Kuǎn
Literally "iQue DSi Clock Famicom Mario Edition"
January 21, 2010 in Chinese
iQue DSi Game & Watch: Mario's Cement Factory GAME & WATCH 马力欧的水泥工场 GAME & WATCH Mǎlìōu de Shuǐní Gōngchǎng
Literally "GAME & WATCH Mario's Cement Factory"
feburary 17, 2011 in Chinese
iQue 3DS XL Super Mario 3D Land 超级马力欧 3D乐园 Chāojí Mǎlìōu 3D Lèyuán
Literally "Super Mario 3D Wonderland"
December 7, 2012 in Chinese
iQue 3DS XL Mario Kart 7 马力欧卡丁车7 Mǎlìōu Kǎdīngchē 7
Literally "Mario Karting Car 7"
December 7, 2012 in Chinese

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese 神遊 Shin'yū[14] From the Chinese name
Chinese 神游 Shényóu
iQue
Mental journey. Interpreted as a contraction of “神奇游戏”, it could also mean "wonderful gaming".
Beyond intelligence.[15] Could be from "IQ", "IQうえ" or "IQえ".

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c iQue. 关于 iQue. Retrieved December 16, 2016.
  2. ^ Nintendo (June 28, 2013). "関係会社の状況" (PDF). Retrieved 2014-07-20.
  3. ^ “‘颜老板在的时候,神游的财务、销售都是独立的,可以自己作主,不用管任天堂的规定。’神游前员工说。当时的神游,与任天堂只是商业合作伙伴的关系,不存在任何行政上的从属关系。” 大狗 (June 22, 2016). 《记录》第17期:神游中国(上). 触乐. Retrieved January 28, 2017.
  4. ^ From the opening of an interview conducted on the now-defunct Chinese forum levelup.cn between iQue staff and players on August 1, 2007: “iQue神游不是任何一家公司的代理商,iQue拥有各个软硬件的自主产权……” Text of the interview has been researched by 我是金属狂人 (April 15, 2013). 【考古汇总】iQue会客厅 神游访谈录问答精选. Baidu Tieba. Retrieved February 17, 2017.
  5. ^ The official English name of 万信 is seen from Aquariuslegend (January 23, 2017). 万信国行初代GB 任天堂 GAME BOY 开箱. Chiphell. Retrieved February 5, 2017.
  6. ^ 我是金属狂人 (June 24, 2013). 任天堂在中国摸爬滚打20年的光辉岁月. Baidu Tieba. Retrieved February 6, 2017.
  7. ^ “为何在中国大陆推出这样一台特殊的主机、采用如此特殊的游戏销售方式?任天堂社长岩田聪给出了三个理由:收入水平低,物流不发达,盗版泛滥。” 大狗 (June 22, 2016). 《记录》第17期:神游中国(上). 触乐. Retrieved February 22, 2017.
  8. ^ First section of 大狗 (June 23, 2016). 《记录》第17期:神游中国(下). 触乐. Retrieved January 28, 2017.
  9. ^ “神游盒子” section of 大狗 (June 22, 2016). 《记录》第17期:神游中国(上). 触乐. Retrieved February 28, 2017.
  10. ^ Chinese nickname seen on the packing box: 行货GBA“小神游”上市 (May 26, 2004). Sina Games. Retrieved March 4, 2017.
  11. ^ Aaron Kaluszka (January 14, 2007). New GBA SP Designs Released in China. Nintendo World Report. Retrieved March 9, 2017.
  12. ^ Sina Games. 超级马力欧2_电视游戏_新浪游戏_新浪网. Sina Corp. Retrieved January 24, 2017.
  13. ^ Sina Games. 瓦力欧寻宝记_电视游戏_新浪游戏_新浪网. Sina Corp. Retrieved January 24, 2017.
  14. ^ From a presentation on the 2003 Tokyo Game Show: 「神遊機(iQue Player) 中国向けの新設計テレビゲーム機」. Dengeki Online (September 26, 2003). 【TGS】任天堂が中国向けに新ハード「神遊」を発売。ソフトはダウンロード方式!. Retrieved January 28, 2017.
  15. ^ From Wei Yen: “‘iQue’的意思是超越智慧。还有,体现了人在创造的过程中的一种欢愉感。在中国,大多数翻译是音译,不是意译。有很多人劝我用音译,因为即使是中国人自己的品牌,也喜欢用像英文音译的那种名字。可是我觉得音译没有什么意思,所以我决定用意译。” 大狗 (June 23, 2016). 《记录》第17期:神游中国(下). 触乐. Retrieved January 28, 2017.

External links[edit]