Blog #6

by carre107

Research has discovered that playing Nintendo Wii games can train surgeons. There are a few articles on this, but this one seems the most relevant (–20130228,0,6961711.story). Specifically, surgeons who played the Wii performed better on surgical skill tests than those who didn’t play the Wii. Basically the Wii helped surgeons be better surgeons, specifically in tasks required by laparoscopic gallbladder removal surgeries. Many surgeon training programs have laparoscopic simulators, but they are very expensive. “Video-games may be a cheap and widely available product, helping to develop cognitive skills that, apparently, can be transferred in improved surgical performance.” Since this research has proven that the Wii helps surgeons, it may be an option for Nintendo to produce games that may further develop the specific skills that surgeons are looking for. “The Nintendo Wii may be adopted in lower-budget institutions or at home by younger surgeons to optimize their training on simulators before performing real procedures.” If hospitals and trainees buy the Wii for the purpose of improving their surgical skills, Nintendo may have the option of targeting a niche market. Creating surgeon-specific games and selling them to hospitals could be a potential option. It would be great for Nintendo because they will indirectly help to save lives and it will be a fun way to train surgeons. I’m not saying that surgeons shouldn’t use the professional simulators, but Nintendo could be a cheap option that can still help surgeons and fine tune their skills. I wouldn’t say that video games are a declining industry, but if it were, one of the strategies is a niche, in this case providing simulation games for surgeons. Nintendo has the option of implementing a focused business level strategy, although it wouldn’t be truly focused since they would be making games for so many other customer groups.