They do things differently in Japanese business. Although the days may be gone where failure is rewarded with ritual sacrifice, the Nintendo president himself has publicly taken the blame for the lack of 3DS sales, and the subsequent price drop.
Although the roughly 30% drop has been heralded as a very good thing by industry analysts and gamers alike, it isn’t such good news for Nintendo. The reduction in price is seen as something of a crisis move, done now in order to avoid increasingly poor sales. They have had to re-forecast their profit projections, and this has led to Satoru Iwata himself voluntarily taking a 50% pay cut. As his salary was a cool $2m a year that’s a considerable saving for Nintendo and should make the shareholders a little happier.
Iwata isn’t the only one symbolically falling on his sword; he commented at a shareholders meeting that, “For cuts in fixed salaries, I’m taking a fifty percent cut, other representative directors are taking a 30 percent cut, and other execs are taking a 20 percent cut.” Personally I have feeling that this situation won’t last long. With the new price point, a massive increase in quality games and the word of mouth that will entail, I wouldn’t be surprised if this time next year we were talking about a 3DS success story.