When Nintendo first announced that it would finally be launching a smartphone game, it’s safe to say, many of us children of the 90’s got a little excited. Sadly, we got excited too soon. Excitement turned to bemusement once the company revealed it would be launching a weird game called Miitomo, which wasn’t exactly a game, but rather a social network.
Following its disappointing Q4 results, Nintendo has confirmed that its second title would include a “very familiar character”, and won’t be another social network attempt. It did, however, stop short of confirming exactly which character we’re going to see.
“The second game won’t be another communication app, and we plan to adopt one of our characters that fans are very familiar with,” Nintendo CEO Tatsumi Kimishima said.
While we can only hope that Nintendo releases mobile versions of Mario Karts, Donkey Kong and Zelda, it’s being predicted by analysts that the company’s smartphone games will tie in with its next rumored physical console. Dubbed the Nintendo NX, it’s predicted that the mobile titles will combine somehow with the NX games, blurring the line between mobile and console gaming.
With Sony and Microsoft dominating the console sales market with their respective PS4 and Xbox One consoles, Nintendo needs to adjust its strategy, especially after seeing its profits drop a massive 36% last quarter. Bridging the gap between smartphones and consoles with a new set of mobile games could help the company create a stronger ecosystem, but it’s unlikely to directly bring in any major revenue for the gaming giant. Analysts predict Nintendo will avoid an aggressive in-app purchasing strategy in order to keep its long-standing fans happy.
Eventually, Nintendo will see mobile gaming as a ‘pillar’ of its company. But until the first true game arrives on Android (or iOS) we’re yet to see if its attempts at taking on the mobile gaming industry will be successful.