Nintendo on Mobile Near You
It wasn’t long ago that Nintendo shut down the Mario Kart channel on the Wii. For all the hype out there for seeing Nintendo on mobile devices, anyone who has been living with the company’s handling of Internet and connected devices may have some second thoughts.
Can Nintendo deliver on its mobile promise better than it has on Wi-Fi Connect?
“Nintendo on Mobile” Means Mario Games
When you first hear the news about Nintendo on mobile you assume the company’s main plan is to use those platforms to drive customers to first-party games on its own hardware. That’s not the case, according to statements by the company, in fact the plan is to build new games based on existing properties fresh for the mobile market. Of course, we’ve seen Mario on the PC before albeit in edu-ware (Mario is Missing, Mario in Time, Mario Teaches Typing, anyone?).
I would not get too excited about seeing your favourite Nintendo characters star in new titles of their own on mobile devices. The company has always had strength in showing off the capabilities of its own hardware (even when they were faking it), but smartphones and tablets are a wide world of sizes, glitches and interactive nuances. Unless they are targeting specific “premium” level devices, they can expect to be in for a world of hurt if they plan on delivering their “unparalleled fun” promise with new titles.
Your Childhood is Not Being Attacked
The good news is your childhood is not getting mined for a quick buck. You won’t find a bad port of Super Mario World in the App Store for $0.99 any time soon. A Nintendo experience on your mobile phone or iPad could be a lot of fun if the developers marry the game play with the unique control available to your device; if Nintendo is able to transfer their experience doing exactly that to their partners at DeNA this could be a great value.
For those who are concerned about what this move means for Nintendo’s hardware business, the company is smartly putting them at ease by letting slip details of their new console platform. Who knows how many years off it is, but it’s a positive sign that we will be enjoying these characters for years to come.
But please, Nintendo, when you do any kind of online experience, commit to it. No more Wi-Fi Connect shutdowns – if you put something on the Internet you are responsible for keeping the lights on, it’s the first thing we’re taught.