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Nintendo Goes Mobile with DeNA, Announces NX Console: The USgamer Reactions

Nintendo is heading into a bold, new frontier for the company. Here's what we think about the announcements from this morning.

Analysis by USgamer Team, .

This morning, Nintendo reminded us it's a Japanese company with announcement of a partnership with DeNA to bring its IP to mobile platforms and a brand-new console. Yeah, we're about as stunned as you are.

Late last night, Serkan Toto tweeted that Nintendo and DeNA had announced a joint press conference to take place an hour later, with forthcoming remarks by CEOs from both companies. At the event, the primary announcement was the alliance between both companies to bring Nintendo's extensive catalog of IP to mobile platforms. Nintendo is viewing the move to smartphones in the same manner it viewed the rise of televisions as a vector for the original Famicom and Nintendo Entertainment System.

"When we further analyze the situation, Nintendo's strength lies in, or our consumers see the most value in and are willing to pay money for, Nintendo IP, such as our software and characters," explained Nintendo president Satoru Iwata at the event. "This is why Nintendo has decided to utilize smart devices aggressively. Very simply put, it is structurally the same as when Nintendo, which was founded 125 years ago when there were no TVs, started to aggressively take advantage of TV as a communication channel. Now that smart devices have grown to become the window for so many people to personally connect with society, it would be a waste not to use these devices."

"This collaboration will create the best prospects for both DeNA and Nintendo," he added. "As for which Nintendo IP will be used, we do not intend to make any exceptions. Potentially, any Nintendo IP could be used in our smart device software."

Before you worry about seeing classic Nintendo games on smartphones, the announcement made clear that these will be all-new titles created specifically for mobile platforms. That means unique Nintendo experiences in a new form factor. Specific titles will be announced at a later date.

"People really like our stuff" - Nintendo 2015

"Even if we use the same IP on our dedicated video game systems and smart devices, we will not port the titles for the former to the latter just as they are," said Iwata. "There are significant differences in the controls, strengths and weaknesses between the controllers for dedicated game systems and the touchscreens of smart devices. We have no intention at all to port existing game titles for dedicated game platforms to smart devices because if we cannot provide our consumers with the best possible play experiences, it would just ruin the value of Nintendo's IP."

In addition, Nintendo and DeNA will work together to develop a new membership service on multiple devices. That service will span the Wii U, 3DS, PC, and mobile platforms, with a planned launch in Fall 2015. It sounds like the service will operate more like Xbox Live or PlayStation Network, with a roaming account not tied to a single platform.

"Nintendo, together with DeNA, will jointly develop a new membership service which encompasses the existing Nintendo 3DS and Wii U systems, the new hardware system with a brand-new concept, NX, and smart devices and PCs, and Nintendo will be the primary party to operate this new membership service," said Iwata. "Unlike the Club Nintendo membership service that Nintendo has been operating, the new membership service will include multiple devices and create a connection between Nintendo and each individual consumer regardless of the device the consumer uses."

Nintendo's vision of its new account system.

As a part of the partnership, both companies have purchased 22 billion yen ($181.5 million) worth of stock in one another. For Nintendo, this comes to a 10 percent share in DeNA. For DeNA, that's a 1.24 percent share in Nintendo.

Following the announcement of the partnership and expansion to mobile, Iwata then dropped the bomb about the brand-new console, currently code-named NX. There's absolutely no other details on that platform, with more information forthcoming in 2016. The early announcement is Nintendo's way of showing that it's still committed to dedicated game consoles for the foreseeable future.

"We aim to construct a bridge between smart devices and dedicated video game hardware that connects consumers to our dedicated video game systems," Iwata said. "For the consumers who are connected with Nintendo through smart devices and interested in Nintendo's IP, we would like to provide even more premium gameplay experiences on Nintendo's dedicated game platforms."

EDIT: Since there seems to be some confusion from readers, here's comments from an interview Iwata had with Time today.

"Development of smart device games will be mainly done by Nintendo, but it is significant that we are forming a joint development structure with DeNA," said Iwata. "Nintendo, through experience in the dedicated game system business, is good at making traditional game products. But for smart devices, in addition to the “product” aspect of a game, the aspect of an ever-evolving “service” is very important—a service that encourages consumers to play every day even for a short time. DeNA has extensive know-how in developing the “service” side of things, and will be primarily responsible for the service-oriented operations. We will be able to greatly leverage strengths of each party.

"As for any involvement of Mr. Miyamoto, we will discuss it when possible, but for now, understand that his priority is on the development of Wii U titles that will be launched this year."

He also discussed payment models, which is usually free-to-play in the mobile market. Iwata admitted that free-to-play was on the table, but Nintendo is open to other options.

"Nintendo does not intend to choose payment methods that may hurt Nintendo’s brand image or our IP, which parents feel comfortable letting their children play with," he said. "Also, it’s even more important for us to consider how we can get as many people around the world as possible to play Nintendo smart device apps, rather than to consider which payment system will earn the most money."

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Mike Williams Associate Editor, Sees Nintendo Making Big Money

Well, that's surprising. I'm the one who wrote the words above, so my impressions will be on the lighter side. I saw Serkan Toto's tweet last night at around 2:40am my time, but I didn't expect much, maybe a Nintendo-themed mobile game like Puzzle & Dragons Super Mario Bros Edition. Despite the surprise, everything here makes a great deal of sense.

I'm not going to say Nintendo needed to jump to mobile, as the 3DS is still selling well, but this is an additional vector into the world of Nintendo for consumers who otherwise would've skipped right on by. Instead of Flappy Bird or Where's My Water, kids can rock official Nintendo games before upgrading to a dedicated console.

I'm glad that Nintendo's working with DeNA on a new account system. I always wondered why Nintendo didn't hire talented account system developers in Japan, as the original implementation of Nintendo IDs is less than adequate. According to DeNA CEO Isao Moriyasu, the companies have been in talks since summer of last year, which would explain the lack of speed in Nintendo's changes.

History being made, or just business?

Nintendo's cautionary nature seems to have served them well. Some companies flailed around the mobile space before completely giving up or scaling back, but Nintendo is smart to leverage DeNA's expertise. The company has been successful in the mobile sector with its Mobage platform on Android and iOS, so they're perfect to help Nintendo fix its poor online account system and determine what style of games work best on smartphones and tablets.

And yeah, I'm pretty excited to have Nintendo making games on smartphones. I play games on my smartphones and tablets occasionally: the entire line of Kairosoft games, Infinity Blade, and some Telltale titles. If Nintendo's going to take the time and go all out, I think that's great. Let Miyamoto, Sakurai, Aonuma, and company play around on tablets, or use them as a chance to grow new talent within the company. This can only fail if the games are bad and we all know that's not how Nintendo rolls.

On the announcement of the NX, there's not much to say. We knew there was a console coming at some point, with the Wii U's sales being what they are. Nintendo has merely given a name to vague statements it previously made and shuffled the real reveal into 2016. Iwata calls the NX a "brand-new concept", and it's been surmised that the console will be some sort of handheld/home console hybrid, which would not count as a "traditional" home console. I'm not sure how Nintendo would pull that off, but I'm a writer, not an engineer. Either way, I'm sure they have a plan.

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Jeremy Parish Editor-in-Chief, The Wordsy One

Hmm, I'm not sure I'd characterized myself as shocked, exactly. Nintendo's been leaning in this direction for a long time, dabbling in mobile and F2P concepts for quite a while. And they'd even told their shareholders that they were exploring mobile apps and platforms for a while. This sensation I feel isn't shock, it's... what's that feeling you have when something you've been dreading with sick certainty finally comes to pass? It's that one.

This really feels like a major and unavoidable tragedy coming to pass, like Krypton's sun exploding or something. Nintendo has long been the last "pure" video game company, and if they must eventually bow to the tyranny of mobile domination, what hope is there for the rest of the world? When I look back on video games from my comfy recliner at the retirement home circa 2055, I'll remember this as the moment they came crashing to an end.

OK, so I'm being not-entirely-serious here. But still, you can understand my trepidation: Mobile games aren't inherently terrible (some are phenomenally good!), but the format lends itself to unethical practices and the erosion of good game design. The last thing I want is for Nintendo to drift slowly into the worst tendencies of mobile game making, literally nickel-and-diming their business to death.

Could Captain Toad make the jump to mobile?

I think - more like strongly believe - the company's internal moral compass will make them resistant to that. Nintendo's executives seem keenly aware that the company's greatest form of currency is the reputation and quality of its properties; Mario and Link and Samus have premium status among game franchises, because Nintendo vets their appearances scrupulously. They only appear in good games (yes, yes, get your snarky Other M comments out of the way now), only appear on good products, and generally avoid the pitfalls common to other franchise properties. If Nintendo cashes in on its good name in the short term, what does it have for the long term?

On the other hand, man, have you ever read the minutes of a Nintendo investors meeting? Its stakeholders don't get games, and they don't have much patience for losing money. The big fear here, I think, is not that Nintendo will start churning out exploitative Candy Crush-caliber garbage game design because they can, but rather that investor pressure will make that tragic outcome unavoidable. The one silver thread of hope trailing into the future is that Nintendo is a Japanese corporation, not American, so its executives and investors are more likely to be capable of comprehending the welfare of the business beyond next quarter's returns.

Looking forward to "Rage of Mario".

If there's a surprise here, it's that Nintendo has jumped into an existing platform with DeNa rather than making their own. The Nintendo way from the very beginning has been to build everything from the ground up, to own the platform and the process the entire way. Nintendo got into games from the toymaker's angle, spinning consoles and handhelds out of standalone Nintendo-manufactured dedicated devices in the '70s and '80s, and the need to control the business at every level remains deeply embedded in Nintendo's DNA (not their DeNa). In fact, conversations about Nintendo's inevitable move into mobile have been evenly split between "when is Nintendo going to make iPhone games" and "when is Nintendo going to make its own phone" - telling, I think.

But if their DeNa connection means what it seems to mean - that they're going to begin making games for other companies' mobile devices - it's a smart move on Nintendo's part. Hardware has increasingly become the least profitable part of their business in recent years, and the mobile market is cutthroat. Even Apple didn't just jump right in with iPhone; they did that stupid ROKR phone with Motorola first. Entering the mobile market as a platform stakeholder would be a really good way for Nintendo to burn through its cash on hand and end up being bought by a pachinko company.

Maybe this project "NX" will turn out to be some sort of hybrid device that give Nintendo its "proper" entree into the mobile market. Like Mike said, everyone has been speculating that Nintendo's next system will hybridize portable and console gaming, so it's not that much of a stretch to imagine they'd throw mobile into the mix. But, honestly, I kind of hope not. Taking on the mobile market is a massive and demanding task that could easily bankrupt the company, and given Nintendo's historic conservatism I feel like it poses too much of a risk for their blood. Then again, maybe Iwata sees this as his own "rise to Heaven, sink to Hell" moment. Still, there's a lot more to gain by Nintendo easing into the market. Imagine the furor if they had some sort of platform exclusivity with an existing mobile manufacturer - the bidding rights over getting Mario and Pokémon on iPhone or Android would make the bidding wars over streaming rights to Seinfeld look like peanuts.

As long as Nintendo still makes great games first and foremost, though, that's all I care about. Given how cautiously they've tread in the F2P space, I'm not too worried. Yet. As long as I can continue to unlock the Tubular and Funky levels from Mario's Star Road with playing skill rather than via a microtransaction pop-up, all's well.

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Comments 48

  • Avatar for nimzy #1 nimzy A year ago
    I think we just saw the death of the portable game console.
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  • Avatar for VotesForCows #2 VotesForCows A year ago
    @nimzy I don't think so - the DS and 3DS are doing brilliantly. It would be odd for them to turn their back on that.

    I'm cautiously optimistic about this anyway. Its definitely worrying, but even when Nintendo make a mistake (Wii U tablet controller...) the system still delivers games of phenomenal quality. I'm confident that they can deliver quality games on mobile as well.
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  • Avatar for Crapknocker #3 Crapknocker A year ago
    I'm imagining something like a hybrid of the WiiU portable screen except using wifi streaming to a smartphone that's attached somehow to a controller. Nintendo has done bits and pieces of a design like this before (remember the GBA to Gamecube adapters? anyone?) and I think they've decided that now might be the time to jump into these waters. I can easily imagine a smartphone app that allows wifi streaming as well as managing a friends list, buying downloadable games or even playing side games that interact with larger ones (something like ME3 or Dragon Age did with their mobile apps). Combined with Nintendo's quality game design, it could reignite the market for decently-priced mobile gaming. I'm looking forward to it!
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  • Avatar for camchow #4 camchow A year ago
    Wait so this means Nintendo will be making PC games as well? I could get behind that 100%
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  • Avatar for boatie #5 boatie A year ago
    I honestly think this is the beginning of the end for Nintendo, or the beginning of Nintendo going the way of Sega at least.
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  • Avatar for Daikaiju #6 Daikaiju A year ago
    @VotesForCows Agreed. Heavy on the caution though...
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  • Avatar for mobichan #7 mobichan A year ago
    Nowhere in that article did I see Nintendo say they would be making games (internally) for mobile phones. I did see the potential for other companies to use Nintendo IP and make mobiles games with them.

    If they plan to really do the "Nintendo thing" on mobile, I would guess it would be akin to mini games that link to their main consoles in some fashion. Their interest will always be to sell their own hardware (as long as they make their own hardware), so investing money in products that don't accomplish that goal seems odd to me.
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  • Avatar for detten17 #8 detten17 A year ago
    not sure what to expect really, I don't use my phone to game; I can only hope this doesn't kill portables.
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  • Avatar for lobotomy42 #9 lobotomy42 A year ago
    @VotesForCows They're doing brilliantly for the moment. At some point, though, they won't be. All console cycles end eventually. The question is, when the 3DS cycle ends, will it be worth it for Nintendo (or anyone) to launch a new one? If their mobile business has taken off, probably not.
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  • Avatar for lobotomy42 #10 lobotomy42 A year ago
    I have that same sinking feeling in my stomach as Jeremy.
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  • Avatar for jeremy.parish #11 jeremy.parish A year ago
    @mobichan True, but at the moment everything is basically speculation. I have enough confidence in Nintendo's stewardship of its properties to expect we won't see the iPhone equivalent of those Zelda games they allowed to show up on CDi, though.
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  • Avatar for Captain-Gonru #12 Captain-Gonru A year ago
    @nimzy I'd rather look upon it as the evolution of the portable gaming console. What if the NX merges the functionality of the 3DS with the communication abilities of a smart phone? The time has come for the phone to evolve, too. Fewer people use a phone in the traditional way anymore (held against the side of the head). Why not a mobile connected "3DS", a 4GDS, if you will, that allows for texting and voice and/or video chatting, while retaining the gaming features of the familiar portable?
    My greatest fear, honestly, is Nintendo apps. At that point, you're further pushing your user base to someone else's equipment, and software. You only need to look at Sega to see the dangers down that path.
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  • Avatar for agwong #13 agwong A year ago
    Really looking forward to that new account system. Excuse me while I scale the nearest mountaintop and scream, "FIIINNNAAAAALLLLLLLLLLYYYYYYY!"
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  • Avatar for dsparil #14 dsparil A year ago
    It wouldn’t necessarily be too hard to pull off a handheld/console. Nintendo already has wireless display tech with the Wii U and they’ve had years to improve it beyond the 854x480 the gamepad uses. Apple’s AirPlay in mirrored mode is HD, but it has to go through a router degrading performance even when close to the router. It does show that it wireless HD is possible and a more direct connection between console and display, like with the Wii U and gamepad, would eliminate performance issues. The main issues are price and battery life.

    Just to give a cost estimate, an iPhone 6 has an estimated BOM of $200 and includes powerful enough hardware to drive an HD capable NX. The original 3DS had an estimated BOM of $100 versus $75 for the DSi. An iPhone obviously has extra hardware that the NX wouldn’t need, but Apple has economies of scale and tight supply chain management (it’s Tim Cook’s specialty) which drives their costs down. On the other hand, the Wii U is estimated to cost $180 to produce. Factoring in unneeded hardware but increased costs, a $200 manufacturing price seems reasonable for a Wii U successor leading to a similar $300 retail price.

    I picked up a 3DS on launch day for $250, but that seemed to be too high for most people. I think a rush of poorly converted 2D to 3D movies in the wake of Avatar turned people off from 3D in general and it took some time for the 3DS to prove that 3D done well is a plus. The New 3DS XL seems to be doing fine at $200 though. Maybe they’d split the difference and shoot for a $250 MSRP again but with more powerful hardware this time. Assuming Nintendo sticks with dual screens, they could market it as something like a cheaper, portable Wii U with full on-TV support, gamepad compatibility, and support for DS, 3DS, Wii and Wii U games. That’s probably too ambitious at $250 unless Nintendo is willing to take a loss on each system which I doubt.

    Battery life is a big issue though for an HD capable portable though. The original 3DS and the contemporaneous iPhone 4 have similar battery capacities, but the 3DS has 60% the total pixels and less complex geometry. From personal experience, the iPhone only got about 45 - 60 minutes of battery life with graphically intense games like Infinity Blade. It’s hasn’t really gotten better with time since it’s inevitable that developers will always try to reach the hardware’s ceiling irrespective of battery life. By the time the NX would be released, Nintendo may be able to get low power parts with equal performance to the Wii U since their handheld have generally been one generation “behind” their consoles. As I said before, an iPhone 6 has comparable hardware and since Nintendo is less interested in pushing performance boundries, it seems likely that low enough power parts will become available.

    One side issue is general consumer confusion. Nintendo didn’t handle the consumer education part of the Wii to Wii U transition very well. Going from handhelds and consoles to just one that can function as both is going to get labeled “Nintendo leaves the console market” by the general media and they’re going to have push back hard to control the message.
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  • Avatar for Lord-Bob-Bree #15 Lord-Bob-Bree A year ago
    @mobichan "I did see the potential for other companies to use Nintendo IP and make mobiles games with them."

    So we could finally see the long-awaited sequel to Hotel Mario?

    Anyway, I am... cautious about this. It's vague about what exactly this new "membership service" will involve, but hopefully it means no more friend codes, and games tied to the account rather than console. I certainly fear Nintendo going the way of F2P.
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  • Avatar for MHWilliams #16 MHWilliams A year ago
    @mobichan Relevant quotes within the linked transcript.

    Iwata:
    "Of course, Nintendo will utilize smart devices as communication media for Nintendo IP. In addition, so that our consumers will be closely connected with them, we will deploy a game business which takes advantage of Nintendo IP."

    "Nintendo and DeNA will jointly develop and operate gaming applications for smart devices in global markets."

    "For smart devices, even in the case where we utilize the same IP, we will create completely new game software that will perfectly match the play styles of smart devices."

    DeNA's CEO:

    "By forming a joint team consisting of Nintendo and DeNA members, I firmly believe we will be able to create major synergies and deliver compelling products with new value to our customers."

    Nintendo mobile games are happening. Nintendo talent is directly involved. This is not speculation. What is speculation is who at Nintendo is involved. I tend to prefer using quotes about reasoning, instead of direct quotes of statements I can paraphrase, but that's why I also linked the transcript and announcement video.
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  • Avatar for CK20XX #17 CK20XX A year ago
    This concerns me not because I want to see Nintendo remain as the last "pure" game developer, but because it seems to indicate that Nintendo has not, or perhaps even refuses to, learn anything from the strife it's been struggling with ever since the N64. At the end of the day, it's a company that only knows how to be the leader of a monopoly, despite all the other obviously brilliant things that have come out of its doors. Instead of embracing third-party developers, building consoles according to what they'd like to see, and removing barriers for both developer and consumer, it seems like it's taking its ball and going elsewhere as cordially as it can manage.

    Is this the death of the portable game console? For Nintendo's sake, it better not be, since that's the last place it has where it can impose as much control as it darn well pleases. It's not like Sony or anyone else has any hope of carrying out a coup d'etat in that empire, where Nintendo can continue to be like the Baron Klaus Wolfenbach of gaming.Edited March 2015 by CK20XX
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  • Avatar for Kuni-Nino #18 Kuni-Nino A year ago
    @nimzy That's how I'm feeling as well. Nintendo's offerings on mobile just have to be 'good enough' and when that happens, who but the hardcore is going to shell out $200 for a console and a game? Kids are easily satisfied and most parents are budget conscious. There's a reason why the price of an iPhone app can't exceed something like five dollars and that's because no one is paying attention beyond a dollar.

    The 3DS might be the last form of the handheld console as we currently know it. Of course, that depends on what the 'NX' ends up being but I think that's going to be something really different.
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  • Avatar for Spooky-Toast #19 Spooky-Toast A year ago
    @agwong agreed. Hard to not get excited about the shared accounts!
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  • Avatar for Ralek #20 Ralek A year ago
    I just finished watching Interstellar by coincidence, and the movie left me somewhat shaken to say the least or maybe even haunted. Now this news about Nintendo kind of feels the same way to me - not necessarily bad just somewhat quite unsettling. I have this strange feeling in my gut, that I will remember this day well ... I think it will spell the end of Nintendo as I know it since my childhood, if for better or for worse, I cannot possibly fathom at this point in time. I think the feeling I'm having is just the kind of uncertainty one sometimes get when facing change on a meaningful scale.
    I'm at the same time excited and full of dread about this, that'S probably the best way I can describe it. There is much potential here, for a 21st century Nintendo we can all cheer for, but also potential for longterm disaster. Nintendo has been a kind of calm anchor in many ways for many, many years for lot of people, but no longer it seems ...
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  • Avatar for kurono64 #21 kurono64 A year ago
    I don't see the traditional handheld console disappearing because of this move. They are not even considering porting games from 3DS to mobile devices because it would be really hard to do.
    If someone thinks you can have an experience as good of games like Mario 3D Land with touch controls on any smartphone then I wouldn't see the need for a 3DS or anything like it. As it goes now, however, I see Nintendo going with Mario skinned infinite runners, and other puzzle games that would still leave plenty of room for the 3DS and it's successor.
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  • Avatar for NinjaMic #22 NinjaMic A year ago
    Wow.

    I like what they said about actually approaching the platform as something that will have unique needs + potential for gameplay and control/interface, and that zero effort rom dumps or half-assed re-appropriation will benefit nobody. That's Nintendo alright. I bet that was a tough thing to explain to their shareholders, though.
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  • Avatar for docexe #23 docexe A year ago
    I have mixed feelings about these announcements. I’m not entirely surprised, given the way the market in Japan has turned, the ailing fortunes of the Wii U and the fact that the 3DS has peaked. Now, I certainly have some trepidation, but I can’t help it but be cautiously optimistic about it.

    On one hand, I think Nintendo is going in a smart way about this, smarter than many of the analysts and pundits that have been clamoring for them to enter the mobile space have been with their suggestions anyway. I think that for a number of reasons:

    1. They are not abandoning dedicated game hardware entirely. Granted, we don’t know anything about the “NX”, and honestly, I doubt it will actually be released until 2017. It could be a new handheld, a new home console or that “home/portable” hybrid that people have been speculating about for a long time. But the fact that they are not abandoning entirely one of their primary markets (as many analysts, pundits and detractors have dumbly suggested), and are even planning to use mobile to attract new customers to it is a plus in my book.

    2. They are partnering with an entity that is already established on mobile. That’s one of the major issues I have had when people just tell them to go mobile and abandon everything else, as if it would be a simple process that would net them lots of profits in the short term. That’s not necessarily the case, entering any new market without any prior experience or know how is always a risky venture that can even tank a major corporation. By contrast, by getting a partner with experience and know how that they can leverage, they are mitigating the risk of trying to build everything from the ground up themselves.

    3. They are using the experience of that partner to create a unified subscription service across platforms, which means a proper unified account system. I think we can all agree when I say: FINALLY!

    4. They are not merely porting their old games for mobile but rather building new ones for the platform. Let’s be honest, outside of a few DS and Wii U games that rely primarily on touch controls, most of their back catalog isn’t really suitable for mobile.

    Granted, there are still things to be concerned about this announcement: From the quality of the games that they are going to publish on mobile and how many resources they are going to allocate for them, to the monetization scheme that they are going to use. I can only hope, cross my fingers and pray to whatever deity that might exist out there that they will remain as fair as they have been so far with their recent dabblings in DLC and F2P, and not succumb to the temptation of the worse and most exploitative models of microtransactions.

    Not to mention some long term trepidation: if this venture succeeds, does that mean that eventually they will go out of dedicated hardware entirely? Granted, I suppose that will also rely on the level of success of the NX, and by the time everything is said and done on that front, the future of dedicated consoles might once again be on question like it was at the end of the previous generation.

    Anyway right now, the best course of action is to hope for the best while keeping close attention.
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  • Avatar for pdubb #24 pdubb A year ago
    Explains the death of Club Nintendo
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  • Avatar for Compeau #25 Compeau A year ago
    I hope Nintendo goes the way of Mario Kart and Windows and calls the NX the Nintendo 7. It makes even more sense if it's a hybrid.

    1. NES
    2. SNES
    3. N64
    4. GCN
    5. Wii
    6. Wii U
    7. NX

    1. GB
    2. GBC
    3. GBA
    4. DS
    5. 3DS
    6. New 3DS (has exclusive retail games like Xenoblade, it counts!)
    7. NX
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  • Avatar for Damman #26 Damman A year ago
    Let's see now *cracks knuckles*

    The Nintendo Xperience
    Nintendo Next (Nextendo?)
    Nintendo Xtreme (might've worked great back in the 90s!)
    Nintendo X
    Nintendo Xii (would doubly work if it was also their 12th system)
    Nintendo Xcess
    Nintendo Executable (This gets my vote)
    Nintendo Exists!
    Nintendo EX
    The Nintendo Experiment
    Nintendoxxing (topical, but ill advised for an online information storing service)

    Take your pick! And yes, I am aware that the codename likely has nothing to do with the final name.Edited March 2015 by Damman
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  • Avatar for IPA #27 IPA A year ago
    This was inevitable -- I'm hoping gaming culture can face the change with more courage and openness than, oh, say, every other industry that has been disrupted by new models and technologies. The sky isn't falling.

    There is the potential for pitfalls, but it isn't like gaming in its current form is some shining example of innovation, restless experimentation, and consumer satisfaction. Outside of my wonderful 3DS RPGs, some Steam games, and (basically) Dark Souls, gaming could be a lot better. Mobile games could lower cost barriers and allow developers to explore the niche markets that I fall into rather than experiencing yet another round of bland AAA FPS bro titles.

    Excited to see where this takes us.
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  • Avatar for apoc_reg #28 apoc_reg A year ago
    Like square Enid they will get the pricing completely wrong and put me off.
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  • Avatar for tenderbrew #29 tenderbrew A year ago
    Hmm.. wow. That's all I have to say. My thoughts are very close to Jeremy's. I definitely would not mind a Nintendogs, Rusty's Real Deal Baseball, or Pokemon Shuffle for my mobile phone, but I dread what might actually come to pass.

    For the last two generations, the Nintendo DS and 3DS have been my clear-cut winners for the generations. Diverse libraries, portable, and of definitive SNES-era high quality. Where that market goes is anybody's guess, but I hope this doesn't destroy hope for it to continue.

    Nintendo is and has been the one company that has delivered exactly what I want out of games for a long time. I just hope it doesn't give in to the less savory side of the mobile market. The Wii U is brilliant and still has the best next-gen library, but sadly the support hasn't been there from the core audience.

    Prove me wrong Nintendo. Please. God.
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  • Avatar for SatelliteOfLove #30 SatelliteOfLove A year ago
    @nimzy

    Maybe. To everything, the stock swapping, the clueless stockholders, the trajectory of console sales in Japan (the Japanese use of "console"), everything..."maybe".
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  • Avatar for Ohoni #31 Ohoni A year ago
    The android port of Square's The World Ends with You (originally a DS game) was fantastic. The port of Sega's Jet Set Radio was HORRENDOUS. They just had no idea how to make the controls functional on a touch screen.

    Nintendo has had plenty of experience working with touch screens, and with their reputation for perfectionism, I have no doubt that they can release first party titles for mobile that are as quality as their other games.
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  • Avatar for Stealth20k #32 Stealth20k A year ago
    Nintendo will not even be putting 10% of its games on mobile. This is a small thing.
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  • Avatar for SevenBones #33 SevenBones A year ago
    This has great potential if Nintendo plays it smart with both this mobile announcement and their new upcoming membership program. Imagine if by playing certain mobile titles people are able to unlock special items and other promotions that could be redeemed on titles on their main systems. For example, complete certain requirements on Animal Crossing tap and go and get special furniture or clothing in the mainline Animal Crossing game through the membership program.

    Like Jeremy I also have a small sickening dread in the pit of my stomach from this news, but I'm sure Nintendo wouldn't be making this move unless they had some idea of where it could take them.

    As for the "NX", I think it's going to be Nintendo's next generation handheld since the 3DS will be 6 around it's reveal next year.
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  • Avatar for larkan511 #34 larkan511 A year ago
    Definitely staying away from this. I sense it'll be a "hey hardcore Nintendo fans! check out this mobile phone/gaming device! Sony did it and did totally fine!"
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  • Avatar for hiptanaka #35 hiptanaka A year ago
    @Compeau Nintendo 7 to launch with Metroid 5.

    Beautiful sentence. :)
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  • Avatar for msturge116 #36 msturge116 A year ago
    On the mobile games front I am optimistic, especially in regards to Nintendo. The big steps into unfamiliar territory have, overall, worked out for Nintendo. Remember how absurd and risky the DS seemed? Or conversely, how solid a bet the N64 seemed? I am far more concerned that Wii U is their last game console, and NX is a step into a compromised middle ground between handheld, console, and tablet.
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  • Avatar for Mikki-Saturn #37 Mikki-Saturn A year ago
    I don't know from what I read it doesn't sound like Nintendo themselves are going to make games for mobile. I think they intend to allow mobile developers to license their IPs. I assume that these mobile "games" (which may well turn out to be more like toys or apps) will be used mainly as marketing tools. They have to get their characters and their franchises in front of children in order to hook the next generation. I imagine every single one of these games will prominently inform you that there are other pieces of hardware with bigger better games out there, and if you liked this you should totally go buy all that other stuff too, etc.

    Anyway, something like that is probably the main idea, but it's unclear if it can be successful. If these marketing focused games are crappy it will just turn people off. But if they're good they may simply satisfy consumers, and eliminate the need for other hardware purchases (at least, for many consumers). Who knows? Anything can happen when Nintendo rolls the dice.
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  • Avatar for hal9k #38 hal9k A year ago
    Honestly, my first reaction is a bit of confusion - I've never heard of DeNA. Who are these guys, and what do they do? I see terms like "social/mobile gaming portal," and I understand what those words mean, but not in that order. So, is it a digital storefront, like iTunes or the Play store? This must be how my parents felt when they had to program a VCR.

    In trying to read up on them, I noticed that DeNA has another partnership to provide games to Renren. I have heard of them - it's one of a few Chinese Facebook analogs, specifically targeted towards college students (censored, naturally - or as they say, the beautifully Orwellian "harmonized"). Perhaps like seemingly every other corporation on Earth, Nintendo is after a slice of that sweet PRC market, and this deal is part of their strategy.

    I also noticed that DeNA owns a baseball team, the Yokohama BayStars. I believe Nintendo of America still owns the Seattle Mariners. Perhaps this is all part of a convoluted trade, like way back when Babe Ruth got traded from Boston to New York essentially in exchange for Broadway musical financing. Soon we'll see Robinson Cano sent to Yokohama in exchange for a unified account system to be named later.
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  • Avatar for Thumbscar #39 Thumbscar A year ago
    We knew something was coming. I guess *shrug* we'll wait and see. Knowing Nintendo, I'm not going to assume anything about this until it is actually released (and even then we might not get all the information)
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  • Avatar for MHWilliams #40 MHWilliams A year ago
    @Mikki-Saturn I get the feeling that there's many who really don't want Nintendo making mobile games. Once again:

    Relevant quotes within the linked transcript.

    Iwata:
    "Of course, Nintendo will utilize smart devices as communication media for Nintendo IP. In addition, so that our consumers will be closely connected with them, we will deploy a game business which takes advantage of Nintendo IP."

    "Nintendo and DeNA will jointly develop and operate gaming applications for smart devices in global markets."

    "For smart devices, even in the case where we utilize the same IP, we will create completely new game software that will perfectly match the play styles of smart devices."

    DeNA's CEO:

    "By forming a joint team consisting of Nintendo and DeNA members, I firmly believe we will be able to create major synergies and deliver compelling products with new value to our customers."

    Nintendo mobile games are happening. Nintendo talent is directly involved. This is not speculation. What is speculation is who at Nintendo is involved. I tend to prefer using quotes about reasoning, instead of direct quotes of statements I can paraphrase, but that's why I also linked the transcript and announcement video.

    Additional quotes from the Time today:
    http://time.com/3748920/nintendo-mobile-games/

    "Development of smart device games will be mainly done by Nintendo, but it is significant that we are forming a joint development structure with DeNA. Nintendo, through experience in the dedicated game system business, is good at making traditional game products. But for smart devices, in addition to the “product” aspect of a game, the aspect of an ever-evolving “service” is very important—a service that encourages consumers to play every day even for a short time. DeNA has extensive know-how in developing the “service” side of things, and will be primarily responsible for the service-oriented operations. We will be able to greatly leverage strengths of each party."

    "As for any involvement of Mr. Miyamoto, we will discuss it when possible, but for now, understand that his priority is on the development of Wii U titles that will be launched this year."

    Stupid web loading thing. Sigh.Edited March 2015 by MHWilliams
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  • Avatar for docexe #55 docexe A year ago
    @MHWilliams I think the reason why people refuse to believe it is simply that Nintendo making mobile games has been anathema for so long.

    But yeah, reading the coverage on other sites as well as some transcripts of the conference, it’s very clear they will be heavily involved in the production of the games, and that they primarily partnered with DeNA because of their network infrastructure (an area on which Nintendo is sorely lacking).

    And honestly, considering how much of a control freak they tend to be with their IP, even if they allowed a third party to develop on mobile for them, they would still keep the leash firmly on hand.

    BTW, Mike, something needs to be done about that bug.
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  • Avatar for MHWilliams #56 MHWilliams A year ago
    @docexe I'm not even sure why you'd want Nintendo to hand Mario, Link, and Waluigi to an outside dev. I'd rather Nintendo handle their own mobile titles.

    Yeah, the bug wouldn't be as bad if deleted posts didn't stick around.
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  • Avatar for kantaroo3 #57 kantaroo3 A year ago
    This has to be a success.

    Nintendo has a happy history of partnering with leading companies in a new and vibrant field of technology and entertainment. It is a really safe way for Ninty to extend its reach and leverage the partner's strengths: Nintendo puts in the IP, the partner deals with the tech, everyone's a winner right?

    Now, where did I put my Philips CD-i?

    Edit: more seriously, I think the problem for Nintendo is going to be cannibalisation of its franchises. Think of the Nintendo games you know that would fit best on a phone; my list would be:
    Pokemon,
    Animal Crossing,
    Paper Mario,
    Advance Wars,
    WarioWare
    (Pokemon Shuffle is not a game, it is a glorified slot machine)

    Let's stop there and think: if those games are available on my phone, what's my incentive to purchase and carry around a 3DS? Yes, of course the major franchises that require precision will not be on mobile, but there may well be enough with the others.
    Plus, once people leave their 3DS at home and get used to gaming exclusively on their phone, will they stick around in Nintendo's ecosystem? I suspect many will not if it is as simple as tapping on the app next to it and play a (horrors) Zynga game.
    I will be interested to see how Nintendo squares that circle, or what is the compelling proposition of the NX (assuming it is a portable system) such that I should prefer it to the Nintendo games on my phone.

    It's going to be interesting.Edited March 2015 by kantaroo3
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  • Avatar for abuele #58 abuele A year ago
    This doesn't spell the doom for dedicated portable consoles, from my point of view. I've been bombarded by news that NINTENDO is going mobile, which is not the case, that is simply misreading information. By creating a new mobile plataform, the so called NX, maybe they would be launching a new plataform to approach new markets, like CHINA.

    They have forsaken developing countries, because they don't have a proper representation of the company in them, and as a conservative company they are not willing to take risks in unknown territory.

    On the other hand they have the European, Japanese and US markets, with heavy competition on all type of digital plataforms, for which they will keep a strong watch in order to deliver the products this customers expect from NINTENDO, for that reason IWATA reassured the crowed with quality in game mechanics, and no cross plataform for other portable devices if the hardware was not good to experience the game in the way it is expected.

    Moving to digital markets, China is a great opportunity, for which NINTENDO needs to develop a flexible way to experience their products in a more feasible way. A channel that could attract other type of developers for this platform.
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  • Avatar for jeffcorry #59 jeffcorry A year ago
    I can't say much about DeNA, but I am confident in Nintendo. I respect that they haven't just jumped on the mobile band wagon without a plan. Nintendo seems to be a very controlled and thought out company. I hope it works out for them. I love having a dedicated Nintendo home console and handheld (or maybe several of each...), but I wouldn't mind playing a quality Nintendo game on my phone once in a while. To be really honest, everything that Nintendo makes I tend to play in short bursts...so...their style of games would really match up to the mobile mentality.
    That being said, as a person who purchases mobile games, such as Final Fantasy, I don't naturally gravitate to my phone to have those types of experiences. I can have a copy of Secret of Mana or Final Fantasy Tactics on my iPhone, but I will still pull out the PSP or the Wii U to play these games...because...buttons...and screen real estate. That may change.
    These are my personal habits. I can see myself paying a decent price for Nintendo's mobile games. Will I keep playing them? I don't know. I have a lot of unfinished, and yet amazing, experiences on my Wii U. Simply because I am at heart, a JRPG guy, that loves deep story and game play.
    So, I wish Nintendo luck, and hope that this works out. I don't feel like it is a gamble for them. They have this well-thought out and planned and that is always something I respect about Nintendo (Except the name of the Wii U...even though I love the system...)
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  • Avatar for KaiserWarrior #60 KaiserWarrior A year ago
    "But for smart devices, in addition to the “product” aspect of a game, the aspect of an ever-evolving “service” is very important—a service that encourages consumers to play every day even for a short time."

    Translated from corporatese: Prepare for Super Mario Mobile: Microntransactions And Nag Your Friends For Energy Edition.

    Nintendo is a company with stockholders. They're not diving into the reeking cesspit of mobile gaming (as a distinct and separate entity from portable gaming) because they think it's the best fit for their IP. They're doing it because their stockholders are pissed about the performance of the WiiU and are demanding they get into this insanely lucrative market that everyone else is in; the stockholders are looking at Candy Crush and Angry Birds and the umpteen bazillion ultra-exploitative Japanese digital TCGs with yen-signs in their eyes.

    You think they won't resort to standard mobile scum monetization like literally every other company in the mobile space? Yeah, and there was a time when DICE stated they would never charge for Battlefield maps either, right up until they did.

    Mark your calendars. Today was the day that Nintendo began the long fall.
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  • Avatar for Malroth #61 Malroth A year ago
    Hey, do you remember the Mario stage on NES Remix that auto runs for you? And you have to do your best to get to the end because you can't break?


    ...That's the future.
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  • Avatar for Mariana-Santos #62 Mariana-Santos 4 months ago
    Even if we use the same IP on our dedicated video game systems and smart devices, we will jogos exclusivos ps4 not port the titles for the former to the exclusivos ps4 latter just as they are," said Iwata. "There melhores jogos xbox 360 are significant differences in the controls, strengths melhores jogos de xbox 360 and weaknesses between the controllers for dedicated game systems and the touchscreens of smart devices. We have no intention at all to port existing game titles for dedicated game platforms to smart devices because if we cannot provide our consumers with the best possible play experiences, it would just ruin the value of Nintendo's IP.
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