Thursday, 19 March 2015

Discussion - Nintendo Finally Decides to go Smart (Phone)

Super Mario Bros. Wii Nintendo on Apple iPhone
Just a quick post tonight for all you gaming fans out there that might have been aching for some Nintendo mascot and character action for different mobile platforms.

Nintendo announced yesterday in Japan that they would finally take their heads out of their arses and take note of the fact that the Smart Phone gaming market has been killing their business and slowly running them into the ground.

Upon the announcement Nintendo stocks skyrocketed by 32% in roughly 24 hours of trading and are sitting at their highest point since 2011. This previous stock price peak was during the height of the first Wii and the Nintendo DS popularity. While I was working at Nintendo Australia the internal company idea was to not even consider the Smart Phone market valid competition, but as we've seen that was definitely the "stick your head in the sand" strategy and I feel vindicated by seeing this happen for various awesome "I told you so" reasons.

Nintendo Stock Soar!
So why did Nintendo do something that they promised that they would never d... ever?  Because it had to be done.  The company has been bleeding money for the past few years and unfortunately it has taken that long for them to realise the true reasons why.  This despite controlling management being told over and over again how dangerous that the downloadable "quick fix" gaming market really has been to Nintendo's business model.

Anyhow, this is good news for the company and if Nintendo gets it right, for consumers as well because who wouldn't enjoy being able to waste time with Mario on their iPhone or Android. Unfortunately I'd say there is only a 50:50 chance that they'll get it right and that's probably being generous.

Lets just hope that they don't fluff it up with the usual Nintendo arrogance and charge $10 minimum for stripped down Nintendo Mascot mini games, but I'm pretty certain that although this will definitely help the company I just don't trust them to get it right.  I think it's a pretty safe bet that we wont be seeing any first line Nintendo games on the mobile platforms because they will think that if they put full Pokemon and Mario games on the Smart Phone App market that it will kill their handheld hardware sales. From some perspectives (ie; Children) releasing proper gaming experiences on Mobile platforms will eat into hardware sales.

However, in my perfect opinion the best way is to utilize their new found brains (I mean Mobile Games) to try and steer people towards buying handheld hardware by providing them with full experiences on smart phones.  Full experiences that are just a taste of what else is out there and in turn create a new generation of fans that can't resist wanting more and therefore buy a dedicated gaming platform.

Unfortunately, Nintendo doesn't think this way and their arrogance towards the market and the type of consumers who play on Smart Phones will cause them to essentially attempt to "cash in" by releasing lots of micro-transaction based crap.  I wouldn't be surprised if this company DeNA that they've partnered with just ends up smacking the Nintendo license on an Angry Birds and Clash of Clans rip (that's perhaps being a bit harsh but lets see what happens hopefully I'll be pleasantly surprised).

I can see it now, the first smart phone release will be Wario Ware *chuckle*.

This is The Perfect Opinion signing off.