Nintendo announces (and delays) first mobile game, 'Miitomo'

Today during a special briefing Nintendo announced details regarding its mobile development plan, as well as a new cross-platform account system.

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Today during a special briefing Nintendo shared more details regarding its plans for mobile gaming. The first game, called "Miitomo" ("Mii Friends") will capitalize on the success of Miis and let them communicate with others without your direct influence. Nintendo says this is to encourage interaction between people who are shy.

Miitomo will be the first of five mobile games that will launch by March 2017. It will be free-to-play with in-app purchases, though the other games slated for mobile release will be paid.

However, instead of targeting the year's end as planned, Nintendo is now looking to begin the roll-out by March 2016. According to new company CEO Tatsumi Kimishima, the delay is partly to give the company time to properly market the game, since right now its efforts are centered on its holiday line-up. Kimishima expressed doubt that mobile would make up a significant portion (half) of its revenue, since its mobile games will be focused on increasing the value of its console IP.

During the conference, Nintendo also shared details on its new online service. Called "Nintendo Account" (at least in Japan), it will serve as a hub for owners of Nintendo hardware, as well as PC and smartphone users. A cloud service will transfer data between mobile and console games. 

We've known about Nintendo's plans to move into mobile gaming for quite a while now, but this is the first time that we have seen any real indication of the company's transition into the mobile arena.

Source: The Wall-Street Journal

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  • reply
    October 28, 2015 6:46 PM

    Josh Hawkins posted a new article, Nintendo mobile games launch delayed to 2016

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      October 28, 2015 7:29 PM

      :(

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        October 28, 2015 8:04 PM

        Exactly ^^^ its should be a freaking Mario game aka side scroller.

        They could juice up any of them and sell million if nto billions on the phones are they nutz or crazy?

        What a ridiculous launch game on the mobile devices, its just mental if you ask mii :(

        Man I hope the NX owns, I worry about Nintendo I am not going to lie. At this point they need a fresh relevant person/vision driving and manning the ship, they can not do things like they used to.

        Progress waits for no one, the world will continue to turn regardless of what you want to do.

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          October 29, 2015 4:56 AM

          Playing a Mario game with only touch controls sounds like an absolute shitshow to me. That is exactly what they should be avoiding.

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            October 29, 2015 11:08 AM

            Super Mario Brothers and Mario 3 are just a d pad and two buttons a lot of mobile games use that control scheme its not ground breaking and ti works well.

            Rayman Jungle Run for instance is a rad game you could easily do that with Mario and add some extra controls as an example it doesn't have the real Mario.

            Still I see no issue why you would not port Super Mario Brothers, Mario 3 or making a all new game for mobile or a free runner hybrid.

            Well that my take, we shall see what they do.

            I am sure if you asked any Mobile phone owner if Nintendo where to make a mobile game what do you want they to do they all would most likely say "Mario".

            Mario Kart, Mario Tennis, and Star Fox would also work well.

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          October 29, 2015 5:00 AM

          Oh, strongly disagree they should do a platformer.

          Phones do not have the controls to let their traditional Mario and Zelda games, as they are typically played, truly shine. Adapted controls, like the stylus controls for the DS Zelda game, would be a better model to consider if you absolutely had to do that type of game.

          Ultimately, I'd be very surprised if Nintendo released anything you'd typically play with a d-pad for phones without a major overhaul. It just wouldn't hit their normal quality standards.

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          October 29, 2015 8:06 AM

          They just released a ridiculously popular Wii U title which lets you make your own Mario levels and sold millions of copies. Under what scenario would it make sense to sell a gimped version of a Mario game for $0.99?

          With all due respect comments like this read to me like "I wanna play Nintendo games without having to buy Nintendo hardware"

          Honestly it sounds like Nintendo doesn't really want to do mobile games so they're delaying it and making a stupid initial game to shut up the stockholders.

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            October 29, 2015 11:00 AM

            Any mobile phone can run any Mario game you don't need a Wii U. They could easily make Super Mario Maker Mobile can you imagine making your levels on a bus, at lunch, or when ever you have time on the go then uploading your levels to your Wii U?!

            Super Mario Maker Mobile would = millions! and increase Wii U sales since ti be the mother ship to unload you new and updated levels.

            This is just an idea, I am sure they could come up with a new platformer made specifically for the mobile if they wanted to. But everyone loves Mario so you be crazy not to give it to them on the go.

            Who wouldn't buy Super Mario Mobile if ti was on the store pages? Probably every phone user would buy it and have to have it. Knowing Nintendo you know it be quality as well.

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              October 29, 2015 11:28 AM

              I agree that having, say, an iPad version of just the level creator tool is a neat idea but your statement:

              But everyone loves Mario so you be crazy not to give it to them on the go.

              They already do. They have made so many SMB games for the DS and 3DS that people accuse them of milking their IP's too much. They literally already make handheld portable platforms and have for decades now.

              But you have to own a DS or 3DS to play them. So like I said, statements like this basically come across as "I want to play Nintendo games without having to buy Nintendo hardware". It doesn't work that way.

              Also "man if they would just sell their games on (platform of my choice) and they'd make millions!" is a sentiment people have been telling me for decades now. Back in college my dorm mates couldn't understand why Nintendo wouldn't release Goldeneye 007 on PC's. What you're proposing makes no sense in any context other than "I don't want to buy Nintendo hardware"

              Plus you're like the king of hardware here, if anything you should be used to the "you need the pipe to smoke this" business model :)

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                October 29, 2015 11:51 AM

                You do have a big point about their hand held devices that in a way they be screwing them selves by taking away the exclusivity. Your probably right and it won't happen and I agree, but if it where to happen they would make truck loads of money with out doubt.

                I just wonder if the hand held crew are tired/burnt out of Mario and accuse Nintendo of milking the IP then why not bring the IP|Mario over to the mobile phones where they are dying to play it unlike the 3DS crew who are burnt out and have been playing it for years. Casual mobile market does not = the 3DS crew.

                Part of me still think its not far fetched, but like you said it almost be like MS would allow Halo to be on the PS4.

                I guess the big question is how is Nintendo running their company? Do they care if Mario is exclusive to their handhelds, or do they want to make a truck load of money with the billions of mobile device out their?

                Who knows, well we will know soon enough I guess.

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              October 29, 2015 12:07 PM

              Any phone can run Mario, none of them can actually control it worth a damn.

              Though a mobile version of Mario Maker, sure, could be awesome.

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          October 29, 2015 12:04 PM

          Terrible idea for multiple reasons.

          - This is their first connected mobile game ever. They're going to ease in with something they can learn from their mistakes on instead of risking the reputation of Mario, Link, etc.

          - The plunge from the Wii/DS to the WiiU/3DS was mainly caused by the flight of the casuals. The Wii U is their best "core gamer" console since the SNES/N64, but it doesn't matter. They're clearly trying to get back the casual audience ("hey, remember Miis?") with this game.

          - Virtual d-pads are dogshit, plain and simple. Doing a simple port of existing games is a really bad and unimaginative idea. Nintendo will find their own ways to specifically exploit smartphones instead of just shoehorning existing software onto it.

          - Nintendo moved almost 5 million copies of Tomodachi Life, most of it to a very different demographic. This game sounds a lot like that game. There's another game called Line this is similar to which is incredibly popular in Japan. The Animal Crossing game that just came out sold 70% to females.

          - Their own hardware platforms will have the games that excite the core gaming audience.

          It makes sense why they'd do something like this for their first game in the mobile market, given the increased diversity of that audience.

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          October 29, 2015 12:18 PM

          I don't think they should necessarily try to be a 3rd player at the same level of Sony/MS though. The last decade has shown us we really don't need a 3rd player to further dilute the lowest common denominator. Nintendo did the right thing by trying to go a different path. They just have to get 3rd party support to come to the party with them. Matching Sony and MS for graphic muscle isn't necessarily the answer, or even trying to be the next gen of ultra realistic graphics. I think they should continue in the alternative course. But, the Wii U was a miss step. They've really gotta think it all out better and talk more, and list, to 3rd party developers.

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            October 29, 2015 12:44 PM

            you can't have 3rd party developers and also make your system so different that it essentially requires exclusive versions just for you that have 1/2 or less of the addressable market as the others

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          October 29, 2015 12:54 PM

          We're going to get a bloody Mario infinite runner and you know it!

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            October 30, 2015 3:34 PM

            I have respect for Nintendo. They're not that lame.

            And if it turns out they are...

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      October 29, 2015 4:52 AM

      They better take their time. They can't afford to screw this up.

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        October 29, 2015 4:55 AM

        Think about how well nintendo understands the internet (still can't follow your friends in mario maker) or their fans (trying to sue people for throwing a pokemon party, or demanding a percentage of streaming).

        I give this a 10% chance of being good for anyone.

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      October 29, 2015 5:19 AM

      This is a horrible start to mobile gaming for Nintendo. I won't play this, and I like Mii's.

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      October 29, 2015 7:16 AM

      That's pretty hilarious considering I have all their NES games on my android phone already and they run great Kappa