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Nintendo on Mobile

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There are many that have been saying that Nintendo on mobile was inevitable and that they should have done it a long time ago. 

And to those people, I say yep, you’re right, it happened. 

But that’s not necessarily a good thing. 

Look at Pokemon Go, a tremendous success in the beginning. It exploded and for a while everyone was pretending they were a fan of the Pokemon franchise. 

But that soon faded and now it’s not as big as it was. 

And pretty soon Mario Run will come out on iOS and Android… what some would consider an accomplishment for Nintendo, I consider it a tragedy. 

Mobile games have rarely done a good job of competing with full-on console or PC games. They are abbreviated experiences, nothing more than time-wasters, compared to something like a Legend of Zelda, or Metroid Prime, or Harvest Moon. Clash of Clans, Angry Birds, and Plants vs. Zombies do not have the lasting appeal of the former. 

I’m reluctant to see Nintendo on mobile because one of my favorite parts of Nintendo games are their timelessness and carefully-crafted feel. Pokemon Go is a step backwards in a significant way, however it did push Pokemon Sun and Moon to have the highest number of pre-orders for any Pokemon game ever. So the compromise-ridden experience of Pokemon Go did help boost the sales of the “real” games. 

So on one hand, Nintendo could utilize mobile “games” as a marketing tool, reaching the audience that have never owned a Nintendo console. I just hope Nintendo steers clear from the freemium model of their core games, and they stay the premium game makers we’ve come to love so much.

Nintendo on Mobile
David V. Kimball
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