I own an iPhone now. Yes, I’m one of those people.
I have no real attachment to the Apple brand however. I couldn’t really care less about their other products right now, except the iPod Classic, but they killed that one off. The scumbags.
But you’d have to be living under a very lonely rock to not be aware of the iPhone 7’s recent reveal and subsequent release. Talking of said reveal, the event proved pretty interesting, not just for the mobile industry, but the gaming one as well.
‘Who’s that?!’ everyone cried!
‘Why, it’s gaming’s favourite uncle, Mr Shigeru Miyamoto! What’s he doing at an Apple conference?’ everyone said.
What was he doing, indeed?
It seems that Mr Miyamoto was showing off Nintendo’s newest Mario title, and no, it wasn’t Super Mario Galaxy 3, unfortunately. It was the company’s very first in-house developed mobile game (unless you count Miitomo): Super Mario Run. Set for release this December, the game is a 2D endless runner, starring the plump plumber himself.
Isn’t that exciting boys and girls?
Well, the reception has been more than a little mixed. With most expressing indifference, very few expressing pleasure, and of course, a set amount of people expressing rage. Personally, I’m not that fussed. I don’t really use my mobile for gaming, and I doubt that Super Mario Run is going to be the game to change that.
However, I do find the whole situation interesting. That is, the situation with Nintendo and mobile gaming. Not so long ago, Nintendo appeared ambivalent at best, and hostile at worse, towards the mobile market.
When asked about the possibility of releasing games on mobile systems, the former president of Nintendo, Mr Satoru Iwata (who is sorely missed) commented that: “This is absolutely not under consideration,” and “If we did this, Nintendo would cease to be Nintendo.”
A pretty absolute statement. However, that was five years ago.
Now it seems that Nintendo’s very own golden boy (or man) Mr Miyamoto is getting into bed with a company that was once considered the 3DS’ main rival.
What is happening with Nintendo?
However, Nintendo going further into mobile gaming isn’t entirely unsurprising. Considering how much of a colossal success Pokemon Go was, and especially how much money it’s made them (well, stock increases and brand growth), as a corporation, they’d be mad not to go further .
But what about as a creative force? Are Nintendo ‘selling out’?
I don’t really think so. At least, not at the moment.
First, let us consider Nintendo’s previous dabbling in ‘mobile-style’ technology; like the NFC amiibos and the 3DS’ QR scanning camera. Their history of playing around with ideas and technology considered too ‘gimmicky’ by those of the ‘hardcore’ gaming market, is one of Nintendo’s defining qualities as a creative force.
Also, remember there were those laughing at Nintendo for releasing the Wii ten years ago. They weren’t laughing when the console managed to bring families together and cause the entire games industry to play catch-up. Shifting over 100 million units worldwide, it outsold both the PS3 and the Xbox 360.
Sure, some may argue that the Wii’s motion controls meant that the console lacked substance, and that poor quality control led to an over-saturation of terrible party games. But Nintendo needs to be recognised as a company that, despite being privy to making some seriously ridiculous and incompetent decisions, is still, at its heart, a creative group.
I certainly don’t expect Super Mario Run to be anything incredible. I never gave a rat’s fart about Pokémon Go (and still don’t), and I like the main series. But I don’t see its existence as being a bad thing.
Additionally, Nintendo have always been committed to developing quality content. Very rarely have they ever developed anything awful, and I can see this applying to their mobile games as well. Other scummy companies might be happy releasing mobile filth, but Nintendo won’t be. That’s just not their style.
So I’m not really worried about Nintendo’s mobile plans, even those for lesser known titles like Fire Emblem and Animal Crossing (personally, I think that Animal Crossing could make an awesome mobile game).
So let’s just wait and see, before we start throwing out accusations of ‘sell-out’. And if I’m wrong, feel free to call me out on it.