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Kezay

Nintendo stepping away from developing mobile games?

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Although this is mostly based on speculation from from analyst, Serkan Toto, they did highlight that since Mario Kart Tour Nintendo has not announced any new major forays into the  mobile gaming space.  Switch's success especially off the back of highly successful titles like Animal Crossing has essentially made for a stronger argument for resources to be dedicated to their dedicated games platforms.

 

Personal opinion, I don't feel like the  mobile games have taken away from Nintendo's development elsewhere which was my main concern back when rumors and eventually confirmation of Nintendo going mobile came about.  But the release of their mobile games didn't take the form of brand new entries in those respective franchise in the sense that they would be replacing what we expect were separate experiences all their own.  I can definitely see where Toto is coming from though when Nintendo hasn't announced any major mobile initiatives in a long while so it's not exactly a wild and out there prediction.

 

I can say personally, the only Nintendo mobile game I tried was Pocket Camp.  It was fun for a few months especially since I downloaded around Toys R Us' last holiday season and when working overnights I would play it during my lunch breaks.  But I've seen deleted it and haven't looked back.  The only Nintendo related mobile game I actually play to any real degree is Pokemon GO and that's more of a Niantic and The Pokemon Company kind of arrangement.

 

IGN: Nintendo Reportedly Stepping Away from Mobile Games

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I've been interested in none of them.  Actually, I don't play games on my cellphone at all.  I think that their monetization models were so all over the place that they never figured out the right model for the right game.  As an outside observer, I think some don't like being nickle and dimed to death on the pseudo pay to really play model of cell phone games.

 

Out of all of the games they have done though, I think the more puzzle solving vs line clearing mechanic to Dr. Mario might justify itself as a mode in a full Dr. Mario game and the alt costumes they have been dropping in MKT might be paving the way costumes/alt colors for drivers (and maybe vehicles) in the next Mario Kart entry.

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The only Nintendo mobile I've played is FEH and Mario Kart Tour. I played very little of MKT when it first came out and haven't touched it since.

 

FEH, I forgot how long I played but I played it longer than MKT. I believe the games that sold the most is FEH, Lost Dragalia and finally Pocket Camp in that order I believe. With that said I'm sort of not surprised that Nintendo have not announced any new mobile games but that could be impeccable time with pandemic still around so that could be another factor.

 

Until Nintendo feels they are absolutely not making any money with these games, I still say they got a little something something saved up. Anything from Nintendo is really mum and this is not surprising about that but if they are not making more sort remains to be seen atm.

 

It's funny that it is reported that Nintendo may stop with mobile games when Pokemon seem to be ramping up more. I'm sure they are up as much mobile games you can count on your fingers or more. Nintendo doesn't even have that many. It's also been a long while I played Pokemon GO too.

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FEH has been hugely profitable, so even with its profits decreasing lately it should still keep going for a long time. That said, its lean into whales and waifu pandering has only ever accelerated, straying further away from FE's original wide appeal. It's also entered late-game gacha territory--introducing 3 new modes in the past 18 months which explicitly require new characters to score well.

 

From what I hear Dragalia Lost has underperformed, which makes sense. It had a rough start and its flavor is indistinguishable from shovelware. I've heard Pokemon Masters is struggling too, unsurprising since its menus and battle system are horribly designed and it lacks satisfying endgame content.

 

Mario Kart Tour from day 1 was a late-game gacha whose roster was scraping the bottom of the barrel. Despite its wide appeal, the repetitive and solitary experience doesn't offer much for big spenders. Mario Kart is a party game.

 

I heard Pocket Camp was bringing in solid revenue, probably for its wide appeal and immediate returns for casual spenders. But then New Horizons comes along and shatters so many records. This is probably the source of Nintendo's new decision--while the mobile games were profitable, the full Switch games are far more profitable. FEH and Pocket Camp are definitely responsible for some number of Switch sales, but Nintendo probably doesn't see opportunities to advertise other properties in this way.

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Posted (edited)

It's kinda ironic given the announcement of Pokemon Unite. But on a more serious note, Nintendo did say in the past they are only going to release like five games over the course of its timeline, so given it looked like they fulfilled it, they are just going to maintain it.

 

Fire Emblem Heroes is still their big money maker. I haven't played it as much as I use to.

 

Dragalia Lost is in a weird spot. I still play this. But the game is EXTREMELY generous with its summoning material, and there isn't a real reason to roll duplicates. (Example: Fate Grand Order will boost the power of that character's NP/Super Special. KOF Allstar will give your tokens to raise your characters' max level.) Believe it or not, Nintendo actually made the order to be more generous with the materials, which made me wonder how much more it could have earned if they kept with their original plan. Also makes it odd, considering...

 

Mario Kart Tour. I've slowed down on this game. But as far as I can see, given how they tickle summoning mats, it can be seen as P2W game.

 

In terms of numbers, Using Panime's on anime gacha games video back in January, it looks like FEH earned $2.3 million, and Dragalia earned $942K in that month. At least in the US. In Japan, only FEH broke the top 30. Not sure how well they are actually doing, but since I still see some of the lower earning titles still going along (like DanMemo), I think they're going to be okay for the foreseeable future. Unfortunately given the video's focus, it didn't have something like Mario Kart and Animal Crossing. I would like to see the numbers for the other titles.

 

Just looking at the list of top grossing games on Google Play, I see FEH above Fate Grand Order. Mario Kart Tour on the list just under Arknights. Obviously Pokemon GO will be one of the top earners, they won't let that one go. Unfortunately I cannot get into the App Store unless I have iTunes or an iPhone, so I cannot see the list there.

Edited by avalonknight

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2 hours ago, Doc Brown said:

The original article was based in part on a renowned securities analyst from Japan.  The implication being that Nintendo hasn't announced any new major ventures in the mobile space and what they have currently hasn't generated the kind of revenue that would suggest a long term stay in that market and therefore likely no new projects on the horizon.  Reading the article you posted, while it's not new commentary from Nintendo, they are standing by their intent to stay in the mobile space but that their take on it is more supplementary to their core business and also helping to drive online accounts in addition to expanding the reach of their franchises.

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