Nintendo is branching out into the mobile space with free-to-play social games like Miitomo and its upcoming Animal Crossing and Fire Emblem spin-offs, but the Kyoto-based company may expand into action games – even if it means going so far as to develop its own peripherals.
At a recent shareholders meeting director and general manager of entertainment planning and development, Shinya Takahashi, said “Physical controllers for smart device applications are available in the market and it is possible that we may also develop something new by ourselves.
“On the other hand, I believe Nintendo’s way of thinking is to look at whether action games are really not impossible (without a physical controller for smart device applications) to create and how we can make it happen to create such a game. I think we will make applications, and not just action games, in consideration of what best embodies ‘Nintendo-like’ applications, including applications for everyone from children to seniors.”
Kimishima later added “We will launch various projects in the future. Advancing projects like these will require the involvement and support of our partners and not just our own human resources,” suggesting that Nintendo could team up with third party developers for both software and hardware.
Indeed one of the biggest challenges in developing for mobile platforms is their limited inputs, which are generally confined to touchscreens. Games like Downwell tackle this well, but even titles like the original Super Mario Bros. would loose a substantial amount of precision when adapted to virtual buttons.
In the meantime, Nintendo is planning to release two unannounced smartphone games – in addition to Miitomo, Animal Crossing and Fire Emblem – by March 2017 when the NX launches.