Nintendo and Japanese mobile company DeNA have formed an alliance to deploy a global smartphone game business, aimed to take advantage of Nintendo’s IP.
At a press conference held today in Tokyo, Japan, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata and DeNA president Isao Moriyasu announced plans to enter a long-term business relationship to deliver new game apps for smart devices. All Nintendo IP, including its iconic characters —Mario and Link, for example — will be eligible for new development between Nintendo and DeNA. (IP, or intellectual property, refers to Nintendo’s game franchises.)
Mr. Iwata said Nintendo has “no intention at all” to port titles from dedicated video game systems to smart devices, and vice versa. “There are significant differences in the controls, strengths and weaknesses between the controllers for dedicated game systems and the touchscreens of smart devices,” Iwata said. He further notes the value of Nintendo’s IP would be ruined if consumers are not provided with the best possible play experiences.
While Nintendo plans to expand into the smartphone game business, Mr. Iwata ensures that the company’s passion for its dedicated video game platforms has become even stronger. “We aim to construct a bridge between smart devices and dedicated video game hardware that connects consumers to our dedicated video game systems,” Iwata said.
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In addition, Nintendo and DeNA plan to develop an online membership service that is scheduled to launch this fall. It will be accessible from Nintendo 3DS, Wii U, PC, and smart devices. A new customer loyalty program – the Club Nintendo replacement — is also scheduled to launch later date this year. Whether the two are related remains to be seen.
Stay tuned to Nintendo News for the latest news on Nintendo’s new global smartphone game business.