Thumb Wars #75: Nintendo Goes Mobile

Fruit Emblem? Angry Cuccos? Poke-ville? Shaun & Petros discuss if this is what lies in Nintendo’s future.

About Shaun K

The video game discussion show where we introduce the debate and you continue it


  1. I think this move is just to make investors happy. The huge success of the Wii had made those investors go [insert number of references to “The Wolf of Wall Street” here], while the unimpressive sales of the Wii U made investors go [insert smarmy Michael Douglas from “Wall Street” here]. They don’t care too much about things like quality and long shelf life; they want machines that print money!

    Kyle Bosman from GT had an interesting notion: Nintendo is forced to go into the smartphone gaming market, yet they don’t want to make the games themselves. They look at titles like Flappy Bird and Farmville and say, “Oh yeah, these games are all about monetizing and little about good gameplay.” Thus they turned to DNA [sic] to make the crappy smartphone games for them. President Iwata: “More money plus a clean conscience? Yes, please!”

  2. Best-case scenario: “Wow! It’s so easy to catch ’em all on my iPad! I just touch ’em and viola! Instant catch!”

    Worst-case scenario: “Oh no! Here comes a Goomba! Mario will need ten cents to jump on it. Yay! You did it! Uh oh, now here comes a Koopa Troopa! It’s extra tough, so Mario will need twenty cents to take it out. Cool! Good job! Now Mario faces the evil Bowser, King of the Koopas! He will need one dollar to bring him down and save Princess Toadstool! Wee! Congratulations, you did it! But uh oh, the princess is in another castle! To download the next level, you will need three dollars. Sweet!”

  3. I disagree that ports are bad. You just have to port the right games. You mentioned some that would be really good to port–the minigames that came with some older games. Those M64DS minigames, if redesigned for touch instead of stylus, could work really well. A lot of the WarioWare games could work well. A proper Duck Hunt port could be awesome. Tetris Attack would work well in the mobile market. And Mario vs. Donkey Kong can work, as you point out–it could just be a port of the touch based ideas. Professor Layton would port just as well as Capcom did with Phoenix Wright. And Brain Age–OMG.

    Nintendo has a huge amount of IP, and a lot of it is pretty much already designed for touch with just a few tweaks. And they have puzzle games that we already know transfer over well.

    The only thing they have to worry about with those is not cannibalizing existing sales, particularly with VC. For a lot of games, controls are already handled.

    Well, that and monetization, but even some of that seems to write itself. You get a limited number of minigames in a free version and can in-app purchase more. For Layton, you follow the Phoenix model. Or, yes, you use an energy bar, limiting the number of games you can play a day unless you pay. Nothing about these IPs scream pay to win.

  4. I cannot take mobile phone gaming seriously.

    As a Nintendo fan, though, I have mixed feelings about this. It could be good for them, but I don’t want the company to lose focus on making actual quality products.

  5. I have seen the void that is Pokemon Shuffle AKA Pokemon Candy Crush Saga AKA A money grubbing Freemium game that’s worse than the puzzle pokemon game they released on 3DS a year earlier for £7, I’m concerned what could possibly be coming for moblie if that is only the beginning.

    • Screw you. I’ve been playing it for weeks & haven’t spent a dime on it.

      • Uhuh, and how much of those “Weeks” were spent waiting for that Maligned timer or having to grind up pokemon or money just so you can beat a harder stage. How many replays just to capture a pokemon since 70% wasn’t enough

        Trozei Battle justs lets me play the game. Plus you need actual skill to beat the later levels maintaining your combos. Not grinding up pokemon levels to do more damage then praying to Arceus you get enough lucky drops to beat it AND then get the lucky pokeball drop.

        I’ll stick to complete games I can play freely whenever I wish without any of this time wasting nonsense. Thanks.

  6. “Can can expect to see a Pokemon game of some kind.”

    ::Takes Pokemon Shuffle to the bathroom::

  7. Oh puh-lease! Mario 64 is not that impressive a 3D platformer. That accolade goes to Crash Bandicoot.

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