Nintendo to release games for smartphones by the end of 2014, says Japanese newspaper

Following shoddy sales of the Wii U and the loss of a significant market share to competitors Sony and Microsoft, Nintendo may soon be looking to expand into a new market: Smartphones. According to Japanese news outlet Nikkei Asian Review, a source which according to Kotaku has had a solid track record for predicting Nintendo rumors, the gaming company may abandon their philosophy of only releasing Nintendo games for Nintendo systems and begin to produce "minigames" and videos for the ever-expanding mobile phone market, in an attempt to drive traffic towards their stagnant home consoles.

While the news outlet reports that initially these games will only be intended to promote their primary business model, it still shows an interesting development for Nintendo, and perhaps an overall philosophical shift for the company - which may bring about more full-fledged smartphone titles in the future. According to Forbes, in an interview given by Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata back in October, he made note of the smartphone's potential for Nintendo's market, saying: 

I feel like we should make an effort to take advantage of smart devices' existence. For instance, we already made it possible to browse Wii U's networking service called Miiverse on smart devices. Starting with this attempt, we are discussing among us how we can expand the use of smart devices to help drive the business of dedicated gaming systems.

This news comes only a few days after it was announced that a "super-rare" NES game from 1990 would be put up for auction at over $40,000, harkening back to the days of Nintendo's golden age of home consoles and market domination. With Nintendo announcing their decreased yearly sales forecast for the Wii U of only 2.8 million units (down from 9 million), the Japanese gaming company is in dire trouble. But with the exponential growth of the smartphone as a successful gaming platform, if Nintendo embraces it as part of their business model, then it may very well be their way back to the top - or at least close to it.

Source: Nikkei via ForbesImage via Shutterstock - Nintendo Booth @ E3 2011

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Well the Wii U sold more than the dreamcast. The dreamcast when it was killed off had sold 10.6 Million.

The Wii U has sold 19 Million so far.

Reggie told us this months ago that they would have som sort of Nintendo experiance but it would not be Games or full fledged games but more Demos based on older games only Nintendo is not going Mobile for gaming tho at all other then current plans to do some sort of demo system for mobile.

Wii U is hear to stay and has a whole slew of great games for 2014 on thew way and still to come so this does not mean nintendo is quiting the Wii U or anything and going 100% smartphone nope

Good God Nintendo... don't do it! I'd rather you guys make a machine on par with the PS4 or Xbox One first, than try to commit to cell phone games.

Hey Nintendo. There's this thing called a PC right. And on the "PC" there is also this thing called Steam, which apparently has a lot of users and stuff.

Why don't you release some stuff for PC? I'm pretty sure a Zelda or Mario game on PC would sell bucket-loads, if you go by all the indie/clone versions of those said games there are on PC. Let alone some of your other franchises eh? But alas, you'll never give PC any love. You'll bring stuff to friggin smartphones for 1.99 or something, but not PC. Ugh.

Release them on the decent consoles if you can't release a decent one yourself.

How long till they're bankrupt?

Considering they've got between $8B-$10B in the bank, they aren't going anywhere soon. Anyone thinking one poor console can sink Nintendo don't know any thing.

I'm honestly surprised that Microsoft hasn't made a mutually beneficial deal with Nintendo, now imagine having the Xbox One as the home console with Mario and then the Nintendo 3DS - Master Chief Edition with pre-installed Zoo Tycoon.

Hopefully though this plan can give Nintendo some much needed funds. I love Nintendo but they really do need to adapt to the world and changes within the Videogame industry.

haha so much hate. Well since I have that "junk" and not a Nintendo console that only offers a few good games every year. I'd take that paywall, UI and ads (No ad's on X1) for a solidconsole with a multitude of games and a proven online environment, something the Wii U is lacking.

There's ads on the X1, as the team have said:

On Xbox, the ad is part of the actual experience, it's not something that is outside. The only difference is that the advertisement we have is quite small and not disruptive, so people are not aware of clicking on the banners because they know this is a part of the whole experience on the dash

I own one, So I can actually visually see what is on there and while it surely can be considered an ad, I don't see a game recommendation or a notification for a game on sale as an advertisement, much like I don't see those things as Ads on Steam.

Would be good. But maybe they should just give up on console hardware full stop, and develop software for all platforms (including rival consoles)

ZipZapRap said,
Would be good. But maybe they should just give up on console hardware full stop, and develop software for all platforms (including rival consoles)


yea how about NO Nintendo will not abandon the Wii U at all and will not develop games for 3rd parties it is a wast of time considering the 4 to 5+ million who already own a Wii U and the many titles coming out this year for it . Nintendo is not Doomed they have enough cash to bank roll 50+ more consoles for another 45 years or more

notuptome2004 said,


yea how about NO Nintendo will not abandon the Wii U at all and will not develop games for 3rd parties it is a wast of time considering the 4 to 5+ million who already own a Wii U and the many titles coming out this year for it . Nintendo is not Doomed they have enough cash to bank roll 50+ more consoles for another 45 years or more

So you'd rather they bleed out than try to make money

notuptome2004 said,


yea how about NO Nintendo will not abandon the Wii U at all and will not develop games for 3rd parties it is a wast of time considering the 4 to 5+ million who already own a Wii U and the many titles coming out this year for it . Nintendo is not Doomed they have enough cash to bank roll 50+ more consoles for another 45 years or more

Hey, keep ya shirt on fella. You can donate blood to Nintendo if you care, you're not saving them now. All they can do is appreciate your enthusiasm.

spenser.d said,

So you'd rather they bleed out than try to make money

They have enough money in there hidden nest egg to sustain them for 45+ years so yes they could bleed out if that is what is happening but they are not bleeding out . Wii U has a good lineup of games for this year from nintendo and 3rd party such as ubisoft and indie publishers now Nintendo plans to release some sort of experience to people on smartphones it wont be as you or anyone thinks it will be mini-games and the like only and also we know we will have the abilty to purchases from the e-shop @ some time in the future using are phone .


i myself am just tired of the negativity that seems to be popping up of late i mean some read a article from a anonymous Dev from 2011 and assume it is now then ya read the talk of smartphone stuff and assume Nintendo is giving up and gonna stop Wii U stuff . trust me ther is many out ther who are tired of the same stuff .


At the end of the DAy the Wii U will have some great games this year and that is what counts

They are just mini games designed to raise awareness to their properties and console games. Kids get a lot of exposure to tablets and smart phones, it seems like a smart way to advertise to them.

Not without top notch controllers... and how is Nintendo (or anyone for that matter) going to provide that for a million different form factors and capability combos (cpu, ram, drive space, screen resolution, etc)?

Last thing I want is Mario on a touch screen joystick... ick.