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Nintendo set to reveal first smartphone game a day before Apple TV gaming hits the living room


Japanese gaming giant Nintendo is expected to show off its very first mobile games for smartphones tomorrow, The Wall Street Journal reports. The news comes after first announcing plans to bring new games with classic Nintendo characters like Mario to iPhones earlier this year. Nintendo famously resisted making games for mobile platforms like iOS and Android for years, focusing solely on its own Nintendo hardware gaming consoles to push its titles.

Now as Apple is set to make its first serious move into gaming in the living room with the new Apple TV launching Friday, Nintendo appears ready to give fans what they’ve been waiting for.

Promising to free characters from the portable DS and TV-console Wii U, Nintendo said in May to expect a total of roughly five titles in total by March 2017. Nintendo explained at the time that these titles, while including current intellectual property from existing games, would be newly created to best make use of the mobile platforms rather than ports of existing console titles.

The good news is Nintendo has previously stated that it plans to develop these games in-house rather than through a partner, which should translate to quality gaming experiences not unlike what fans enjoy on Nintendo’s own consoles … although smartphone games may never be true console quality given the hardware constraints.

And while Nintendo appears to only be catching up with the trend of mobile gaming’s popularity on smartphones, Apple is launching a new platform, tvOS, and its first App Store for the living room on the fourth-gen Apple TV launching on Friday. The new Apple TV has already demonstrated potential for fun, lightweight gaming.

We’ll stay tuned for Nintendo’s official announcement with more details on its first smartphone game expected tomorrow.

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  1. rnc - 7 years ago

    Apple TV is great for Nintendo, if they embrace the platform.

    Heck, I would buy a Nintendo designed gamepad for Apple TV in less than half a heartbeat.

    • Steve Grenier - 7 years ago

      Now that is interesting. I would love to play Nintendo games on the AppleTV, especially with a custom controller.

      • oddyoh - 7 years ago

        Finally Nintendo games would have proper cloud saves.

  2. Jake Becker - 7 years ago

    This can only get better. Before I was a fan of Apple I was a fan of Nintendo. There’s many similarities in their approach to the quality and user experience.

  3. o0smoothies0o - 7 years ago

    Zelda: A link to the past and Pokemon games can easily be ported, it’s simply a matter of not wanting to. Frankly though, Donkey Kong could as well.

    3D Touch actually enables much better gaming on a touchscreen albeit touch screens will always be garbage compared to an ergonomic gaming controller. Developers are too slow or stupid to use 3D Touch effectively though. Any shooter games should be virtual analogue sticks on either side of the screen, and a press of the right stick fires the weapon, and a press of the left stick throws a grenade or fires secondary weapon. This way you don’t have to look for a shoot button, and you can seamlessly be moving the character and aiming whist firing.

  4. AppleTV + Blutooth gaming Pad + Nintendo = gaming heaven!

    Please do it Nintendo.

  5. presslee - 7 years ago

    If theres one bad thing about nintendo, its they never understand the appropriate price for downloadable stuff. But good games indeed.

    • o0smoothies0o - 7 years ago

      I’d respect them a lot more if it was expensive and had no in-app purchases.

      In-app purchases as they are, are horrible for the consumer. It’s detrimental to all games.

      What should be allowed as an in-app purchase? Add-on downloadable content, for example a level based game could have 10 new levels to play. Right now it’s just a way for developers to justifiably leech money from people, especially kids. I mean if you seriously look at it, it’s not very morally good, the current model. It’s understandable because people are inherently greedy and self-preservation is ingrained in our DNA, but that’s why Apple, being the supervisor should have made it something that wouldn’t hurt consumers, but they get that 30% cut too.

  6. djfriar - 7 years ago

    “although smartphone games may never be true console quality given the hardware constraints.”

    I don’t understand this comment by the author, especially when discussing Nintendo since they purposefully didn’t use latest gen technology. I can’t imagine the iPhone 6s is any less powerful than the Wii or 3DS is. Yeah, it may not be an Xbox One, but neither is anything Nintendo sells.

    • o0smoothies0o - 7 years ago

      I read that and I was hoping that he meant in respect to control. Like a touchscreen will never be close to an ergonomically designed gaming controller. An iPad Pro with its A9X and 4GB DDR4 RAM can probably play any Nintendo game to date, with perfect graphics. It cannot however, play them with an ergonomically designed gaming controller because next to no one has one, and the current offerings are not good (although the nimbus is the best so far).

  7. twelve01 - 7 years ago

    Wow, this could be huge for Apple. Nintendo too

  8. Ryuichi Tanaka (@ryu1) - 7 years ago

    I just picked up information about Miittomo and MyNintendo.

  9. McCutch Enfj - 7 years ago

    Apple TV would be AWESOME for Mario Cart


Avatar for Zac Hall Zac Hall

Zac covers Apple news for 9to5Mac and hosts the 9to5Mac Happy Hour and 9to5Mac Watch Time podcasts.