Nintendo’s higher-ups have made no attempt to hide how they feel about mobile gaming. In an interview with Gamasutra, Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime stated that while Nintendo values small developers, the company has no desire to accept app-like titles from “garage developers.” Shortly after Fils-Aime made this comment, Nintendo’s Marc Franklin, director of public relations, made a statement clarifying that Nintendo “embraced” the efforts that indie devs put into their work.
According to Franklin, Nintendo truly appreciates what developers bring to the table, whether they’re major companies or smaller units. The PR director named World of Goo developer 2D Boy as a company that Nintendo worked closely with and valued. “This is a group of guys who don’t even have an office,” said Franklin. “So we embrace that kind of independent spirit and it’s ultimately the most innovative content that will rise to the top.”
Fils-Aime isn’t the only individual from Nintendo who has taken jabs at low-cost gaming. Satoru Iwata, the company’s CEO, also mentioned that the price of apps from upstart develops contributed to poor quality in games on mobile phones, And most recently, 3DS project lead Hideki Konno expressed the company’s lack of interest in competing with the low cost of games that are released in the App Store. While I agree that a lot of the games released on phones are utter garbage, there are certainly countless mobile gamers who disagree. Luckily, that’s what PR reps like Franklin are for: They clean up the mess left by their colleagues.
If WiiWare and DSiWare are any indication, then Nintendo really does provide opportunities for small-scale developers. We’re likely to see indie devs take a stab at some 3D game development once the 3DS eShop launches this May. It’s going to be fun seeing what kinds of games small-scale companies create for Nintendo’s newest system.