Nintendo’s Ecosystem Destined to “Fall Apart” Says Mobile Publisher

Will the 3DS survive in the era of mobile gaming? Can it thrive amidst the onslaught of casual gamers and free or $0.99 downloads? That’s the question many have been asking as the run-up to the 3DS XL puts the handheld console back in the public eye, and at least one mobile publisher has publicly stated that he thinks Nintendo’s ecosystem will possibly fail, when faced with outside competition.

Neil Young, CEO of Ngmoco – a company that specializes in game titles for Android and iOS – is known for, ahem, “cloning” popular titles, and grabbing rights to bring Japanese games to the West. They’re best known right now for their recent success with the title Rage of Bahamut.

In an interview with Gamasutra, Young postulated thusly when asked about Nintendo’s standings when it comes to handheld games:

“I think that Apple has done a number on Sony, and Apple and Android are now doing a number on Nintendo. What they’re really doing is defeating the Nintendo hardware machine … in the ecosystem they’ve created, it’s just really difficult to justify spending $30 on a game that is anything other than a Mario, a Zelda, a Pokemon. I think that ultimately their ecosystem starts to fall apart.”

Young has also said that he’s “quite happy for [Nintendo] to stay in their little custom handheld gaming space”, and has claimed that he believe the mobile gaming industry will be worth up to $30 billion annually in the near future. As a result, he doesn’t seen Nintendo as a competitor in the marketplace.

Whether his comments have validity is certainly worth debate, though there’s no doubt these kind of comments are ones that make Nintendo fans shake their fists with fury. And one needs to consider that the 3DS is still selling well, with nearly 20 million units moved in the past 16 months. Is it sustainable? Will it continue to thrive with the increase in mobile social gaming and free or nearly-free games? That truly is the question.


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Author: Faith View all posts by
Faith likes games and books and cake and writing and Lara Croft, not necessarily in that order. She also thinks a Skylanders cartoon show is a really, REALLY good idea...

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