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Nintendo chasing big money on mobile as it partners with Cygames

Following the announcement that Shuntaro Furukawa will soon be replacing the current president of Nintendo, Tatsumi Kimishima, the company has released an investor Q&A as part of its annual financials report. The headline announcement from the briefing involves a new partnership with Japanese developer Cygames to release a new mobile title, Dragalia Lost, as a Nintendo property. This will be the first Nintendo-published mobile title that doesn’t use an established Nintendo IP.

The Q&A with both Furukawa and Kimishima revealed that Nintendo has much larger plans for its mobile efforts in the future. Particularly when it comes to generating income from the projects.

“We still want to release two to three titles a year in the smart-device business,” Kimishima explained. “That thinking has not changed. And at the present time, we have no intention of rapidly increasing this number each year. What we want is to release applications for smart devices that can be played for a long time, and if we can increase those kinds of titles, then we will build a lineup of titles that consumers will truly enjoy. Right now, there are not very many titles yet. I expect to see an increase in sales come about when we are able to present consumers with several enjoyable applications, including those that have already been released.”

While unwilling to give firm numbers on Nintendo’s targets for the mobile side of the business, Kimishima mentioned a dissatisfaction with the amount currently being generated in the space. “Suffice it to say that the amount we are currently not satisfied with is in the tens of billions of yen,” he said. 10 billion yen is over £67m, suggesting the publisher could have made more than double that and that they’re chasing far larger numbers.

The Q&A also reiterates Nintendo’s commitment to the 3DS as a low-end entry point to the brand. Particularly for parents to buy for their kids.

“Consumers purchased Nintendo 3DS systems in numbers we expected last fiscal year,” Kimishima said. “It has an ample software lineup at a price point that makes the system affordable especially for parents looking to buy for their kids. We expect that demand to continue during this fiscal year as well, so we will continue to sell the product.

“Given that Nintendo Switch is a home gaming system that can be taken on the go, this situation may change if it grows from being a one-per-household system to a one-per-person system. But the price of Nintendo Switch is not something with which most parents would buy a system for every one of their children in a short period of time. Moving forward, we will work to ascertain what kinds of play people want at which price points, and as long as there is such demand, we will continue to sell the Nintendo 3DS system. I see the product coexisting with Nintendo Switch at this point in time.”

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