Investor Wants Nintendo To Create Mobile Titles With Game-Altering In-App Purchases
Posted by Damien McFerran
"Just think of paying 99 cents just to get Mario to jump a little higher"
Please understand, Nintendo isn't keen on bringing its library of games to mobile right now — company president Satoru Iwata has been pretty firm on that point. However, Nintendo is an organisation which has shareholders, and that means it constantly faces pressure from these parties to make as much cash as possible — and to many investors, Iwata is ignoring the potential goldmine that is mobile and tablet gaming.
Seth Fischer — manager of a hedge fund that owns shares in Nintendo — is one of those people. He's penned a letter to the Nintendo president which outlines what he feels the Japanese company should do, and the Wall Street Journal has had a peek at it:
We believe Nintendo can create very profitable games based on in-game revenue models with the right development team.
The same people who spent hours playing Super Mario, Donkey Kong, and Legend of Zelda as children are now a demographic whose engagement on the smartphone is valued by the market at well over $100 billion.
Possibly the most eye-opening quote is the one which suggests that Fischer doesn't play games all that much:
Just think of paying 99 cents just to get Mario to jump a little higher.
While Nintendo isn't against embracing new ways of earning cash — Steel Diver: Sub Wars and Rusty's Real Deal Baseball are proof of that — it is taking these steps on its own platforms, and not on smartphones and tablets — which is what investors like Fischer want to see.
Fischer's comments are on shaky ground — we'd like to think that no Nintendo gamer worth their salt would ever want to pay to gain an advantage in a game — but Iwata will certainly be feeling pressure from other investors to expand Nintendo's business into other sectors. What are your thoughts on this topic? Let us know with a comment.