With Nintendo and DeNA actively working on multiple phone apps, and with the big N having a financial interest in the likes of Pokémon Go, the concept of the company's games on mobile devices is no longer fanciful. The company has also filed multiple patents over the years for emulators and actual phone-like devices, showing that they've been considered if not acted upon.

What's interesting is how long the idea has been considered. Over on Reddit a patent from 2001 has been shared, an era when mobile phones were a lot simpler and more primitive. Nintendo filed a patent that seemingly had options to buy games, with Game Boy titles included in drawings to show off the concept.

That's a translation of the Japanese name for Metroid, apparently...

Notably, a similar idea almost got off the ground in the Game Boy Advance era, too, in that case to sell its games on a phone in 2004 - how close we were to getting these devices and services is interesting to consider. We even suggested that it was an option still open to Nintendo in late 2014.

As it stands it seems more likely that Nintendo will simply release apps onto the iOS and Android platforms. One thing is for certain - Metroid 2 would have knocked the socks off Snake back in the day.

[source reddit.com, via patft.uspto.gov]