Last year, legendary Japanese game company Nintendo finally decided for the first time to license their games to mobile platforms, Android and iOS. Earlier this year, Pokemon GO, which uses characters owned by Nintendo, was released by Niantic and became a hit overnight. The huge success of Pokemon GO has demonstrated that there is great demand for Nintendo to release more mobile games, and the company appears to be listening. Yesterday, at the iPhone 7 launch event, Nintendo announced a new game featuring their most well-known original character, Mario. Unfortunately, for now, the side-scrolling runner, Super Mario Run, is only available on iOS, but it is expected to be released for Android in the near future. And Nintendo’s not done there – they’ve got two more games from classic franchises coming to mobile devices soon: Animal Crossing and Fire Emblem.
However, they may not be not coming quite as soon as fans may have hoped. The games, which were announced earlier in the year, were expected to be released this fall, but now it appears that they have been delayed until next year. Although the games were expected sooner, efforts to complete them were likely postponed temporarily in the interest of finishing with Super Mario Run in time for the release of the iPhone 7. Since the game is an iOS exclusive for the time being, it makes sense that Nintendo chose Apple's event of the year to unveil the first mobile game featuring their best-known character. Nintendo's Animal Crossing and Fire Emblem games are still expected, at this point, to be finished by their previously announced deadline of March 31, 2017.
While Nintendo was once at the top of the game industry, in recent years they have taken a backseat in terms of sales to big rivals like Sony and Microsoft. With the increasing number of gamers playing mobile games, allowing their own franchises to be licensed for use on mobile devices lets Nintendo cash in on both console and mobile markets. Although delays of game releases can be a bit disappointing, Nintendo has a great track record for releasing amazing games rather than rushing to release unfinished products, so it is probably better that they have time to perfect the games, and they will likely be well worth the wait.