If you were going to crown a ‘gaming industry champion’ for 2017, that title would have to go to Nintendo for their work developing the Switch. The Nintendo Switch exploded out of nowhere to become one of the best-selling consoles on the market as well as one of the most innovative. In fact, during just the first nine months that the console has been on the market more than 10 million units have been sold. Not shipped. Sold. These incredible numbers only begin to paint the picture that is Nintendo’s big year.
A big reason for Nintendo’s success has been their willingness to put out strong titles within their original IP while being willing to open up to third-party developers. Highlights from the first year of the Switch include Zelda: Breath of the Wild as well as Mario Odyssey. Both titles are going to be competing for the coveted ‘Game of the Year’ award from several major gaming publications, but they only begin to tell the story that Nintendo has been weaving.
This year we have seen a concentrated effort from Nintendo to expand their library and thus expand their audience. This has meant that Nintendo has been more open to accepting titles for older audience son their main console, the Nintendo Switch. Ports of big titles like Elder Scrolls: Skyrim, as well as a remake of Doom, has further cemented Nintendo’s status as an industry titan for every demographic of gamer.
While Nintendo fans are already celebrating the monster year that their favorite company has had, they should instead be looking ahead to what is to come. Nintendo has put down a serious lineup of releases over the next six months that should push the Nintendo Switch into legendary status in terms of sales and gaming library.
Companies like Microsoft and Sony are struggling not to keep up in terms of sales but in terms of breadth of innovation. While Microsoft and Sony continue to try and work with motion control, the Nintendo Switch has already set the standard.
There is something so uniquely and intimately satisfying about creating a character in the hit Nintendo series ‘Animal Crossing’ before spending hours shaking trees, fishing and talking to animal-people. Nintendo’s quirky series has been one of the staples in their massive library of IP and now it is going mobile. ‘Animal Cross: Pocket Camp’ hit mobile application stores last week and it ascended quickly to 15 million downloads, making it the second largest mobile game launch in Nintendo’s history — right behind Super Mario Run.
Nintendo has made a habit of giving fans a new ‘Animal Crossing’ title with each generation of their console release, dating all the way back to the Nintendo 64. Fans were notably worried that nothing had been announced in 2017, up until about two months ago when news of ‘Pocket Camp’ first hit the internet. Fans were initially put off by the idea of a mobilization of such a deep and unique game, but those fears have turned out to be unfounded as critical and commercial success has followed the title.
In ‘Pocket Camp’, gamers create a character like they traditionally do in other ‘Animal Crossing’ titles. Afterwards, each player is given a special RV Camper that they can decorate and expand, much like their home. The big twist here is that your character does not live in a village. Instead, you have your own ‘campsite’ that can be completely and uniquely decorated. You can invite other animals to come hang out at your campsite while you perform tasks for them in order to build your friendship. Of course, there is plenty of exploration too. An overworld map allows your character to travel to a handful of different areas, including beaches, parks, and forests, in order to catch bugs, go fishing, and meet new animals and players.
Nintendo has taken a relatively hands-off approach in terms of monetization for ‘Pocket Camp’ which is likely why the title has been so popular, so far. You don’t need to pay a cent to enjoy the game unless you would like to speed up certain tasks or buy specialty aesthetic items to decorate your camp.
If there is one thing that Nintendo has mastered, with almost no competition from other major brands, it is the platformer. With Mario setting the tone and every iconic character after to follow, Nintendo has cornered the style of gameplay almost entirely. Now it looks like the Nintendo Switch is picking up its next great piece of IP in the retro platformer genre, “Yooka-Laylee”. Ignoring the obvious play on words, there looks to be a lot of depth in this title and fans of the style should be eager to get their hands on it when it drops on December 14th, 2017.
Yooka-Laylee was originally supposed to release on the PS4, XB1, and Wii U this past April but a slew of technical issues changed the ramping up of the release. Instead, the developers at Playtonic Games decided to hold back and refine their product with a new release window during the Holiday Season for the Nintendo Switch. Over the past several months the team at Playtonic have been focused on technically optimizing the quirky, colorful platformer in order to make it a homerun for Nintendo Switch owners around the world.
For fans of the Yooka-Laylee that have already played the title on the PS4 or XB1, there will be new content and additional gameplay elements that come with the Nintendo Switch. What we do know is that Playtonic Games focused on incorporating the impressive Joy-Con controls as much as possible during their optimization process. You can now play all eight mini-games with just one of the Joy-Con controllers. You can also enjoy a brand new camera system, refined controls, and even a dialogue skip button for the truly impatient gamers.
The Nintendo Switch has turned into one of the biggest console surprises of the past decade. The Switch has completely flipped the Wii U’s relative failure on its head, becoming one of Nintendo’s hottest selling systems of all time. With titles like Yooka-Layle in the fold, gamers are only going to keep coming back for more.
There was a time when Nintendo was staying as far away as it possibly could from the mobile gaming market. It appears those days are now over. Nintendo is not only putting out mobile games, but those games are having massive success at launch and beyond. Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp is a spinoff of the full version of Animal Crossing.
Now that this mobile game has launched, it has ended up being the second most successful mobile game launch of all time for Nintendo. While that sounds like a really, really impressive number, we should point out that there really haven’t been that many mobile games coming from Nintendo at all. The good news is that while the pool might be small, there has clearly been a demand for this game.
According to Gamingbolt, this mobile version of Animal Crossing has seen more than 15 million installs worldwide in the first six days since launch. Those numbers are almost twice what Nintendo saw with the launch of Fire Emblem Heroes. That game had a pretty successful launch but only saw eight million installs in the first six days it was on the market. The only game that has actually done better for Nintendo on the mobile platform is Super Mario Run.
The company broke into the mobile platform in a very big way, having more than 32 million installations when the game first hit the market for the iOS and Android devices. The one problem for Nintendo is that Super Mario Run might have had a ton of downloads, but those downloads didn’t really transfer over into people paying money to unlock the whole game.
Fire Emblem Heroes, according to Nintendo’s own book keeping actually led to much better revenues, despite having about a fourth of the downloads and installs. It’s far too early to see if Animal Cross: Pocket Camp is going to do all that well when it comes to revenues, but its off to a good start.
If there was any doubt that the Nintendo Switch has been built to be a contender in the console wars, those doubts were likely erased over the long Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Adobe posted a report on Monday as part of its Digital Insights Initiative that tracks the best selling products through retailers’ websites.
Adobe takes this particular report seriously as the company says it’s based on more than 4,500 retail websites and 55 million sales SKUs. At the essence of this new report is that Holiday weekends are big weekends for Nintendo’s newest console. The Switch had a very good Veterans Day weekend, and it had an even better Thanksgiving weekend. The Switch was the best selling console on both weekends, closely trailed by the Playstation VR.
On Thanksgiving weekend, there really wasn’t a particular competition. Of the five big consoles, the Xbox One, the PS4, it’s high def iteration and the Switch, Nintendo blew the competition away. Just how impressive is that feat? Sony has said it had a monstrous Black Friday but its sales didn’t come close to what Nintendo was able to do.
This has to be hailed as more than great news for Nintendo, considering their previous console was an abject failure. While initial reports seemed to be hinting at success for the console, there had to be a bit of trepidation that sales simply weren’t going to be anywhere close to what the company had seen in early projections.
It turns out that games like the newest Legend of Zelda, as well as the Mario Odyssey were big time helps in making sure that people wanted the newest console on the market. Nintendo has also benefitted from the fact that this fall is the first time the Switch has been readily available at most retailers. After it’s launch this spring there were long periods of time when the console wasn’t available at any retailers, whether or not people were talking about brick and mortar stores or online shops.
The Nintendo Switch is the latest console venture by one of the most legendary gaming companies of all time, Nintendo. The Nintendo Switch, like many of the prior Nintendo console ventures, aimed to bring about something completely new while still offering that tinge of nostalgia to older gamers. This meant that they wanted to innovate without completely changing the soul of their system. Thus the Nintendo Switch is born. The Switch released to immediately amazing sales statistics and it seems like the console is only going to do better as time goes on. In fact, Nintendo recently released their newest addition to the Nintendo Switch — an online companion application for your phone.
In an effort to stick with the times and constantly innovate within the expectations of current technology, the Nintendo Switch team decided to release an online companion application. Nintendo Switch Online is coming to both the iOS as well as the Android mobile systems completely free ahead of the launch of the popular ‘Splatoon’ sequel, ‘Splatoon 2’. The Nintendo Switch Online application won’t be mandated in order to enjoy what the Nintendo Switch has to offer, but it will bring about a ton of new features that dramatically enhance your playing time.
What we know about the Nintendo Switch Online app is this: you will be able to view your stats, see what your friends are up to, and even buy digital items for your characters in games. You can also use the application to create groups of friends in order to play games together. One of the biggest benefits of using the Nintendo Switch Online app is that you can set up group voice chats through the interface, allowing you to game together while you talk. The Nintendo Switch online features are free right now but multiplayer and classic game downloads may go up to $20 per year starting in 2018.