Nintendo Coming to Mobile
Amidst recent rumors and speculation, Nintendo has finally announced that it’s coming to smartphones. Nintendo and DeNA Co., a fellow Japanese game company, will be working together to bring some of video gaming’s most iconic characters to consumers’ mobile devices starting this Fall.
As part of the deal, Nintendo now owns 10% of DeNA, while DeNA owns 1.24% of Nintendo. The announcement has been a huge surprise, because in recent years Nintendo has campaigned heavily against mobile gaming and refused to license its characters, fearing it would devalue the importance of the company.
Since the mobile gaming market is expected to surpass console sales by $4B later this year, it seems like a logical and smart move for Nintendo. Also part of the announcement was Nintendo’s next console, codenamed NX. Nintendo is keeping details about the NX under tight surveillance, but we should hear more about it in the coming months.
You can learn more about the news here on The Wall Street Journal.
Stronger Google Play Ratings
The Google Play store appears to finally be joining the ranks of Apple’s App Store approval standards, according to a recent blog post by the company. Two major changes have been announced, with the first being a new age-rating system.
With the new age-rating system, developers are now required to complete a questionnaire about their app or game, which helps determine a proper rating. Previously, developers designated their own rating. Failure to complete the questionnaire will result in an “Unrated” rating, which could block the app in certain countries.
The second announcement is that apps and games are finally going to be put under the microscope by an internal team of reviewers at Google - similar to how Apple does things with their App Store. Each app will be manually tested for viruses, malware and content. You can learn more about the new Google Play store changes here on the Android Developers blog.
Marketing for Indie Devs
Game industry professional Taylor Bair recently wrote an interesting article on Gamasutra providing a crash course on the different marketing options that indie developers have - from earned media such as public relations, to paid media (i.e. advertising).
The get the best results, it’s important to utilize a mixture of each type of marketing. If you’re just starting out, PR, direct marketing and word of mouth are probably going to be your best bet. Take a look at the article here for tips.