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While its core business is making and selling games, Nintendo leverages its popular IP in various ways.
Its new Tokyo store will launch on November 22, the Super Nintendo World theme park land at Universal Studios Japan will open in spring 2020, and a new Super Mario animated movie is expected to be released “around 2022”.
But asked during an interview with Time whether Nintendo’s business strategy is inspired by Disney’s, Furukawa said: “We’ve never tried to imitate any other company.
“The idea of using our IP in things like theme parks or movies is simply an extension of the philosophy we’ve had all along.”
Elsewhere, Furukawa said experimenting with new ideas will be key to Nintendo growing its business.
“Nintendo is Nintendo because of our games, characters and IP. So giving our teams the freedom to experiment with new ideas is something I strongly agree with,” he said.
“Expansion can’t happen without the freedom to try something new, and the courage to step into unfamiliar territory.”
Furukawa also commented on the company’s approach to monetising mobile games.
“In terms of monetization, that’s something that we decided on an app basis,” he said. “It’s something we decide looking at the game content of each app, as well as the IP used and the player that we’re targeting.
“We also look at how we can best have the players enjoy the game, as well as how they would be comfortable in spending money.”
Mario Kart Tour launched on September 25 and broke mobile game records with 90 million downloads in its first week, although the feat was soon surpassed by Call of Duty Mobile, which achieved 100 million week one downloads following its October 1 release.
While free to start, Mario Kart Tour microtransaction mechanics include a gacha-like system for unlocking content, as well as a $5/£5 Gold Pass monthly subscription service that lets players unlock more in-game rewards.