Nintendo says it’s ‘not actively pursuing large-scale collaborations’

But firm will consider partnerships that increase the value of its IP, such as mobile apps

Image: AP PHOTO/EUGENE HOSHIKO

Nintendo says it’s not actively pursuing large-scale collaborations to overcome increased competition in the marketplace.

During a Q&A at the platform holder’s AGM, president Shuntaro Furukawa told investors the company will instead take on new and old rivals alike by continuing to “create value in our products that is unique to Nintendo”.

“We consider it to be a very good thing that so many companies are entering the games business and that the industry is thriving,” he said.

“In this environment, we believe that the most important factor in overcoming stiff competition is to create value in our products that is unique to Nintendo.

“Regarding collaborations, our basic stance is that we do not intend to actively pursue large-scale collaborations,” Furukawa continued. “We will, however, actively consider partnerships that would increase the value of Nintendo IP, such as our game characters and worlds.

“Many of our existing collaborations with other companies are related to smart-device applications. In the near future, we plan to work together with LINE Corporation to release the Dr. Mario World application on July 10. We are also working with DeNA Co., Ltd. on the development of Mario Kart Tour, to be released this summer.”

In May, Sony announced a strategic partnership with Microsoft which is expected to result in the PlayStation maker using Azure data centres for cloud gaming and content streaming services, with PlayStation boss Jim Ryan subsequently noting that the move was in part driven by Google’s plans to launch cloud gaming platform Stadia in November.

“When you’ve got these big, very large companies coming into your space, I think simply viewing the world in the terms you viewed it in the past 25 years, with the competition you’ve had over the past 25 years, is probably not a very sensible approach to take,” Ryan said in a recent interview.

During Nintendo’s recent AGM, Furukawa said the company must keep up with developments in the cloud gaming space, while veteran designer Shigeru Miyamoto dismissed suggestions Nintendo isn’t staying abreast of technological advancements in the online space or areas like virtual reality.

Miyamoto also said Nintendo wants to build on its history of user interface innovation by creating a next-gen controller that becomes the industry standard, while Furukawa revealed the company is still developing “quality of life” products five years after late president Satoru Iwata announced his intention to take the firm into the health improvement business.