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The gaming industry left Nintendo behind. Before the global brand’s slow and painful descent, it was a dominant force that actively competed with today’s platforms.

The company’s solution to turn the business around is mobile gaming. Nintendo, in collaboration with DeNA, announced five unnamed, handheld games by 2017 with the first one to be released this year.

Most individuals who are familiar with the brand have high expectations for a Nintendo-backed smartphone game. But is a mobile version of Mario Kart enough to go head-to-head with big titles like Candy Crush Saga and Clash of Titans?

Nintendo Mario Kart

Nintendo’s New Strategy

Many question Nintendo’s growing interest in mobile gaming. While the business model of creating a smartphone game is not anything new, for the company, it is a rare opportunity to shake up the predictable market.

Nintendo stated it will apply a “no whale” strategy to meet the demands of mobile gamers worldwide. Instead of catering to a small group of large spenders, the business will develop products for a wide demographic.

The plan is safe and incredibly low risk. It could also mean that individuals will get a chance to play old-time classics, namely Zelda, Star Fox and Golden Eye, on their handheld devices. Such favorites appeal to both hardcore gamers and individuals looking for an immersive game to fill in gaps of free time during the day.

“We will deploy our game business on smart devices not because we think that the dedicated game system business will wane, but because doing so will encourage a greater number of people to associate with Nintendo IP, to become familiar with the charms of video games, and, eventually, to explore more premium experiences on our dedicated game systems,” said Satoru Iwata, president of Nintendo.

Nintendo games

Puzzles & Dragons: Super Mario Bros. Edition

The question on everyone’s mind is, what kind of mobile games does Ninetendo have in store for the mainstream? Some speculate the new offerings could resemble a game that was recently released on the 3DS, Puzzles & Dragons: Super Mario Bros. Edition.

The game is a themed version of the widely popular Puzzles & Dragons for iOS and Android. It features Pokemon-style gameplay that hooks in players through endless collections of monsters. The fuse and evolve aspects of the game increases its replay value exponentially, which makes it one of the few titles worth keeping in your phone.

For the 3DS Super Mario Bros. Edition, characters from the Mushroom Kingdom take on leading roles. Compared to the mobile version, in-app purchases are not required to progress through the levels. The full $30 provides hours of fun from beginning to end.

Existing games skinned with a Mario theme may not be enough to keep the company afloat, but it is a step in the right direction. Seeing remnants of Yoshi and King Koopa can instantly bring gamers back to Nintendo’s glory days, and may help ease the release of its future products.

After profiting from sure hits, the business might be in a better position to develop something new and exciting.

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