Nintendo makes another stride on its path to conquer mobile devices with today’s release of Fire Emblem: Heroes on both iOS and Android. This makes way after the massive success of Niantic Labs’ Pokemon Go, as well as the more qualified success of Nintendo’s own Super Mario Run, which came out in December. Fire Emblem: Heroes gives a smartphone version to the franchise which is very well-known among the Nintendo’s loyalists, though maybe not as much as IP’s like Mario or Zelda. Unlike Nintendo’s previous Super Mario Run, it’s being billed as completely free to play, and so it should be interesting to see how Nintendo manages a make a significant amount of money out of this (probably they get the concept of in-app purchases now).
Like all of the series’ main line games, Fire Emblem: Heroes will also be a turn-based tactical strategy game, which is only streamlined for quicker play sessions and formatted touch controls. The free to play system will come by way of a set stamina meter that will control how often you will be able to fight — like many games of its genre, you will be given the option to spend real money to fight more often. What I’m personally most interested in seeing is just how well the series’ known depth translates to a smaller hand-held screen.
Now, the chances of this turning out to be a massive success are indeed slim, but that may just be okay. Nintendo has led it’ on going mobile development push with its most recognisable character (Mario), and that didn’t really do a great job if we take a look at the numbers. A seemingly massive promotional push before release still led to confusion due to lots questionable design choices made by Nintendo. And it became clear that while Nintendo had certainly optimised the moment to moment gameplay of a touch-based side scrolling game, it still hadn’t been able to truly unmask the overarching structures of a mobile title.
A somewhat less well known series like Fire Emblem will definitely take all that pressure off just a little bit, and might give the company some breathing room to fine tune its approach with a smaller but more dedicated target audience.
Shared from Dhruv Chopra