Yesterday, Nintendo released its first mobile app, Miitomo. The game itself is pretty rudimentary, but the fact that it released on non-Nintendo platforms makes it pretty significant.
When you start the game, you have to make your Mii. You’re presented with a Mii maker that’s very similar to the ones found on the Wii, 3DS, and Wii U. You can also use a QR code to transfer the your Mii from a previous system over to it or use the Mii associated with your My Nintendo account.
Miitomo is a game about answering questions. That’s kind of it. Basically, the game asks you some questions, and then you answer them. Then, you’ll start getting questions from other players Miis, but to be clear, not ones that those players came up with. Soon, you’ll be answering questions about your friends and yourself as well as hearing their answers.
As you answer questions and add friends to your friends list, you earn coins. You can use those coins to buy new clothing items for your Mii. When you change your clothes, your fashion level increases, although honestly, I haven’t really figured out what that does for you.
If you haven’t already figured this out, Miitomo is an exceptionally casual game. Honestly, calling it a “game” is a bit of a stretch. It’s more like a weird social experiment. But for whatever reason, I’ve been playing it quite a bit in the last two days. It’s strangely addicting, and getting into weird conversations is a lot of fun.
I think Nintendo made the right decision in making Miitomo and putting it out on mobile platforms. Nintendo had huge success with the casual audience on the Wii, but really struggled to keep that momentum going with the Wii U. I think Nintendo recognized that the audience they once catered to on the Wii simply doesn’t care about game consoles anymore and has largely moved onto phones and tablets. While I’d be excited to see them put something closer to a real game out on a phone, I think it makes a lot of sense to put more casual experiences on phones and more hardcore games on consoles.
All in all, I’m definitely enjoying Miitomo, but I’m not sure how long I’m going to stick with it. Maybe I’ll check back in with updated impressions later, but for now, I think everyone should check it out, but keep their expectations in check.