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Nintendo’s first mobile game, Miitomo, has been delayed until 2016

Shoppers walk under the logo of Nintendo and Super Mario characters at an electronics store in Tokyo Wednesday, May 7, 2014. Nintendo Co. sank to a loss for the fiscal year ended March as sales of its Wii U game machine continued to lag, but the Japanese manufacturer of Pokemon and Super Mario games promised Wednesday to return to profit this year. (AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi)
AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi
Not coming to a smartphone near you.
By Alice Truong

Deputy editor

This article is more than 2 years old.

What a letdown.

After months of hyping its first smartphone title, Nintendo disappointed gamers and investors alike by delaying its launch to March 2016. The company previously said that it would debut a mobile game before the end of this year. Nintendo’s stock fell 7% on the news.

At its investor meeting in Kyoto today (Oct. 29), Nintendo did, however, reveal what the first of five planned smartphone games will be. Miitomo will be a free-to-play game with in-app features that people can pay for. This business model has proven successful for other smartphone games, including Clash of Clans and Candy Crush Saga, two of the top grossing mobile games, according to app analytics firm Sensor Tower.

Miitomo will feature avatars that players create, also known as Miis, which will be able to communicate with one another. The Wall Street Journal reports that Nintendo will “find ways to encourage people who are hesitant to talk to share things about themselves.”

Nintendo previously shunned smartphone games and suffered as a result. The company, which just reported its first half-year operating profit in five years, had hoped to boost sales by tapping into the genre, so it teamed up with Tokyo mobile game developer DeNA this year with plans to release five mobile games—none of which will be replicas of its existing titles—by March 2017.

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