Are mobile games becoming unfashionable?
However as time went on the things I was playing on the go seemingly became less original and I felt that every new app I tried was pushing me to fork over money to speed this up or get more of that. That's not to say that some standouts didn't make themselves apparent with Tiny Wings and Ridiculous Fishing stealing away some serious hours. However overall I found that I stopped playing games on the go.
Then I got a 3DS and suddenly I'm buying most of the major games for it (between Pokémon Y and Animal Crossing New Leaf) which means I've started putting some of my console or PC gaming time aside to bust out the little handheld alongside games of Mario Kart during lunch at the office. This is just my experience (although a couple of my friends have admitted the same) and it makes me curious: could we see mobile and handheld games swing in and out of fashion? Much like changing styles of clothes (if bowties can make a comeback then so can dedicated handheld systems) or do the majority of gamers think they will never pick up a handheld console again?
TLDR: Have people who used to play handheld games before the rise of mobile games switched back (like me) or will mobile games reign king for the foreseeable future?
Let me use Crash Bandicoot as an example. The original PS1 classic is available on the VITA through PS1 backwards compatibility and in theory (just in theory!) could be ported to the 3DS just fine. That game is infinitely more playable, can requires more fine input from the user and is ultimately more fun than practically every platformer on any of the smartphone stores (one button gameplay!).
It is my opinion there is a space for both.
NVIDIA says that mobile graphics performance will surpass console performance sometime in 2014. That's insane. And exciting.
That's really my biggest turn off right now for mobile games. When I see something that says "free (offer in-app purchases)," I tend to ignore it unless there are rave reviews by friends. There are some genuinely awesome mobile games out there though -- my favorite is the XCOM Enemy Unknown iOS port. You basically have the AAA console quality title available on a phone or a tablet. That's huge!
P.S. I will give all my money to someone who fully ports Civ IV or Civ V to tablet.
Disclaimer: I had a gig with a mobile gaming company in the Bay Area for a year and a half. It was a lot of fun and provided some interesting insight into how publishers and developers design mobile games.
This really never bothered me until recently when I downloaded Tiny Death Star. I was so excited to have that game come out and build my own Bitzen driven Death Star, except it's nearly impossible to progress without spending real money. The earlier Tiny * games had a decent balance that allowed you to progress fairly far before IAP really became almost necessary to move on, but Tiny Death Star is different. The first upgrade alone is worth $25 bux which in the few hours I've played have only managed to accumulate $14 bux.
With the recent controllers sdk available to iOS devs it will be very interesting to see how many hardware manufacturers and how many mobile game developers work towards growing that.
I'll admit that Ridiculous Fishing, Tiny Wings, Kami, and some other games are ally enjoyable to play but they're specific to a touchscreen. I just don't see some of the popular titles on the 3DS or Vita translating over to mobile very well; and as discussed before Nintendo has no dire reason to port Pokemon or even new titles to mobile www.engadget.com/discuss/nintendo-is-doing-just-fi....
My desire to get into portable consoles is just the fact that I miss gaming with a controller a lot, and I just feel the titles offer a lot more connection. Sure I may knock out a few hours on my phone trying to perfect a level in Kami but there is something about getting involved in a depth of story that Nintendo or Sony can deliver. I am yet to find a game on mobile devices that can really offer any kind of depth of story as an Uncharted, Last of Us, or Bio-Shock. And while indie games are all over on mobile I just don't think many can fully stack up or deliver in the same way as they can on a PC or portable console; sidenote, Jeb alluded to the Vita getting a PC port of Minecraft and not the Pocket edition!!!
What is interesting in all this as I sit here and type this is out is where the hell is Microsoft? They arguably have one of the biggest and most popular consoles in the US, yet they aren't doing much to bridge the console to mobile beyond stuff like SmartGlass. I think the fact that Sony is coming out of the PS4 gate with Vita integration will play a huge part in the potentially dominating again if marketed correctly.
I'll play a game like Plants vs Zombies on my phone because it works really well with a touchscreen. I'd never want to play a Mario or fighting game on my phone because the controls would be terrible. For games like that, I'd still pick up my 3DS.
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