For the longest time, Nintendo has been against entering the mobile gaming market, instead sticking with its traditional game handheld systems, like the Nintendo 3DS. Some see it as a selfish move by the company, especially considering the cashflow it could clean up from reselling classic games to a new audience, but the company has stood firm by its decision for some time. However, new patents filed by Nintendo indicate that it may be changing its stance.
According to Mashable, the big “N” has filed a patent application that would allow a (legal) Game Boy emulator to be introduced to both smartphone devices and airplane screens, enabling gamers to play their titles on something outside of typical Nintendo platforms. The patent was filed on November 27, and reads as follows:
“A software emulator for emulating a handheld video game platform such as GAME BOY.RTM., GAME BOY COLOR.RTM. and/or GAME BOY ADVANCE.RTM. on a low-capability target platform (e.g., a seat-back display for airline or train use, a personal digital assistant, a cell phone) uses a number of features and optimizations to provide high quality graphics and sound that nearly duplicates the game playing experience on the native platform.”
With the low-cost processor used in these older game devices, it would be a cinch to port over these classic games to new devices. The company stated that “there may be an advantage in certain contexts to being able to play or execute the same binary images store in GAME BOY.RTM cartridges on target platforms.”
That said, the company still hasn’t officially announced plans to expand to other mobile platforms. Nintendo president Satoru Iwata did speak earlier this spring to investors about the possibility of exploring mobile platforms, but felt that they wouldn’t receive ports of Nintendo games.
Considering Nintendo’s bumpy road to success with the Wii U and 3DS models, it wouldn’t be surprising if the company did, in fact, consider a slight move to mobile with its older library. We’ll have to see what the next year holds for the company. But don’t worry, console owners, it’s business as usual for you with plenty of new titles on the way.