Nintendo "are interested" in participating in the metaverse

by Adam Fitch  · 
Updated
Nintendo "are interested" in participating in the metaverse

Video game giant Nintendo believes that the metaverse has "great potential" but the company isn't ready to dive in just yet, according to a recent Q&A session.

The interest: While the session is only available in Japanese, a Twitter user shared Nintendo's answer in English using a translation service.

  • The Japanese developer spoke on the metaverse, revealing it believes that the concept has "great potential".
  • Animal Crossing is where it sees such potential, noting that the game is sometimes cited as an example of how the virtual network may work, though the exact model of how it envisions the metaverse wasn't shared.
  • The company is awaiting a means of contributing towards the metaverse with its "Nintendo approach" but doesn't believe it can do so currently in "an easy-to-understand manner". Nintendo believes the metaverse poses quandaries that are "difficult to define".

A major player: Nintendo owns major franchises and, while the company is clear in not knowing how it fits into the bigger picture just yet, there's a whole lot of potential considering the properties it owns.

  • Nintendo develops or publishes major franchises like Mario & Luigi, Animal Crossing, Pokémon, and Super Smash Bros.
  • While it's unclear which devices would have the capability to integrate into the metaverse, the Nintendo Switch recently outsold the Wii — a phenomenon in and of itself years ago — further illustrating the console's popularity among gamers.

First-mover advantage? Many major video game companies are already moving towards new technology in NFTs, technology that some believe will be pivotal to the metaverse concept.

  • Companies like Konami, Sega, Ubisoft, EA, and Square Enix have all either shown or expressed interest in NFTs and blockchain technology, though they've typically been met with negative sentiment from fans and gamers.
  • While major entities believe they see utility in NFTs, which essentially assign a unique identifier to a digital asset or item, it's clear consumer concerns need to be addressed before mainstream gaming adoption can even be thought about. Nicolas Pouard, a VP at Ubisoft's Strategic Innovations Lab, believes gamers aren't recognising the potential NFTs can bring.
  • "Gamers really believe it's first destroying the planet, and second just a tool for speculation," Pouard said recently. "But what we are seeing first is the end game. The end game is about giving players the opportunity to resell their items once they're finished with them or they're finished playing the game itself. So, it's really, for them. It's really beneficial."