When iPhone introduced the first iPhone a couple of years back, along with a claim that they will agressively go after the Nintendo-owned handheld space, I could not help but to laugh.
A few years and iPhone models later one has to admire the truth in the original statement. iPhone, along with the iPod became a viable gaming platform with some very respectable titles on offer. I believe that there are two key factors involved with the success.

1) The price levels
I am stating the obvious, I know. Would you rather buy a game for 30 bucks or for 99 cents. You got it...

2) Comfort
You have your mobile with you wherever you go. Have 5 minutes to kill? On the bus? Making a poo poo? Whatever the context, iOS games are always within your reach and with the new multitasking feature it is dead easy to drop out, check new mails and drop back in in a matter of seconds.

Nintendo consoles require more effort to produce and start up, even when in hybernation sleep. Multitasking is non-existent and switching games means switching cartriges. E-mail? You are joking, right?

iPhone seemingly comes out as a clear winner and casts a shadow on handheld future. Seemingly.

One argument is that the mobile games are not on par with the depth of gameplay and quality of experience offered by the consoles. Visually stunning titles have been showcased on iOS 4 devices to counter this argument, running advanced 3d engines such as the Unreal 3 engine. It is very easy to be awed by such tiles and rightly so. Nintendo DS titles go pale in the mere idea of comparison.

However...

However we have yet to see a game as charming as The Legend of Zelda, or a racer as enjoyable as Mario Kart. There are loads of interesting titles, yes, but they are all so forgetable, that they slip of your mind a second after you have put them down. N.O.V.A. ? a carbon copy of Halo with shallow gameplay and story, dull controls and generic feel. It may look thrice as good as Metroid Prime: Hunters, but it will never be as good. What was the main characters game? No idea...

Samus Aran is still someone to love and so is Nintendo.


- ha douken