Paying GREE and Mobage users play more DS says Nintendo boss Iwata

And he's got some numbers that prove it

Paying GREE and Mobage users play more DS says Nintendo boss Iwata
As keen as they are to dismiss it, the fact that Sony and Nintendo spend so much time stressing the lack of impact mobile gaming is having on their respective handheld businesses suggest it's a sore point.

Last week, SCEA head Jack Tretton compared the Hollywood glitz and glamour of PS Vita to what he described as the 50c home movie feel of mobile games development.

Now, in a more stats-based attack, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has suggested users of social gaming platforms actually play more handheld games, rather than less.

On the up

Iwata detailed the numbers during a presentation to stockholders, claiming that users of popular social gaming networks in Japan such as GREE or DeNA's Mobage are more likely to use their DS than owners of the handheld that don't visit such platforms.

Mobile and social gamers in the country purchase an average of 1.5 DS games a year compared to 1.2 games purchased by standard DS owners.

In the US, Nintendo's figures state, Facebook game players tap into more DS games than the platform's average.

In all, Satoru stated, if there has been any impact on Nintendo DS's business, it's not been big enough to decipher.

Gamers love games

"If there is a causal correlation, those playing both Nintendo DS and social games will play with Nintendo DS less frequently or become less likely to purchase Nintendo DS software," said Iwata.

"The only explanation I can find is that these users love games. They are spending more time both on Mobage or GREE and Nintendo DS."

Of course, Nintendo DS was already an established platform with around 80 million units sold by the time gaming on smartphones and social platforms began to take hold from 2008 onwards.

Indeed, notably absent from Iwata's statistics was figures relating to 3DS, which is the format set to take on social mobile gaming in the coming years.

To date, estimates suggest only around 3 million 3DSs have been sold worldwide.

[source: Gamasutra]

With a fine eye for detail, Keith Andrew is fuelled by strong coffee, Kylie Minogue and the shapely curve of a san serif font.