Most of us enjoy a good video game. Video games offer a creative outlet, an escape from stress, and endless entertainment. The best video games feature captivating musical scores, breathtaking graphics, challenging puzzles, and game-play with interesting back-stories we can get into. Nintendo games hold a special place in many of our hearts, because quite a few of us grew up playing some of our favorite games on Nintendo consoles. Nintendo mobile games differ from the Nintendo classics we already love, but are just as easy to fall in love with as your favorite console game.
Mobile games offer added versatility to the console games we grew up with, and the convenience of having games on devices we can take with us wherever we go adds a whole new level of fun. Since we are all connected through our mobile phone networks, mobile games offer a large sense of community, as we can connect with others who also have the game on their phone.
Nintendo is a trusted brand that has been around for quite some time, so it’s no surprise that their mobile games are at the height of popularity in app stores. Let’s review six of the best Nintendo mobile games available for free on the market, so you can get started having fun on the go!
We found a few important questions regarding Nintendo as a company and its journey into making mobile games. We hope the history provided here will allow you to appreciate the massive revolutionary strides Nintendo has made in the gaming world.
1. What Are Nintendo Mobile Games?
Nintendo mobile games are often echoes of some of Nintendo’s best and most popular games, such as Super Mario, Pokemon, and Fire Emblem. These games bring us the graphics we love and the familiar story lines we know, with a unique mobile game twist that offers new challenges and fun game-play. Mobile games usually have more simple premises that are great for people of all ages and easy to understand. Since most mobile phones nowadays are all touch screens, mobile games have a unique challenge to fulfill utilizing touch functions in their games.
There are countless creative mobile games out there that offer unique game play and mechanics, but Nintendo is a brand everyone looks to for quality games that are worth it to experience.
2. What Makes Nintendo So Special?
Even though there are so many free mobile games on the Apple and Google app stores nowadays, Nintendo remains a revered and trusted video game brand that holds a special place in the hearts of those who were lucky enough to grow up playing their console games. But what is it about Nintendo that makes everyone enjoy Nintendo so much? How did the brand get to where it is now?
Nintendo started from humble beginnings during the early 80s in Japan, and was founded by Fusajiro Yamauchi. Since then, Nintendo has stayed in Japan and has produced many successful titles that the world has come to love. Remember the original Nintendo system? The Game and Watch games, the SNES, the N64, the Gamecube, the Nintendo DS? Not to mention their most recent consoles! All of these amazing consoles were developed thanks Nintendo’s genius and commitment to quality gaming. Remember Donkey Kong, Zelda, and Mario? So many characters that seem like old friends to us are also Nintendo’s property. The Nintendo mobile games honor these games and characters in unique ways.
Ever since Nintendo’s success with their Game and Watch systems in 1980, they have sold countless millions of games and systems that are revered and still incredibly popular.
3. What Is the History of Nintendo Mobile Games?
Although Nintendo has been a huge contender in console games over the years, their presence on mobile devices could almost be considered brand new. Up through 2015, Nintendo had focused on its consoles and used unique elements of those consoles in its games. Since mobile games eliminate the need for a console altogether, Nintendo was faced with a unique challenge when the world began to shift towards increased popularity in mobile games.
Nintendo faced this challenge head-on and developed a strategy for entering into the mobile games market as a means of introducing their franchise and properties to increase traffic towards their consoles later on. Because of Nintendo’s extreme popularity, several of their new mobile game apps have been ranked as top-downloaded in both the Apple and Google app stores.
Nintendo was hesitant to start making mobile games, but because of 2014’s shift in focus to mobile games for consumers, that year caused Nintendo’s stock to drop because they were receiving criticism for not using that shift to present new ideas to consumers. When the Wii U did not sell as much as they had hoped, from 2015 on Nintendo began making mobile games and quickly shot to the top of popularity in mobile gaming.
4. Where Are Nintendo Mobile Games Available?
Nintendo products are incredibly easy to find, since they are one of the most popular video game companies out there. If you have an IOS device, the Apple iTunes app store is available for you to download any game available there. If you have an Android, the Google Play Store is your app platform of choice, and you also get access to every single one of the games on our top six list!
5. Price Range
There are numerous apps and games available on both app stores for Android and Apple users, and the stores are even organized so you can search for free or paid apps. For our list of the top six best Nintendo mobile games, each game on our list is absolutely free to download and play! These games do offer in-app purchases but it is completely up to you if you want to spend extra money or not.
We found the six of the most popular free Nintendo mobile games through much research and testing by our team! We hope this list offers some fun suggestions for games you can play anywhere you go, while enjoying that familiar Nintendo style we’ve all come to love. Each of these apps has been tested by our team, and numerous reviews from consumers nod towards these games’ playability and professional manufacturing. Check them all out in your app store now!
- Super Mario Run
- Fire Emblem Heroes
- Pokemon Go
- Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp
- Pokemon: Magikarp Jump
Miitomo was the first mobile app developed through Nintendo and was released in March of 2016. This game revolves around social networking that allows players to nteract with their virtual Mii avatars. You can interact with any of the other users through the My Nintendo service, and you can use real-world money to purchase in-game currency that you can use to buy customization options for your Mii. This game has attracted more than 10 million downloads within one month of its release!
- You can earn in-game currency through free in-game actions
- Offers a welcoming social environment
- Appeals to a wide range of global mobile device users
- Introduces new users to uniquely Nintendo experiences
- Nintendo ended support for the app in May of 2018
- No actual game-play involved
First released in December of 2016 for IOS users, this endless-runner game features the iconic Mario we all know and love, back for more coin-collecting action! The game-play of this mobile game requires the player to control the timing and length of Mario’s jumps. Offering a free demo for players to try the game, it ended up being downloaded by consumers over 200 million times, immediately skyrocketing Super Mario Run to the top of the app store charts.
- A free Mario title
- Game offers three different modes for extra fun and playability
- You can add friends in-game
- If you go into this thinking it will be exactly like side-scrolling NES Mario games, you will be disappointed
- You have no control over Mario’s speed or stopping
First released in February of 2017, this app uses the same tactical role-playing game elements we all love from the Fire Emblem series. Players control a party of heroes to battle foes, and this game is a more traditional free-to-play model. You can play as many missions as you want while your party still has stamina (stamina can be refilled by waiting or purchasing stamina in-game). You may also purchase new heroes for your party in-game. By April of 2017, this popular role-playing game was downloaded by consumers over 10 million times!
- Offers tactical RPG game-play
- Has a brand new original story with the characters and universe we are familiar with
- Plenty of strategic battles to keep your interest
- Game crashes frequently due to overloading of servers
- Single-player only
This revolutionary spin on the ever-popular Pokémon series was released in July of 2016. It is an augmented reality game that has players physically searching their surroundings in order to capture virtual Pokemon. There are also real-world locations that allow players to battle each other, or recieve free in-game items. While the game itself is free to play, there are a number of in-app purchases such as buying Poké Balls for capturing more Pokémon, as well as a number of in-game boosts. This game was immediately considered a world-wide success, because by September of 2016 it had been downloaded by consumers over 500 million times worldwide. It even became the fastest game to make over $500 million in revenue.
- You can add friends, become part of a team, and experience a unique universe
- This is a game unlike any other, and offers a unique twist on Pokémon that allows you to be a real-world trainer!
- Nintendo did not anticipate the game’s immense popularity; the servers are prone to crashing because of the number of people playing it simultaneously
- Constantly goes through updates
- Prone to bugs
5. Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp
Released in October of 2017, Animal Crossing Pocket Camp is a social simulation game that has the player work to earn a living and improve their campsite in-game. This free-to-play game allows players to purchase in-game items that reduce activity cooldown timers. This means it decreases the amount of time you have to wait before performing a certain action again. This title was downloaded by consumers more than 15 million times within its first week of release, making it one of the most popular games on this list, even to this day!
- Offers a high-level of customization of your character’s surroundings and campsite
- You can visit different in-game recreational spots and meet various animal campers to help them with entertaining problems, such as looking for fish, fruit, bugs, and other things
- Earn Bells and crafting materials from each camper you help
- Limited space to decorate your campsite/area
- If you go into this thinking it will be a full Animal Crossing game, you will be disappointed
6. Pokémon: Magikarp Jump
This digital pet-stylized game was released in May of 2017, and requires the player to fish for and capture Magikarp Pokémon and train it to increase its ability to jump out of water. You can enter all kinds of entertaining challenges that test how well you have trained your Magikarp. The game-play itself is very simple, but users of all ages revere this game for its cute and punny dialog, and you can tell the developers put a lot of time and effort into the feel of this adorable Pokémon game!
- A free Pokémon title featuring a beloved character
- Simple, straightforward, easy-to-understand game-play
- Great for all ages, and keeps you entertained for hours on end!
- Apple IOS users cannot play this game
- App contains ads
- Prone to crashes
There are quite a few Nintendo mobile games out there, and Nintendo is always working hard to improve games that are already out and make plans for new exciting games! Did you know there are plans for a Legend of Zelda mobile game in the near future? We are very excited and can’t wait to see what else Nintendo will bless our mobile devices with.
Since these games are free, we encourage you to try them all out so you can experience the Nintendo charm and entertaining game-play on the go! Pick out your favorites and head to the app store now! What are you waiting for?