It certainly took Japanese video game giant Nintendo an absurdly long time to realize and try to capitalize on the massive potential of smartphones, but once global phenomenon Pokémon Go got the ball rolling, the company’s involvement in the mobile arena escalated fairly quickly.
Super Mario Run followed as Nintendo’s proper first solo effort on iPhones roughly six months ago, expanding to Android devices a little later than it was perhaps ideal. The slightly lower-profile Fire Emblem Heroes even attempted to steal Mario’s thunder with a wide-scale cross-platform launch in February, while Animal Crossing’s simultaneous debut on iOS and Android is slated for the second half of 2017.
Next in line, it may finally be time for “The Legend of Zelda” to be told and shared with users of other platforms than just Nintendo’s own. According to “people familiar with the matter” quoted by The Wall Street Journal, which basically makes this story as good as official, the next installment in the uber-successful high-fantasy action-adventure series will see daylight on smartphones… soon enough.
Sometime in 2018, most likely, though you shouldn’t entirely rule out at least a limited rollout of sorts taking place around the upcoming holiday season.
Released way back in 1986, the original Legend of Zelda title has spawned nearly two dozen sequels and spin-offs for Game Boys, DS, Wii, NES and most recently Switch consoles, selling more than 75 million copies total as of 2016. Fingers crossed this doesn’t hit Apple’s App Store months before it reaches Google Play, and though it may be asking too much, let’s hope for a reasonable one-off charge. Nobody likes in-app purchases, mmkay, Nintendo?