Nintendo plans NFC figurines, extended licensing

Nintendo Figurine Platform

Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has announced plans to launch a line of Nintendo figurines linked via NFC to games for the Wii U and 3DS consoles.

“Nintendo has a lot of well-known character IP that has originated in video games, and we have been regularly releasing titles from game franchises that make use of this character IP,” said Iwata. “This is why I believe a brand-new type of platform will be born when the character IP becomes compatible with NFP.”

The Nintendo Figurine Platform (NFP) will utilise existing NFC technology in the Wii U Gamepad, and an infrared 3DS peripheral, slated for release in early 2015, to extend the system to the 3DS handheld console. Nintendo plans to debut NFP at E3 in June.

“The figurines, which consumers can buy and collect, are going to work with multiple software titles to be released in the future,” said Iwata. “The launch of this new product genre, NFP, which will be compatible with Wii U and Nintendo 3DS, is going to serve as the first example of actively utilising our own character IP.”

Iwata also confirmed plans announced in January to expand licensing of Nintendo IP.

“We are seeing possibilities in licensing character IP in areas Nintendo has never worked before,” Iwata said. “We will be flexible about forming licensing relationships in areas we did not license in the past, such as digital fields, provided we are not in direct competition and we can form win-win relationships.”

Nintendo-licensed products currently include books, collectibles, sleepwear, manga, toys, foods and party goods. The company’s Yoshi character was also included as DLC in Sega’s action-adventure platformer Sonic Lost World released last year.