Theory editorials aren’t something I do very often. Most of my editorials I do I try and use evidence to back up what I’m saying. The only one I can think of off the top of my head that was just an idea I had was if “Telltale Games Could make a Good Zelda Game” and even that used Tales From the Borderlands and Hyrule Warriors to back up my points but as far as I could find, what I’d like seen to be done with amiibo hasn’t been directly commented on by Nintendo and, while I’ve seen fans request a Skylanders style game using amiibo, I haven’t seen the exact way I’m proposing. Before Nintendo even attempts this I think they need to figure out the stocking issues. I will give a few other options for what they could do, but I think it would work best with the figures.
So this idea came to me as I was talking to my brother. He used to be a fan of Skylanders and owns most of the Spyro’s Adventure and Giants sets and is currently collecting amiibo based on characters he likes. I asked him if he would like a Skylanders style game that uses amiibo and he replied simply that he didn’t like the idea as it would probably end up closer to Disney Infinity than Skylanders by locking out Pokemon characters from Kirby levels and how would Wii Fit Trainer work? When he brought up Disney Infinity I then had another idea. Toy Box mode, from what I gather, is essentially a level creator and is one of the only reasons I’d want to pick Disney Infinity up. I then wondered how well a Nintendo styled Toy Box using amiibo would work. Nintendo has officially released very few level creators, so Nintendo gamers have never truly had the chance to create a Pokemon or Star Fox style level and I think amiibo would work perfectly for this. How?
If Nintendo starts it off as a generic level creator that allows you to define a start and end point, create hills/valleys/water/etc, add enemies, maybe collectibles, etc, then with each amiibo you scan you unlock items relating to that character. For example, Bowser can do things such as add podoboos, lava, Bullet Bill Blasters, Villager could add different fruit trees, a shovel, ax, fishing rod, bug net, etc, Link could unlock collectibles relating back to the Zelda series, the list goes on. This idea would stop at the Super Smash Bros. line of amiibo either. Toad could unlock ways to create Captain Toad style levels or if a Star Fox amiibo line is made they could allow Arwing or Landmaster style levels. They’d essentially allow you to create levels based around any series you wanted as long as you had the amiibo to unlock the parts you wanted.
Requiring the amiibo might be a problem, however. As we’ve seen Nintendo aren’t exactly having the easiest of times shipping them out so are we now stuck with only a select few people outside of Europe able to incorporate whatever Marth or Wii Fit Trainer would unlock? I have 2 ideas for solving this (aside from just stocking all the amiibo like those pictures of stores in Germany). 1. Use the cards. Super obvious I know but with confirmation of cards to be produced that will work like amiibo it just seems like a really easy way to get around this (as depending on how they’re produced they’ll probably be a lot more plentiful in stores) however we don’t know exactly how they’ll be distributed. They might be sold like trading cards where you get 5 but you have no idea which or they might be sold only in Gamestop or any number of problems. My other idea wouldn’t have stocking issues no matter what and that’s to simply, put the content on the eShop. What I’m having trouble figuring out with this is what the pricing should be. You don’t want it to be too cheap or people might not even bother buying the amiibo but you can’t charge the same price as you’re only unlocking content for this specific game while some amiibo work with quite a few games.
Another issue I thought of was the pricing of the game itself. It could technically be digital only as you don’t require a portal for the amiibo and this kind of game would require sharing on the internet (another issue which would be a non-issue if this was any company besides Nintendo) and it could even be free-to-play making all profit from amiibo/DLC but I’m not sure how well that would work. I’m also not sure how well a physical release would do. It’s pretty much just a level creator, albeit an expansive one, that requires you to spend extra money to get into the real content. With Mario Maker getting a physical release we can see how well that does but it is a bit different as you aren’t required to spend more money after buying the game. One other issue is do you allow people people to play on levels that say, use content from the Pikachu amiibo if they don’t own this content themselves? I’m not sure as this would be a lot of developer time to create (one more issue!) and even more to update as new amiibo release. If people don’t actually own any amiibo but just download other’s levels and Nintendo’s relying on amiibo sales to fund this game it might not go over very well. They could force you to own at least one amiibo but even that has its issues.
I really like the idea but I might be thinking a little too ambitious for this. Maybe if we could only create adventure style levels and the amiibo simply unlocked enemies or collectibles relating to that character it would work better but then what would Wii Fit Trainer unlock, or Captain Falcon, even Little Mac might be a little hard to cover. What do you guys think of this idea? Do you like it or do you think it has way too many problems and solving them wouldn’t make it fun anymore? I’m still debating myself how well this would actually like so I’d love to know what you think!