NaturalMotion and Zynga recently released Dawn of Titans for iOS and Android devices. The game takes a major leap forward in graphics processing and visual fidelity being rendered on mobile devices thanks to NaturalMotion’s new Echo Engine. The game marks a stark evolution in what sort of games mobile gamers can expect to see on portable devices in the near future.
However, during an interview with NaturalMotion’s CEO, Torsten Reil, I was able to squeeze in a few questions about NautralMotion’s potential support for the upcoming release of the Nintendo Switch, and whether or not we could see their breakthrough technology on Nintendo’s device.
In regards to supporting the Nintendo Switch hardware, Reil states…
“I think theoretically it’s possible. And I’m sure from a device point of view [the Switch] would be able to support [Dawn of Titans], given how we’ve optimized the game. For us, we always need to look at (A) does the business model work on that device? And (B) are there enough units out there?
“The attractive thing with iOS and Android is obviously there are literally hundreds of millions of units out there. And with free-to-play the accessibility and barrier to entry – the accessibility is high, the barrier to entry is low. That allows us to do what we’re doing.
“A big part of our business model is – however kind of dry that sounds – is that we try to invest in the product to make it so awesome that you want to show it to your friends and recommend it to your friends. And that works particularly well if you have a large userbase. It works less and less well if the userbase is small. In which case it makes sense to charge more, but since our games are free we want people to recommend them.”
On the subject matter of install bases and user engagement, the most logical question after that was to ask about whether or not the Nintendo Switch would be a viable platform to support if it sold like the Wii, which was very, very popular when it released a decade ago. In fact, the console managed to move more than 100 million SKUs globally.
In regards to the Switch potentially becoming a big seller upon release and whether or not that would change NaturalMotion’s policy on supporting the system, Reil states…
“We would never rule it out… but many of these things are a matter of focus, right? Like, mobile has been so good to us, this is how we build our entire company that at the moment that’s kind of our biggest focus.
“Again, never say never. We’re not ruling it out, but it’s definitely iOS and Android is where it’s at for us at the moment.”
NaturalMotion’s Morpheme, Europhia and their new in-house Echo Engine are some of the most prestigious pieces of software technology out there. The Europhia helped give GTA IV and GTA V those realistic ragdoll reactions when people get hit, fall down stairs, trip over objects or get shot and stumble around, and helped make Red Dead Redemption as realistic as it was when it came to character movements and interactions.
The company took the advancements they’ve made from the home console space and have evolved it for mobile devices, using dynamic scalability for both low-end and high-end hardware. They recently released Dawn of Titans to the Google Play and iTunes App Store for free.
Additionally, Nintendo has plans on unveiling more details and information about the Nintendo Switch during the early half of January, 2017.