By Sean Ray | a&e editor
Created by the venerable video game company Nintendo, “Miitomo” is a new app and company’s first foray into smart phone products. The app allows users to create a custom avatar called a Mii, answer questions about themselves and… that’s it. That’s all there is to it.
The existence of “Miitomo” is an incredibly confusing one. When news of Nintendo making an app for the very first time reached the public, many probably assumed it would be SOME kind of video game. Instead, users are treated to a lackluster social media platform, whose only appeal is buying outfits for their Miis.
It is extremely concerning how little there is to “Miitomo,” considering all that could have been done. Maybe players would have to care for their Mii, similar to the “Sims” video games? Maybe there could have been some fun mini-games or ports of famous Nintendo games, like “Mario Bros?” Maybe there could have been something?
Instead, all that players do is answer questions posed by their Miis like “What’s your favorite kind of bread,” get coins for answering those questions and then for good measure, get even more coins for looking at what their friends answered. Those coins can be used to buy various outfits for the Mii, though most users are probably going to find one or two looks that work for them and stick to it.
There is a single minigame players can partake in, but instead of anything actually fun or requiring of skill, the minigame is a glorified pachinko machine which awards users with, you guessed it, more outfits.
There is also the MiiFoto feature, which allows users to place their Miis in pictures taken by their phones, complete with the option of adding amusing features like word balloons or floating hearts. However, there is no point to this. Making photos does not award any coins. While I had some fun messing around with the MiiFotos, it’s ultimately a shallow experience that stops being amusing after a few minutes, which really just describes the entire app as a whole experience.
Honestly, the only way someone is going to get any degree of amusement out of “Miitomo” is if they have a lot of friends who also have the app. Seeing other people’s answers to questions can be interesting, but if you are like me and only know three other people using the damn thing, it is just kind of boring.
Really, the main problem with “Miitomo” is a lack of things to do. It is shocking that a company who put a minigame into “Splatoon” to play while the main game loads can make something this boring. There could have been some potential here. Playing through something like a Mario level as your own customized Mii could have been fun, and if doing that awarded coins, it would have provided even more incentive.
But as it is, “Miitomo” is nothing but a novelty with no one to appeal to. There are better social media platforms out there, there are better video games out there, and there are better apps in general out there. If this is the beginning of Nintendo’s foray into the app market, I desperately hope they think of something better than this garbage for their next release.