I'm back, baby! And I have come bearing... a roundtable.
I remember, during the Touch Generations days, Miyamoto had repeatedly intimated that he wanted to keep the audience coming back every day. Of course this applied to games like Big Brain Academy, Brain Training, Wii Fit, and Nintendogs, but games like Puzzle League and Picross DS had some sort of daily challenge mode. Y'know... OUR games. When the 3DS launched, it was indicated that the onboard software, Streetpass features, and Play Coins were meant to encourage usage and ensure user retention.
It seems to me that Nintendo has been putting elements which encourage the user to 'check in' daily into more and more of their games. Of course, all of the free-to-start games have elements of this. It would be easy to attribute this design to Nintendo chasing the mobile market, but, as I already mentioned, Nintendo's been blowing this horn for quite a while. They might be blowing it harder and implementing more modern concepts like timer-based economies to compete with games like Crossy Road and Pac-Man 256, but even titles like Animal Crossing could be seen as early stabs at the concept.
Now traditional games like Triforce Heroes and... Triforce Heroes also include elements which reward daily play. In the case of, say, Triforce Heroes, it's not even daily 'play', necessarily, but even just daily check-in. Wake the system up, check the market, try your hand at the daily lottery, and put the system back to sleep. That pretty much sums up the vast majority of my Triforce Heroes sessions.
While I was playing Pokemon Rumble World and Shuffle, I similarly made sure to check in and get my daily goodies/gems/whatnot. And I feel an unexplainable sense of loss when I forget to power up Pokemon Picross and complete the daily challenge. I mean, it's not like Picrites grow on trees!
So, yes, to a certain extent, it can be said that Nintendo has successfully tricked my weak-minded self into checking in every day, but I don't really think that it's a good thing. My 3DS sessions now typically consist of logging in to the daily apps, doin' my business, and then logging out. As with the Streetpass titles, these types of experiences are seriously diminishing the playtime for traditional games (the type that caused most of us to fall in love with Nintendo in the first place). I haven't touched my enormous backlog in forever. If I think about it rationally, I KNOW that almost any of those games will provide me with far more utils/hour. But, again, weak-minded.
What do you guys think about this trend? Is it positive or negative? Is it perhaps a necessary evil to keep up with the Joneseses? Has it seriously changed your gaming habits, particularly in the portable realm?
Now, if you'll excuse me, I don't think that I've completed today's Pokemon Picross challenge...