It’s been four days since Nintendo released its first free mobile game featuring Mii creation and social sharing with friends you can find via Twitter, Facebook, or face to face connections. It had gotten so popular on its first day, the app crashed from new user intake. The issue has now been resolved, but is evidence that you don’t have to go far to find a fellow user. So how does it hold up over time?
On your first day playing, there is much to do; customizing your character, setting up its voice and personality, finding friends and sharing questions and answers with them, and take pictures of your Mii in different poses and outfits to share. Most of the questions are fun and somewhat original with few repetitive or similar questions. It’s never dull as your Mii will react to certain descriptive words with movements and facial expressions correlating to your response. Responding to friends answers is also a form of entertainment as it somewhat acts like an animated Facebook comment wall. All of it has a “how well do you know your friends?” vibe, and some answers you give them and they give you may surprise and teach you both a little more about the other person. Miis can wander into other Mii’s rooms when offline and online to ask questions and start conversations, so it’s rarely hard to find someone to chat with. Apparently Ben’s favorite five letter word is “chips”. Who knew? If you messed up an answer, no worries: they let you edit them in the all answers section.
Miifoto is a unique feature. You can pose your Mii in outfits you assemble and use backgrounds Nintendo offers or photos from your phone. You can also add stickers, text, and actions to yours Miifoto. Once they are done, you get the option to share with your Miitomo friends and save them to an album where you can view them later and send them to different social media sites, your phone, and email. Check out the first one I took by using a picture of The Blue Mountains in NSW Australia from my phone as my background:
Some people get extra creative by recreating internet memes or movie scenes with their Mii characters. It helps that Miitomo allows you to make up to 5 separate Miitomo characters per account, so you can save and use a variety of characters. and there are dozens of neat and sometimes ridiculous costumes and props to choose from to use on your Mii characters such as pirate garb, space mech armor, a dinosaur suit, and traditional Japanese wear like a layered kimono. Or, you know…you could dress as a hot dog.
You can also earn, buy, and spend coins on an array of outfits and accessories for your Mii or playing their outfit game Mii Drop. Mii Drop with drop your friends like Plinko to try and win themed outfit pieces. It’s fun and a bit addicting, especially as your friend’s Mii reacts as they fall and bump into pinball like bumpers and obstacles. Won all the themed items in a drop game? No worries: drop themes change every week so there will be a new set of clothes and accessories to win in a few days. That is, if you have the coins or game tickets.
And that’s where they get you when it comes to money. You can earn just a few coins by answering social questions, logging in every day, commenting on friends responses a few times a day, and accumulating more and more friends. Where they make the money is coins, which you can purchase in the app if you are tempted or desperate for certain wardrobe pieces, especially and of the limited time or daily showcase pieces that change every 24 hours. The more you buy and try, the higher your “style” level goes which can get you some exclusive pieces. It’s just like any online or mobile game: make something the player feels they need to complete the game or their profile. In this case, you will feel the need to level up in friendship and style. The same gimmicks in any online flash game: buy to win or make progress.
But doing these challenges can help you get points that go towards your My Nintendo account if you set everything up with you Nintendo ID. You also get big bonuses if you link Twitter and Facebook because what company or app doesn’t want to be all up in your social media business nowadays? Nintendo is no different. The more friends you accumulate, the easier it is to complete the daily challenges.
The problem lies in what to do over time. After a day, it get’s to a point where there is little to continue doing on the app. Answering questions and taking ridiculous Miifotos for “heart” up votes kills a little bit of time, but not having game tickets or coins to play Mii drop or buy new wardrobe pieces and not having anything else to do becomes, well, boring and can make the app rather forgettable very quickly. Unless they add new features or mini games and more ways to earn coins or game tickets, it gets old fast. But for some people, despite knowing there is nothing left to do we still keep coming back and checking in on friends and their replies. Due to a sudden lack of activity you can do in the game, the addictiveness wears off, but it never stops you from checking in for signs of activity an new things to do for your alter Mii ego.
I happily recommend Miitomo for those that love Mii making, have Nintendo accounts and want to start using My Nintendo, and people with many friends on Facebook and Twitter. Miitomo is a good replacement for those quiz makers and question games you see on social media as they are much more secure. However, you may want to read over Nintendo’s policies and what info they do use of yours through the app before you get started. And if you have a Nintendo ID, make sure you set up a My Nintendo account first! If you want a few laughs, get to know friends old and new a bit better, and dress up in ridiculous amount of outfit combos, playing the casual Miitomo may be a good fit for you and worth checking out. I just hope that they offer more things to do in the future, but hey: it’s only been day four!