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Nintendo’s Amiibo Market in US

As a major selling point for one of the largest video game companies, Nintendo, amiibo figures have been popular these years since they were launched by Nintendo due to the customizations they bring to various games. Simply by tapping the amiibo figures onto the game console (i.e. Nintendo Switch), players can unlock special contents which will appear in the games they are playing.

This essentially is a two-sided market where Nintendo/game developers who program the amiibo figures receive money and players receive the figures as well as extra digital elements in games. The currency is money, given by players, to Nintendo/game developers. In this situation players always have weak/strong rank-order preferences over amiibo figures while to reach the greatest number of paying players, the game developers tend to program for those amiibo figures of characters in popular games first. That’s probably the reason why the most popular amiibos feature the most various contents.

One market feature is the programmed mechanism between different digital contents and amiibo figures, which is specifically, the kinds of digital contents players can get after tapping their amiibo figures on game consoles. This market feature is worth exploring as different designs directly change the things being exchanged in the market.

In current design, digital elements appear randomly for each amiibo figure no matter what specific figures players are using, and figures of characters in those specific games can be used in some other games too. The latter design element benefits players as they are not restricted to use their figures in only one game, while an alternate design for the randomly appearing mechanism is to program those more special, rare digital contents which are hard to get without amiibo figures in games to those more expensive figures. By connecting the “internal” digital values with the external prices of amiibos, the new design may enhance strong preferences among players.







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