When Nintendo first announced that the major Japanese company would be entering the mobile game arena, there was a lot of worries and gnashing of teeth from traditional console gaming fans. The late Satoru Iwata, who was president of Nintendo, explained that they largely wanted to use mobile games to advertise their own console games. It can be argued how well they stuck to that initial claim, but there’s little argument that Dragalia Lost was an entirely new IP. The collaboration between Nintendo and CyGames (Granblue Fantasy) was completely original when it launched in 2018 and is scheduled to be shut down in a few months on November 30.
The action-RPG was Nintendo’s most ambitious mobile title in some ways, with lots of characters, enemies, updates, and more in a world designed from the ground up. As time went on, though, it became fairly clear that the joint effort was losing steam as updates got more repetitive and sparse, leading to a climactic conclusion in July of this year. Now that the game’s imminent closure has been scheduled, its currency premium currency diamantium is no longer for sale.
It had been previously reported in 2019 that CyGames and its parent company CyberAgent were not super enthused about the way Nintendo was handling Dragalia Lost, suggesting that the Kyoto giant was too squeamish about monetization when the game could be significantly more successful for its publishers. For what it’s worth, my own sources have said the same thing, which was a tidbit I thought I would drop in this story without realizing that The Wall Street Journal had reported on it years ago. Whoops.
If that is the case, it does explain why the game’s content eventually dried up, and why it eventually closed down as opposed to Fire Emblem Heroes which still makes bank today. It’s unclear, especially looking at Fire Emblem Heroes, exactly what the line of no return is for monetization at Nintendo, but they seemingly did not wish to cross it with Dragalia Lost.