Two men in business suits pull up to your house. They step out of their white car and quietly knock on your door. When you open it, they move forward, saying as they do:
"Wii would like to play."
This is how Nintendo introduced us to the Wii in 2006, Nintendo's first step into the next generation of consoles. They emphasized the family and social nature of the console, selling it as a way to bond with friends and family alike.
Now, a decade later, they did it again with Miitomo. Nintendo's first iOS app/game/social media thing launched March 30.
The closest comparison is that it's the future's version of Tamagotchi, only without the responsibilities of having to feed it and the guilt over letting it die because you went on vacation for a week.
Miitomo allows you to create a Mii, a tiny avatar that interacts with the Miis of your friends, so long as they have a Facebook or Twitter. Face-to-face adding is possible but impractical.
The main attraction of Mittomo is its question system. Your Mii will ask you questions ranging from, “What’s your Zodiac sign?” to “What’s your deepest fear?” These questions and answers are visible to your friends, giving you a huge opportunity to learn your friends’ deepest, darkest secrets. Or their favorite kind of bread. Or both.
Answering and commenting on questions gives you coins you can use to either play the Miitomo Drop game, which is effectively Plinko to win Mii clothes and accessories, or shop for clothes directly at the store.
Two things will limit your time on Miitomo — you’ll either run out of interesting answers from your friends, or your battery will explode. Seriously, this thing is a major battery drain. The 3D imagery takes a little while to load too, but it doesn’t take more time than Twitter to open up. Unfortunately, every time you switch away from the app, it has to reload next time you switch back to it.
It’s adorable, interesting and offers you a subtle way to find out things about your friends that you never thought to ask. For me, that means I now know what a friend of mine that I haven’t spoken to in five years thinks about his first crush and that tacos are my old roommate’s favorite food. I’ll probably learn more if I ever make more than two friends on it though.
My biggest complaint about Miitomo is that I don't have enough friends, but I guess that's on Mii.