Postdigitality in Children’s Crossmedia Play: A Case Study of Nintendo’s Amiibo Figurines

  • Bjorn NansenEmail author
  • Benjamin Nicoll
  • Thomas Apperley
Part of the Studies in Childhood and Youth book series (SCY)


In this chapter, we use Nintendo Amiibo to interrogate the evolving intersection of crossmedia products and children’s cultures of play. Amiibo figurines are based on characters from various Nintendo franchises, such as Super Mario Bros., and use NFC tags to connect wirelessly to Nintendo’s Switch, 3DS and Wii U platforms. In their production, promotion and everyday use, the figurines solicit playful practices that cut across physical objects and digital spaces. Drawing on interface analysis, promotional discourses and videos of play on YouTube, this analysis highlights how Amiibos are framed as a means to envelop children in Nintendo’s crossmedia ecosystem by reinforcing a physical connection between child, toy, software, platform and intellectual property. Informed by the concept of postdigital play, we account for this reciprocal dynamic between children’s everyday play and the branded world of IoT products, and we point to emerging questions around children’s data literacies.


Amiibo Nintendo Postdigital Data Play 



This work was supported through funding from the Australian Research Council (ARC): Discovery Early Career Researcher Award grant DE13010073 and Discovery Project grant DP140101503.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bjorn Nansen
    • 1
    Email author
  • Benjamin Nicoll
    • 2
  • Thomas Apperley
    • 3
  1. 1.University of MelbourneMelbourneAustralia
  2. 2.Queensland University of TechnologyBrisbaneAustralia
  3. 3.Tampere UniversityTampereFinland

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