Nintendo announced during their e3 conference they were throwing their own cap into the NFC figurine arena.
Being described as "toys to life", Nintendo's NFC figures will recognize the special chip within the Wii U gamepad and change the way you play specific games. Nintendo demonstrated with a whimsical Super Smash Bros fight. Near the end, a Mario figurine was placed on the gamepad, and Mario joined the fight, winning the contest! The figurines are officially called Amiibo's. Reggie Fils - Aime went on to say the data reading NFC capabilities of the Wii U went both ways, and your figurines data will change as you play with it. The figures data can become uniquely your own the longer and more frequent you play with it. Finally, Reggie stated that Super Smash Bros. is only the first of future games to support Amiibo play. Mario Kart 8 will also feature Amiibo's in the game at some point in the future.