Following the phenomenal success of its Pokémon GO app, Nintendo is unleashing its biggest franchise onto Apple’s mobile platforms with Super Mario Run.
Launching exclusively on iPhone and iPad in December, Super Mario Run has Mario racing through the Mushroom Kingdom to collect as many coins as he can while heading towards the end of each level.
The side-scrolling endless runner game will be free-to-download, with a portion of the game being free to play, with all additional content unlockable for a (yet unannounced) set purchase price.
Mario creator and Nintendo’s chief game designer Shigeru Miyamoto announced the title’s release at Apple’s press event in San Francisco.
“Super Mario has evolved whenever he has encountered a new platform,” said Miyamoto, “and for the first time ever, players will be able to enjoy a full-fledged Super Mario game with just one hand, giving them the freedom to play while riding the subway, or my favorite, eating a hamburger.”
Nintendo entered the mobile gaming market earlier this year with its social app Miitomo, followed by Pokémon GO in July.
Nintendo’s console sales have dwindled in recent years and the Japanese video game company has turned to the lucrative mobile market to increase its profits and visibility in the marketplace. North American Nintendo stock rose by over 29 per cent following the announcement of Super Mario Run.
In 2017, other familiar Nintendo franchises will hit mobile, including tactical role-playing franchise Fire Emblem and the social build-and-design series Animal Crossing.
Nintendo will release a new console in 2017 code-named NX, which it hopes will revive its sagging console business. Their current Wii U console has underwhelmed in sales, with 12.8 million consoles sold worldwide to date, far below the sales of their previous Wii console, which has sold 101.63 million units to date. It is also trailing far behind its competitors: Sony’s PlayStation 4 has sold 36 million units and Microsoft’s Xbox One has sold an estimated 19 million units.