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'Super Mario Run' Hits 40 Million Downloads

Nintendo announced that its first smartphone game, Super Mario Run, has been downloaded more than 40 million times since its December 15 debut.

The app is a mix between the venerable Super Mario Bros. and the endless runners that have become so popular on mobile platforms. Mario automatically runs through the game's levels--players merely have to let him know when to jump over obstacles, into coins, and around enemies. Nintendo designed this simplified control scheme to make Super Mario Run easy to play on devices that don't have physical buttons for more complex gameplay.

That's how Super Mario Run breaks away from other titles in the franchise. It also eschews a staple of mobile gaming--microtransactions that let people unlock new content or bypass artificial barriers to progress--in favor of asking people to pay $10 for access to the full game. (You can download a short demo at no cost.) Nintendo didn't abandon its business model just because many consumers expect to be able to play mobile games for free.

Many people aren't happy about the company's decision. Reviews of Super Mario Run on the App Store often praise the game for its design while slamming Nintendo for wanting them to pay for access to the full version. Consumers have been conditioned to expect more bang for their buck--which often means entire games for no money, at least in the App Store--and they aren't happy about Nintendo breaking from the mold with Super Mario Run.

It would be interesting to know how many of Super Mario Run's 40 million downloads led to sales of the full game. The title is currently at the top of the App Store's lists of the most-downloaded and highest-grossing applications, so it must be doing fairly well, though it's also worth pointing out that Apple has been pushing Super Mario Run since it was revealed at the iPhone 7 keynote in September. Both companies put their full weight behind the game.

Super Mario Run is available from the App Store now. Nintendo has not announced a release date for Android smartphones.

  • IceMyth
    The problem with the game, 1st it rated 2-2.5 on AppStore. 2nd they charge you 14$ if you want to continue playing after 3 levels. 3rd, (speculation) more levels will be released and if you need to play them you wil have to buy them separately -> tons of $$.
    Also from what I read the ticket things to race vs your friends you will need to buy them (You get some free but if you want to play more you will have to buy them).
    Reply
  • photonboy
    The slogo is "the feeling never changes" but you can't control movement, just jumping.

    Yeah, that makes sense.
    Reply
  • TheViper
    19034420 said:
    The problem with the game, 1st it rated 2-2.5 on AppStore. 2nd they charge you 14$ if you want to continue playing after 3 levels. 3rd, (speculation) more levels will be released and if you need to play them you wil have to buy them separately -> tons of $$.
    Also from what I read the ticket things to race vs your friends you will need to buy them (You get some free but if you want to play more you will have to buy them).

    Almost everything you just posted is wrong.
    It's $10, not $14. And no other micro-transactions or fees exist. Rally Tickets are earned or traded for, not bought. New levels also won't cost anything extra but they have no plans for new levels yet anyway.

    One more thing, many of the low ratings are from people that have never bought anything on the App Store and are knocking Nintendo for their unfamiliarity of buying an app (regardless of price). This means they've tapped a market that normally doesn't even play games....again.
    Reply
  • IceMyth
    19035068 said:
    19034420 said:
    The problem with the game, 1st it rated 2-2.5 on AppStore. 2nd they charge you 14$ if you want to continue playing after 3 levels. 3rd, (speculation) more levels will be released and if you need to play them you wil have to buy them separately -> tons of $$.
    Also from what I read the ticket things to race vs your friends you will need to buy them (You get some free but if you want to play more you will have to buy them).

    Almost everything you just posted is wrong.
    It's $10, not $14. And no other micros-transactions or fees exist. Rally Tickets are earned or traded for, not bought. New levels also won't cost anything extra but they have no plans for new levels yet anyway.

    One more thing, many of the low ratings are from people that have never bought anything on the App Store and are knocking Nintendo for their unfamiliarity of buying an app (regardless of price). This means they've tapped a market that normally doesn't even play games....again.

    I hate to argu with other people but first you assumed I was wrong about the price, so check this "http://imgur.com/a/D9het", yea maybe I forgot to mention that 14$ on AppStore (Canada). Second, so all these low rating are from people who have no clue what they are doing neither they play games.

    Lastly, how can you be so sure that there will be no other purchases with more levels, mainly what you will buy now is 6-levels only?
    Reply
  • wifiburger
    meh, trow numbers all you want, don't care, it's a mobile game, too casual and nobody will remember it or hang around like the true gamers that buy full games from Nintendo,

    why bother, mario bros on 3ds are 20$ used and you have so much more !
    Reply
  • zblade
    This game screams the phrase "you can't please everyone". People dont want to pay a set fee for a full game, people also dont like micro transactions and people hate in game ads. So to please everyone, Nintendo should release Mario Run as a free to play game with no micro transaction and no ads and make absolutely no money off it. They should do this for all mobile games and also make sure that there are timely updates and new stages every month. Making absolutely no money at all and keeping up with content while pleasing everyone. Such a great business model, I dont know why all business dont do this.
    Reply
  • atljsf
    no, release it at 5 dollars, and don't charge for anything else

    the game in general, will be forgotten quickly, if i can't use a gamepad or more than jump by tapping the screen, it is not fun
    Reply
  • beans4you
    Hey Tom, Ford ads are breaking the mobile responsiveness and leaving some comments unreadable on this site. Just saying.
    Reply
  • memadmax
    Great play n toss game.
    Has about 3-4 hours of useful entertainment value then it drops from there(cause thats how long it takes to "beat" it).

    Anyways, I would rather much prefer a SMB3/2/1 port than this....
    Reply
  • bit_user
    Huh. I was guessing it'd be an AR game, somehow related to running. I guess that'd be a tricky thing to get right.

    This is much lower risk and if even 10% of downloaders buy the full version, that's $40 M of revenue. And I always thought the biggest problem with Wii U is that it bundled its own tablet. They should've just supported any Android/iOS tablet or phone.

    Still, I'm waiting for the next sign that Pokemon Go wasn't just a flash in the pan.
    Reply