Super Mario Run [Free] finally launched on Android this week after many months of iOS exclusivity, and everyone's second favorite plumber taking the limelight yet again has led to much speculation and discussion over whether Nintendo's first true mobile title has been a success or not. Compared to the cash cow and cultural phenomenon that was Niantic's Pokemon GO [Free], Super Mario Run has not reached such lofty heights, and despite finally launching across all platforms, it's unlikely that the Android release will serve as a catalyst for sudden unprecedented success. However, in a recent article, Japanese financial newspaper Nikkei has suggested that, despite the fact Super Mario Run "did not meet [Nintendo's] expectations" according to Nintendo President Tatsumi Kimishima, the release and subsequent Android launch were primarily focused around expanding the fan base, irrespective of earnings.

In the article published this morning, a 'senior company official' at Nintendo emphasises how Fire Emblem Heroes [Free] has instead acted as the cash cow for the company, with the gacha mechanics achieving significant financial success since its February launch. Despite this, Nintendo have emphasised that Fire Emblem Heroes "is an outlier", and "we honestly prefer the Super Mario Run model". This is hypothesised to be because gacha mechanics, in the long run, end up 'undermining the value of Nintendo's characters', and so attracting more users and gaining more visibility is still at the forefront of the publisher's mobile strategy, even at the expense of profit. If this rhetoric is to be believed, it's certainly good news for iOS gamers who can expect more premium releases down the line from Nintendo. However, the success (or lack thereof) of the Switch will likely play a major part in defining the future plans for Nintendo on iOS and Android.

[via Nikkei]

  • WhoaManWtF

    I don't really care anymore because I bought a switch... But hey Nintendo, the problem is this... If you are going to make a game and charge premium prices for it, MAKE a premium game! not a runner with a stamina system that would be free by any other company minus mario.

    • nav1

      Most of the "free" games you mentioned don't even come close to what SMR offers. I don't think you've given it a real chance. It is very addictive and fun (until you 100% it, which can take a while).

      • yogg sarons cousin

        DUDE...this . I've actually gave it another try yesterday after dropping it a few months ago, because... well you know, and NOW without the bad hype everywhere brainwashing me, i am actually enjoying this freaking game ( building towers and shit to) it's a really engaging game always something to do and tinker with despite it being very limited world, the tours are really 50% of the game , when your getting in to really competitive side of the game it becomes an awesome experience, and of course the" Nintendo" quality of the look and feel is of course in a league of its own.

      • Edwin Ramirez

        Dude, it's Rayman Jungle Run with a Mario paint job. And Rayman is FTP. Coming from Nintendo, one would expect them to come up with something new for mobile and not just charge 10 bucks for a game that would otherwise be free.

      • nav1

        The first RJR really is a great game, and imo the best adaptation of a console game to mobile. Can't deny that. But it wasn't FTP, at least not event it came out in iOS. I remember paying something to be able to play it at launch. The sequels are not as good because they lean too much on FTP even allowing you to skip or get help on levels by using items. That to me ruined them, because why bother trying %100 levels if you can just cheat your way through them.

        Aside from that, RJR is a tougher game to %100, but SMR is much deeper in terms of game mechanics and overall gameplay. But you have to play the full game to realize it, the free levels don't show that.

      • Wize N Witty


    • 3DDesigner

      I was thinking about getting one, but there are hardly any games for it. and to pay $300 for the console and $60 for Zelda, is a little bit too much.. and looking at the upcoming titles, there might be only 10 games by the end of the year.. kinda disappointment.... If they had the Dungeon games for it, (can't think of the name.. it's the one where you have to draw your maps) then I'll think about it..

      • DanKetch

        The problem I'm facing now is that I have a $400 (Canadian) Zelda machine right now. It's great if you're the one guy that's wanted to play NeoGeo Pocket games for the last 20 years, or pay $70 for Bomberman & $65 for 1-2 Switch (which should prolly be a throw in title with your console purchase).

      • WhoaManWtF

        I am really enjoying Blaster Master and Fast rmx, Snipperclips is fun multiplayer too and I never had it before so I got I am Setsuna and am enjoying that as well.

      • 3DDesigner

        Well so far, there is no Switch to be found anymore for the next 2 weeks..
        I guess they must be doing pretty good atm.

      • WhoaManWtF

        It is a fun system, I don't buy game consoles generally either like I have a PC that is multi-use but can certainly game, a 3ds and now a switch. I am liking the Switch a lot and assuming they keep up on games I think it will be huge.

      • 3DDesigner

        people are asking insane prices for the consoles on Ebay lol.... they all know it's sold out.. $400-$600 for a $299 item... sigh

      • WhoaManWtF

        Yeah it sold better than they expected I think they underestimated the aging gamer market that wants quality pick up and go games. They will catch up though and hopefully the scalpers get stuck with inventory.

      • 3DDesigner

        I agree.. went to all the local shops, even Best Buy , Target, Amazon, Gamestop etc are sold out for the next 2-3 weeks. Bought the Zelda game... now need the console LOL.

  • nav1

    Good on them for sticking to their plan, I enjoyed SMR very much, and for me it was well worth the money. It is indeed the least expensive REAL Mario game available.

    • WhoaManWtF

      I am more than willing to drop the money on a real mario game, I did give it a chance, I tried out the multiplayer (til I ran out of stamina) played through the free levels... hell I had bought and loaded a itunes card to buy the game before it launched and only changed my mind after playing the demo. I am a huge Nintendo fan but that is just a mobile game and I am not the least bit impressed.

      • nav1

        Fair enough, but to be honest the free levels aren't a good measure of the rest of the game. They are too simple. The rest can get quite challenging and force to think about how the levels are laid out when going for the colored coins. And that is the main problem with the game. If you're not interested in collecting all coins and all levels, then it's not worth it. Personally I loved collecting every single one of them, and doing so for me felt every bit a Mario game, because of how you need to play and the hidden mechanics you learn. Toad Rally is also a lot of fun, and while it is pretty much like other mobile games in that you're just playing and not really accomplishing anything, it's my perfect "time waster" since the game came out.

      • Pamza

        I am sorry, but I don't understand what multi player and stamina? Did you mean Toad rally and Rally Tickets?

  • curtisrshideler

    I enjoyed SMR, but it wasn't Classic enough for me. Maybe a board to move around on like SMB3 would've given me more satisfaction. I don't know. However, I didn't spend a dime on FEH. So, I'm all for more premium titles. I'd like them to have the option to be offline though. I don't care about competing with others. And for goodness sakes, Nintendo, make the NES Classic into an app and charge us a couple bucks for each game. I can do it for free, but would happily pay quite a bit to get it from you.

  • Luci0

    I buy anything Nintendo , if it's a game franchise I enjoyed. Wish fire emblem was a real fire emblem game - larger maps and an actual story..
    Not concerned about price of SMR, 10$ for a fun mario game is worth it for me. I also pre ordered a switch and love it!

  • Rohit Bhatia

    again i would like to say if you want to make a premium game price it right according to the content and the after release love you are going to give it.

  • nini

    "I'm old, why can't they do things they way I wish they would?"

  • WhoaManWtF

    Yeah they sure do have a hard time selling consoles huh?