Today, Nintendo celebrates a huge milestone. For the first time ever, its most iconic video game character, Mario, makes his debut on a device not produced by Nintendo. Super Mario Run, a fully-featured platformer starring everyone’s favorite plummer, is now available in Apple’s App Store for iPhone and iPad.
The game boasts 24 levels spread across six worlds, as well as multiple ways to play, including an online mode called Toad Rally where you can compete with gamers across the globe.
Three worlds into the game, I can safely say it’s excellent. I’ve played it on both my iPhone and iPad, and I prefer it on the bigger screen – because playing Super Mario Run on the iPad is the best way to appreciate the game’s beautiful visuals and charming audio. My only complaint is that I don’t like that you need an internet connection to play the game. The reasoning for this is because Nintendo thinks it will prevent piracy. While I understand this, it’s a shame that this game can’t be played offline. I, like many others, would love to play Super Mario Run on an airplane, in a train tunnel or other places where internet access is limited, but we won’t be able to because of this requirement.
Super Mario Run is free to download but to get full access to the game, a one-time payment of $9.99 is required. Keep in mind that if you own an iPhone and iPad, you only have to pay once to enjoy the full game on both devices. I’m glad Nintendo isn’t trying to nickel and dime consumers the way other app developers do with their freemium software. I’d much rather pay up front for a product that isn’t built to make me spend more money in the future or one that is riddled with intrusive ads. Hopefully the success of this game will set a new precedent for what mobile gamers want and expect from software on the App Store. If you’re part of Nintendo’s rewards program, My Nintendo, you can rack up points simply by playing Super Mario Run. This integration is similar to what Nintendo did for its first iOS app released earlier this year: Miitomo.
Super Mario Run is a great game that’s worth the price of admission. It’s easy to pick up and play, and there are levels that will seriously challenge those of us who’ve been playing Super Mario games since the days of the NES. With the immense popularity of the NES Classic Edition and the high level of interest in Super Mario Run and Nintendo Switch, Nintendo is poised to, once again, become the most successful company in the video game industry.