Way back in September, the legendary designer Shigeru Miyamoto of Nintendo took the stage at what would eventually be an iPhone unveiling, and took the wraps off their first real major push into the mobile world. It’s not their first app for mobile devices, but it is their first real game. (Miitomo had some mini-games in it, but it’s really just a social app with Mii’s in it.)
At the time, Apple, and Miyamoto-san, hyped it up as an Apple exclusive, with a release date pegged for some time in December.
All things considered, it was a pretty big deal for not just Nintendo, but also Apple. The Cupertino-based company snagged a huge exclusive, and Super Mario Run brought in a ton of cash for Nintendo in a very short period of time. It’s also probably a pretty good indication that, in the future, Apple will be the exclusive launch destination for future Nintendo games.
But, as we’ve seen today, it doesn’t mean that iOS devices will be the soleplatform for Nintendo games. While it’s never been a secret that Super Mario Run would find its way to Android eventually, Nintendo has been relatively quiet on a release date. They still are, technically. But, at least we’re one step closer to an official launch, as the game now has a landing page in the Google Play Store, and Android users can pre-register to get notified when it becomes available to buy.
There isn’t a price tag associated with the game right now, but it stands to reason that it will have a similar launch and price tag as the iOS version. That means it will be free to download and try, but, after the player reaches a set period of play, they will have to fork over $9.99 to unlock the full game.
Pricing for apps and games on our mobile devices continues to be a hot button topic for many people, as finding that sweet spot for a price is still messy. That’s one reason why the free-to-play model has done so well. Paying nothing up front, but giving the player options to pay as little, or as much, as they want down the line to unlock what they want works.
People aren’t afraid to pay for digital content — it’s that initial price tag that seems to hold them up, though.
But a $9.99 price tag for Super Mario Run makes sense, because this is Nintendo we’re talking about. And if the iOS release is any indicator, Android is just another opportunity for Nintendo to make buckets of money.
Will it work out that way, though? Android users actually have a bit of a break here, because there are actual reviews of Super Mario Run out there to check out, and see if the game is any good before they buy it. iOS users, while reviews started to trickle in ahead of launch (and Apple held demos of the game at retail stores) basically had to go in blind.
If you’re an Android user, do you plan on buying Super Mario Run when it launches? Or is the $9.99 price tag keeping you away from the game? Let me know!