Get ready to totally kill your iPhone battery because Nintendo is bringing Mario Kart Tour to Apple’s smartphone.
Super Mario Odyssey, the next major Mario game, will land on the Nintendo Switch this October. But if you can’t wait that long, here’s a cool way to get a taste of one of Odyssey‘s major new features: Cappy, Mario’s anthropomorphized hat that allows the famous plumber to temporarily “possess” and control other characters and objects in the game. An intrepid developer has modded the N64 classic Super Mario 64 to include Cappy’s “possession” feature. Check out the video, and grab the modded ROM in the video’s description if you have an N64 emulator.
Nostalgic gamers rejoice, for Nintendo is bringing back its classic console as the mini Super NES Classic console system. It will come with 21 games like Super Mario World, F-ZERO, Final Fantasy III, Earthbound, Super Mario Kart, and Star Fox 2, which was previously unreleased. Nintendo will launch the mini SNES Classic Edition on September 29th for US$79.99. Just like the NES Classic, it will have an HDMI port so you can hook it up directly to your TV. Hopefully Nintendo learned its lesson when it released the NES Classic, which was hard to come by because of limited stock and was discontinued earlier this year. When September finally comes around, it wouldn’t be surprising if the SNES Classic is quickly sold out.
Nintendo released Super Mario Run 2 for the iPhone and iPad just in time for the weekend. The update for the Mario runner game lets you unlock more levels without paying by completing a Bowser challenge, adds new Yoshi colors for Toad Rally and makes it easier to win rally tickets, and improves overall game play. You can download Super Mario Run for free, and unlocking all of the levels costs US$9.99 as an in-app purchase.
OK, Nintendo fans, you have another game to take up your free time: Fire Emblem Heroes. The fantasy-based role playing game (RPG) puts you on a quest to save heroes from different worlds and stop the Emblian Empire’s evil rule. The game is based on the Fire Emblem game franchise and pits you in battles and duels as you explore. Unfortunately, you’ll need an active internet connection to play, just like Super Mario Run because Nintendo seems to think we’re all clever hackers out to steal their game. Fire Emblem Heroes is a free download for the iPhone and iPad, and it includes some in-game purchases.
Couldn’t snag an NES Classic this holiday season? You can still relive some classic gaming memories with the launch of the original six Mega Man games for iOS & Android, each updated to support touchscreen play.
Many hoped that Nintendo’s single in-app purchase approach for Super Mario Run would save us from the microtransaction free-to-play hell that is the iOS App Store. And while heavy marketing from Apple and the Nintendo brand gave it a boost, in the end only about 3% of users are estimated to have paid.
Nintendo’s Super Mario Run for the iPhone and iPad is off to a great start topping 40 million downloads in only four days. This follows the US$5 million the game brought in during its first 24 hours.
Super Mario Run has garnered as many as five million downloads and US$5 million in revenue in just the first 24 hours since the game launched. VentureBeat rounded up estimates from three third party app metric services, with two of the three offering estimates in that range. If accurate, it would represent a 20% conversion rate of people who have download the free-to-download game. Nintendo gives users access to three levels, plus a tiny taste of the boss level, in the free download. For $9.99, users can unlock the whole game. $5 million is not a lot of money to a company like Apple—and Apple’s cut would be roughly $1.5 million—but it’s likely to be significant for any gaming company. Especially in the first 24 hours. Mobile gaming is big, and Apple has been pushing Super Mario Run hard (as Jeff and I discussed in Friday’s Daily Observations). It would seem that Apple’s user base is responding well to that push. Just for fun, the game’s trailer is below.
Nintendo released Super Mario Run for the iPhone and iPad Thursday afternoon, and by early Friday morning it was already the top grossing and top free title on Apple’s App Store. The game is a free download with a US$9.99 in-app purchase to unlock extra levels, and considering Mario’s top spot on the App Store plenty of players are happy to pay up.
Mario fans, Nintendo Mobile and Apple have posted a video of Mario-creator Shigeru Miyamoto drawing the character on an iPad Pro with Apple Pencil. The game launched Thursday exclusively on iOS, and Apple has been pushing the game hard. In this video, you see Mario and other characters from the franchise take shape on the iPad screen. Apple also published a blog post about the video and featured it on the company’s website. To me, drawing/art is voodoo. I can’t do it. Watching the process of an iconic figure taking shape is plain fascinating to me.
Investors, just like gamers, are a fickle lot, and Pokémon GO is showing just how true that is for Nintendo. The company’s stock shot up to its highest point in decades after pretty much everyone with a smartphone went crazy over the game, then took a big hit when Nintendo reminded investors it has only a partial stake in developer Niantic and Pokémon Company.