Mario Runs From Nintendo’s Expectations

So this will be a follow up on the article I did a few days ago on the release of Super Mario Run on Android phones and systems.

Nintendo has recently stated that the sales numbers for Super Mario Run have so far lived below the expectations Nintendo had for it. They didn’t give specific numbers, so there’s no way to tell how much they expected to make off of the app. This is interesting considering that Mario Run was, in fact, hyped up a lot. People were very excited about finally having a relatively pure Mario experience available on a device that can be played anywhere anytime. I don’t know what Nintendo was expecting, a ton of people have downloaded the app probably on Nintendo’s brand alone.

Though I might be able to guess why they’re so disappointed.

The money.

Mario Run is free to download, but that’s only for access to the first few levels. If you want the full game, you have to give up ten dollars. And that’s for access to about 90 percent of the game. Now, that does skew people’s thought of the game a bit considering ten dollars is kind of a lot for a mobile app, most apps go for a few bucks if they cost any money at all. I know I didn’t want to buy the rest of the game because, honestly, I don’t think it’s enough to warrant ten dollars to play a much more scaled down version of Mario. It’s not even terribly unique either, it’s just Mario but you can’t control anything but the jumping. I’d pay five dollars for it definitely, but ten kind of sounds like a bit much. But who knows, maybe they put a lot of development into it and expected a big payoff. Or perhaps they thought people would just put down any amount of money because it has their name on it. All in all though I don’t think Mario Run was anything close to a failure, the app was downloaded over 78 million times, it’s just that over 5 percent of those people paid to unlock the full game, so I guess that’s what Nintendo is disappointed about.

Moving on from that though, Nintendo also said that the model they used with Mario Run is the model that they’re going to use going into the future. The model they had with Fire Emblem Heroes was that is was all free to play, Nintendo doesn’t want that to continue. They say that Fire Emblem Heroes is “an outlier” and that they “honestly prefer the Super Mario Run model” despite the fact that Emblem Heroes was more successful than Mario Run. I guess they’re really trying to go for it and do something new on mobile platforms. Since they want to keep the pay to play model going into the future while they develop 2-3 mobile apps a year, I guess they’re finally doing something outside the self-contained bubble they’ve been living in.

Despite it all, I’m still excited to see what else Nintendo’s going to do with mobile apps. I mean, Nintendo isn’t a stupid company nor are they as money hungry as Microsoft and Apple, so the chances of them shoving out an underdeveloped piece of sh*t app are pretty low. And even if they are charging money for it, I’ll probably check it out anyways.

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