Super Mario Run "did not meet" Nintendo's expectations in terms of sales

Posted March 25, 2017

Super Mario Run is one of Nintendo's first mobile games and it released past year for iOS. But the company is refusing to admit its pricing was a mistake.

Super Mario Run finally makes its way to Android devices.

"Heroes' is an outlier", a senior company official told Nikkei. "We honestly prefer the 'Super Mario Run' model".

They worry that trying to fleece customers with microtransactions undermines the value of those characters, and ultimately Nintendo's business as a whole.

While this was a model that was controversial to many along with the need to always be connected to the internet in order to play it, it appears that it's a model that Nintendo prefers. Or will it be two outliers to one?

Nintendo president Tatsumi Kimishima admitted in a recent interview with Nikkei that revenue from the game "did not meet our expectations". While the Android launch this week will certainly help, as will the updates to the iOS version, the one-time pay model for the title likely means it'll be a short boost followed by more stagnation.

That model involves the first few levels of Super Mario Run being playable for free with the remaining levels being locked behind a $9.99 paywall. More significantly, the goal of the venture was to introduce new players to Nintendo's classic franchises and characters, "and thereby bring them back to Nintendo's dedicated hardware as well as introduce them to Nintendo's expanded software library". Unfortunately, today's news muddies the waters regarding that game's payment strategy, since it's now unclear whether it will lean towards Fire Emblem Heroes' freemium model, as Moriyasu said, or be part of Nintendo's preference for a pay-once option.