Why Nintendo Went Mobile For Super Mario Run

Super Mario Run
(Image credit: Nintendo)

One of the upcoming titles for Apple's smart devices is Nintendo's Super Mario Run. The new game is designed to leverage the popularity of Nintendo's pudgy plumber and take advantage of Apple's deepseated market saturation with their smartphones. Nintendo's Shigeru Miyamoto recently explained why Super Mario Run has ended up on mobile devices.

In an interview with Yahoo!, Shigeru Miyamoto explained,

Certainly smart devices have their unique benefits: a persistent network connection and an individual account. And so we are looking at smart devices as an option going forward and we have more games in development for smart devices. We are looking at how we can use the unique elements of a smart device and how we can make unique games with those elements. One of the reasons we focused on iPhone first was the stability of the platform and being able to get the level of response that we want out of the games.And that's not to say that Android devices don't have the same level of responsiveness. But because there are so many Android devices, trying to engineer the game to work across them all requires quite a lot of time

That actually makes a lot of sense. In fact, a lot of people oftentimes compare Apple and Nintendo to each other given that they both focus on utilizing proprietary branded technology- keeping their software and growth aligned within a exclusive ecosystem.

Both companies have had a unique trajectory in growth over the years -- Apple more-so than Nintendo -- but it was the similitude in how they go about establishing compatibility and stability within that ecosystem that drew Nintendo to Apple. As Shigeru Miyamoto mentions in the quote above, it was the stability of iOS and the singular platform approach from Apple that made Super Mario Run an enticing venture to first appear on Apple's devices.

That's actually one of the things that Nintendo has always favored in gaming: quality.

Nintendo devices have always been known for their quality and stability, working from a proprietary OS platform. Despite some missteps like the GameCube and Wii U, Nintendo still proved that both devices were quality made with unbeatable first-party software, especially for the Wii U.

In this particular case, Nintendo is leveraging the quality of Apple's smart devices given their popularity and are slowly dipping into the mobile gaming arena with specific properties to help further expand the Nintendo brand with unique experiences. In fact, some reports indicated that Pokemon Go helped bolster sales for the Nintendo 3DS and various Pokemon games. Given the more focused and limited functionality of Super Mario Run, it wouldn't be surprising if the game was basically designed as a unique pastime app to help generate interest in whatever the next Super Mario title will be for the Nintendo NX, which is due for release next year in March.

While a lot of analysts and investors have been begging Nintendo to adopt mobile platforms for software releases, Nintendo has done so reluctantly and with a very specific aim of still retaining the worth of their own devices. And even though Super Mario Run is designed for mobile devices, it isn't being leveraged to take anything away from Nintendo's other hardware ventures.

Will Usher

Staff Writer at CinemaBlend.