December 15th is fast approaching for the launch of Super Mario Run, the pudgy plumber's first foray onto iOS-powered devices from Apple. The Nintendo-made app will feature Mario as a playable character from the outset, but Nintendo guru Shigeru Miyamoto reveals that there are playable characters other than Mario in the game.
According to an interview with Time, Miyamoto revealed that you'll start the game as Mario and unlock new content, and as you advance through the game you'll unlock new characters, saying...
But one thing we have done this time is that you'll be able to play not just as Mario, but after going through the game and unlocking some things and meeting some conditions you'll be able to play as some of the other characters as well.
This opens up the possibility for all sorts of cool playable characters, ranging from old-school but rarely used Super Mario heroes such as Birdo, to more recognized and lovable sidekicks such as Yoshi.
It's likely that the first character you'll unlock will be Luigi, the thin, green-dressed brother of Mario. From there, I imagine either Princess Peach or Toad will be the next character to unlock, along with Yoshi and probably Princess Daisy. Maybe even expect Rosalina to make an appearance along with maybe guest appearances from characters like Donkey Kong, Diddy Kong Jr., and Toadette.
There have been a growing list of characters in the Super Mario universe so there's likely going to be an ample supply of unlockable characters to play in Super Mario Run. If we don't know for sure who will be in the game there's most certainly going to be a list made available from dataminers if the game warrants that level of dedication and investigation, depending on its popularity.
Gamers and dataminers found all sorts of neat goodies in Pokemon Go shortly after it launched, including details on Ditto, who eventually became a Pokemon that could be captured months after its discovery.
As for popularity... there are actually comparisons from analysts being made already ahead of Super Mario Run's release. The comparisons show that it could end up being a lot bigger than what some people may have thought. According to a report from Forbes, marketing research firm SensorTower did a forecast on the potential first month gross of Super Mario Run compared to Niantic Labs' Pokemon Go, estimating that it could earn up to $71 million right out of the gate, just about half of what Pokemon Go made in its first month.
Of course, the numbers are all speculation right now and the game first has to hit the market and garner strong user engagement before speculations begin about it toppling Pokemon Go. If there is an ample supply of unlockable content, as Miyamoto suggests, then that could definitely help with engagement.
According to the famed designer, it doesn't sound like the characters will have any special traits but they will be part of a cache of unlockable content in Super Mario Run and they've designed it so that casuals can easily pick it up and play it.