After years of staying away from the mobile games market, the early success of Super Mario Run this month has finally convinced Nintendo they need to be more aggressive in launching smartphone and tablet games. In a new interview, the company’s president Tatsumi Kimishima confirmed that Nintendo will launch between two to three new mobile games a year, starting in 2017.

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Super Mario Run has already proven to be more popular than Pokemon Go

December 17, 2016

Chatting with Japanese media outlet Kyoto NP, Kimishima now says that the mobile gaming market could become one of Nintendo primary business divisions. He stated that mobile games could reach many new fans and generate more revenue for the company. He even suggested those games could be used as a way to promote the upcoming Nintendo Switch console, which is due to launch in March 2017.

Super Mario Run launched for iOS on December 15, and Nintendo confirmed it has already been downloaded 50 million times worldwide. Kimishima expects that the game will hit the 100 million download milestone. The game is supposed to be launched for Android devices at some point in 2017 but so far, the company has yet to offer a specific release date. Nintendo also has not revealed how many people have decided to pay the $9.99 price to unlock all of Super Mario Run’s content, although analyst estimates put that number somewhere between four and nine percent.

Nintendo has already revealed that two of its upcoming mobile games will be based on Animal Crossing and Fire Emblem. While these franchises are well known to hardcore fans of the company, they are not as well known to the general public as the Mario series. It will be interesting to see what the reaction will be to those titles and if they will come close to Super Mario Run’s initial download numbers.

John Callaham
John was a newspaper reporter before becoming a technology and video/PC gaming writer in 2000. He lives in Greer, SC with his wife and five cats.
  • theforevermachine

    I wouldn’t call SMR a huge success. It’s got like 2.5 Stars in the app store, a bunch of complaints, really high price-tag, free to try for ten minutes before you need to pay, and useless without an internet connection (which is ridiculous). Unless the first game was a test run at figuring out all the things NOT to do (lol) I hope they have a plan at hitting consumer needs and desires, because then they can REALLY make some good money, and also release some quality games at the same time (seems to be a lost concept nowadays).

    • Aaron

      I don’t think internet connection as a requirement is a good idea, but I’m reminded that internet connections outside the United States are often cheaper and work in the subways, etc. Hong Kong, Tokyo, Munich, and more all have internet connections in the subway. NYC and other U.S. cities are behind the times.

    • zeth006

      And you can beat it in 3 hours. A game like SMR isn’t going to boost Nintendo’s brand value, it’s going to tarnish it. Repeated releases of similar low quality games is just going to put Nintendo in the same territory as other low quality, junk mobile games on the play store and app store.

  • Jason Wilson

    Nintendo is used to charging a premium for their games. Their titles take forever to drop in price and even when they do it’s like to $30.

    $2.99-$4.99 is the price range on mobile IMO. You’ll get a ton more impulse buyers that way.

  • Choda Boy

    iOS exclusive launch means I will never play it, even after it is released on Android.