05 November 2017

Super Mario Run

Nintendo Disappointed by Super Mario Run Profits

I'm in the minority, but I think it hurt Super Mario Run more that it wasn't a regular Super Mario game than that the in-app purchase was seen as too expensive. People will pay more than $10 for a good Mario game on any platform.

It also didn’t help that you had to sign-up/log-in before you could play. And that that whole process was awful. And that once you did that, it still took way too many taps to go from launching the app to actually playing the game. This is exactly the lesson that everyone should have taken from the success of Flappy Bird.

Controls are arguably an issue on iOS. I’m not fully convinced since there are controllers available. We haven’t seen enough developers willing to make games that require them, though.

But I know that just falling back on “one touch” isn’t a solution. It works beautifully in some cases, but not for every game.

If Nintendo really dedicated itself to creating a first-class Nintendo game for iOS developed for touch controls rather than just “one touch” and made sure that every part of it was polished... I can’t see how they couldn’t make profits they’d be happy with.

If they launched a good iOS controller, then they could not only make better iOS games more easily, they could make money on hardware too.

Maybe that isn’t the best thing for Nintendo to do. But the main point is that, as in most things, the lessons to be learned from Super Mario Run aren’t as simple as “iOS users won’t pay” or “Nintendo can’t be successful on iOS.”

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