Nintendo’s first real mobile game has finally dropped. Available on every Apple and iOS-enabled device, Super Mario Run has been the talk of the mushroom kingdom as players work their way through every level and mode. Toad Rally has been a hit, and fan-favorite characters have all made an appearance, but despite the generally positive reception of the game, players are upset that they have to pay to get the full Super Mario Run experience.
Like many mobile games, Super Mario Run offers a portion of the game for free before prompting players to pay $9.99. This includes three Stages of World 1, but not the first castle, as well as Toad Rally, although only Red Toads pop up. Essentially, it’s a demo of Super Mario Run to try out, and boy does it have some fans upset.
They’ve also compared it to Pokémon GO, Niantic’s popular free-to-play Pokémon app released earlier this year.
This sort of practice isn’t anything new, however, as gaming companies have been using it for years on mobile devices, and, more recently, consoles with events like free-to-play weekends encouraging you to play (and purchase). The idea is to give you a taste of the experience and see if it’s something you’d want to spend the full price on. But, since Super Mario Run is technically an application on mobile devices, people are equating it to a pay-to-play experience like so many other popular mobile games have become.
With so many players upset with the $9.99 price tag following the game’s demo levels, there’s also been a massive backlash from players who don’t have a problem paying for Super Mario Run at all.
As a matter of fact, plenty of players actually prefer the method since it doesn’t force advertisements into the game and avoids the entire micro-transaction strategy usually practiced by mobile games.
Regardless of how you view the $9.99 price tag though, one thing is clear about Super Mario Run: Nintendo designed it to be akin to a full video game experience for players, instead of one that they opt to sell in tiny slices. It may not be the second coming of Super Mario Bros. we were hoping for, but if you’re a fan of the classic controls, you can always go grab a copy for Nintendo 3DS on eShop. The rest of us will be over here with our endless runner.