There have been three Super Mario iPhone games so far, but an interview with Shigeru Miyamoto suggests we may not be getting any more …
The gaming company has been coy about revealing what’s next for the Super Mario video game franchise. But while Shigeru Miyamoto — the legendary video game designer, Nintendo fellow and self-proclaimed “Mario’s mom” — won’t say where Mario is running next, he is forthright about where he won’t be: your smartphone.
Sitting down with Variety for this week’s cover story on the making of the film, Miyamoto said firmly, “Mobile apps will not be the primary path of future Mario games.”
The site’s conclusion seems rather more definite than the actual quote, and pulling out of the mobile market might seem an odd decision given that two of the three Super Mario iPhone games grossed more than $360M between them. However, Variety does note that this is relatively minor in the scheme of things; Mario Kart 8 has so far generated $3 billion.
Nintendo did also pull “Dr. Mario World” from the App Store two years after its release, without explanation.
Miyamoto said that mobile apps had been a good way for more people to experience the games, but the platform did involve a lot of compromise.
“First and foremost, Nintendo’s core strategy is a hardware and software integrated gaming experience,” said Miyamoto, who played a pivotal role in designing the Wii, among other Nintendo consoles. “The intuitiveness of the control is a part of the gaming experience. When we explored the opportunity of making Mario games for the mobile phone — which is a more common, generic device — it was challenging to determine what that game should be. That is why I played the role of director for Super Mario Run, to be able to translate that Nintendo hardware experience into the smart devices.”
Miyamoto added that his reported opposition to violent games isn’t a blanket one: He simply doesn’t think it’s appropriate for Mario.
“I want to make it clear that I am not against shooter games and violent games,” he said. “There are many mediums that entertain people, but I think it is my mission to find other ways to make an interesting and fun game. I told myself that Mario is a character that never hurts other people, so I wanted to find a different way of expressing Mario.”
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