Super Mario Run is a bold and daring free-to-start adventure from Nintendo exclusively on mobile platforms and it’s abundantly clear upon playing that you’re going to have a big grin on your face as Mario dashes his way through the intricate levels in the most stylish way possible.
Cute and charming but fiendishly addictive is one way to sum up Super Mario Run. Mario runs automatically and you stylishly flow your way through the levels on offer. It all sounds extremely simplistic at the outset but once you get an itch for those precariously placed pink, purple or black coins the game turns into something that’s going to bring you back for more.
If you’ve played Rayman Adventures on mobile you’ll know what to expect, but this takes that specific game to another level. Mario has a grace and charm about him that Rayman lacks and the world he inhabits and the characters really add to the atmosphere, leaving you feeling that you are playing a stellar Mario title albeit on a mobile device. Love and care has been poured into the game by the bucket load and once you’ve done the first few levels you know you are going to pay that £7.99 price tag just to see what awaits you in the later levels.
One thing that stands out is that the visuals looks sumptuous on the high-resolution retina screen that the iPhone provides and it highlights just how far technology has come with regards to mobile gaming. There’s a variety of familiar Mario environments on offer from the grassy plains of the Mushroom Kingdom to the dark foreboding atmosphere of Bowsers gloomy fire laden castle. The animation is equally as good as Mario glides his way over obstacles and the various enemies he encounters on his journey.
Super Mario Run includes three different modes to keep you entertained and inevitably coming back. The main mode is The World Tour which sees you take on six different worlds complete with end of world boss fights. It’s not an incredibly long adventure but as I mentioned earlier it’s all about replayability with high scores to beat and special coins to be obtained.
The second mode is the decidedly charming Toad Rally which sees you compete against other opponents using a rally ticket picked up on The World Tour. The lovely Toadette judges who the winner will be based on how many coins you collect and how many Toads show up to cheer you on. If you perform certain actions during the Toad Rally then you fill the Coin Rush gauge and once it’s filled the Coin Rush begins – so basically be as stylish as possible. The Toads that cheer you on if you win will decide to join your Magical Kingdom.
Talking of the Magical Kingdom this is a chance for you to rebuild your Kingdom using the Kingdom Builder where you obtain, move, and place buildings. You obtain the buildings from the shop and you use the coins you’ve collected along the way to begin building. The buildings can give you bonus games which are simple enough to play, just like the main game. However, to unlock some special things you need a specified number of Toads that can be acquired in the Toad Rush mode.
The World Tour levels might be a tad on the short side and the game may deplete your phone’s battery, but it’s an extremely good start from Nintendo who should be praised for creating something other than a cheap mobile cash-in. This is a fully fledged game with immeasurable replay value that will have you and your friends competing against each other at school, college and work. This is clearly what the team over at Nintendo had in mind when creating the game. Will it be as big as Pokémon GO? Well that’s something we shall just have to wait to find out, but as it stands Mario and mobile fit perfectly.