It's been over 3 months since Super Mario Run came out for iOS (precisely 99 days) and the game has finally dropped for Android and it's of course already available on Aptoide. But hey, better late than never right? On the other hand, Nintendo has already confirmed that future title "Fire Emblem" will be coming out for Android first 🎉 so I guess this is Nintendo's way of showing their love for the Android community as well. Either way, it's time to get our thumbs ready to make Mario double jump over the obstacles on our devices, since Super Mario Run is this weeks game of the week (obvs).
*The Nintendo plumber, says hi to your device. At last.*
Let's go over some of the game's features, shall we?
1. It's super addictive. Like, really.
We could have never imagined that this game would be so addictive. The most interesting part so far for us is the PVP experience in the "Toad Rally" mode. Basically, you can challenge players from all over the world so that you can try to beat them in terms of speed/score/cool moves and steal Toads from them (we'll get to that later). You gain points by grabbing coins and the game has a time limit, but we can also end if one of the players finishes the level, thus, making it impossible for the other player to catch up with you in terms of score. We're not saying the single player experience is not fun, but the PVP is definitely what's keeping us hooked.
2. You can play it with one hand. Whaaaat.
The game only has one interaction, which is the screen tap. With such a simple system, it's surprising how rich the game experience can be. There are all sorts of little details, from the speed, the duration and the timing. For instance, Mario can now do wall jumps, but you need to trigger it on the right time and with the right duration. It takes some practice.
3. Mario is always running - and it's hard to keep up.
I guess that's why they call it Super Mario Run. This game is entirely based on the auto-run feature. We can only imagine that that was a necessary adaptation to the mobile, screen-tapping environment. Sega, for instance, opted to have on screen controls for some of their latest Android adaptations of Sonic. But of course this takes a better advantage of the current technology in our opinion, and we've seen similar adaptions in other mobile games such as Final Fantasy. It does limit what you can do with these games, but it's an elegant workaround.
In this game, Mario even vaults over small obstacles and enemies on his own - so it's actually your choice to attack them or just skip by. That said, there are ways of changing the running direction, for instance when you encounter a special block that sends you in the other way. When you encounter such blocks, it usually means that there are extra coins available somewhere in a previous point in the level.
4. Multiple Characters. Hello!
You're not limited to Mario on this game. You can play with the usual cast of Mario characters: Luigi, Peach, Toad, Toadette (the female version of Toad) and Yoshi. Each of these characters has to be unlocked at a different point in the game or by doing a specific action. For instance, you can unlock a Toad by creating/signing into your "My Nintendo" account.
Additionally, if you have a "My Nintendo" account you can even use a custom avatar as a player icon (a "Mii"), that you can create on the Miitomo app. You will still play with one of the game's characters, as this will only change your player card image.
5. You can rebuild the Kingdom - and save princess Peach!
So, Bowser destroys everything in the beginning of this game, and no one has a place to live. That's why we have the "Kingdom Builder" mode. In this mode you can reconstruct the kingdom by spending coins (that you earn on the main "World Tour" levels) to build structures, and by rallying the Toads (which you can do on the aforementioned "Toad Rally" mode). If you build Luigi a house you can unlock him! It's a good thing Mario is a plumber, eh?
6. You need internet connection. Wah Wah Waaaah.
*Yeah. It sucks.*
In our view, this is one of the game's major issues. You need to be online to play it, since it is constantly downloading new content. So that means, no offline mode (for now at least). According to official information this is to keep the game experience more dynamic and interesting. Sure, we get it. But it would be nice if we could download the content and use it when we're offline, just sayin'.