Long-time videogame software and hardware developer #Nintendo has been on a wide-ranging diversification initiative over the past few years. This is of course most manifested in their forays into the world of mobile app games. Nobody needs to be reminded of the juggernaut success of “Pokémon Go” last year, to see that the gaming company still has a few tricks up its sleeve. So while their upcoming Switch console is being groomed to go head-to-head against perennial hardware rivals Sony and Microsoft, Nintendo unleashed a new game title for the iOS mobile scene last December, fronted by the face of the company's most famous icon: a cheery, foe-stomping, princess-rescuing Italian plumber.

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It’s called “#Super Mario Run," and soon it’ll be on #Android, too.

Run, Mario, run!

An announcement by Nintendo on January 18 revealed that “Super Mario Run” is now up for pre-registration at Google Play, in preparation for its Android release this coming March. Already its made quite an impact over on iPhones and iPads, after it became available through the App Store at the end of last year. We’re talking a non-stop downloading streak for the app that reached 40 million in 4 days. In 12 countries around the world “Super Mario Run” became a top-grosser, with players paying $9.99 en masse to unlock all its game levels.

Dissatisfaction with the gameplay and levels were quick to set in, however, not to mention the near $10 one-off payment to access everything.

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As the year turned over, Nintendo stock was affected by the rise in criticism from Apple users regarding “Super Mario Run." The game company hopes to alleviate the decline in interest in the App Store by premiering the game on Android, although this delay from the December iPhone release was called out on by market analysts, who point out that the Google-developed MOS has more users that play games than the App Store. On the other hand, Android gamers are also less likely to pay for premium features for their games. Still, IHS Markit games analyst Jack Kent thinks not much will change in terms of user habit.

Merely the beginning

Super Mario Run” isn’t the only new mobile game Nintendo’s been cooking lately, a far cry from when the game maker shunned the mobile community with the intent to only make titles for their proprietary consoles and handhelds. Also coming up very soon is the hotly-anticipated “Fire Emblem Heroes," which will simultaneously release on both the App Store and Google Play next month (February). It will also follow the “freemium” model of “Clash of Clans” in that the game download is free and all paid content will be premium items and bonuses to get ahead.