Apple held a keynote last week where several new products were unveiled, including the Apple AirPods and the Series 2 model of the Apple Watch.

One of the reveals was a video game, but it’s not just any video game: Nintendo’s mascot, Mario, is finally jumping into the world of smartphones!

Mario in Super Mario Run (iPhone 6s)

Mario in Super Mario Run (Image: Nintendo)

Super Mario Run was greeted with a round of applause from the audience. Following that, Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto and Bill Trinen took the stage to demonstrate the game.

While 2D Super Mario titles traditionally feature a run button, the plumber will automatically dash forward in Super Mario Run. Billed as a game “you can play with one hand,” your attention will be on Mario’s jumping.

Familiar maneuvers, such as the wall jump, return from prior installments, and Mario will jump higher the longer you press the touch screen. Traditional Mario iconography is covered as well, including coins, Toads, and Mario’s eternal nemesis, Bowser.

Mario vs. Bowser in Super Mario Run (iPad Pro)

Mario vs. Bowser in Super Mario Run (Image: Nintendo)

Fans of the genre-defining giant will notice that Super Mario Run borrows heavily from New Super Mario Bros. U’s aesthetics and sound direction. I would have appreciated something different, but this was probably cost effective. Besides, the clean visuals translate well into a mobile game.

Super Mario Run will offer three distinct modes:

  • The first will present the player with courses to complete, just as any mainline Super Mario game would.
  • The second, named “Toad Rally,” will compare your run through a course with your friends’ and strangers’ attempts, as you compete to see who has the most flair.
  • The third will, by using your progress in the prior two modes, allow you to create your own Mushroom Kingdom.

Following its announcement, Miyamoto has given two interviews pertaining to Super Mario Run. The first was with TIME, where Miyamoto discussed, amongst other things, the potential of migrating Nintendo’s smartphone audience over to their dedicated hardware.

The second was with IGN, where Miyamoto discussed Super Mario Run‘s development. Both interviews are worth reading.

Mario and several Toads in Super Mario Run (iPad Pro)

Mario and several Toads in Super Mario Run (Image: Nintendo)

Super Mario Run is the latest project in Nintendo’s partnership with mobile publisher DeNA. The fruits of this initiative began back in March with the launch of Miitomo and Nintendo’s new loyalty program, My Nintendo. Both companies will bring two of Nintendo’s other top franchises, Animal Crossing and Fire Emblem, to smartphones, too. Nintendo plans to launch both of those “before the end of March 2017.”

Apple’s App Store will receive Super Mario Run in December, and it’ll run on iPhones and iPads. Those playing under the iOS operating system will be able to download a section of the game free of charge, and a single purchase will unlock the full game. Furthermore, Apple is already celebrating Mario’s arrival by releasing a free sticker pack for the iMessage app.

Oh, and don’t feel bad if you prefer Androids, as Nintendo confirmed to Kotaku that Super Mario Run will eventually grace our smartphone of choice.

Mario and a Piranha Plant in Super Mario Run (iPad Pro)

Mario and a Piranha Plant in Super Mario Run (Image: Nintendo)

I’m really eager to try Super Mario Run. Smartphones aren’t tailored to platformers; the genre requires you to carefully control your character across obstacle courses, and a touch screen isn’t an appropriate substitute for buttons and a pad, which offer a much greater level of precision.

However, Ubisoft’s Rayman Jungle Run proved that enjoyable side-scrollers can thrive on mobile platforms. I’m confident in Nintendo’s ability to deliver a quality product within these limitations, and I will download Super Mario Run as soon as it hits the Google Play Store.

Will you rescue the Princess in Mario’s newest adventure?

BUY NOW: ‘SUPER MARIO GALAXY 2’

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