Super Mario Run demo stations installed in Apple Stores for pre-release play
Nintendo's highly-anticipated "Super Mario Run" will be available to all users on Dec. 15, but until then, people anxious to play the game can head to an Apple Store for a few minutes of hands-on time with the title.
"Super Mario Run" was featured alongside the forthcoming Nintendo Switch console on The Jimmy Fallon Show on Wednesday, with an appearance from Nintento U.S. chief Reggie Fils-Aime.
"I feel like Mario was what introduced millions of people to video games and interactive entertainment, and I think that Mario will continue to serve that role," designer and Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto told The Verge. "And I think with Super Mario Run that's exactly what's going to happen."
"Super Mario Run" is an endless runner title with the same graphical style used for Mario for decades, playing similarly to long-term iOS titles "Canabalt" or "Jungle Run." Users tap on the screen to make Mario jump to avoid obstacles, strike objects, and clear gaps.
The longer a user taps, the higher Mario jumps. On-screen items or tiles can reverse Mario's direction, or stop forward progress to allow for precise timing of a jump.
The title also includes a new battle mode called "Toad Rally," where victory is determined by the number of coins you collect, with the "ghost" of your competition visible as you run, and by the number of Toad characters you impress. Progress across all modes is tracked by the number of coins the player has collected, as well as with persistent scorekeeping.
The initial download will be free, and will feature three game modes with limited progress available. The entire title will unlock for $9.99.