Why Super Mario Run Is Worth It
Super Mario Run isn't just a great mobile game, it's a great Mario game, and has quickly become one of my favorite titles of 2016. But while I've been spending hours happily bouncing through the Mushroom Kingdom for coins, a good chunk of fans have taken to the App Store to express their disdain for Nintendo's big iOS debut. Mario's many detractors seem to think that $10 is too much for a mobile game and that the title's brilliant levels are repetitive, but I think they're dead wrong. Here are 5 reasons why Super Mario Run is worth your money.
True Mario Gameplay
Super Mario Run has one big advantage over every other auto-runner on the App Store: it plays like an actual Mario game. Nintendo has successfully brought the magic of Mario to touch screens — every jump feels precise, every stomp is satisfying, and getting into a rhythm of collecting coins and bouncing from Goomba to Goomba provides a feeling that you just won't get from games like Temple Run and its many knockoffs.
Sure, you can complete Super Mario Run's core 24 courses in about an hour. But beating Bowser is just a fraction of the fun. Every level is dripping with replayability, each featuring three sets of hidden coins that become progressively harder to obtain. Exploring every nook and cranny of the game's courses (not to mention unlocking its many hidden characters) will keep you busy for hours, and that's not even counting Super Mario Run's other two modes. Which brings me to my next point…
It's Basically Three Games in One
While World Tour mode provides a classic Mario fix, it's complemented by two fun new additions to the franchise: Toad Rally and Kingdom Builder. The former is Mario Run's multiplayer mode, an addictive challenge that lets you compete with friends and strangers over who can rack up the most coins in a quick run. The latter is essentially a mini-Sim City that lets you decorate your Mushroom Kingdom with objects that get progressively cooler-looking as you work your way through the game. That's a whole lot of content for a pocket-sized Mario game.
It's Absolutely Gorgeous
Short of his Wii U appearances, Mario has never looked as good as he does in Super Mario Run. Leveraging the graphical power of the iPhone and iPad to their fullest, Super Mario Run offers a vibrant, delightfully colorful art style ripped right from the latest New Super Mario Bros. games for consoles. The action also never slows down, even when Mario is surrounded by Goombas, Koopas and Bomb-ombs.
No Ads or In-App Purchases
This is perhaps Super Mario Run's strongest trait. While some of the App Store's most popular games assault players with ads or offers to spend real cash on in-game items, Super Mario Run is a truly premium experience that only asks you to pay once. Once you've unlocked the full $10 game, you'll never be asked to spend a dime again — which is impressive, considering Nintendo could have probably made a pretty penny off of items such as coins and Toad Rally tickets. Super Mario Run makes a big statement amongst the crowded crud of the App Store: quality is worth paying for.
Get Your Gaming Fix at Tom's Guide
Looking for more great mobile titles? Check out our roundup of the best games for iOS. If you want to scratch your Nintendo itch, we've also compiled the best games for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U. And if you're looking for the perfect gift for the gaming addict on your list, here are our favorite gifts for gamers.