By Shubhra Agrawal

Super Mario Run, Nintendo’s much anticipated mobile game, released on Friday. Subsequently, however, Nintendo’s shares sank by more than 4% in trading.

The game was downloaded 40 million times in the first four days of its release, according to data released by Nintendo. 40 million is indeed a pretty staggering number. It currently also sits at the No. 1 slot in both free games and highest-grossing apps in the United States.

Considering the response it received initially, Nintendo stocks took a bit of a beating after the game’s launch. This could be due to two reasons – lukewarm reviews and the game’s strange pricing structure.

A Peculiar Revenue Model

Super Mario Run is based on peculiar revenue model which is proving to be a deal breaker for the gamers.

Super Mario Run is based on peculiar revenue model which is proving to be a deal breaker for the gamers | Picture Courtesy: Engadget

The game has a very differently designed revenue model.

The game has a very differently designed revenue model. While in most games, users are asked for a fee to pace up the speed of the game by removal of ads; players have to pay in Super Mario Run to complete the game. The higher levels can only be unlocked once an amount of  $9.99 is transferred.

This has two after-effects. Firstly, it makes the game more expensive as compared to other mobile games. Secondly, this revenue model also restricts the amount of money a user will spend on a game. Traditional free-to-play games like Pokémon Go, have no limit on the number of extras they provide. Hence, the user can spend as much as he wants. The traditional model hence generates higher revenue over time. It has been found that Pokémon Go users usually spend 20 dollars playing the game.

Pokémon Go: A tough act to follow

After the phenomenal success of Pokémon Go, Super Mario Run was expected to be the next big trend. App analytics firm, Sensor Tower, had predicted that the game would gross $71 million in the first month of its release. However, the fee-to-play model of the game has not gone down well with Nintendo fans.

Pokémon Go was the game that put Nintendo on the map. For the company to continue to enjoy its run, it must rethink its strategy for Super Mario.


Featured Image Credits: Shutterstock
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Posted by The Indian Economist