Super Mario Run is finally available in the App Store for the iPhone. It is Nintendo’s second mobile game in history (the first being Miitomo) and Mario’s first game on a mobile device. So, this is big news. Like any good Super Mario Bros. game, it has plenty of skill-based content. You’ll have to plan your strategy and learn how to time your moves just right if you want to get all of the goodies on any given level.
Super Mario Run is free to download. You can play The first three levels of World 1 and 20 seconds of the boss level for free. After that, you’ll have to unlock the rest of the game for $9.99. Believe me, you’ll want to buy this game once you’ve played 30 seconds of the first level. It’ll hook you in!
There are three modes of gameplay; World Tour, Toad Rally, and kingdom building. Each one helps other modes. For example, completing worlds in World Tour unlocks new courses in Toad Rally, which unlock new Toad colors, which unlock new buildings in your kingdom. So, be sure to play everything every day.
Mario runs automatically. You don’t have to (or should I say, get to) manually move him. He also automatically jumps over small obstacles, like blocks, small gaps in the path, and low-height Warp Pipes.
Though Mario likes to automatically jump over things, that doesn’t mean he is invincible. You can be injured or die. If you are powered up thanks to a Mushroom, you’ll simply shrink back down in size. If you are not, Mario will be captured by a bubble and taken back to the beginning of the level. You’ll have to tap the screen to pop the bubble. You can tap the bubble anytime after Mario stops spinning. If you want to go back to the beginning of the level, you can float away. If you want to continue right where you left off, tap the bubble right away. You gets three lives before Game Over.
You do want to control when Mario jumps, though. A well-timed jump will provide some sweet rewards. For example, if you jump onto a Goomba’s head, you’ll earn some coins for crushing him. If you time your jump just right, you can kick a Koopa Troopa into a spin and send him into your enemy’s path. Proper jumps will also lead to areas with secret goodies, like Super Stars or Challenge Coins.
To jump normally, tap the screen. To get a high jump. Press and hold your finger on the screen. To spin in mid-air, touch and hold your finger on the screen, and then tap the screen while in mid-air. To stall in mid-air, touch the screen and swipe to the left.
While running the course, you’ll see little transparent arrows. When you run past one, it will project a row of coins for you to grab. Pay attention to these arrows because they give you insight into where you should run/jump next.
Levels have a time limit. You have to get through to the end before the clock runs out or you’ll lose and have to start over (when you die, your time does not start over).
Challenge Coins can be found throughout each level of Super Mario Run. The are usually, well … challenging. They might be situated high above, or far below, running platforms. So, you’ll have to practice some tricky movies to get to them. For example, you may have to jump on the head of a Goomba to get the right height to get you to a platform that you might have to immediately jump from in order to get even higher to grab a Challenge Coin.
When you’ve found and collected every Challenge Coin on a level, you will unlock new Challenge Coins, which are, of course, even harder to get. The coin and block placement changes on a level once you’ve collected all of the Challenge coins. So, when you move from pink to purple, the coins are harder to reach, there are new blocks in new locations, and different skills are needed to reach everything. There are three sets of Challenge Coins on each level, so the replay value is pretty dang good across the board.
Pause Blocks stop Mario. When you step on one, Mario stops moving, allowing you to time when you want to move next. This is helpful when you’ve got a couple of options. Should you jump to the higher platform or stay on the lower level? Tap the screen when you’re ready to start moving again.
Launch Blocks launch Mario in the direction shown on the arrow. When you run across a launch block, nothing happens. To trigger it, you have to tap the screen as you cross it. If you tap on a reverse Launch Block, Mario will run backward.
Springboards catapult Mario in a specific direction through the air. This is useful for climbing walls and getting to out-of-reach places.
Red Rings make red coins appear. Red coins are special high-paying coins that only appear for a limited about of time, usually about five seconds. So, make sure to run through a Red Ring whenever you see one,.
Super Stars will turn you into an invincible coin-collecting machine. They are hidden amongst bricks (usually ones that are hard to reach), so be sure to smash one whenever you see it. It acts as a magnet, drawing coins toward you as you run. Big time fun.
Switches will change which platform is active. Some levels have switchable platforms that will help you reach greater heights and collect Challenge Coins, but be careful. When you switch an active platform, it may leave you without any footing.
P Switches trigger the blue coin change. Jump on a blue P Switch to turn blocks into blue coins for a few seconds at at time.
Time Extenders give you a few extra seconds on the clock. Time Extenders are invaluable on some levels, so be sure to hit one whenever you see it.
At the end of each world, you’ll have to face a boss. You’ll run through a level, as normal, but instead of running to catch a flag, you’ll be face to face with someone like Bowser or Boom Boom. You’ll have to figure out how to defeat each boss. Bowser can be defeated when you drop an axe onto the bridge he is standing on, but Boom Boom needs a little head-bouncing finesse. Make sure your character is fully powered up before entering a boss battle. That way, you have a little wiggle room for making mistakes. It ain’t easy to jump over Bowser’s spike shell.
When you defeat a boss, you will unlock the next world.
Toad Rally is the multiplayer portion of Super Mario Run. You’ll get to compete against other real-life players in a competition of speed and accuracy. You will race against a ghost version of your opponent. The number of coins you gather, combined with the number of Toads you impress, determine who wins the round.
New colors of Toads are unlocked as you defeat the bosses. For example, green unlocks when you complete World 1 and purple when you complete World 2.
When you win a rally, Toads will rejoin your kingdom. But, if you lose a rally, some of them will leave. These Toads are not impressed.
When you perform tricks, you’ll get the audience, which is a bunch of adorable Toads, excited. The more Toads that appear to cheer you on, the higher your score goes. You’ll want these little guys on your side because, if you win a rally, they will rejoin you kingdom, allowing you to unlock new and awesome buildings and decorations.
You can unleash a coin-collecting frenzy by filling your Coin Rush meter. When it reaches full, coins start falling like rain, so you can get the most jingle in the least amount of time.
You get to keep the coins you collect in the game and use them to build and deck out your kingdom. You can buy buildings and decorations from the shop and place them on your land.
In order to add items to your kingdom, you’ll have to entice Toads back home. Play Toad Rally a few times and impress them with your sweet moves. As Toads come back to the kingdom, you’ll level up your castle. Remember: if you lose a round in Toad Rally, some of the Toads will leave the kingdom again.
You can buy special Bonus buildings that unlock mini games. You can play these bonus games once every eight hours. These bonus houses are a quick way to earn coins and Toad Rally tickets. You can place up to eight buildings and 12 decorations in your kingdom at first. However, you can build a rainbow bridge to connect two parts of the kingdom back together once you’ve gathered enough Toads back into your kingdom.
You can also purchase buildings that will attract familiar characters, like Luigi, Yoshi, and Peach, whom you’ll be able to play in the game. Each character has different special abilities, which will make replaying levels new all over again.
Note: Toad is a My Nintendo exclusive reward. To unlock him, you must be signed into your My Nintendo account. You can redeem him in the My Nintendo tab in your kingdom.
Super Mario Run is pretty amazing and provides hours of non-stop gameplay (I literally spent an entire day playing it while trying to write this game guide and never got bored). Do you have any questions about how to play the game or unlock characters? Put them in the comments or check out our Super Mario Run forum. If you know any secret tricks or have found any easter eggs, be sure to let us know!