Upcoming Mobile Game 'Mario Kart Tour' Will Be Free-to-Start

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Nintendo last week announced that its next mobile game will be "Mario Kart Tour," but with a launch date aimed at any time before the company's fiscal year ending March 2019, not much information is known about the game. Today, DeNA CEO Isao Moriyasu was reported as saying that Mario Kart Tour will be free-to-start (via TouchArcade and The Wall Street Journal).


The "free-to-start" terminology is somewhat vague, but when compared to Nintendo's previous use of the phrase it could suggest where Mario Kart Tour is headed. For example, Nintendo currently describes Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp as free-to-start on the game's website, while Super Mario Run's website explains that "you can download and enjoy a portion of Super Mario Run for free."

DeNA CEO said "Mario Kart Tour," a Nintendo-DeNA smartphone game planned for FY18, will be free-to-start. - Takashi Mochizuki (@mochi_wsj) February 8, 2018
While far from a definitive answer, this suggests Nintendo might lean towards its recent trend and make Mario Kart Tour a game that's free to play, with in-app purchases that help with certain tasks. Out of Nintendo's four mobile games so far, three have followed this model (Miitomo, Fire Emblem Heroes, Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp), while only Super Mario Run has used the pay-once price tier.

Article Link: Upcoming Mobile Game 'Mario Kart Tour' Will Be Free-to-Start
 

HiRez

macrumors 603
Jan 6, 2004
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While far from a definitive answer, this suggests Nintendo might lean towards its recent trend and make Mario Kart Tour a game that's free to play, with in-app purchases that help with certain tasks.​
That’s not at all how I interpret this. To me it’s pretty clear they mean you can play a few levels for free but have to pay up for the rest, they’ll be locked out without the IAP.
 

marty1980

macrumors 6502
Apr 22, 2011
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If they lock down the roster behind micro transactions, they’re doing it wrong.

I could see them using coins as currency and you earn so many coins every 15 minutes and those coins are required to participate in competitive races (online or single player). Offering coins in purses for $n.99.

I’m not excited for how the potential pricing could work with the content, but I’m hopeful it turns into something my family can enjoy.
 

69Mustang

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Jan 7, 2014
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That’s not at all how I interpret this. To me it’s pretty clear they mean you can play a few levels for free but have to pay up for the rest, they’ll be locked out without the IAP.
Why would you interpret it that way? The article does a fairly good job of making the distinction between "free to start" and "download and run a portion Super Mario for free". Your interpretation describes the revenue stream for Super Mario Run. "Free to start" describes Animal Crossing which is simply IAP. Can't see what makes you think otherwise.

I had previously stated I thought this new game would be IAP since Nintendo did not make the money they thought they would by going pay once. They did make their revenue goals from their IAP games.
 

dwaltwhit

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Oct 25, 2013
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I am fine with the mario run model of free to try, $10 for the full thing. I would rather just pay upfront(ish) than pay little by little.

Also online all the time doesn't interfere with my use, but should definitely go away.
 

justafew

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May 6, 2016
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I never purchased SMR because of the IAP to buy the full version. I have three kids who wanted it, but since Family Sharing can't share IAP, I wasn't going to pay $10 apiece.
 

KanosWRX

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Jul 14, 2008
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That’s a new way of saying pay 2 win.. that’s too bad, would have been happy paying a fair amount to play if it were good. I just won’t support that type of game.
 

littyboy

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Jun 12, 2009
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Sigh the days of paying for a FULL game upfront are long gone. Now, every company just tries to nickel and dime you just to play more.
 

B4U

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Oct 11, 2012
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These freemium games are so annoying.
All the game companies are following this business model and rip us off with crappy games.
Where are all the quality games that used to cost over $50?
 

GeneralChang

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Dec 2, 2013
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Not on consoles...I checked.
No big name JRPG are there.
Even the PS4 PS store is littered with garbage freemium crap.
So uh... Neir Automata? Persona 5? FF15? Those don't... count, for some reason? And it's not exactly a JRPG but LoZ: Breath of the Wild? To say nothing of all of the excellent non-JRPG games covered by your original comment because you didn't specify JRPGs until later?

There are dozens of fantastic non-freemium games released over the past few years on PCs and consoles for $50-60. Just not on your phone. Which uh, was what this article was about.