Nintendo announced something very special this week: the company is finally bringing Mario Kart to mobile.
The developer/publisher announced in an earnings call this week that it would be bringing the hugely popular racing game to Android and iOS.
The game will be called Mario Kart Tour, and is listed as ‘in development now’.
Though the company has been vague with announcements for a release date, thanks to a statement from the publisher, we do know that the game will hit smartphones and tablets in the next financial year.
That means, unfortunately, that the game could come out anywhere between April 2018 and March 2019.
The details are pretty thin on the ground right now, but at least we finally have confirmation that Nintendo’s next step into mobile games isn’t going to be a new IP, much like the ill-fated Miitomo experiment.
Instead, Nintendo fans will get something more familiar with a continuation of one of its most successful gaming franchises.
Mario Kart is a very successful IP for Nintendo: Mario Kart 8 Deluxe has sold more than 7.3 million copies for Switch since its release last April – meaning that the game has an attach rate of roughly 50% to the company’s newest console. Not bad at all.
Mario Kart is the newest of Nintendo’s franchises to turn to mobile.
Since the publisher announced its plan to develop for mobile in 2015, we’ve seen Super Mario Run, Fire Emblem Heroes and Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp all release to relatively good reception.
Miitomo, the only new IP, didn’t hold onto its initial surge of popularity and will close down this May.
Rumours abound that there is a Legend of Zelda smartphone game in the works too, but that has not yet been confirmed by Nintendo.