It won't be long now until Apple device owners can get in on the fun of Mario with Super Mario Run, the highly anticipated auto-runner due for release on December 15th for $10. Hopes are high that Nintendo and DeNA's newest venture onto mobile devices will prove to be as popular as Pokémon GO, although one minor detail about the game's functions might sour some expectations.
Series creator Shigeru Miyamoto revealed in an interview that the game has no offline mode, and that it will require an internet connection to play. The reason behind this, as Miyamoto notes, is due to piracy risks as a security concern, as Nintendo's software "is a very important asset" for the company.
His complete statement on the matter is as follows:
"[...] the security element is one of the reasons that we decided to go with iPhone and iOS first. So this is just — based on the current development environment — a requirement that's been built into the game to support security and the fact that the three different modes are connecting to the network and interacting with one another.
"We had thought at one point that it would be nice to have the World Tour [story] mode available standalone, to be able to play without that connection. But then the challenge is when that's operating in a standalone mode, it actually complicates the connection back to the Toad Rally and Kingdom modes. And because those two modes are relying on the network save, we had to integrate the World Tour mode as well." — Shigeru Miyamoto
Nintendo later offered an expanded statement to Polygon concerning online connectivity for Super Mario Run:
Online connectivity allows us to offer a variety of features and services that enhance the play experience. Super Mario Run is not a static experience, but rather one that players can continue to return to again and again to enjoy something new and unexpected. For example, online connectivity can offer the following:
Access to other users' play data and scores for automatically generated Toad Rally challenges.
In-game events that will offer players new challenges and rewards for a limited time.
Linkage to Nintendo Account to access save data from multiple devices. For example, if players have Super Mario Run on their iPhone and iPad, they can share one save file across the different devices. However, this save data cannot be used with different devices at the same time.