Dr. Mario, the classic 1990s puzzle game which originally launched for the NES and Game Boy, is coming to the App Store.
According to Nintendo, the game will arrive on July 10. It will be free to download but, as with recent Nintendo mobile games, will contain in-app purchases.
For those who never played Dr. Mario back in the day, it’s somewhat similar to Tetris. It’s a falling block puzzle game, in which your objective is destroy viruses populating the screen by using colored capsules. These are thrown by Mario, who has somehow hurriedly retrained as a doctor following his original career as a plumber and princess-rescuer. The player must align similar colors of capsule to remove viruses, before moving onto the next level.
“Hundreds of stages over many different worlds … with new worlds coming on a regular basis! You’re not in this alone — send and receive stamina-giving hearts to use in stage mode! Then, show off your puzzle-solving progress. In versus mode, you can challenge others to a one-on-one showdown!”
Coming soon to a device near you
While Dr. Mario is ostensibly an update of a classic almost 30-year-old game, it shows the hallmarks of Nintendo’s current philosophy concerning mobile games.
After Mario Run didn’t pull in quite as much dough as expected, Nintendo embraced micropayments. (But it has reportedly got a few qualms about not charging users too much.) Nintendo has also pushed toward social games, although its first effort in this area, Miitomo, failed to live up to expectations. Both of those will play a big part in Dr. Mario.
Unfortunately, it also shows one other trait of Nintendo mobile games: it requires constant online access to work.
Estimates show that Nintendo made $348 million from mobile games alone during 2018. With two new games starring its most famous mascot coming in 2019 (the other being Mario Kart), this year could turn out to be even better.
You can pre-order Dr. Mario here. It will work with all iPhones, iPads and iPod touch devices running iOS 11.0 and above.