One of Nintendo’s first attempts to break into the mobile market was naturally with its mascot in Super Mario Run, though as a predominantly paid app it failed to break through like its contemporaries. The plumber has made appearances in other mobile games since, namely Dr. Mario World and Mario Kart Tour, but it appears that might be all for the foreseeable future.
In an interview with Variety, Miyamoto discusses mobile games and confirms they “will not be the primary path of future Mario games”. This doesn’t rule them out, though Miyamoto later clarifies that “Nintendo’s core strategy is a hardware and software integrated gaming experience”, revealing that it was “challenging” to determine Mario’s direction to mobile.
Of course Miyamoto was ready to point out the benefits to having Mario on mobile, suggesting the current games might be there to stay (unlike poor Dr. Mario World):
“Having Mario games as mobile apps expands the doorway for far more audience to experience the game, and also expands the Mario gaming experience, where you only need your thumb on one hand.”
Finally, Miyamoto was asked when the next mainline Mario game will be revealed and could only say “please stay tuned for future Nintendo Directs.” Here’s hoping it’s sooner rather than later!