Blockbuster game Super Mario Run is all set to launch on iOS on Dec. 15, but here's what you might not know: it requires an always-on internet connection.

Super Mario Run is one of the most highly anticipated mobile games because it finally brings Mario to the mobile era, allowing players to enjoy the adventure on the go.

The game is launching on iOS in 151 markets and will be free to start, but it will have limited content. This means that interested players can download the game for free, but they will have to pay if they want more fun. Unlocking the full adventure costs $9.99 (£7.99 or AU$14.99) and it will be a one-time purchase, bringing additional content for all three game modes.

Super Mario Run Always-On Internet Connection

Nintendo just released a teaser before the iOS release next week, revealing four minutes of Super Mario Run gameplay to boost the hype. What Nintendo failed to announce at any point so far, however, is that players will not be able to enjoy the game unless they have an active internet connection.

This important tidbit of information surfaced during an interview with Shigeru Miyamoto, the game's designer. Miyamoto said that an active internet connection is required because it was too challenging to offer the World Tour single-player mode as a standalone option, as it made it more complicated to switch to the Mushroom Kingdom and Toad Rally modes that require an internet connection.

Piracy Concerns

Another reason for this decision, however, pertains to security, stemming from piracy concerns.

"We wanted to be able to leverage that network connection with all three of the modes to keep all of the modes functioning together and offering the game in a way that keeps the software secure," Miyamoto explained. "This is something that we want to continue to work on as we continue to develop the game."

The game designer pointed out that piracy is a great risk, and requiring an active connection aims to counter the threat.

How Much Data Will Super Mario Run Require?

Games that require always-on internet connections can bite a big chunk of one's monthly data allowance, but the requirements vary by app. Super Mario Run will reportedly gobble up 75 MB of data per hour for intensive, constant play after the download, reveals AppleInsider. The publication adds that it will require "significantly less" otherwise, "in most cases."

It remains unclear why Nintendo did not reveal from the very beginning that Super Mario Run will require an active internet connection, especially since the full experience requires a purchase.

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