'Super Mario' makes his smartphone debut December 15

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'Super Mario' makes his smartphone debut December 15

The game Super Mario Run will appear on iPhone and iPad on December 15.

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'Super Mario' makes his smartphone debut December 15

Brett Molina , USA TODAY 9:44 a.m. EST November 15, 2016

A screenshot of the mobile game 'Super Mario Run.'(Photo: Nintendo)

Mark your calendars for December 15. That's when Super Mario will make his smartphone debut.

Nintendo announced Tuesday it will release the mobile game Super Mario Run for the iPhone and iPad next month. Players can download the game for free, and try certain portions of it without paying. Unlocking the full game will cost $9.99.

Super Mario Run is among the category of running games similar to Temple Run, where the character runs on their own, and players must tap the touchscreen to jump over obstacles and swipe left or right to dodge.

In the case of Super Mario Run, Mario must avoid enemies, jump past obstacles and collect coins on the way toward the flagpole to finish a level. It's not clear how many levels will appear in the game, or whether Nintendo plans to add more in future updates.

This isn't the first mobile game for Nintendo, which had been reluctant to introduce its signature franchises to popular platforms like the iPhone. Last year, Nintendo launched the social app Miitomo, where users have conversations with friends featuring avatars called Miis.

Follow Brett Molina on Twitter: @brettmolina23.

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