The Super Mario franchise, since its inception in 1985, stands as an emblem of the gaming world. Having started as one of the pioneering mainstream games, it has consistently remained at the forefront, with its titles resonating with gamers across generations. Given the multitude of Super Mario releases over the years, many wonder, “How much money has the Mario franchise made?” In this analysis, we’ll dive deep into the most pertinent Super Mario statistics to provide insights on its financial achievements and legacy. We sincerely hope that you will find the information here helpful, and if you want to learn more, like how much the video game industry is worth, we got you covered!
Super Mario key stats
Like everything else, we’ll start from the beginning. In this first section, we’ll take a look at Super Mario as a franchise to see when the first game was made and examine the many accolades that the game has accumulated over time. The appeal of the Super Mario games lies in the nostalgia surrounding the characters, as well as the addictive nature of the games which offer a lot of replayability and engagement with players. The fat little Italian plumber has had a long career, so let’s see what he has accomplished!
The Super Mario franchise has made $22.6 billion in revenue.
(Source: VG Sales)
Super Mario Bros. generated $2.67 billion in revenue.
Super Mario Bros. 3 generated $2.39 billion in revenue.
New Super Mario Bros. Wii generated $2.34 billion in revenue.
Super Mario World generated $2.14 billion in revenue.
Since the franchise’s inception over 35 years ago, it’s understandable why many might ask, how much money has the Mario franchise made? A staggering $22.6 billion in revenue is a testament to its enduring appeal and the unwavering support of its community. As the franchise continually innovates and releases new titles, its trajectory of success is set to ascend even further. While the latest games offer unprecedented accessibility to players, it’s notable that the older titles have substantially contributed to the franchise’s total revenue.
The first Super Mario game was made in 1983.
(Source: Mario Wiki)
It was released for the Nintendo Entertainment System.
It was released in the year when the video game industry crashed.
Its successor, Super Mario Bros., was one of the games to revive the gaming industry from 1985 onwards.
Although it wasn’t stated at the time, the first “Super Mario” game to come out was technically Donkey Kong in 1981, but the protagonist was called Jumpman instead.
Although there are some discrepancies in the community regarding the first Mario game ever released, we can be sure that the legacy of Super Mario began between 1981 and 1983, with the 1981 iteration being named Jumpman before being changed to Mario. In any case, when Super Mario came out it sparked the revival of the gaming market which experienced a significant crash in 1983. Super Mario, together with The Legend of Zelda managed to redefine gaming in general and produce something incredible.
The most successful Mario game is Mario Kart 8 Deluxe with nearly 50 million sales.
(Source: IGN, VG Sales)
The Super Mario franchise has sold over 396.8 million copies.
Super Mario Bros. sold 40.2 million copies.
New Super Mario Bros. sold 30.8 million copies.
New Super Mario Bros. Wii sold 30.3 million copies.
Super Mario World sold 26.6 million copies.
There isn’t much to say about the section other than this is a great representation of the success of the franchise in general, wherein it sold nearly 400 million copies across all of its games and iterations. This is a massive feat for any gaming company since you will see a lot of franchises sell a fraction of the copies that the Super Mario franchise has sold. It’s a titan of the gaming industry and its success is only going to increase as the future of the gaming industry improves.
Across all consoles and since the first game, there have been 638 games in the Super Mario franchise.
(Source: Mario Wiki)
This number includes duplicate games released on multiple consoles.
Mario doesn’t appear in all games in the franchise, with some of the characters in the series having their own games.
4 of the games were released for the Nelsonic Game Watch.
48 of the games were released for physical Arcade machines.
Okay, even we weren’t expecting a number this massive when it comes to the total number of Super Mario games released, but what can you do? The series is immensely popular and it makes sense that it would be spread across many consoles and even more releases. What is interesting in this section is that there have even been some Super Mario games released for the Nelsonic Game Watch, an experimental piece of tech that offered to bring your favorite games to your wrist, something that sounded amazing at the time. It never really caught on, though.
Super Mario and Animal Crossing are the Nintendo Switch’s best-selling franchises.
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe has 48.4 million sales, while Animal Crossing has 40.2 million sales.
4 of the top 8 best-selling games for the Nintendo Switch are Super Mario titles.
The Nintendo Switch is a revolutionary console that has accumulated nearly 115 million sales since it was first released, and since it was released by Nintendo, you can be sure that you’re going to be able to play titles ranging from The Legend of Zelda to Pokemon, and of course, Super Mario. Because of that, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is the most-played game on the Nintendo Switch with nearly 50 million downloads.
Contrary to popular belief, the Super Smash Bros. series is not a part of the Super Mario franchise.
(Source: Mario Wiki)
Super Smash Bros. is a crossover fighting game featuring many different characters from the Nintendo universe.
There are 89 playable characters in the Super Smash Bros. series.
14 of those characters are from the Super Mario franchise.
Super Smash Bros. is one of the most prolific fighting games out there because it is a composite fighting game that includes characters from the entirety of the Nintendo universe. The premise of the game is just like in any other fighting game where the players choose a character and their ultimate goal is to knock each other off of the map. It is a high-paced game that is insanely fun, yet it is not a part of the Mario Super franchise. This is because it is a separate title where characters from different franchises can come together to duke it out.
A vintage Super Mario Bros. game was sold for $2 million.
(Source: NY Times)
The game has never been opened before.
The previous profit record for a Super Mario game was $1.56 million.
In comparison, a Legend of Zelda cartridge sold for $870,000.
This is another thing that happens with extremely popular games that came out many years ago — when preserved correctly, their value skyrockets to massive proportions, but not all games can reach the hype and value that Super Mario managed to accumulate. This is yet another testament to the sheer quality and popularity of the franchise, and we are sure that some games are only going to further increase in value as time goes on.
To sum up
This is the part where we enter a random green pipe and eat some mushrooms because that is all we have to say about the Super Mario franchise and everything it has accomplished over the years. From the information we have presented here, we can see that the Super Mario franchise has accumulated millions of sales and hundreds of millions of dedicated fans that play many of their games whenever they come out. They eagerly play some of the older games because of nostalgia and the retro gameplay dynamic, as you should. We sincerely hope that you have learned something new about one of the biggest characters in gaming history and we hope that we have answered any questions you might have had.
“Mario Bros. (game)”. Super Mario Wiki, 2022, https://www.mariowiki.com/Mario_Bros._(game)#NES_controls
“List of games”. Super Mario Wiki, 2022, https://www.mariowiki.com/List_of_games#Electronic_water_games
“Nintendo Switch Sales Cross 114 Million, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Nears 50 Million Units Sold”. IGN, 2022, https://www.ign.com/articles/nintendo-switch-sales-cross-114-million-mario-kart-8-deluxe-nears-50-million-units-sold