TAG Heuer has followed up on the partnership it announced with Porsche earlier this year with something a bit more down with the kids: a tie-up with Nintendo’s Super Mario.
The watchmaker’s youthful CEO, Frédéric Arnault, says the company was casting around for ideas on ways to reach new audiences for its Connected smartwatch when the video game concept cropped up.
“The inspiration for this collaboration came from our desire to gamify and bring excitement to our new wellness application and Super Mario instantly came to our minds,” Mr Arnault says.
Older generations may associate gaming with teenage couch potatoes starved of sunshine, but TAG Heuer thinks Super Mario is a force for good and a perfect brand ambassador for £1,800 wellness-enhancing Connected timepieces.
“Mario is the ultimate super-active character whose perseverance and tenacity get him out of every situation,” urges Mr Arnault.
More than 370 million Super Mario games have been sold worldwide since 1985, making it one of the most recognisable brands on the planet within and outside the gaming world.
Super Mario Smartwatch
A new TAG Heuer Connected with Super Mario interactive watch face will be like having Joe Wicks or Mr Motivator with your on your wrist.
Mario will encourage wearers to keep moving by becoming livelier and more animated the more the wearer is active.
“The new hero watch face gives life to this iconic character and encourage users to team up with Mario to get out there and be more active. The TAG Heuer Connected is the perfect companion for a connected life and every active person’s best friend. With this Super Mario limited-edition smartwatch, they can add a bit of fun and originality to their activities and wellness,” Mr Arnault explains.
Animations are based on a familiar video game rewards system.
Mario wakes you up with a salute in the morning and as the day progresses and you rack up your step count, you unlock rewards at each stage of your daily target – 25%, 50%, 75% and 100% – a different animation plays out on the dial.
These take the form of Super Mario’s famous objects: at 3 o’clock the Super Mushroom that makes Mario grow, at 6 o’clock the Pipe that allows him to travel fast and at 9 o’clock the Super Star that makes him invincible lights up. And when you reach 100% of your daily step count target, Mario climbs the Goal Pole, another iconic feature of the video game.
This Super Mario version of the TAG Heuer Connected comes with four fresh digital dials with different details from the Nintendo character.
The regular timekeeping watch face has been re-skinned using retro elements from the 1985 version of Super Mario Bros. with Mario, all in pixels.
There are two versions of the Heuer 02 watch face, one with Super Mario’s red and blue colours, and a more classic one with subtle touches of Super Mario’s red cap.
Lastly, the Orbital watch face had its neural network replaced by Super Mario elements.
On the hardware front, the watch’s bezel, push buttons and crown logo are filled with Super Mario’s red cap colour.
The bezel has three iconic symbols, a mushroom, star and finishing podium, at the three, six and nine o’clock positions.
A new-look steel case has two interchangeable straps in black leather on red rubber or red perforated rubber with the M symbol of Mario engraved on the buckle.
The same M symbol is on the crown and the flip side of the watch has a screw-down case-back inscribed with “TAG Heuer x Super Mario Limited Edition”.
Only 2,000 of the watch are being made, priced at £1,800.
Customers are invited to register today at TAG Heuer’s website if they want to buy one with the watches expected to be sold from July 15.