5 Blatant App Store Ripoffs of Nintendo Games

As many people know, Apple’s app store has always had quite a few stolen games and ripoffs. You’ve got a dozen bad attempts at mini games starring characters from TV shows and movies the game creator has no right to, umpteen million Pokemon clones being sold for a dollar and an almost ridiculous amount of attempts at trying to get a Mario game on mobile phones by people who have no right to the character or franchise.

So here are 5 of the worst blatant rip offs of Nintendo games that were once available on the app store.

1. Mole Kart

Based on: Mario Kart Wii

The most infamous case of plagiarism in recent history, Mole Kart was a blatant rip off of Mario Kart Wii down to the tracks, items and graphics. You had tracks ripped straight from the Wii game, items which looked and acted nearly identical to those in Mario Kart Wii, and the style was just so blatantly a rip off of Mario Kart Wii that fans reported it to Nintendo in their hundreds. Here’s a trailer, in case you need to see for yourself:

Yeah, when you can see the entirety of Bowser Castle 3, Sherbet Land, Peach Beach and Mushroom Gorge taken whole sale from Mario Kart Wii, you know you’re watching a video with a lot of plagiarism present.

It was even bad enough that for a time, the original video on Youtube showing this game was removed due to a copyright claim from Nintendo of America, despite it just being a Nintendo fan uploading the trailer to mock it!

However, while the original version was removed from the app store due to legal claims by Nintendo (namely the stolen track designs, items and graphics), a newer version of the game was eventually released that removed any stolen elements and that one has seemingly been allowed to stay up by Nintendo and their legal team.

2. 3D Land Safari

Based on: Super Mario 3D Land

Is it more or less depressing that the same person who made this also made a completely different game that was also a blatant Super Mario 3D Land rip off?

Either way, 3D Land Safari is an unashamedly bad attempt at copying Super Mario 3D Land, and doesn’t even attempt to hide it.

Main character looks almost identical to Mario? Check.

A graphics style that looks like a poor man’s copy of Mario 3D Land? Check again.

Heck, it even has clones of common Mario enemies like Koopas, Goombas and Bullet Bills, as well as flagpoles to end the levels!

Just look at the screenshots, and I think you’ll see exactly what I’m talking about.

The other game mentioned (known as Cloud Run), is just as bad, and even stars a stick figure wearing a Mario hat!

Ripoff 1

Ripoff 2

However, you’ll be happy to know that Nintendo seem to have caught on to these clones, since at least one has been removed from the app store, likely for reasons related to copyright/trademark infringement.

3. Little Masters

Based on: Pokemon (Gen 3)

If the name didn’t tip you off previously, this game is about as subtle as a rock.

Pokemon clone

The graphics look to be edited versions of those used in generation 3 titles like Fire Red and Leaf Green and Ruby and Sapphire, attacks share names with those in the actual Pokemon games, and hell, the whole layout and game perspective is near enough identical to Nintendo’s Pokemon series. Have a look at some screens:

Pokemon Clone 2

I mean, yes, Nintendo doesn’t own the concept to a game where you capture, train and battle with monsters. But this game just steals the whole layout from Pokemon, and the game looks like something you could make just by hacking one of the gen 3 or 4 titles.

Don’t buy this.

4. Pokemon Yellow

Based on: Just guess

Pokemon game ripoff

There’s not much to say about this game, because it’s pretty much a non working doorstop deliberately disguised as a Pokemon game.

This isn’t a joke either. While the packaging and marketing materials imply that this is a port of the classic Game Boy game complete with all the same content and hours of gameplay, the actual gameplay you get for your money is literally nothing.

The game doesn’t work. All you get is an image at best, simply because the game doesn’t load at all. The hilarious reviews only make this all the better, being fake quotes from non credited, non existant sites, and the images aren’t even from Pokemon Yellow but from Fire Red and Leaf Green.

Pokemon ripoff

This isn’t just plagiarism, this is an actual scam. As a result, it’s long been removed by either Nintendo’s lawyers or Apple’s quality control team, and is thankfully now impossible to download or buy.

5. Super Jump World

Based on: New Super Mario Bros

Looking all too inspired by the New Super Mario Bros series, Super Jump World/Lep’s World looks far too close to the Mario series for comfort. Oh, it stars a Leprechaun rather than a plumber, but the style looks a lot like a fan artist trying to redraw the New Super Mario Bros tilesets in an image editor.

Mario Clone Grassland

Mario Clone Castle

However Nintendo themselves presumably threatened the makers of this one with legal action or something, because the game itself has been fairly heavily tweaked to remove anything seen as looking too much like the Mario series (the ground has been redone, the ? blocks removed and replaced with clover symbols and other minor changes). Still probably not quite thorough enough, since the ‘totally not inspired by New Super Mario Bros at all’ castle background remains and the HUD looks much like Nintendo’s games, but I guess the makers did try and minimise the resemblance somewhat.

Of course, these aren’t the only rip offs of Nintendo games to be found on the app store, only some of the most infamous. Heck, here’s another example of a game on there stealing resources from Nintendo games despite having absolutely zero right to:

Yes, they stole the Super Mario World ghost house background. Probably some of the others one too, although I don’t have enough knowledge of non Nintendo games or sites with photos of outer space to know for certain.

Really though, all the examples above make me wonder quite a few things. Like how anyone can be so oblivious to think that stealing the whole design and graphics style of a game by Nintendo is even remotely legal. Or that taking your sold game’s graphics from the Spriter’s Resource isn’t going to end up in you being sued. Considering that at least half the games on this list were removed for stolen content, why even take the chance?

So there you have it, five examples of Nintendo game ripoffs that were once available on the app store. Some got removed, many got tweaked to remove the copyright infringing elements, but it’s still a sad display of how some developers have no respect for Nintendo and their work.

Have you seen any other ripoffs on the app store?


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7 years ago

Well, we wouldn’t have cheesy, unneeded rip offs…. If Nintendo just cooperated with apple and made the world happy again! Seriously! Think of the profit possibilities, MILLIONS OF APPS could be sold about Mario, Link, Pokemon, Mario kart, etc… But oh no, that’s not good enough, no matter that everyone on the planet has an IOS/ android device, not everyone has a wii, wiiU, nintendoDS, Gameboy,wii2, or whatever else! People could take pokemon with them like they did with their Gameboy when they were kids, the original games, Red, Blue, Green, Yellow. But on their phone or IPad, do you… Read more »

7 years ago
Reply to  Fortemysterium

not another, “Nintendo should make games for tablets and phones” comment.

Andrew Mulligan
Andrew Mulligan
7 years ago
Reply to  Fortemysterium

Buy a DS.

7 years ago
Reply to  Fortemysterium

so you want some real games instead of cheesy casual things? get a real gaming device, don’t be a casual poser gamer wannabe. btw i got psp, ds and iphone

7 years ago

Recently some flappy bird fanboy developers released two new games: Bouncy Boo & Splashy Fish. I think that because of the rumors of nintendo suing the flappy bird developer, these people wanted to mock nintendo a little bit. Check the games out.