Nintendo has partnered with Google to give Mario and his beloved kart a starring role on Google Maps over the next week, in celebration of this year's Mario Day.
Why Mario Day? Because today, March 10th, can also be written as MAR10, you see, which hopefully speaks for itself. It's tenuous but Nintendo has been trumpetting Mario Day for a few years now, and occasionally likes to bring others aboard the party train. Hence today's cross-corporate camaraderie and Mario on Google Maps for iOS and Android.
If you fire up the Google Maps app on your Android or iOS smart device over the next week (you might need to update it first), and follow the usual steps to access driving directions, you should find a familiar question mark block at the bottom the screen.
Tap it and enable "Mario Time", and the blue arrow that shows your position when viewing turn-by-turn driving instructions will be transformed into Mario and kart. Sure, the novelty will probably wear off after a few minutes, but what joyful moments they'll be.
"Just remember to practice safe driving on the road," says Google, "we don't encourage throwing bananas or red shells at other drivers in real life!"
For its part, Nintendo is celebrating Mario Day with a more traditional offering: between March 10th and March 25th, you can get 50% off Super Mario Run on iOS and Android.