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Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Luxury Watchmaker TAG Heuer Puts Ugly Red-Hatted Plumber on Limited-Edition Watch

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - And people are expected to pay for this?

While this doesn't have a Nintendo press release (not as of publishing, at least), Swiss luxury watchmaker TAG Heuer is launching with a Super Mario-branded luxury smartwatch—officially called the TAG Heuer Connected x Super Mario Limited Edition—that'll be sold for £1,800. Only 2,000 watches will be produced, according to watch industry outlet WatchPro. (This same outlet put their headline as “TAG Heuer teams up with Super Mario to get gamers off their sofas”, so they're... clearly not friendly to gamers. Or familiar with Ring Fit Adventure.) According to Roberta Naas, the self-described “first woman watch journalist in America”, TAG Heuer is entering into a “long-term collaboration with Nintendo”.

As an aside, I have no idea if the watch journalism industry is as stupid and bad at their jobs as the videogame journalism industry is. I know several gamers who think gaming journalism deserves special scorn, but most journalism, irrespective of niche, is like that. Regardless...

These smartwatches are packed with features thanks to having Google's software suite embedded. That includes music, digital payments, a calendar, Google Translate, wellness monitoring (step-counting, heart rate), and apparently there's an integrated Golf App that would probably be there even if Mario Golf: Super Rush didn't exist. I would imagine navigating all of that on a tiny digital screen with tiny controls would be very undesirable, as someone who has never owned a smartwatch and hopefully never will. It also has five customisable watch faces packed with Super Mario references, including the main one being a likeness of the plumber. Here's a trailer...

Mario will change his animations as you get closer and closer to your daily step goals. At 25%, there's a Super Mushroom transformation. At 50%, he goes into and then goes out of a warp pipe. Then at 75%, he uses a Super Star to hurt your eyes. (While I prefer Super Star over Super Mushroom as a power-up, I don't think I prefer it as someone to stare at for any duration of time.) At 100%, he's pole-dancing on a flag.

This will allegedly be available in very select stores throughout Earth as well as online, though I'm not sure how the supply chain works when you gotta distribute only 2,000 watches across 69 “super boutiques.” (In terms of the United States, there are boutiques in California, Florida, Nevada [AKA Las Vegas], New York, and Texas.)

Who is supposed to want to buy this? TAG Heuer put out an article following a (hypothetical?) dude who seems to enjoy when convenient modes of transportation break down so he gets an excuse to walk around for 10,000 steps. (He also likes going to the gym.) Of course, it's not like having that ugly plumber digitally attached to his wrist would make him (or you) more athletic. If it were me and I was forced to wear the watch, I wouldn't want to move at all just to keep him away from me.

I think the type of people who'd hunt down and pay for these watches are the type of people who pay $660,000 for a sealed copy of Super Mario Bros. or $1,560,000 for a sealed copy of Super Mario 64. Weirdos with a lot of money to pay for expensive gaming-related things they'll never actually use. There's probably at least 2,000 of those for this!

TAG Heuer Connected x Super Mario Limited Edition flagpole waving bye
Well, I referenced those auctions, so I'll be heading out.

Update, July 15, 2021: It's already sold out. Guess you can't buy it!

Ludwig isn't concerned that this is an insidious plot to expand Mario's Earth influence since the goal specifically seems to sell very few of these and only to wealthy people.

TAG Heuer returns in 2022 for a Mario Kart chronograph collaboration.


  1. I would prefer an old school styled mario watch rather than the eventually outdated 3D version. In the same being as I prefer the classic 2d Micky watch rather than any of those 3D Micky abominations. The best watch was the ALF watch!

    1. I dunno wot the hell you're talking about.

    2. I prefer 8-bit Mario to cgi mario. Do you like to wear watch’s? I do.

    3. I don't own a watch and I don't know why I ever would.

      There's an 8-bit watchface.


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