Nice to Miitomo you: Nintendo's first smartphone app is here

Japan-only for now, but it's coming to other countries soon

It's been a long time coming, but Nintendo's first smartphone game is finally here - only it's not the Mario platformer you might have been expecting...

Miitomo is part game, part social network; you can create and dress up your Mii avatar, and give it a voice for the first time.

On the Wii, Wii U and 3DS, Miis were silent, but here you can choose the pitch, speed and depth of your voice. Your Mii then reads out on-screen messages using text-to-voice.

You can dress up your Mii with proper clothes now too - not just choose the colour of a generic shirt.

The meat of the game is in the questions your Mii asks you. Each one gets shared with your friends, and they can respond to your answers.

There's also an augmented reality Miifoto mode, which lets you pose with your Mii and take a photo for uploading to social networks.

Playing Miitomo will unlock digital coins to spend in My Nintendo, the online store that replaces the old Club Nintendo store. Right now the list includes Miitomo items, game discounts, and even free games.

Twilight Princess Picross and WarioWare: Touched are first in line, but Nintendo will probably take things in and out of rotation after a few months.

Yes, there are in-app payments too. Some of them are crazy expensive, but everything can be earned through hours of playtime too.

Miitomo is officially available in Japan right now, but unless you've got access to the Japanese iOS App Store you're out of luck until Nintendo brings it to other countries. 

That should happen by the end of March, though, so Nintendo fans won't have long to wait.