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I grew up playing games on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES), most of my favourite games when I was younger included my favourite plumbers Mario and Luigi and their dinosaur friend Yoshi, and of course Princess Peach, who always seems to be running into bad luck and getting captured by the villain in this game King Bowser. I honestly spent hours trying to rescue the Princess in games such as Super Mario Bros 1, 2 and 3, Super Mario World 1 and 2, The Lost Levels and of course Mario 64 when Mario became for 'advanced' on the Nintendo 64 console. The Mario Franchise has brought gamers worldwide countless hours of entertainment, and their games were one of my favourite past times when I was a child.
Fast forward to the future and Mario has been revived in a format that is much like the old games from the past for the Nintendo Wii, this was great news for me being a long term fan of the franchise. As soon as the game came out I was straight out to the shops to get myself a copy. I bought this copy in Game for £34.99 and I just could wait to get home and play it.
Okay, so as usual Princess Peach has got herself into trouble and been captured by King Bowser and his children again. In this game she is captured by the Koopa Kids (King Bowsers Children) at her own Birthday Party (how unlucky), they take her away on their flying ship and Mario and Luigi and co. quickly jump to her aid and set out on their journey to save her. Meanwhile the Toads People (Princess Peaches loyal subjects) blast off aid for the heroes in the form of penguin suits and helicopter heads (these are brand new Power Ups in the game that spice up the old fire flowers and racoon tails). The game then starts in world one 1.
Like many Mario Games there are 8 worlds for Mario and co. to work through before he can save Princess Peach, at the end of each world there is a castle at each world, these get progressively trickier the further you get in the game.
Also like many Mario games there are small castles at the half way point of each world for Mario and co. to tackle, the famous 'Ghost Houses' also feature in this game and also red and green Mushroom Houses make appearances in every world in this game giving you the chance to win extra lives and different items such as mushrooms, fire flowers and racoon power ups.
The villains that Mario comes across in this game are the same old favourites some examples are the Koopas, Spike, Thump, Monty Mole and Boo to name a few.
Mario levels are very similar to the old games also, where he works his way through a world filled with blocks with coins and prizes in them and also tunnels that lead that when entered bring you to a different stage in a level. This game really is a treat for the hardcore Mario fans, also I don't think it would be hard for someone who enjoys games and is not familiar with the Mario franchise to have fun playing this game.
In each level there are 3 Mario Coins that a player must aim to collect, this is another well known feature of the Mario games, as the game progresses it gets harder to locate and capture the Mario Coins, this makes the game more challenging as you are not only trying to make it through a level you are also trying to find coins to complete the game 100% and also if you locate all the Mario Coins you can open a 'secret' world with 8 more challenging levels in it.
You can skip from world to world if you find 'secret exits' in some levels which leads Mario and co. to cannons that shoot him off to worlds further in the game, this is helpful if you are looking to skip to the more challenging levels in a hurry, however is also a shame as you don't complete the game 100% unless you go back and complete the easier levels at a later time.
Yoshi also appears in this game as Mario's faithful dinosaur/horse, you can ride Yoshi through selected levels, this is a great feature of this game in my opinion as my personal favourite Mario game ever made is the Super Mario World game where Yoshi made his first appearance.
This game stayed true to the old game formats, it also has added a number of new features which gives the game a bit of an edge.
The first new feature that excited me about this game is the new Mario Power Ups available to play with, these give Mario special powers within levels and make game play more interesting. There are three new Power Ups in this game, they are the Penguin Suit, Propeller Mario and Ice Mario. The Propeller Mario allows Mario to fly, this Power Up is triggered when you are wearing the propeller suit (found in select levels in the game) by shaking your Wii controller, Mario then soars through the air making the game much more interesting than just simply walking through it. The Ice Mario Power Up allows Mario to shoot ice balls much like the Fire Flower Power Up, villains that are hit by the ice balls are then frozen on the screen and cannot harm Mario, also iced villains can be picked up and smashed by Mario within the game. The Penguin Suit is my favourite new Power Up on this game, this allows Mario to shoot ice balls the same as the Ice Mario Power Up but it also allows Mario to swim with much less effort and more steadily in water levels (also Mario looks really cute in his little Penguin Suit).
There have also been two new mushrooms Power Ups added to this game, they include the Super Mushroom and the Shrinking Mushroom. The Super Mushroom grows Mario to into a giant for around 30 seconds within the game, this allows Mario to destroy everything in his path and gain lots of extra points and extra lives on the score board. The Shrinking Mushroom allows Mario to shrink down to a tiny size, this results in Mario becoming more vulnerable to villains but this is traded in for him being able to jump extra high and also fit down tiny tunnels that are normally placed for the purpose of level secrets.
Playing co-operative is a new feature that is really interesting on this game, it means that everyone can play together at the same time, making their way through each level as a team. This is a great feature as it can get boring waiting for your turn on the older Mario games, in this game everyone works together to progress to the next stage. When my fiancé and I play this mode it always turns into a competition to see who can complete the game quickest or who can get the Mario Coins within the level.
This game is fantastic for multiplayer, you can play with 1-4 players at a time, every player can play through each level at the same time and at stages players need to co-operate to gain Mario Coins or find secrets within levels. Playable characters within this game are Mario, Luigi and also a Yellow Toad and a Blue Toad.
The graphics on this game really don't disappoint, they stay true to the old Mario games. This game is played in a 2D format, advancing from one side of the screen to another. I am really glad that Nintendo decided to stay true to past games in this way as I think that this is part of the 'charm' of the better Mario games. The graphics are both simple and efficient to their purpose, each world is decorated in a detailed and colourful way and the game is drawn up in a cartoon display just like past Mario games.
The Mario level music is also very similar to the old Mario games. This is great for Mario fans, as the music on older games is unique to Mario games and easily recognised as it is upbeat and catchy. The tempo of the music increases if your timer only has 100 seconds left on it to 'hurry you up' to complete the level.
This is a great game for both Past Mario fans and also new potential players. I love the Mario games and although the story is repetitive, it never gets old, there is something traditional about saving the Princess and living happily ever after for me. I love that this game (as well as other Mario games) has a definite beginning, middle and end and also a lot of cool secret levels for more advanced players. I would definitely recommend this game to a friend, it is a non offensive, light hearted game (that can be played from ages 3 and up according to the box, however think it would take a quite exceptional 3 year old to complete the game at such a young age). I give this game 5 out of 5 and really enjoy playing it with my fiancé and the family.
*Also posted on ciao under lorrainek90*
this is an up to date game based on the original super mario bros. aim of the game? run through the levels collecting coins to increase your lives, getting power ups to help you defeat enemies, pipes to find new levels and special items to help you fly/turn into a penguin/ shoot fireballs etc.
still very expensive but in my opinion well worth the money. this can be played with up to 4 players on the same screen although it can get confusing at times when you all want to go in different directions. the children love this game as when we all play together they can pick my character up and throw him down the holes or into the enemies which they find hysterical.
very very playable. the old favourites are all still there ghosts, plants, turtles etc. the main boss characters at the end of each level are very cool really made us laugh but some are very tricky to defeat.
we bought this game over a year ago and we still play it a lot even now. you can save the game on the way but sometimes you have to complete 3 or 4 levels in a row before being able to save which on the harder worlds can become frustrating.
you also have the ability to fly over some distances and ride on yoshi. yoshi adds a great level of fun too as you can eat the enemies then spit them out at other enemies or as the children do eat a turtle then spit it out so it hits my character!!! still very good fun
even after fully completing this there are loads of bits ive missed out and shortcuts to find so i have replayed it to try and find these.
its everything youd want and more from a current super mario game and the controls are still as simple and easy as the original - jump and fire and shake the controller to fly.
another new addition to this game is the penguin suit which im not so keen on but the kids love to get as he throws snowballs and slides along.
overall excellent game
This was the first game that we bought for the Wii and it really is suitable for the whole family, we often play with our two boys aged 10 and 5.
The advantage that this game has over many others is that up to 4 people can play at one time the characters available are, Mario, Luigi and the two toads.
All the old favourites make appearances at various points throughout the levels and new features such as being able to pick up another persons character and carry them to safety is a great idea, we find this very useful whe our five year old is playing as we can help him out but not spoil his fun.
We have been playing this game now for about two years and still find secret pipes and areas that we did not know were there.
A realy good family game we have had kids as young as four playing and grandparents in their 70's having just as much fun.
This is definitely my favourite game for the Wii.
It can keep you busy for a long time due to the high number of levels across nine worlds, which do get very hard. There are also star coins to collect and sometimes these are hidden and it can therefore take ages to complete the game.
The new mode of being able to play multiplayer is probably the best new feature. It makes for a great gaming experience because you have a higher chance to complete the level and there are much more things you can do. However, you cannot go too far ahead of another player because they will die and when four people are playing this can be quite annoying, especially if you are an advanced player and your friends are beginners.
The levels in the game are varying and there are often things you didn't expect and secret passageways that take you to the end of the level. You also have the opportunity to remove Mario's hat once you reach 99 lives (nothing special but fun)!
As soon as I found out this game was coming out, I knew that I had to have it, when have you known a non third-party Mario game, not to be absolutely brilliant? Of course I got it on release date and I was definitely not disappointed when I first played it. When I opened the packaging I was at first surprised by the red case, which at first I thought was odd, but at least when I want to play this game, it's significantly easier to find because it sticks out like a sore thumb.
The first thing that I think needs to be mentioned is the visuals. To be perfectly honest, they were just as I expected. They were nothing special, but that doesn't really matter in this game, they are very clear and crisp, but they have that Nintendo feel about them, and you can tell they were meant to be like that.
The gameplay in this game is very simple and it is very similar to the gameplay of the original 'Super Mario Bros.' so it's a completely side-scrolling game which works very well when playing in co-op mode. Obviously, it is a lot more complex than the original Mario games, and it has a couple of new items such as the penguin suit, which only enhance the gameplay and there is obviously different types of backgrounds for each themed world and there are also a bunch of new different types of enemies.
Now on to the controls, they probably could be better. I sometimes have found it awkward to use the D-pad on the controller and I think it would be a lot better if the game offered the option of using the nunchuk because I feel the analogue stick would work better for more accurate controlling of your character. Also, I have found there is a short delay between pressing the 'A' button and when the character actually jumps. It is only a short delay, but as you will know if you've played a game similar to this, that quarter of a second could be the difference between virtual life and death.
One last thing to talk about is the music and sound effects on the game. I think the music is very good, with most of the songs that play in the background being remixes of songs from older Mario games, which i feel gives it that nostalgic feel, but still gives it the modern feel as well. Also, the sound effects, there's not much to be said about them really, they are just the classic Mario sound effects that we all know and love.
In conclusion, I recommend this game to any fan of side-scrollers or general Mario games.
If you like the old marios your childhood and 2D games, do not hesitate one second to buy it: it is 10 times better at graphics and options. Similarly, if you like to play more for a good laugh and support in difficult areas, this is for you. And remember to play with numchuk that will be truly optimal.
We really found the game of our childhood with the ability to take the shell to send to your enemies, secret passages, the stars to get back, monsters at the end of each world, ... There are many worlds with many designs and options to use. For example, in the world of ice, it's very funny to slide on the ice with the penguins. Some worlds are quite difficult, however. When some passages are difficult, you put yourself in a bubble to avoid
This game is really freat like the old versions of Marios.
I have come to really appreciate this game over the past few months of owning it and occasionally popping it in for a good run. First of all, you should know that I am a 360 gamer, Modern Warfare 2, Madden '11, that type of stuff. However, I saw this game and decided it looked good enough to add to my meager collection of Wii games (most of which are collecting dust in the corner). I am happy to say that I was pleasantly surprised by how much fun this game was.
.:Single or Multi:.
One of the biggest flaws with the Wii is that the majority of its games are only fun when with a group. This is fantastic.. when you're having a party at your house. But I have found the Wii to be increasingly boring when it's a Tuesday afternoon and I'm tired and just want to relax and play a game. Contrary to what some people may think, standing alone in the middle of your living room swinging a remote around and jumping up and down is not fun.. it makes you feel like a loser. This game however, doesn't have that effect on me. Playing the game by myself has found to actually be enjoyable. At the same time however, playing with 2-4 people is also a blast. Few Wii games are able to do that, this game though is one of them.
The Wii, being a "kids" type of console often has the problem of making its games too easy. I understand this, and there's really not that much wii (get it?) can do about it, but it's still annoying. This game is not the most difficult game you'll ever come across, but it can also provide a bit of a challenge for some of us "seasoned" gamers. You're not going to spend hours in frustration on some of the harder levels, but you're also going to die a few times along the way.
This game is actually pretty lengthy, which is good because for where it lacks with in challenge slightly. There is a total of 80 levels in this game, so in my book that is quite a lot of playing time. I would say it took me 20+ hours to just defeat the final boss, and even longer to the point where I considered the game "finished" (maybe I'm slightly OCD like that). So those of you who think that this game could be rented and finished in that rental period of a week or two.. yes I suppose it could but you won't get the full experience, plus when your buddies are over you will be Mario-less. I have to say, it's worth your while to just go out and buy it.
I have owned most of the Super Mario games on the Nintendo's, from the first to last and the new Mario Bros Wii does not disappoint.
It has stayed as a 2D game instead of the Mario galaxy's 3D platform game which I think is a great move. The game has kept most of the original characters, Kooper Troopers etc... and follows the same layout, different worlds, levels, ghost houses and castles.
You can play as Mario, Luigi, or a few different coloured toads. The new addition is you can play as a family E.g... with 1,2,3 or 4 people. Me and my family found this great fun as this used to be only a 2 player game and with most families having at least 3 people someone get left out.
The levels are challenging and with the new motion controls it takes some time to get used to. Some of the levels are a through back to the original game which is fun.
There are a few new powers in the game, penguin power, shrinking power which are all needed to complete the game.
The only disappointment is that Yoshi only make an appearance in a few stages and you can not carry him through to the new level. It would have been better to include him more.
The game is well priced at £30 in my local shop and is perfect for the family.
Nintendo decided to take Mario back to his old 2D platforming days with new super Mario bros on the DS. It sold very well for the DS proving that Mario was still popular in 2D as well as in 3D. It proved so popular in fact that Nintendo decided to make another new super Mario bros game, this time it was released for the wii. The big feature about new super Mario bros wii, is the ability to play with four other players at the same time rather than waiting for a player to die then the other player gets their go, no this time all four players are on screen together! As I said before the best feature about new super Mario bros wii, is the four player system. The first player plays as Mario, the second player is Luigi, the third is a blue toad and the fourth player plays as a yellow toad. Ok so they could have done better with the third and fourth player characters, maybe using some other famous Mario characters, but once you have four players all playing at the same time it is one of the greatest multiplayer experiences ever! Another feature in new super Mario bros wii is the ability to ride yoshi. Yoshi can use his signature move, which is his long tongue which he can use to eat most enemies. He can also flutter jump, which yoshi can use to reach new heights which without him you wouldn't be able to reach them.
The actual gameplay in new super Mario bros wii plays just like new super Mario bros on the DS and most other 2D Mario games. Mario travels across 8 worlds to save princess peach who once again surprise, surprise has been kidnapped by Bowser. Mario sets off from peach's castle along with luigi and the two toads to rescue peachy, along the way Mario comes across two new power ups that he has never encountered before. These items are: the propeller mushroom and the penguin suit. The propeller mushroom gives the player an ability to perform a propeller jump which launches Mario to new heights. The second power up the penguin suit turns Mario into a penguin, the plumber can then throw ice balls at enemies (just like the ice flower) but he can also slide across on his belly just like a penguin! Across the world Mario comes across big coins known as star coins, these coins are important to collect whenever you see one. The coins unlock videos which can be viewed at peach's castle but also, help Mario and pals later on in the game in the secret world!
Altogether super Mario bros wii is yet another well made 2D platforming game for the plumber. The controls are well balanced, the levels are well designed and made, the graphics are colourful and full of character, and the multiplayer mode is one of the best multiplayer experiences bar none. So if you own a wii and have two or more wii remotes, you need this game even if you're not really a Mario fan, the multiplayer will most likely win you and everyone else over.
Myself and my partner are always after two player wii games for us to get stuck into. We love the lego series, (Harry Potter, Batman, Star wars) and were on the look out for something similar. We did some research and found that the new version of the Super Mario bros game comes quite highly recommended. It seemed like a very expensive game, £42.99 in HMV so we waited a while but the price didn't seem to drop. We shopped around and managed to find it about £15 cheaper online, from zavvi.com so ordered it from there.
The game is suitable for 1-4 players, depending on how many remotes you have. We have played it singularly and at two player, and I can honestly say I think anymore than two players would be very hard to control, as you can only move off the screen together, so it would rely on all four players wanting to be in the same place in the game at the same time, which I believe would end up making people feel frustrated.
As a two player game we play as Mario and Luigi, the traditional characters everyone knows and loves. The levels have not been jazzed up too much they are still quite basic, which I think is necessary as this keeps the die hard Mario fans happy. The levels involve you walking along a grassy verge and coming across mushrooms and turtles which you need to kill before they kill you (or make you smaller if you have won the right to be bigger!). There are bricks which you can jump up and smash with your head if you are bigger, to get coins, and also surprise bricks which you can jump up at to get goodies out of. These are sometimes good mushrooms to make you bigger, extra lives, or the power to shot fire, which means you can kill your enemies from further away which is safer than having to get close to them. The levels are timed and you only have so many lives which makes it trickier.
Once you have finished a level you unlock another one, which may be similar, might be under water, or might be one in Bowsers castle.
I have found this game really fun to play as a two player laid back game. It is not a match for the shoot 'em ups like call of duty, it is in a completely different league, for a different sort of gamers. This is more for family fun.
The only downsides are that I find the controls could be a little more sensitive. It takes some practise to get your jumps absolutely perfect so that you jump on your enemy, rather than land next to them, which then causes you to die!
If there's one thing that takes me back to my early teens it's that instantly recognisable theme music from Super Mario Bro's on the old SNES. Many a happy hour was wasted glued to the screen with claw shaped fingers aquired from my attempts to finally rescue the Princess from the evil Wario. As one of the most iconic games of the early 90's, it's no wonder Nintendo have revived this old classic and cleverly revamped it while keeping the old nostalgic characters and graphics that we all know and love.
The storyline of Super Mario Bros: Princess Peach is kidnapped by the evil Wario. Mario (or his brother Luigi) are controlled by the player to navigate through a series of levels until finally conquering Wario and rescuing the Princess. The game is a platform type game and Wii have kept this same format for the New Super Mario.
On Wii, you play this game using the Wiimote tilted on it's side. You then control the direction your character moves with your left thumb and the actions with the right. There are some nice touches to the game which require you to tilt or shake the Wiimote to perform an action such as to tilt platforms or to propel yourself into the air upon picking up a flying Mario suit. All the well know characters feature in this game such as Yoshi and Toad and you can make Mario become special by finding penguin suits, fire or snowball abilities or flying suits. There are touches from the old games throughout from the music to the levels themselves which borrow scenes from them.
One of the best things about this game is that the Wii allows you to play it as a multiplayer with up to 4 people on screen at the same time. This is genius as it brings hours of fun stealing mushrooms off your mates and ground pounding enemies together. It also means you aren't sitting for ages waiting for a shot as you can all play it at once! It's such a family game and really is suitable for any age and even older generations will enjoy it.
Everyone loves a bit of Mario and this new game is bound to please even the most hardened gamer. I think the thing about Super Mario bros is that it is easy to play and quite basic in it's graphics and overall design but that's what's great about it! There's no frills or fancy special effects just good old fashioned fun that you won't tire of and will play again and again.
Priced between £30-35 depending where purchased.
I really love Super Mario games so thought this would be a good choice when I bought it last Christmas but I just found it to be too difficult for me.
The things I like about it though are that it is like the old super mario and is lots of fun and if you have played super mario before you will recognise it. The controls are very simple to use and the graphics are quite good on this game compared to some other wii games. There are lots of different levels to complete before you can move onto the next world and also minigames where you can win lives or powers to help you in your journey.
One of the things that I did like about this game was the fact that when you keep dying on one level then you get the opportunity to be shown how to complete it and then you can either complete it yourself or just move onto the next level. I did find this really useful as it gets very frustrating if you keep dying and in the past with a game like this I have just given up but at least with this I could move onto the next level. What I did find though is that I kept having to be shown how to complete the levels every time so in the end I didn't end up finishing this game as there didn't seem any point because I couldn't complete it by myself.
This game is quite expensive. I paid about £35 last Christmas and is still quite a high price even though it was released quite a while ago so it is obviously still a popular game.
I would not recommend this game as it is very difficult to complete. I would not say I am terrible at games like this as I completed Super Mario Galaxy 1 and 2 no problem but this was too much for me
Super Mario Bros.Wii
New Super Mario Bros. Wii offers a combination of cooperation and competition. Players can pick each other up to save them from danger or toss them into it.
Mario, Luigi and two Toads are all playable characters, while many others from the Mushroom Kingdom make appearances throughout the game. Players can even ride different Yoshi characters and use their tongues to swallow enemies - or their fellow players.
In some areas, players use the motion abilities of the Wii Remote controller. The first player to reach a seesaw might make it tilt to help his or her character reach a higher platform - and then tilt it incorrectly just to mess with other players.
New items include the propeller suit, which will shoot players high into the sky with just a shake of the Wii Remote and Mario's new ability to transform into Penguin Mario.
At the end of each stage during the simultaneous multiplayer mode, players are ranked based on their score, the coins collected and the number of enemies defeated.
We love playing games as a family so got this to play with our children. Also my husband both grew up playing Mario on the nintendo 64 so it was a bit of nostalgia for us too. We purchased this game from Play.com for approx £30.
We have become so addicted to this game. We have been playing the game on multiplayer which is both amazingly fun and very frustrating in equal measure but unlike any gameplay ive played before in the way that you have to work together to complete levels.
The yoshis are an awesome part of the game we have played the first yoshi level a stupid amount of times and enjoy eating each other and then spitting people of cliffs or into enemies just for the fun of it.
The game is also very good on single player but its definately more fun on multiplayer, also if you are not so good at computer games if you die on multiplayer you come back in a bubble and your friends can save you so its good for all ability gamers and ages from my 7 year old upwards.
The best game i have played on the wii for sure.
Mario has been a huge game for around 25 years now and when I purchased the Wii console the game I wanted the most was Super Mario Brothers and I was so fortunate I did as it proved to be a real success.
People know the Nintendo Wii lets you are a player control many aspects of a game you play. This might be interactively or just through the new features you have installed on many games. With Mario you are the one who controls various types of new features compared to older versions of the game.
You have new features which give Mario more chances of defeating his enemies and when you have plenty of new features you want to explore and find them and you do this within the first level you come across. The story remains the same as Princess has sadly again been taken against her will and Mario controlled by you needs to free her and it will take you 8 worlds and plenty of searching to do this.
You will find on every levels has enemies out to stop your moves and you can remove them by collecting random bonuses which give Mario extra powers to use against the enemies and remove them.
You have to collect coins in order to gain extra life's and keep an eye out on special coloured mushrooms as some can give you extra incentives. You need to get to the end of each level and work your way to the various castles and defeat some of the bigger enemies. Once you have beaten them you advance to the next world until the game has been completed.
The game offers you the chance to interact with Mario in that you can make him pick up items and throw them at other people and you have a good story behind the game which is easy to follow. You get hints along the way throughout on what controls to press and how to do various moves you might never have experienced before. I have found the new moves easy to do and make the game more fun as well. You will find old favourites like Yoshi within the game and many others.
You can save the game and even play against friends if you wish as multiplayer options are a serious option for people who want to have fun as well. The game really can become addictive and I can easily vouch for that as I play the game continuously and I love every moment.
The biggest problem is the price and this is around the £35 mark and never seems to reduce often from that price. You can get hours of fun whether alone or with friends in this game. The graphics are excellent and even the sound of Mario makes me laugh. Occasionally he seems to talk in a different language and appears to say words you can interpret as something else but other than that this game is superb.
New Super Mario Bros. Wii is a surprisingly hard game to classify, it represents five years worth of back-pedalling in what some would argue is a less profitable direction. Nintendo has never shown themselves to be afraid of taking risks and New Super Mario Bros. Wii feels like another of their gambles, though I'm not quite sure why. Fortunately, but not surprisingly, the choice has proven to be profitable and creates something of a schism. Effectively it is another split in the franchise, the Mario titles are developing in yet another new direction that will continue to sell very well. The twist this time is that the new direction is rather old.
New Super Mario Bros. Wii is based largely on the style of the DS title, also called New Super Mario Bros. These games are both well developed titles that pick up the Mario franchise as if that whole 3D thing we've been devoting the last ten years to never took off. It is a 2D platformer in truest Mario Bros. fashion. While reviewers have been quick to slap the "2.5D" label on the game, it really isn't appropriate. New Super Mario Bros. Wii is a side on view game that merely uses 3D rendered models instead of sprites. Those familiar with the original Mario Bros. or Mario World titles will be at home instantly. The game involves working from the opening of the level to the flag at the end, between you and your goal is a sequence of obstacles. These might be enemies, lava pits, spiky blocks falling from the sky or even falling off a platform into oblivion. It's classic gameplay that doesn't roll around too often and it's as tightly coded as ever. New power up are involved as is to be expected from an all new Mario Bros. title. This time around you can freeze baddies in blocks of ice, slide around in a penguin suit or even don a little helicopter hat and use it to reach out of the way areas. These all blend perfectly well into the level and no power up is useless or makes completion too easy. Playing through New Super Mario Bros. Wii is so familiar, is almost as though you're picking up right where you left off in 1996.
It's not all retro though, Nintendo have taken some modern gaming ideas an worked it into the overall game. Lives are a lot easier to come by, we no longer live in a world where games are driven by arcade sales and it's nice to see home console titles drop a game mechanic intended purely to pump more quarters out of punters. Lives do still feature but after about twenty minutes playing around in the early chapters of the game I'd picked up so many I forgot about them until this end. This doesn't make the game easier, rather it doesn't penalise you for taking as many attempts as you need. A welcome change. They have also included an overworld map, much like Super Mario Bros. 3. This includes all the levels in a series of world and allows you to navigate to the next level or replay previous levels to up your score. Again showing a bit of modern flair, the map isn't a lifeless information screen but a representation of the Mushroom Kingdom, goombas wander across the map kidnapping the toadstool people and hiding them in other levels and there's always a bonus level or even a cannon to uncover. To say that New Super Mario Bros. Wii is an excellent example of the genre is no exaggeration, it really fits with the rest of the Super Mario Bros. series in the best way. It continues with all the best aspects of the series while developing on them in new and interesting ways. The game is also no quick fix, levels can be completed in a few minutes but there are a very large selection of levels, they also require replaying many times to complete 100%. It's a good, old school replayable game complete with high scores and collectables, it will also last as long as those early 90s favourites.
Nintendo also offers a first for the series and has included four player, co-op multiplayer. While the Mario series has always traditionally provided a two player option, it has always involved players taking turns to complete a level, trying to beat one another's score. This time players control Mario, Luigi and two toadstool folk within a level. The levels are adapted to this gameplay and will provide a powerup for each player, minimising the otherwise likely vicious competition for power flowers. Any game featuring four play co-op gets instant brownie points from me as the feature is just so rare, however I was quite surprised and a little disappointed with how this feature panned out. Nintendo had promoted this feature heavily prior to release, however after putting a lot of time into the game I was pretty stunned to find the game seems to play much better solo. It really feels as though the game was designed for the typical solo play with the four player tacked on later as a selling point. While it doesn't lose any points for implementation, the job is flawless, it does feel like a bonus and not the way the game was designed to be played. Not quite how Nintendo sold it.
Graphically, New Super Mario Bros. entertained me greatly. While the world is rendered in full 3D, you're not going to be seeing any varying perspectives here. Rather, you're locked in a side on view and it's beautiful. Colours are some of the most endearing, a rarity today and it looks as good as 90s sprites.
As fun as it is, the decision to develop the game intrigues me. The Mario series is regarded as one of the few games to successfully make the transition from the 2D to 3D era. Super Mario 64 took elements of the Super Mario Bros games and modified them to fit a 3D world, it too felt like a true continuation of the series despite the massive paradigm shift and is regarded as one of the finest games ever made. Since then there have been three fully 3D titles in the main Mario series and each has received stellar reviews and sold incredibly well. Perhaps I'm reading too much into it, but decisions such as these are usually taken after a failing to meet customers expectations (see Sonic the Hedgehog 4, Megaman 9. Both franchises that have recently returned to the styles that made them famous.). Mario on the other hand has consistently lived up to his reputation. It could be that Nintendo's success with the Wii and DS is freeing them up to take decisions covering many different directions. Nostalgic games who left the scene in the 80s are going to flock to New Super Mario Bros Wii while fans of Mario 64 are equally enjoying the Galaxy series. It seems if your company is called Nintendo, you CAN please everybody.
I wouldn't want anyone to take my words the wrong way. I don't consider New Super Mario Bros Wii to be a step in the wrong direction, I'm just impressed at Nintendo's ability to take so many steps in so many directions at once. This is a first rate title and another must own on the Wii. The price however, should not please. Despite being available since before Christmas, New Super Mario Bros. Wii is still priced at over £30. Wii owners should be used to this by now and no doubt a great deal of you will still buy it anyway (which probably has a lot to do with why prices stay so high.)
This can be found literally anywhere selling video games but nowhere for less than £30 new.