Product Type: Nintendo Wii games
Newest Review: ... and isn't helped by a stupid meter that needlessly punishes you if you stay in the alternate dimension for too long. There's no good reason... more
Paper Sequel Falls Flat! Sadly, this game isn't much better than that joke.
Super Paper Mario (Wii)
Member Name: TimStain
Super Paper Mario (Wii)
Date: 26/10/12, updated on 26/10/12 (17 review reads)
Advantages: Good writing, nice visual style
Disadvantages: Dull gameplay, feels unfinished
Unlike most sequels which will settle for a nice number 2 in the title (or perhaps more accurately '3' as this is the third game in the series), Nintendo have added the word 'Super'. This seems a bit counter-intuitive to me as highlighting the sequel alone as the 'super' game is a bit like releasing a Half Life sequel called Half Life: Good Version.
Super Paper Mario's gimmick is that you can 'flip' to an alternate dimension (viewpoint) to see all the secrets and gameplay there (disappointingly, almost none). The 'flip' feature gets old fast and isn't helped by a stupid meter that needlessly punishes you if you stay in the alternate dimension for too long. There's no good reason to punish you for staying in the alternate dimension, it doesn't make the game any more challenging, other than too cynically draw out the length of a game that clearly had a rushed development cycle. Even ignoring the gimmicks, the basic platforming in SPM is uninspired, boring to play and way below the standards of your typical Mario platformer.
'Rushed' is very much the word that sums up Super Paper Mario. Here is a good game that clearly needed a few more months of development, but was probably released quickly in the early days of the Wii so people who had just paid £180 for a new console wouldn't start rioting in the streets at the lack of new games.
SPM was originally developed for the GameCube and if you think Twilight Princess was hastily ported to the Wii (which it was) then wait till you see this. I counted two uses of the Wiis motion controls. One was pointing at the TV screen to create a circle of light that could find hidden objects. That's not clever use of the Wii, that's a 'How To Use A Torch' simulator. The other was shaking the remote occasionally to unfreeze yourself. Yeah, this is a GameCube game.
Everything I like about this game is from the far superior GameCube title Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door. All the good art assets and design (the new stuff is ugly and visually uninteresting) the clever design, the witty scripting. Super Paper Mario has its moments but it's a dull platformer sequel to an excellent RPG. If you're desperate for another Paper Mario game then you'll probably get something out of this but this should have been so much better. I don't doubt that give another few months of development time this would have been a fun platformer with a lot more to see and do, up there with the standards of its predecessor.
Summary: Dissapointing sequel which feels unfinished. Play The Thousand Year Door instead.