Super Mario Bros. Wonder sees Mario going the the Flower Kingdom, but while there Bowser makes a mess once again. Here is our Super Mario Bros. Wonder Review.
The game was developed by and published by Nintendo, it was released on October 20, 2023, for the Nintendo Switch.
Mario and the crew are back, this time taking a trip to the Flower Kingdom, but as usual, Bowser and Bowser Jr. follow suit ready to cause some problems. This time Bowser isn’t after Peach, but instead, he is just ready to cause some chaos. He does this by taking in a seed that merges him with the castle. Mario and his friends are going to try and defeat him, but to do that he needs to travel the kingdom and seek out Royal Seeds to slowly lower the defenses of the castle, but who is guarding the seeds? Bowser Jr. and he also has some strange powers making the boss battles a bit different than normal.
The story is very basic, but that’s just this style of game, it still ends up being a pretty fun and different story than we are used to seeing with Mario. Where the game really shines are its levels and new introductions to them, especially the flowers, it’s a fever dream you never want to wake up from, they are just such a great new addition to the game and make each level feel unique and replayable to complete in a way without it to see an alternate version.
The flowers made it feel like a strange bad trip, but in a good way, sometimes the environment started moving, other times the enemies started being big and you would need to ride them, and other times you turned into an enemy like a goomba or slime and sometimes the game just turned into a rhythm game and the enemies started singing. The variety was so cool to see and almost nothing really felt recycled or the same, each level truly stood out on its own and almost none of the levels really got boring, some were even more challenging than I thought it was going to be, especially the special stages. I know this is a gimmick that is just for this game, but I hope to see this done again maybe in a 3D Mario game just to experience this again in a new way.
Almost all levels introduced something new to the game, it did a great job doing it in a way that didn’t make it feel like a massive introduction you were playing but in a way that the whole game kept feeling new and fresh each time you started a new level. They also introduced a badge system that gave you some handy powers to use like a grappling hook vine, a parachute hat, a double jump twister, and a lot more, you couldn’t equip more than 1, but they all could help you out in their own way in the levels. If you dont like some of the powers you could also use a buff instead like a safe from falling or getting extra coins for defeating an enemy for instance.
They introduced some new powers as well, like the elephant, drill, and bubble. My favorite of the bunch was the elephant one but I also ended up using the good old fire flower a ton. Each also helps you solve some puzzles and can be used to unlock new paths inaccessible while being just Mario or another power. Like the drill would let you go on the ceiling or floor through small gaps and the elephant would let you destroy some bricks to go past a roadblock. The level gives you the ones to use plenty of times and I never really felt like I lacked any power or couldn’t find any.
Something new they also added is online multiplayer and it’s amazing Nintendo is finally seeing the good things about it. They make it here super helpful, you can put down signs that let others respawn when dying but you can also fly towards another person to do the same. This made the game a lot more bearable for someone like me who isn’t the best at platformers but it also made the game feel alive due to seeing others running around and doing the same thing you are trying to do.
This game proves again that you dont need a PlayStation 5 to have a good-looking game, it’s so good looking I almost forgot I was playing on Switch (till my day 1 joy-cons started drifting again at least). The new visuals and animations of Mario make him feel so much more alive and less stiff than what we are used to in 2D Mario or even in 3D Mario, he has facial expressions and animations from everything you do. There are also some visual puzzles you could do like you could go to the background or front at times to solve some puzzles and get some collectibles at times and it did a lot more cool visual magic to do some cool stuff.
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