PAX Prime: Super Mario 3D World – First Impressions

I could just start and end this review with one word: AWESOME. But you probably want to know more about it than that… however, I want to say that I’m not going to break it down step-by-step for you, because there’s something about a Mario game where discovering crazy, fun, weird, wacky things on your own is part of the experience!

The Nintendo Fire team was able to play two different levels on different days, so we were able to really get hands-on with the game… and seriously, Mario fans, this is the game you’ve been waiting for. If you recall how amazing Super Mario 3D Land was back in the day, this is the sequel that we were hoping for back when Super Mario Galaxy 2 was announced.

Note that it’s best to play this kind of game with friends. We were able to play 4-person with both levels, and the insanity of having others onscreen with you really adds to the experience.

The first level that we tried out was a level where we got to experience the silliness and special abilities of the cat suits—a new addition to this Mario game, and one that it seems most people were scratching their head over at the initial announcement. But once you put the suit on in-game, it makes you wonder… why didn’t anyone think of this before?

The cat suit allows Mario and friends to run on all fours like a cat, use a scratch attack, and crawl up various wall surfaces to reach higher (or just plain tricky) locations. The movement and wall crawl makes this a beneficial suit to use, and the attacks are more effective than you might initially imagine! And while I won’t spoil it for you, if you all reach the flagpole in your catsuits to do your “touchdown” pose… make sure you have the sound turned up.

The second level we tried out involved a lot of movement through clear pipes—avoiding enemies and trying to reach various secrets, special items, and so forth, without messing up the other players. That’s also part of the fun when playing with others in this game—there’s plenty of chance to hit / kill / throw off the side of a ledge / toss at an enemy your fellow player, sometimes even when you didn’t mean to! Or, uh, “didn’t mean to.”

Super Mario 3D World is bright, colourful, and fun, with the challenge of a Mario game (so far, anyway) combined with wacky antics and new elements that make it intriguing and worthwhile. And though we didn’t get enough time with it to discover if we’d have fun playing solo, certainly the solo-player experience will be enjoyable in the way you’d expect for a Mario game.

Overall, this looks like the perfect sequel to a much-loved game. What we’re hoping for is, in later levels, that the challenge level will be ramped up to provide experienced players with the toughness they’ve been hoping for and yet haven’t received lately from Mario titles.

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Micah
Author: Micah View all posts by
Micah has been playing games since his first pong machine, and has been writing for as long as he could grip a pencil and not drool on the paper. So, for about a week.

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