Review by Leetdude
"Throw things at your enemies! Throw enemies at your enemies!"
Wow. I don't believe that of all their choices to port old games to the Game Boy Advance they'd choose this, but it's too late to change. And I'm not complaining. Super Mario Brothers 2 was an excellent game in the 1980s, and it's a fairly excellent game now that it's been released once again. It has cool extra stuff going for it, too. Yoshi's Challenge is pretty cool, and the coin thing is also very nice. Plus, the cartridge also includes the original Mario Bros., which is a fine piece of work. On top of all of this greatness, you can now play the original Mario Bros. with multiple players, and on one cartridge, to boot! The game would make for the perfect launch title, but unfortunately, they added two features that the original did not have, which immensely tone down an already easy game. They were probably added to make it easier for all the little kids today, since games *are* easier now than they were in 1988, for the most part. But that's a completely different complaint. Overall, it's awesome, but there are some cursed parts to the game, stated above...
The Graphics in Super Mario Advance are wonderful ports of the original games. It takes them, and redoes them as perfect changes, even including a few extra cool looking parts to the game! Like Super Mario Brothers Deluxe ported Super Mario Bros. 1 perfectly, this does the improved Super Mario Brothers 2 very nicely as well. It does show what the Game Boy Advance can do. Mario Brothers is also a faithful looking port, with the same points of its original, innovative Graphics. You really can't talk about Graphics in ports very easily, since they were meant to be around years ago. I'll just say that they are faithful, and look great for the Game Boy Advance.
Likewise with the Graphics, the music and sound effects in Super Mario Advance are faithful to the original versions of the game. The music in Super Mario Brothers 2 is quite upbeat and silly compared to the original game. Also, the sound quality is quite nice on the music, being more clear and having more general feel to the music than Super Mario Brothers 1. Mario Brothers is also quite nice to hear. Although it only has one song throughout the game, it doesn't get annoying quickly. However, the song does start to annoy you after listening to it for many, many levels. The Sound Effects are also quite faithful to the original games. Super Mario Brothers 2 has the same sound when you pluck the enemies and pluck the vegetables as it did 13 years ago. Mario Brothers has the same simple sound effects that it did on the Atari 2600 and the arcade. While they aren't wonderful sounding stuff, they are quite faithful to the original. One problem is that the game did give the characters in Super Mario Brothers 2 voices. Trust me, you don't want to hear some of their voices. TURN THE VOLUME OFF IF YOU CHOOSE TO PLAY AS TOAD. Trust me, just do it. You will thank me later.
Super Mario Advance's two games control perfectly. In Super Mario Brothers 2, you use the A button to jump. You use the B button to pick up things from the ground, including both enemies and vegetables, along with a few other things. The B button also lets you run, if you choose to hold the button down. You press the Start button to pause the game. You use the directional pad to move your character of choice around. It's very simple, but controls perfectly. The button position works just fine, with your hand being able to slide over onto the A button perfectly if you're running and must jump, for one reason or another. Mario Brothers has simple control, fit for an Atari. The A button lets you jump, and the directional pad lets you move. That's about it. The Start button also pauses your game. You have to bump your enemies from below in order to knock them down. Timing is everything, because you are going to accidently bump your head on the ceiling while you try to jump up often. This often leads to your death from a spiked enemy. Ouch. Both games control fairly responsive, and work nicely with the buttons of choice.
There really isn't any story in either game. There is absolutely no explanation to what you are doing in Mario Brothers, but one wouldn't expect there to be one. This was released in 1983, people. Super Mario Brothers 2, on the other hand, has a fairly interesting story, but nothing awesome. Mario is having a bad dream and it's caused by an evil monster called Wart. You're playing in Mario's dream with Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, and Toad. You go out to defeat Wart so Mario can wake up. That's it. You really shouldn't expect an old game to have a plot, so I'm not going to rate the plot of the game.
Both of the games in Super Mario Advance control faithfully and completely similar to the original games. Super Mario Brothers 2 is almost as good as the original version, but not quite. The game itself is quite fun, although very frustrating at many times. If you die from falling off a cliff, especially in world 4-2, you WILL be frustrated, and very much so. However, otherwise, the game is quite fun. One of the problems is that, even though you have extra hearts, a very STUPID thing added to please the kids and lower the difficulty for them, you still die. I got very angry whenever I died from the game, for that reason. Mario Brothers, on the other hand, if a fine piece of work, playing just as fun, with the same lack of frustration, as the game did back in the good old days. Overall, with a few problems, both games play quite fun, just as they did way back in the 1980s.
Mario Brothers isn't a very hard game, but it doesn't have frustration going with it, either. The game doesn't end at all, so no matter how far you go, eventually you'll have to die. Also, the lack of a save feature makes for a more difficult game on Mario Brothers, so the game is still very difficult if you want to get far. Also, when you play against your friends in Mario Brothers, it's quite difficult to master the technique. Super Mario Brothers 2, on the other hand, has been greatly toned town from its original state. The game was already an easy game, being able to beat in less than half an hour easily, if you use warps. These warps took out lots of the fun of the game, at least for me. However, there has been two new additions that make it easier yet. The first point is the save feature, allowing you to save your progress ANYWHERE IN THE GAME, making it EXTREMELY easy to complete with no problems whatsoever. The second point is that the game now gives you hearts to heal you easily. I'm talking, there's often two hearts in the area with the boss. That's easiness.
The Replay Value in Super Mario Brothers 2 is fairly lacking. After beating the game (read: not hard), you will probably come back once for the Yoshi's Challenge, where you have to find two hidden Yoshi eggs in every level without dying. This isn't much harder than the original game, but you do have to play the game entirely through to complete it. After that, there's no real point in coming back. On the other hand, Mario Brothers has plenty of Replay Value. The game never ends, so you will be able to keep getting better at it. Plus, you can play it in two player mode, where you get to beat up on each other! Now, how fun is THAT to do multiple times?
Play Control: 19/20
Story: Not Applicable
Game Play: 27/30
Replay Value: 8/15
OVERALL: 78/100, 78%, 8/10
With a few problems that bring the score down a bit, Super Mario Advance is a faithful port of two awesome, classic video games. It also has a few updates that might make it better in parts. There are a couple of flaws that hurt the game, but overall, the game plays very nicely. If you want to experience the game entirely, buy the game. Beat Yoshi's Challenge. Play the game in the car against the other people in the car. Enjoy it to the full extent. However, if you just want to beat the game and maybe have some fun with Mario Brothers, it makes for a great rental. Most locations now rent Game Boy Advance game, so this would be the best bet. However, I do say that it's a good game to get, be it through rental or buying. Try it out for yourself.
Reviewer's Rating: 4.0 - Great
Originally Posted: 07/26/01, Updated 07/26/01
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