Review by Showerman

"Mario RPG on the go!"

Recommendations: Ages 6 & up with mild reading skills (for maximum enjoyment)

Background: This game is a fantastic adaptation of the RPG/Platformer hybrid that was Super Mario RPG for the SNES and later on Paper Mario for the N64 (with subsequent installments on the Gamecube and Wii). Mario and Luigi: Superstar Saga also spawned a sequel on the Nintendo DS, and a third title in the series will be released for the DS in the Spring/Summer of 2009.

Review: Superstar Saga is about as charming as a handheld title can get. It is suitable for all ages, although it can be a bit text-heavy at times. The majority of the game is spent doing three things: exploring the hub world and towns, solving unique "dual-button" puzzles, and engaging in combat.

Exploring not only advances the story of the game but it also gives players a chance to get to know the various NPCs (Non-Playable-Characters) that inhabit the world of Mario and Luigi. This adds a charming amount of depth to the game and makes it all the more enjoyable.

In addition to their exploring escapades, Mario and Luigi will also come across mildly-challenging "dual-button" puzzles. In these sequences Mario and Luigi are both assigned to the A and B buttons, respectively, and the player has the opportunity to control both of the brothers to solve puzzles and navigate through the game world. These sequences are a fun experimentation of mind-teasers and dexterity, and are rewarding in their own right.

Finally, the combat in the game is most reminiscent of the Paper Mario franchise. Both Mario and Luigi can be controlled in turn-based battles, where they can act separately or together as a team. The combat is extremely fun, and surprisingly deep, while remaining completely accessible at the same time.

I've spent a lot of hours with this game, and it remains one of my favorite GBA games in my collection. Here are some of the pros and cons:

Pros:
-Great Controls
-A Colorful and Rich Graphic's Engine
-Engaging Combat
-Suitable for all ages

Cons:
-Silly Story
-Drawn out Text-Sequences
-A little text-heavy, but nothing too demanding...

All in all, this is a great game, and I would recommend it to anyone owning a Gameboy Advance, a Gamecube Gameboy Player, or a Nintendo DS. You really shouldn't pass this up.

Story: 6/10
Graphics: 8/10
Gameplay: 10/10
Fun Factor: 10/10

Overall: 10/10


Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 04/16/09

Game Release: Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga (US, 11/17/03)


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