Review by Yoh_of_Izumo

"A Legacy of Classics Keeps on Chugging"

Well I thought I had seen everything when I played Super Mario Brothers, but even before Super Mario Brothers for the Nintendo Entertainment System, there was a dark past in my gaming development. My first game ever that I ever played was Super Mario World for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. Yes, of all games that a child could get introduced to when starting an adventure into the gaming world, why did it also have to be one of the greatest games game creators have ever produced. This game is the true perfection of any action adventure game. Yes it was a two-dimensional side-scrolling adventure, but yet, it was the best. And in the greatest games of all time, it still continues to be one of the best. Super Mario 64 improved on its legacy, Super Mario Brothers started its legacy, but Super Mario World for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System is the true legacy of all Mario games. I would have to say that the Mario legacy is probably known to most even to the non-gamer, it cannot escape us. Without violence and without class, Mario destroys all.

Ah, yes, now where were we? Oh ya, I was talking about how I started on this game and it is the truth. When I was probably four or five years of age, my family went up to New York to visit some relatives. I did not know at that time the vocabulary term “Video Game” and my world was about to be revolutionized. When I started exploring the household as any curious child would, I stumbled upon a weird contraption hooked up to the television. I had never seen such a thing before and I began to fool around with and started to notice that the top of it could be detached and in the detached object there were some shiny glittery objects as well. Well then, I decided to ask my cousin what is this weird device, and he told me: it's a SNES and that is a video game. He turned it on and I saw a new world open up in front of my eyes. I could control my destiny and the characters' destinies with my fingers moving the controllers. I was shocked, my parents had sheltered me way to long, and I was sucked into the gameplay. I could not understand what I had been missing. Here I was playing with Lego and Mecano when I could have been playing with video games! Of course, my parents saw my destructive nature and witnessed me clued to the box playing the game for five or six hours straight; I was fixated by the marvel. Though I doubt I got past the first few levels, maybe not even the second level, it was an unbelievable experience.

And even to this day, even though I did beat the game several years ago (years after I first played the game though), I am still amazed at the power that this game incorporated. It is as the Super Mario 64 is to the Nintendo 64 as this game, Super Mario World, is to the Super Nintendo Entertainment System – a perfection. This game offers an experience where all gamers and non-gamers can enjoy a relatively wonderful game. It does not have the contrite puzzles or mystifying puzzles of a lengthy role-playing game nor does it have the gore of a first-person shooter game, but it does posses classicism and the essence that erupts from it is everlasting. All gamers can be masters of this game; all gamers can enjoy immediate satisfaction from having Mario squash the enemy; and all gamers can enjoy this continual satisfaction for a very healthy-long and hearty game. The gameplay is sheer outstanding, the music is beautiful, the graphics are stunning, and the replay is continual. Even after so many years have passed the release of this game, it still pops up with releases, and has earned a place in the heart of many gamers – it is not a game to be forgotten.

With that said, jump on to the review…

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Gameplay: 10/10
Now then, if you are short on time, and cannot read too much, then let me suggest to just read this starting paragraph on the gameplay, because basically all I am going to doing is expounding on the beauty of it. The gameplay is as perfect as perfect can come. The gameplay is intuitive, simple to any person, and in a matter of minutes most people who have at least a minimal amount of dexterity in their hands will be well capable of playing through this entire game and learning a secret or two hidden away. Basically, it is the best gameplay that can be asked for in a game. When I want to play a game, I want it to respond, I want to be full of adventure, I want the controls to be simple to use, and I want some content that will fulfill the adventures of this game. This game does it all and more, I cannot be more satisfied when I sit down to play and say wow, this is game that not many other games can lick the dirt of its boot – in a figurative and non-literal sense of course.

Well then, I guess it is time to breakdown the many components of this game that make it so worthwhile. Let me beginning with the overall setup of the game. This is no Super Mario Brothers for the Nintendo Entertainment System or no Super Mario Land for the Gameboy Color, but Super Mario World, WORLD, for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. Now when I mean world, this game is huge. There are so many different levels to play through, you will be stuffed crazy with happiness. When you first pop open this game and start it up, you will discover a totally different configuration. You control how Mario navigates through this world to get to Bowser and stop him. Of course you start in the first area, but now it is not as straight forward as before. While before the game guided which maps you could choose from and what levels where necessary to play, this game has you decide multiple paths to take. Will you follow the main road, or do you even know what the main road is? Will you try to find secret shortcuts to get to Bowser quicker or will you play the entire extent of the map and enjoy the gameplay content that this game is able to offer you. From the very start of the game you are plagued by the decision of whether to go left or right in the fork. If you go left, you can get access to a power-up that may help you later on in the game, but if you feel as though you prefer to go through the world the manly way, you may just choose hardcore style and go right. Such decisions are amazing, and when you find a secret they are even more amazing. Take the Star Road. Many players will have played through this game and never experienced such a secret. Though when a player does uncover this, many will be shocked and amazed how much replay content this add. It is not enough to go and save the princess. You want some fun and this game has all the fun you could ask for.

After being flaunted by the new worldly display, let us talk about the in-game controls. They are simple as ever with Mario being able to jump and run and now even spin at the touch of a button. What is even better now is that while Mario is open to his wonderful power-ups of the previous game, he gets to take part in even more power-ups now. Before we had the wonderful mushroom, flower, and star. But now we have a cape and the amazing Yoshi. Ever wonder where the LUEshi came from, well it came from this game. Now then let me go into this game's power-ups in more detail. The mushroom allows Mario to grow quite huge in size and makes him very daunting to the enemies. Though with this increase in size, he will not fit in every nook and cranny as easily as his smaller counterpart. Though with that power-up it does save Mario from an instant death if he accidentally touches the rather innocent looking Goomba. From the mushroom though we progress to the flower, a very favorite weapon power-up for most players. Now this power-up a player can enjoy annihilating the enemy before the enemy even has the chance to come close to Mario. With his cool jumping abilities and the flower to make Mario an offensive defense of flower power, Mario seems the real deal when he wishes to take down the enemies. Finally let us not forget the final of the original power-ups and that is the star. The star allows Mario to be invincible for a set amount of time, and Mario can enjoy plowing through the map without a worry in the world, of course, until his invincibility star runs out, then he has got to sober down and not crash like a blind hooligan on the loose.

So from those original power-ups we progress to two new power-ups that give this game even more class: the cape (feather), and the Yoshi. With the cape, Mario can enjoy flying, yes, Mario can fly now, around the world and though it seems as though these controls are hard to master, in the right hands, it seems as though flying can defeat some of the fun of the game. Of course not all of us are masters of the caped Mario and most will usually end up sending Mario down to an abyss or slam him right into an enemy. As for the masters, enjoy something that is amazing. Now who could forget Yoshi? Well with LUEshi, it definitely seems like Mario and Yoshi are not going to be forgotten anytime soon. With the two teamed together Yoshi actually munched up the enemies of Mario and digests them inside his very acidic stomach. Though if Mario does not want Yoshi to enjoy the meal, well, Yoshi can spit the meal right back out at the enemies. The classic scenario is when Yoshi swallows a Koopa and spits the turtle shell out to knock out a brigade of enemies – talk about efficient. It seems as though Yoshi and the feather power-up are truly in their own class and deserve a classic essence to them. I still wish Mario could ride Yoshi in later games (with Super Mario Land 2 being the exception), but as of still, it has not surfaced.

Okay so now that we have cleared up the power-ups, let us move on to the very essence of this gameplay and the on-screen setup. Very simple and very clean, no player will argue with it. In the top we can see the time, Mario's lives, and any available power-ups. Then in the game below we see the world or a level that Mario is playing in. A new feature to this game is that Mario can now save up stored power-ups so that if he accidentally gets hurt on his quest to rescues Princess Peach, well the nice power-up will fall from the middle of the screen from the box and Mario can savor a well-saved up with interest power-up. This game is a two-dimensional scrolling action adventure and it does a very detailed job of keeping the movements of Mario and the scrolling up to snuff. There are no flaws in its design and it is very seamless. Now as Mario progresses throughout the level, the screen scrolls along with Mario, very key to side-scrolling games, and it does with such ease that a player will not notice any changes in the screen. It will seem as that of when a person drives in a car. He or she will see all the action, but never experience any actual change in his or her driving experience – unless he or she crashes, just as if Mario were to die. I even feel that the side-scrolling in this game has been improved upon the side-scrolling of the Super Mario Bros. game for the Nintendo Entertainment System. First of all, with the graphics and the technology much improved, the gameplay will nonetheless be severely much better and a player will be able to see much more of the action, and a player will not have to worry about guessing in an attempt to hope that a platform hiding off screen will or will not be there when Mario jumps blindly.

From the older game of Super Mario Brothers as well, it seems as though the enemies have gotten better and any mistake in the physics system that might result in a players death have been corrected. It is obvious now in this game that it takes more than one mere pixel to send Mario careening off the screen dead and actually a little bit more effort. Now players will no longer have to say once the game freezes for that split second as Mario is plagued by death, what is wrong with this game, a pixel, are you joking? Instead in this game a player can evidently see that Mario and the enemy actually did collide and Mario is touching several pixels of the enemy. This makes logically sense anyway, because even a bullet that touches a persons skin in real-life by a thousandth of an inch is not going to send a person to his or her grave. Now then a player may wonder how is the overall feel of this game in retrospect to the enemy and let me say that it is amazing.

In this game Mario can experiment more with the environment than who could have ever dreamed of. In this game, there are other power-ups laced around the map to add more to the gameplay content with switches, baby Yoshi, and the POW blocks that many players have not seen for quite a long time. Let me give a very interesting example of some gameplay that is new to the Super Mario World that was probably never possible in the former Mario games. Let us start with Mario on a level. Okay let us make in an underwater level. Mario happens to have acquired the cape before taking this adventure in the underwater level. So Mario is exploring and behold, he finds a bean stock block that takes him to dry Earth. So after climbing up the bean stock, he grabs a Koopa shell and returns underwater. Now his entire front is protected thanks to the Koopa shell. Any enemy that touches the shell is instantly killed by the shell's sleekness. So even though Mario may seem powerless underwater when he lacks the flower power power-up, he can use the environment to his adventure. Even with the baby Yoshi, he can use the baby Yoshi to eat up any enemies that stand in his way underwater. When Mario wants to grab an object, there is no question that if you did it correctly, there is a possibility that the game will not register it, but it will.

Let me conclude on this note, that a true way to tell whether a game was the best gameplay that can offered, is if people attempt to find secrets in which to exploit the game so that they can do speed runs on the game. With the emulator, many players have posted throughout the internet speed runs of their adventures throughout Super Mario World. If a game is marred with gameplay flaws then the chance of trying to do a speed run is quite pointless. The purpose of the speed run is so that people can train for the expected. With the expected perfected, they become experts at the gameplay system. And no doubt could this be resounded anymore than after reviewing the world record holder's video of conquering Super Mario World in just over ten minutes. It is evident that with the gamers ability to jump, use power-ups, adequately use the cape to fly through the game, and defeat Bowser with ease that Super Mario World made the gameplay as perfect as the limitations of the Super Nintendo Entertainment System could possibly handle.

Enemies and bosses always seem to be flawed with gameplay issues, but that is not so in Super Mario World. With Mario capable of taking down any enemy with the right power-up and avoiding any enemy with the correct moves, it is quite amazing. Mario even takes the take when he was to go against the notorious Bowser in the very end. While it seems that Bowser may be buggy to the unsuspecting user, his gameplay is quite predictable, quite elegant, and very simple and efficient to defeat when you know how to throw, jump, spin, and duck. Of course to the average player, they will not be masters of this game, but that is the key. Once you are a master of the gameplay, you can enjoy in other terms. The fact that the game creators made such efficient gameplay was for the gamers to exploit, and if you can exploit this, you have become your own legitimate hacker in a game that does not require cheats or exploits and only coordination with the fingers and the eyes and some brain power, yes, a little is required.

Story: 7/10
It is the typical Mario story of saving the Princess from the hands of Bowser, but it has been slightly improved. Now we finally get to see the motives behind Bowser and a little graphics to add to the overall story. While people in the past may have been befuddled on why Mario is jumping around in a game to beat some enemies and bosses, it is clearly evident that he has an objective to do. He wants to enjoy his vacation and he is not going to let some over-sized Koopa with some nice armor get in his way. What is interesting though is that since Mario is a plumber and since Princess Peach – also known as Toadstool – is a Princess, will they ever be capable of marrying each other. Yes, that might keep some of you up at night, but really, I wish they would get on with the story, get married, have some kids, and maybe play save Super Mario's children…nah sounds corny, but you get the picture. Besides saving Princess Peach though, you are tasked with ridding the land of Bowser's evil minions and saving Yoshi's friends. I am not sure how Yoshi plays into this picture, but I guess since Yoshi is helping you get to your objective of saving Princess Peach, why not help out Yoshi and save some of his friends. This is a classic storyline, and while many games attempt to copy, there is nothing better than having Mario, the plumber who jump super high, saving Princess Peach from Bowser. Though the story is different in a sense. Instead of a game with a destined path, Mario can finally be the explorer and play in the sandbox of Super Mario World. The story may seem immature to players who are used to a good old classic role-playing adventure, but to those who love action games and could care less about the intricacies of a story, it will do and does quite well.

Graphics: 10/10
Well this is a no brainer. The graphics in this game are the best graphics that I have seen on any Super Nintendo Entertainment System game. There is no rough edges, all the graphics are smooth, and when I popped this game in the first time, I was quite fortunate that this was the game I took part in and some of his other games with quite horrid graphics. I cannot stress that everything is spic and span and in my honest opinion, with the capabilities of the Super Nintendo Entertainment System's 16-bit interface, there would have been no way this game could have improved. This was the final game on the frontier before Mario switched to the awesome three-dimensional graphics and it is quite evident why after this game it took the jump into revolutionary graphics, because it was the end for side-scrolling graphics – the graphics were as perfect as technology could allow them to be. Most players were find this graphics comparable to the graphics of a cartoon, very crisp and very clean. If I have only one complaint, I wish that the game had a better graphical ending and did seem a little cheesy, but nonetheless the world graphics were stunning. When you moved Yoshi and Yoshi stuck out his tongue to eat the enemy, even Yoshi's tongue had detailed. There was so much detail and shading in this game that it almost seem to reflect psuedo-three-dimensional graphics on a two-dimensional side-scrolling action game. The graphics were just that good and so superior that I could not believe how people would settle for other games on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System that had severely worse graphics than this game, but hey that's there choice. Probably what is the most stunning aspect of this game is that despite the action that encircles Mario, there is graphical beauty in the backgrounds that reminds some of looking at well architecturally structured city in the background of the mountains of the sea – such as Seattle or San Francisco. If you want some graphical power and some gameplay experience, then this is the game.

Sound: 10/10
I cannot emphasize how impressed I am with the musical quality of this game; it has so much improved from its predecessors of the Super Mario Brothers games for the Nintendo Entertainment System. No longer do players have to turn down their televisions to the possible mundane sounds of Mario or even the harsh sounds of a synthesizer. The music in this game is classy and some people may even listen to it in their iPods. When I was probing around in the game, I said, oh no, it is stuck in my head and that is what has happened. By only playing a few minutes of the game, the entire soundtrack has resurged back into my head and I cannot stop singing the tunes while I right this review, truly interestingly funny. All the songs have been redesigned from the ground up and with this music, any player can move to the wonderful and catchy tunes as a player glides through the air, jumps floating islands, or runs through a spooky area filled with the infamously hard-to-defeat Boos. If it gets stuck in your head, like it did mine, quickly, you know that it is classic. This game contains more songs than the typical Mario game in the past, and it longer, not as repetitive, more pleasant on the ear. Though remember the classic tune for the Nintendo Entertainment System, well do not worry Hardcore Mario fans, because it is still hear, and redone for better musical quality and even has some kick to it.

Replayability: 10/10
When a player has finished this game, it is still not done. There are many secrets that player has still yet to discover than he or she has still not yet uncovered. Besides having epic replay value, let me stress the power that this game incorporates in its game length. To do all aspects of this game is quite stunning and most players will find that they spent there money well on a game, especially an action game, that can deliver hours upon hours of varying fun and adventure. So then, you have defeated the game, but have you found every nook and cranny bottled up inside? Well I doubt it. With this game, it may take several more hours to try to solve all the mysteries and possibly many players will resort to guides figure out all the secrets, it is just amazing. Not only will players try to explore every single aspect of this game, but they will also take note that in these discovered secrets a play can easily defeat the game in less than half an hour if he or she takes advantage of the secrets that litter this game. It is no surprise that many players return to this game, especially after several years of activity, because with the advent of technology and the internet, people can post videos and flaunt their skills at a game that has garnered much respect for all gamers. Once you play through game a couple times though nonetheless it will be time to move on, but after a few months or years, when giving the option and the availability of this game, there is no doubt that many players will return just to relieve the experience. Not many games offer this and possible most gamers can only name a couple on their hands and those are the true classics – not only do they have all the aforementioned content, but they also posses the replayability factor. There are many great games out there that are let down, because they too, but fortunately Super Mario World gives out the replay value in just spoonfuls, but bowlfuls.

CONCLUSION
Using my rating system for action games:
35% Gameplay, 12.5% Story, 25% Graphics, 10% Sound, 17.5% Replayability

Overall Game Rating: 9.625

OVERALL RATING: 10/10 – Genuine Classic Extraordinaire
Suggested Action: Try it, I insist.


Final Comments: Talk about a whopping score, this game has everything that any person would want. It is so superb that even people who are not big into games would surely enjoy having a go at it for at least a few well-spent minutes. Now then what makes this game incredibly awesome. Well it is the fact that it has everything a classic game should have – infallible gameplay, classic story, stupendous graphics, outrageous music, and epic replayability. When I play a game, I do not play a game hoping that it will live up to some false values. I want all the games I play to be classic. The reason? Well, I do not like wasting my money on games that are not classic, because I want to know the best of the best, because my wallet is not too forgiving, and I do not have time to be wasting my life on worthless games. This game though is not a waste a persons time. With it being a nice action game, most players will enjoy the full extent of this game in a few hours and if a player wants to draw it out for a couple days, then ya, that is possible. If you do not have anything to do and want to kill some time, Mario is infamous for being a noteworthy time killer. Unfortunately though, the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and its Super Mario World game are not easy to find anymore, but fear not, because Super Mario World came out for the Gameboy Advance as a port. Now a player can enjoy the best of the best in a world of portability. With the graphical nature of the Gameboy Advance, nothing is lost and everything is maintained. So if you don't happen to have a friend with this old game, then why not go out there and experience in a portable world, because that is quite fun as well. I will emphasize to my fellow gamers again, that if you want to play a true Mario game, then there are two that are not worth missing and those are this game and Super Mario 64. No other Mario game before and since has been able to live up to there legacy. Though most Mario games are credited for being great games, there are still few that are true classics and Super Mario World for the Nintendo Entertainment System is a classic of the classics and when the years have passed, this game will still be known and remembered.

Fin


Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 07/30/07


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