Review by horror_spooky

Reviewed: 09/10/12

Galaxy shrinks

A video game that greatly takes advantage of the hardware it is released on is called a killer app. While there is usually much argument over what game is the killer app for each system, it is pretty unanimous that the killer app for the 3DS is Super Mario 3D Land. This game is the best 3DS game to date. Find out why.

Super Mario 3D Land is an attempt by Nintendo to take the epic platforming goodness found in the Mario Galaxy games and make it bite-sized. And it pays off. Every level has value and is designed incredibly well. Super Mario 3D Land is also an attempt to inject some of the ideals of the 2D Mario games into the three-dimensional Mario formula. Star Coins have been added to the formula, making the levels more replayable, and there is now a flag to mark the end of each level instead of going after star objectives. Super Mario 3D Land is the best of both worlds.

It's basically all you could want from a Mario platformer. The graphics are stunning, and the 3D is actually useful. There are certain areas of the game that look incredibly different without the 3D slider turned all the way up. There are very few games for the 3DS that actually take advantage of the 3D visuals, but Super Mario 3D Land is one of them, and I am very thankful for this fact. While there are ghosting issues sometimes, the 3D isn't obnoxiously powerful, and it's usually comfortable to have it turned up to maximum settings.

Super Mario 3D Land provides a healthy challenge and plenty of replayability. Players can beat secret worlds, go after various star-achievements, and even play through the game again as Luigi. I sincerely enjoyed Super Mario 3D Land, and it remains the best 3DS game I've played to date. My only gripe I have against it is that it lacks any functionality that takes advantage of the touchscreen or motion controls of the 3DS. I'd like to see the mini-games from New Super Mario Bros. make a comeback.

The game sounds just as wonderful as it looks. The plot is just a cookie cutter Mario plot of Princess Peach being captured and Mario being tasked with saving the day, which is disappointing, but in the end, as long as it provides a decent excuse to platform through a bunch of brilliantly designed levels, that is okay by me.

Super Mario 3D Land is yet another must-own title for the 3DS. It provides countless hours of entertainment, and is a genuine Mario game through and through. It is far superior than the recently released New Super Mario Bros. 2 because it is amazing right from the get-go, not just halfway through.

Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Product Release: Super Mario 3D Land (US, 11/13/11)

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