Review by AnyGenGamer1

"Super Mario 3D Land--a pleasant surprise, and addicting game."

This game from first glance does come across slightly as the 'obligatory' Mario title that every system must have. But the game is so darn fun! I was amazed by the graphics (again, this is the 3DS, not the PSVITA), and the replay value is pretty high. The only problem is the ease of the game, and the formulaic plot. Essentially a 3D retelling of New Super Mario Bros (although it has the Koopa Kids from Mario 3), the game rehashes the basic Mario-rescues princess-after-she-gets-kidnapped-by-koopa storyline. One question I had about this was this: what about the supposed 3D? How is it considered 3D when the recent games have been 3D? Well, it's kind of interesting how they do it. Mario will float down and glide downwards toward platforms and other things with an incredible sense of depth perception. Mario also can get the raccoon tail to bat around at little spinning switches to go upwards and grab bonus items. There are also levels who feature a top view of Mario, and there are times that he gets so close to the screen, I feel almost like a can reach out and grab him. Well, almost. The illusion isn't perfect, but they did a decent job. Here's how I rate the game:

Graphics (10 of 10): This is the high point of the game. Amazing. Just Amazing. It looks like a hand-held WII game. It's hard to believe we've advanced from the primitive etch-a-sketch graphics of Super Mario Land, to this. Plus, the game has movie sequences, not just stills. Bravo! I have no major gripes with the graphics, other than I admittedly get a tad bit of eye-strain from the 3D effect, but I just counter that by flipping off the 3D with the slider.

Story :( 1 of 10): Again, this story is stale is hell. No originality, just the same story we've known since 1985. Still, the story is not the reason people played the games from the beginning, it was the gameplay. The only difference is when you defeat a boss. Instead of seeing the "Sorry, but the princess is in another castle, you instead see a psudo-3d snapshot that shows Peach in Koopa's clutches, and hear her squeaky cry of 'MARIO'. Basically, the game and designers said: "You know the drill, get a move on.....” This is the only aspect of the game I find stupid, both that and the fact that Bowser is the boss AGAIN. I really wish they would get another boss for a minute. The only deviations from Koopa have been Wario, King Wart, and Tatanga the spaceman. Give somebody else a chance, Koopa. This guy just doesn't know when to quit! He is the most tenacious villain in videogame history, to the point of out-and-out absurdity. How many times does Mario have to beat you?! GO AWAY! Anyway, back to the game.

Gameplay/Challenge (7.5 of 10): The game is fun as hell, but it is WAY TOO EASY. At lease the first mode. You get more of a challenge when you try the special stages. I recommend them over the regular mode. If you flub the level too many times, you even get a special raccoon Mario that is invincible. Why does this game puss out like that? We didn't get any breaks with Nintendo games back in the old days of NES. The difficulty of the games was merciless! That wasn't a bad thing- in a reasonable dose, of course-as beating the games would give you a true sense of accomplishment. It's like beating the game Contra for example. HARD game, but when you beat it--WOW! You are ready for bear.

Sound Effects :( 6.5 of 10): Though it offers some variety, the majority of sound effects is vintage Mario. The same fireball noise, jump sound effect, brick breaking, etc. It's nothing to holler about.

Music :( 6.5 out of 10): Again, classic Mario, so nothing too special. I do like the climatic music for the Bosses.

Replay Value (7.5 out of 10): The game will likely keep you glued to the game when you first play it, and offers some replay value with the bonus levels and collecting Gold Coins, but after that, the game probably will lose its appeal.

Overall: 7.8 of 10.

Verdict: Recommended--YES, but only for those who never tire of this format, which I am getting slightly sick of. Also, the ending of this game, when you finally fight Koopa (again), is built up to be so grandiose, I was expecting a much better finale. I kept thinking to myself: "Oh, yes, this is it. This is the great Mario/Bowser battle we've been waiting for! This is going to be epic..." But no, you just climb to the top of the level and throw a switch that sends Koopa to his doom. Again. Jeez, Nintendo, all this built up for nothing. Way to disappoint. Well, it was fun to play, though.


Reviewer's Rating:   4.0 - Great

Originally Posted: 09/12/12

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

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