Review by rockmanegg

"2 Mario games mean lots of Mario games"

Super Mario Advance is really 2 games in one. While Super Mario Bros 2 is the main attraction, Mario Bros Classic is a great addition and gives Super Mario Advance good value. If you get bored of Super Mario Bros 2, you can play Mario Bros Classic, and vice-versa. As soon as you start the game you are asked what game you want to play. High scores are saved for both games, but your progress is only saved in Super Mario Bros 2.

--Super Mario Bros 2--
In this game, you can choose to play as Mario, Luigi, Peach, or Toad before each level. Each character has different abilities, so players who choose wisely will have an easier time completing the game. The goal is to complete each of 20 levels by running and jumping through all the platforming obstacles and to get the crystal ball at the end of each level. In this game you start with one heart, but you can have up to 2. Every time you get hit you lose one, and when you run out of hearts, you lose. You can get your hearts back by getting heart items. Look carefully and you may even find an item that will increase your maximum hearts from 2 to 3.

Unlike most platformers, nothing happens when you jump on a baddie. In this game, you have to throw an item at the baddies to beat them. You can even throw a baddie at another baddie! Super Mario Bros 2 is fun because there are so many items to pick up and use. Many of them are hidden as vegetables sprouts growing from the ground, and you have to pick them up to find out what they really are. It could be anything, but don't be surprised if you pick up a vegetable! But you can throw the vegetables at the baddies. Other items you can find include 1-UP mushrooms to get an extra life, Koopa Shells that attack all the baddies in its path, and Magic Potions. Throwing a Magic Potion creates a red door that gives you access to a bonus area in which you have a few seconds to grab as many coins as you can. For every coin that you get, you get to play a game of casino slots at the end of the level. By winning the slots, you can earn extra lives!

Super Mario Bros 2 consists of 20 levels of veggie throwing, coin-searching, platforming action. The game presents some interesting challenges. Some areas can't be completed unless you steal a magic flying carpet from a bird. A locked door on one side of the level can't be opened without the key on the other side of the level. To finish a level you must get the crystal ball, but sometimes you have to beat a boss to get it.

--Mario Bros Classic--
This game isn't as long or sophisticated as Super Mario Bros 2, but it's still fun. Mario Bros Classic is good, simple Mario action. All the levels are identical except for the baddies that you face. In each level you start in the middle and pipes are at each corner of the screen. Baddies come out of the pipes and you have to beat them. Hit the underside of a platform a baddie is standing on to knock it upside-down. Once the baddie is upside-down you can simply touch it to make it disappear. You win the level when you beat all the baddies! Now keep doing it over and over again until you run out of lives. Each level is more difficult than the last, because there will be new baddies, they will move faster, and there will be more of them. It's repetitive, but addicting. The game is a nice bonus.

There are 2 multiplayer games to choose from. Besides being able to play a co-operative game of Mario Bros Classic, you can also play Mario Bros Battle which is a competition. If you have only one game cartridge then you will only be able to play Mario Bros Battle. That's a good thing because Mario Bros Battle is different from Mario Bros Classic, which you can play by yourself anyway. While I haven't been able to play multiplayer, it looks like fun, and the fact that it only requires one cartridge is a definite plus.

The graphics are bright and very colorful. They fit the game perfectly. Nintendo wanted to show off the ability of the Game Boy Advance, and it shows with all the special effects in this game. When you defeat multiple baddies at once, colorful explosion appear revealing the words ''1-UP'' as a reward for your feat. There are a lot of rotation effects. Every baddie you beat will fall off the screen, twirling around. It works.

Besides voices, this game boasts nothing special in this department. But the sounds are good as it is. They give the game that Mario feel. The voices are a nice addition, but it's not like the characters ever say anything important. In fact, it is sometimes difficult to understand what they are saying. The music is this game is taken straight out of the original versions of these games, and it's not very good.

--Replay Value--
There are 2 games to choose from! Besides that, there is a Yoshi Challenge after you complete all 20 levels in Super Mario Bros 2. In the Yoshi Challenge, you pick any of the 20 levels and find the Yoshi Eggs. There are 2 Yoshi Eggs in each level, so there are 40 in all. Sound easy? Well, it's not, as they are hidden in the bonus areas that the Magic Potion unlocks. If you ever want to see the Yoshi Eggs then you have to get the Magic Potion first! With 2 games to choose from, and a Yoshi Challenge, this game has a healthy amount of replay value.

--The Big Decision--
Is Super Mario Advance the game for you? If you have never before played through Super Mario Bros 2, then yes, you should get this game. It's just as good as any Mario game, and you get two for the price of one. If you are already familiar with Super Mario Bros 2, then it's up to you. But if you get this game, you might be surprised.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.0 - Great

Originally Posted: 07/25/01, Updated 07/25/01

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