Review by SuperMan678
One of the best games on the N64
The Nintendo 64 has plenty of sequels to leading Nintendo franchises like StarFox or Zelda. Like its precedessors, it's good fun to play and is generally quite good. Unlike its prequels, they have mostly made the change from 2D to 3D, which means you can move around more freely. It also makjes use of the N64's anlogue stick. Super Mario 64 is one of these games. Released as a launch title, the N64's installment in the Mario franchise is, like the ones on the NES and SNES, great.
Super Mario 64's (or SM64 for short) story is very similar to previous Mario games: Princess Peach Toadstool sends Mario an invitation to come to her castle to share a cake she has baked for him. Mario comes through a pipe, walks into the castle to discover that the Princess has been imprisoned and Bowser has stolen the power of the stars from the castle. It's up to Mario to obtain these Power Stars, defeat Bowser and rescue the Princess.
You guide Mario through the level, avoiding obstacles, punching or jumping on ememies and jump on platforms. There are 15 levels, the setting ranging from mountains to battlefields, rainbows to clocks and igloos to haunted mansions, each with about seven stars. Plus there are some castle secret stars, obtained when you complete special tasks within the castle.
Of course, it wouldn't be a Mario game without power-ups, wouldn't it? There are three caps, the Metal Cap, The Vanish Cap and the Wing cap, which you have to unlock by pressing the switch in the cap's course. The Wing Cap allows Mario to fly for a short time after triple-jumping or being blasted into the air by a cannon. The Vanish Cap makes him invisible so he can walk through stuff like wire mesh or undersea coral. The Metal Cap makes Mario pratically invincible and allows him to walk underwater and withstand jet streams. These caps are vital to beating SM64. Don't unlock them and you'll never get 120 stars.
The graphics are not as good as Ocarina of Time, but hey, it's not so ugly, your teeth will fall out. As for the sound, it's catchier than velcro is on shoes so you collect those stars and listen to delightful music at the same time.
To be honest, it'll not take you long to complete Super Mario 64. Most of the stars are easy to get and you'll beat Bowser and rescue the princess very quickly. Getting 120 stars, though, is another story.
Even after you've rescued Peach, there's still a lot to do. Collecting all 120 stars is the only thing and soon you'll be screaming with delight as get 120 stars and unlock something very special. Not that I'm telling what it is.
+ Very solid gameplay
+ Wonderful sound
+ Nice level design
+ Will last a long time
- A bit too easy
As Mario's first 3D adventure, it's great. It's a good gam so if you've Ocarina of Time, why not give this one a go? Except, this is a launch title, so you should have bought it with your N64.
Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Product Release: Super Mario 64 (EU, 03/01/97)
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