Review by wolverinefan

"Mario has finally returned"

Mario is the most well known gaming character ever created. With a number of failed TV shows, a horrid movie and more games than a person can remember we are now treated to his first next gen adventure. Platforming wise of course considering he has been in at least 2 other Wii games that I can toss off the top of my head... But the question is, is Mario Galaxy worth your hard earned cash?

Bowser has taken Princess Peach into the far reaches of the universe. Mario must travel through space and collect stars to help another woman named Rosaline. While this has one of the more in-depth plots out there for the Mario universe I must say it's very limited to so many other platformers. At the end of the day though we have our favorite characters running around yet again so a bit of nostalgia can go a long way.

Graphically Mario looks good. The character designs are nice and offer a good amount of detail. I love the next gen look of Bowser and he looks the best he ever has. The worlds are bright and colorful, they can almost breath life out of your TV. The only problem is that it feels like Nintendo forgot to actually connect the stages so we get random planet hoping during the stages and it makes everything feel a little disjointed. Not a horrible thing but by breaking of these interesting worlds it feels like less thought went into the overall design of the games worlds.

The sound in the game is rather pleasing to the ears. The sound effects are the classic Mario fair of coins twinkling and Mario's shouts of joy. The voice work might as well not exist as there is so little of it. The music has nice fantasy flair to it and still maintains the classic Mario feel. It's actually a rather nice soundtrack.

The Wii isn't known for having the best controls but I will say that Nintendo almost has it right this time around. You move around with the analog stick. A and B are used for jumping and attacking. The only real motion control is for shooting the stars and stuff so it's nothing major and it works well enough. The only problem is that you have little control over the camera. The d-pad can shift the camera but it isn't worth messing with as it tends to hop right back into place.

The game has an overworld. This time it's a single castle room so it isn't overly complex as the castle was in Mario 64. I do like how this hub world works but it can be confusing sometimes trying to remember which doorway leads to what planets.

The game play itself has each planet offering different goals. It's a bit linear at times but still fun. It's pretty much exactly the same as Mario 64 with you needing to do simple tasks to gain stars.

Mario can run, jump and stomp on guys but I found myself shooting stars to kill most enemies. The enemy ai is rather bland, even the bosses. However the game sure does love its bosses as it's constantly throwing them at you.

My biggest problem with the game play though is the level design. They are kind of boring and most are just about hoping from planet to planet, hitting enemies and looking for your goals.

As you progress in the game it opens up, worlds become larger but still the game offers this awkward planet theme and sure it's cool that you can run around the entire planet but it seems that it all lacks any focus.

By that I mean each stage feels kind of empty and that the entire game just feels kind of bland. Not in the normal sense but it seems like nothing really went into creating these worlds. But again it does clear up a little later on and the creative juices must have flowed better as the project went on.

The game is kind of short unless you want all 120 stars. Upon doing that hefty goal you'll unlock something special and you may or may not want to start up a new game for it. I personally finished the game in less than 15 hours.

Super Mario galaxy isn't a bad game. It's pretty good actually. It has some flaws along the way but in the end they are kind of minor after the first set of worlds. Nintendo fans will be in heaven and this is one reason to own that Wii that's been collecting dust. I do hope we get a normal Mario game soon though, one that doesn't feel awkward with it's planet hopping.

Story - 7/10
Graphics - 8/10
Sound - 8/10
Control - 8/10
Game Play - 8/10
Replay value - 6/10

Final Score - 8/10

Reviewer's Rating:   4.0 - Great

Originally Posted: 12/21/07

Game Release: Super Mario Galaxy (US, 11/12/07)

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