Review by Kunlun

Reviewed: 11/11/08

An incredibly good game that's accessible to any and all.

November 11, 2008 – Where to begin? First off, this is one of the best Mario games every made. Secondly, whether people like Mario or not (how could anyone not?), the game itself is extraordinary. Similar to the previous Mario games, Super Mario 64 and Super Mario Sunshine, this is a 3D platformer and players will have plenty of freedom to move around. This is the best looking Mario game to date and one of the best designed as well. That's saying a lot as the franchise has had some of the best designed platforming games ever.

As usual, Princess Peach is kidnapped by Bowser and his goons. This time however, he doesn't take her away to his castle; instead he rides into space, to the center of the universe. Mario's planet gets destroyed and Mario and the Mushroom Kingdom are scattered across space. Mario lands on a strange space station and a lady named Rosalina is determined to help Mario save Peach. To get to the center of the universe power stars must be collected to increase the power in the space station to be able to travel that far. Power Stars are scattered across the universe in different galaxies and in those galaxies are stages that need to be completed to attain them.

For the most part, Super Mario Galaxy is a single player game. There is a novelty feature that allows Player 2 to collect and shoot star bits as Player 1 controls the character, but that kind of becomes boring for Player 2 after awhile. The nunchuck controls the character movement and ground pounds while in the air. The Wii Remote has the jump button and can be pointed at the screen to collect and shoot star bits. The motion controls for the Wii Remote are used at times to control the character in certain stages or to knock over enemies, it's not overly used and that really is a good thing.

In the game Mario collects Power Stars, Grand Stars, and star bits. Power Stars will allow players to unlock new galaxies, Grand Stars unlock new sections of the space station, and star bits can be fed into Lumas (cute little creatures) to unlock new galaxies and shoot enemies or other specific things in stages. The game actually starts off pretty easy and progressively gets more and more challenging. The boss fights do seem to be a little forgiving and rarely pose a big challenge though. The later galaxy levels can get a bit tricky, but trial and error will get players through them without too much frustration. There is a lot to do in this game, lots of platforming stages to complete and some mini game challenge stages too. To fight Bowser and rescue Peach, one only needs to collect 60 Power Stars, but there are 120 Power Stars in total, so there's really a lot to do even after beating the game. Also, obtaining these stars unlocks new chapters in a story book that Rosalina is reads to the inhabitants of the space station.

Graphically, this game is very polished and looks fantastic, probably some of the best graphics we'll see on the Wii. The classic Mario soundtrack returns remixed to fit the galactic theme of the game, very nicely done. Sound effects are done nicely and go with the flow of the game as well. There isn't much voice acting, just some sounds that Mario makes while performing some moves and Rosalina speaking a word or two. Most of the information will be given through text, there's not much so it's definitely not going to drag the game down.

Super Mario Galaxy is a marvelous game, a game that just about anyone can play and enjoy. There's a ton of innovative gameplay and ideas in this game has just makes it a must-play. Controls feels good, the story is classic Mario, it looks great, it sounds great, and it plays great. Really, not many flaws in the game and it's a definite classic for the Wii.

Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

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

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