Review by Chunkey Simmons

"It says "Mario" and "Wii" in the title. That's an indication of the greatness of this game."

It's hard for me to give an introduction about Mario without sounding corny and without saying things that have been said a million times. It's Mario for gods sake! How can you go wrong with him? Even a mediocre game idea that is made into a Mario game makes a whole ton of new twists which makes it an excellent game. Form Mario Party to Mario Kart, Nintendo has a developed a system of creating new ideas to cash in on their famous series without the series getting old. Most game series' go through a stage of consistency where every game is similar to another, and eventually the series grows older and older and less likable. Meanwhile on the flip side, you have an audience who dislikes change and prefers things to remain how they are. Somehow Nintendo managed to keep Mario alive so long, and now here comes my review on New Super Mario Bros. Wii.

Bowser once again stole the princess and Mario must save her! Bowser's 7 sons, who originally appeared in Super Mario 3., are all back and more bad than ever! It's a good reason to buy this game. you don't want Bowser to win!

This game is supposed to revive the original 1985 NES game Super Mario Bros. It took what that game had, and improved it by a lot. Nintendo had already successfully pulled off this trick years earlier on the Nintendo DS with the game New Super Mario Bros.

As Mario, you walk around, jump on enemies, walk to the right to complete the stage, and get past all the obstacles in your way. You jump to one platform, avoid that Goomba in the way, knock over that Koopa and steal his shell. It can't get anymore fun exciting than that!

You can either play as Mario, Luigi, or a variation of toads. Since it's on Wii, you can play as 4 players, and as confusing at the game can be with that many people on the screen, Nintendo managed to find a successful way of making it as simple as possible. A new feature was added where if you're about to fall, or about to lose a life, you can turn into a bubble and not get hurt. The catch however is you can't break this bubble and you're stuck inside of the bubble. The only way to get out of the bubble is by having another player break it for you. If all the players turn into a bubble at the same time, then the stage resets and you have to start the stage over again.

Like in Super Mario Bros. 3, you have an inventory that you can take items from when needed. The items themselves are a whole different story. We already know there's the mushroom which makes you large, and the fire flower which lets you shoot out fireballs, but a whole bunch of new upgrades were added, and it's nice for a game like this to try some new things. There's the penguin suit, which is loads of fun to slide around in that suit. I was a little sad that they took out giant Mario from the previous DS release which enables him to grow big enough to wreck the entire level apart; I'm not sure why they took that upgrade out of the game, but they replaced it with plenty of other neat ones.

A stellar game like this isn't complete without stellar controls. The game is sort of a mix between Super Mario Bros. and Super Mario 64. It's a perfect combination. You can either walk or dash, and you can preform the high jump by jumping once, jumping again as soon as you land, and then jump the final time as a high jump. There are other functions that Mario can perform using some of the upgrades that requires the Wii's capabilities, like shaking the controller around to make Mario fly up with the flying hat. Bottom line, there's a ton of cool stuff that can make this game more fun than usual.

Like any game, there are flaws to it. For starters, in world 8, there's a level where the lava waves can reach altitudes that are high enough to be a threat to Mario, and after trying to get past these waves several times, I went in my inventory and selected the starman, which makes you invisible for a period of time. But when I ran into the first lava wave with my star, I was immediately wiped out! How was I supposed to know the lava can override my star? You can't change the rules like that Nintendo. Then again, in Super Mario Bros. 1 and 3, the lava at the bottom of the fortress stages killed you as well, starman or unarmed. Speaking of losing lives, the game is generous enough to let you off with unlimited continues... and they even count how many continues you have used to let you know how much you suck! I used like 18 continues before beating Bowser.

Another issue is the new bubble feature. Yeah, even new feature has a few flaws. First off, say you and one friend is playing this game at the same time, if both of you activate the bubble at the same time, you can't continue anymore since there's no one to break the bubble for you, so the stage resets and acts as if you die. Although you don't lose a life for it, it still waists time. Sometimes, I accidentally activate the bubble at the wrong time! If you're playing two or more players it's not a big deal, someone can break it, but if you're the only one playing, you're screwed! You have to go all the way back to the last checkpoint. That's not fair!

If someone loses all their lives, they can't continue until the stage is over. Then they get three lives and they're out to start again with the other players. There's 8 worlds, and like 10-20 stages in each one of those worlds. Like in the older Mario games, you can warp from one world to another by finding a specific secret area in random stages.

Mario can also perform wall jumps, first implemented in Super Mario 64 but also can be done in New Super Mario Bros for the DS, to get to higher up areas. The wall jump actually first made an appearance in the original Super Mario Bros. but as the infamous wall jump glitch where you have to land perfectly in dead center of a pixel on a wall. Just thought I'd comment on that.

I was honestly shocked by the graphics. Typically in Mario games, the graphics were always simple. I was fine with the simple graphics, I mean, no one wants to show off completely. But this game was done extremely well. The levels are so well designed, and Bowser's castle is honestly amazing. I was extremely impressed by the effort the Nintendo put into the graphics in this game.

I recommend this game to anyone, whether you're a 7 year old, or you're some teenager with a car. It's fun for all ages and all people (except maybe people who are blind, but I bet even they would find a way to enjoy this game).

This game is loads of fun. There's so much to do, so many levels, and awesome replay level. This is probably the best game I've ever played, although I have to think about that one first! There are flaws, but with the amazing features and all the effort that this game has put in, it's well worth the Mario title.

Reviewer's Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

Originally Posted: 09/07/10

Game Release: New Super Mario Bros. Wii (US, 11/15/09)

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