Review by ChronoCactaur
Mario enters a new galaxy greater than the previous
Mario is a video game veteran. He's rescued his fair share of princesses, defeated his fair share of bad guys,all in various locations from castles, beaches, to even an alternate dimension where everything is paper.
But nothing could prepare Mario for the adventure that waited for him in 2007. Super Mario Galaxy was s standout title, and considered the definitive Wii game. Not owning Super Mario Galaxy was equivalent to not playing The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time, it was simply uncalled for. The game was a masterpiece in every sense of the word, with no flaws to report, and it even went the extra mile.
Super Mario Galaxy 2 was released nearly 3 years later. While it takes a step back in the story department, it advanced in everything else. Upon starting the game you'll notice that the events of Galaxy 1 never seem to be mentioned. This is because Galaxy 2 is largely considered a reboot, and for the better. The big gimmick of Galaxy 2 is the re-introduction of Yoshi in 3D games, though he wasen't absent for long as he was in Super Mario Sunshine. Yoshi is at his best here however, as he is used quite frequently, and is much more loyal to his original source than the Sunshine Yoshi. It is a blast to play as him now, whereas in Sunshine it was hit or miss. I don't think anyone was particularly fond of Ricco Harbor Episode 8, right?
The reintroduction of Yoshi isn't the only new addition to the fold. New power ups include Cloud & Rock Mario. While Rock Mario is a bit of a one trick pony in that all he can do is roll, Cloud Mario is a very innovative power up in that you are literally making your own platformer experience by creating the clouds. It would be a gamebreaking concept if it weren't for the fact that Mario is limited to only three of them!
The level structure is also different, but not in a bad way. You use a world map to go where you want. In this respect, it is much more like New Super Mario Bros. Wii than Super Mario 64, as the closest you get to a HUB is the Starship Mario. Again, this leads to a very streamline experience that doesn't detract your overall enjoyment.
Basically, if you enjoyed the first Galaxy's gameplay, you'll find Galaxy 2 has taken all the right steps to be a powerhouse sequel. It reminds me of the Pikmin series, where the first one was a good game in its own right, but the sequel literally improved every detail. Maybe the relation between Super Mario Galaxy isn't quite as extreme, but it is an apt comparison.
So do yourself a favor and pick up a copy of Galaxy 2, now only $20 at your local K-Mart store!
Rating: 5.0 - Flawless
Product Release: Super Mario Galaxy 2 (US, 05/23/10)
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