Sunday, January 17, 2010

Game Review - New Super Mario Bros Wii

Today's review is New Super Mario Bros. Wii, or as the game calls it, "New Super Mario Brothers, Wii-HII!!!!!" And this game really is a mixed bag for me. Allow me to explain the backstory for this game. A friend of mine picked this game up, called me up and said he wanted to get me and my other friend together and play the multiplayer on the game, I was fired up, said yeah and we all got together and played this game, I didn't play all the game, but together, we all compelted this game in under a day (excluding the secret world). So how does it stack up? Read on to see...

Story: 2/5

It's a Mario game, I'm not expecting a story on par with Legacy of Kain or Metal Gear in depth and epicness. The Princess is having a birthday party, a large cake is there, the Koopa Kids pop out, nab the princess, hop into the airship from SMB3 and fly off, it's up to Mario and Luigi and two nameless toads no one cares about to rescue Princess Peach once again. That's pretty much it, what else would you expect?

Sound & Music: 3/5

The music is a mixed bag, like alot of this game. This music suffers the same annoying "BAH BAH!" bouncy flavor of the DS New Super Mario Bros. This is sad, because the Mario games have produced some of the most memorable tunes in video game history, yet this game and the DS have mostly forgettable tunes, they're just too...meh. Don't get me wrong, I can go to sleep to alot of the tunes, they're very mellow and relaxing, but nothing overly memorable. But there are a few saving graces in this game for the music, which pulls the rating up. There are several remixed tunes in this game, like the airship theme from SMB3, the boss battle from the same game and so on. My favorite tune of the game though, is the final boss. There's a flair of epic to the tune that makes me wish the rest of the game was on the same level.

Graphics: 4/5

The graphics in this game are bright, colorful and well done. The real downside to this is that the graphics are really just a more detailed form of the DS' game, there's not much difference from that game's graphics other than better resolution. However, it is a pretty game, that much is true.

Gameplay: 3.5/5

This is really where the game suffers in my opinion, not as bad as you might think though. The game is far too easy. You're giving a whole lot of options to use, which is nice, but it makes it too easy to beat the game. You're given power ups which is a standard part of the Mario experience. This time, in addition to the Super Mushroom, Fire Flower, mini mushroom and the Star, you've got an Ice Flower...which would be nice, if it wasn't made totally redundant and useless with the Penguin Suit. Both the Ice Flower and Penguin Suit allow you to shoot iceballs that freeze enemies you can use as platforms and throw as projectiles. However, the Penguin suit goes further, allowing you to slide along the floor and have far better swimming controls, making it far better for use over the Ice Flower. The other new item in this one is the propeller hat which allows you to do a spinning high jump and slowly float back to the ground. This cap also helps make things easy as you cheese your way past several obstacles.

The boss fights are numerous and fun, but ultimately, easy. You face one of Bowser's kids at the half way point, beat them, and they retreat to the final level of the world, and you face them in a rematch where Magikoopa flies in and enhances the match somehow. Though you now have a challenge added by Magikoopa, it doesn't make the battles any harder. The hardest boss battle, thankfully, is the final one, as it should be, but even it is easy. Bowser's battle is as easy as he was in the DS game, then Magikoopa pulls a Rita Repulsa and makes his Boswer grow and BAM! MEGA BOWSER! It's not so much a battle as you run from him as he destroys walls with his breath to allow you to move on. You hit the switch, and I'm not kidding, you flush Bowser like down a toilet and beat the game...and yes, Mario gets the credit, though I, as Luigi, saved the Princess. She's such a tease!

Multiplayer: 1/5

Ugh...this is the game breaker to me. Multiplayer is set up in such a way you'll not want to play with friends...which I did. I got fed up with the annoying habit of knocking each other into pits and getting in each others way that I stopped playing and let them continue on (I only helped for the final battle because my friend was having trouble timing Bowser's jump).  Alone, this game is fun, if forgettable, but in multiplayer, it will turn a saint into a swearing sailor. I like playing the game alone, because the levels do not have multiplayer in mind, most of the time, the other players will enter a bubble that will allow them to follow without having to deal with the obstacles while one player does all the world. That's the best way to get through this game on multiplayer.

Replayability: 3/5

There is some replayablility to the game, but not much. Collect star coins to unlock hints on the stages, or to unlock the final star world and play it. But that's about it. After that, there's not much to do.

Overall: 3/5 (Not an average)

This game falls into the middle of the road. It's not the next best Mario game, but neither is it the worst one ever created. The main problem with this game, it takes everything from past Mario games to make this one, not really giving this game an identity of it's own. From the musical hints to the levels, and Magikoopa using his'll just think, "Haven't I played this before somewhere else...and it was awesome then?" It's sad to see Nintendo make such an average game, considering the past games like Super Mario Bros 3, Super Mario World, Yoshi's Island. Those games are awesome, but this one doesn't even come close to matching them. This game is fun for an afternoon, but it won't have the lasting influence of the Mario games to come before it. You can breeze through this game pretty easily and then go want to pop in your old SNES Mario games. And I hate how they screwed Yoshi over. Bah.

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