Video Games

Super Mario 3D World

Story for Super Mario 3D World

Mario, Luigi, Peach, and Toad are watching a firework show on a Mushroom Kingdom evening and, while on a walk, find a transparent glass pipe. Mario and Luigi fix the transparent pipe, and a green Sprixie Princess emerges. She tells the heroes how Bowser kidnapped and trapped the other Sprixie princess in jars. Bowser arrives soon after to kidnap and trap the Green Sprixie Princess. The group follows Bowser to the Sprixie Kingdom to save the Sprixie Princess from Bowser.

Full thoughts and Review of Super Mario 3D World

The follow-up to Super Mario 3D Land, Super Mario 3D World, came out for the Wii U back in 2013 and released to the Nintendo Switch in 2021. This recent rerelease is the version I am playing for this article. I purchased the game in 2019 for the Wii U. I liked it, but it felt lacking, and I grew bored with the game quickly. Maybe the system was already out, and the Nintendo Switch was the primary focus by then. Some Super Mario 3D World features were discontinued by then, such as the Miiverse option of leaving messages and using the collected in-game stamps in the notes. The rerelease on the Nintendo Switch changed my opinion of the game rather quickly when I got it.

Wait, It’s a Mario Game, and Princess Peach isn’t captured? Only a handful times that has happened.

The game is similar to Super Mario 3D Land. It combines the 3D Super Mario franchise’s free-roaming gameplay with the 2D linear side scrollers’ mechanics like timed stages and a flagpole at the end of each level. The blend of the two platform genres works well. The controls are great, and the isometric camera angle gives a great view of the screen and everyone on it. You can play with up to four players and on the Switch, over wifi with friends. There are some similar elements of New Super Mario Bros Wii with the games multiplayer. You can pick each other up, throw each other around, share lives, and bounces off of each other. You will still need to work with each other to get to the end of the level. Once a level is completed, you get ranked on how many points are earned out of the total score. The highest score player receives a crown. This could be stolen by another player and gives the wearer a score bonus at the end of the stage. I haven’t had a chance to try out multiplayer.

For being a seven year old game, the graphics held up right well on the Switch.

The game gives the abilities that Mario, Peach, and Toad had in a neat throwback from Super Mario Bros. 2 (the US edition) character abilities. Mario is a balanced character. Luigi can jump the highest but is a slow sprinter and has less traction. Princess Peach can float after a jump and sprints sooner but has the slowest speed. Toad runs the fastest but falls faster after a jump and sprints the latest. No one character feels stiff or out of place in this game. Anyone should have no issues with playing any one of these characters. The overall aesthetic of the game is vibrant and colorful. This feels like Nintendo took all the other Mario Platform games of the past and homaged them into this game. I see this as a bridge to bring old and new players together to play this and enjoy the game.

In order to collect some Stamps, you need to play as the other characters. It’s a clever idea to get players to try the other characters.

Other characters that are in the game are the Sprixies and the Sprixie Princess. Fairy-like creatures that aid our heroes as they try to save the Sprixie Princesses. When aren’t given any reason why Bowser is trying to kidnap them, other than an excuse not to kidnap Peach for the umpteenth time. Toad houses are around to help with giving players power-ups. There are many enemies in the game, both old and new enemies from the various Mario game history. The old enemies are Mario staples that I would expect to appear in the game Goomba, Koopa Troopas, Piranha Plants, Etc. Some of them even have cat variations on some level that help the cat theme the game conveys. The new enemies have distinct characteristics that add to the Mario Universe, like the Ant Trooper, Slipsqueak, but others like Conkdor, act similarly to Whomps or Thwomps but are easily defeated. Strangle replacements to me were Walleye that acts like Wallop from Super Mario 3D Land made me wonder why not just add Wallop?

Some similar power-ups return, such as the Super Mushroom, Fire Flower, and Super Leaf, to name some. But there are two new power-ups that I thought were ridiculous to have in a Mario game, are actually quite handy. The Super Bell that transforms our heroes into Cat Suit versions of themselves. This allows them to climb up walls for a brief time, swipe attack enemies, and make a jumping pounce attack. The Double Cherry adds an identical clone of the player, with up to 5 clone characters on screen. This may allow you to defeat more enemies and activate certain switches on a level. With new support and old items, there are eighteen power-ups in the game, the most of any Mario platform game to date.

Super Mario 3D adds a snapshot mode to replace Miiverse and give use to the stamps that you collect in the game.

The game consists of eight special worlds, and four special worlds unlocked at the end of the game. The overworld maps on each screen remind me of other Mario world maps, like in  Super Mario Bros 3 and Super Mario World. In this game, you have free range to run and jump around on the overworked maps—a nice touch to give the player a sense of free-roaming and control. But stages are still linear, and you can’t jump ahead and play another section of the world map first. If I have the freedom to go anywhere on the map, then why can’t I take on 1-Castle first? Instead, I have to go through the levels in the order intended by the developers. If that was the case, then the player should be locked on the linear path, and then after you beat the game, you may choose to run around the world path.

Even more impressive, there is a Mario Kart themed world complete with Mario Kart music in the level.

The levels in each world are great. There are many power-ups, paths, and secrets that you can find and want to play again and try to find all secrets. They provided a challenge and made me feel satisfied whenever I defeated a level. The difficultly of each world is paced out well and gradually gets more difficult as you advance to the next world. Some stages can unlock in some worlds by collecting a certain amount of green stars. You find three of them on levels, five on Captain Toad levels, and Mystery House levels. The levels and Captain Toad stages aren’t too bad to find green stars. Some are obvious, and others can be difficult to locate without a guide to help. Another good change is if you collect a star, lose a life; you keep the star you collected. It’s an easier challenge than the Wii U version, but I appreciate the time-saving idea. The Mystery house stages aren’t bad early on but later get worse. It’s a challenge level where you have ten seconds to complete an objective. The challenges aren’t too bad early on, but later levels have you complete up to 30 challengers to get all of the stars. The frustrating part is losing at any point of the challenge, and you go back to the beginning.

Hisstocrat one of the few new bosses in the game. The Boss battles in the game are a bit lacking in challenge, but are creative in design.

With much that I’ve already mentioned in this game, even Captain Toad has a side adventure. The red toad, first introduced in Super Mario Galaxy, is the leader of the Toad Brigade and is “ready for adventure.” Captain Toad’s stages are puzzle-based, and you have to collect five green stars. Captain Toad can’t jump due to his heavy backpack, so you’ll need to time the different elements and obstacles to progress. You can also rotate the camera to see the different angles of each boxed stage. The stage is fun as well, and it’s no surprise that this section of Super Mario 3d World earned Captain Toad a spinoff game, Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker.

Captain Toad levels are a fun diversion and a good way to collect a bunch of green stars

There is a lot of content in this game to keep any gamer out there occupied for a long time. This is an excellent game and a great Mario title to own for the Nintendo Switch or the Wii U. another game came on the Nintendo Switch with this game called Bowser’s Fury. Being this article is already running long, I’ll do a separate article for that game on another date.  

Summarized thoughts and review of Super Mario 3d World

Whether you are playing the Wi U version or the Switch, this game is packed to the brim with content. At any price, Super Mario 3D World is great for single and multiplayer with forcing anyone to play in one mode. Colorful and vibrant 3D worlds and multi-levels on each stage make this game a true Mario series tile. Challenging with many secrets to discover and many ways to play and retry levels. This game has lots of replayability and charm to have old and new players of the Mario series come back to replay this game for years.

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