VIDEOGAMES-TO-FLIX is a JoBlo.com column showcasing reviews of videogame translations of Hollywood films (or games soon-to-become Hollywood movies). With both industries getting closer and closer, and videogames, in general, getting so much more popular, you knew it was just a matter of time before we hit that stuff!
NEW SUPER MARIO BROS.
INTRODUCTION:Nintendo's greatest icon has returned to his side-scrolling roots in his latest adventure, NEW SUPER MARIO BROS. Unlike recent RPG side-scroller, PAPER MARIO: THE THOUSAND-YEAR DOOR, this adventure is pure action from start to finish. As with tradition, Mario is battling Bowser to save Princess Peach and the Mushroom Kingdom. This latest adventure is exclusive to the Nintendo DS and includes plenty of mini-games and a new multiplayer game. Two to four players can wirelessly connect and compete for stars on levels reminiscent to SUPER MARIO BROS. 3. This is the first occurrence of such a battle in a standard Mario game and might even overshadow the single player. This new feature adds extra enjoyment to an already fantastic title. Perhaps this is something they'll need to include with SUPER MARIO GALAXY.
GAMEPLAY:NEW SUPER MARIO BROS. is a standard platform action game designed in two-dimensions (the same fashion in which Mario first became known). The gameplay mixes the best of SUPER MARIO BROS., SUPER MARIO BROS. 3, and SUPER MARIO WORLD. The flag poles from SUPER MARIO BROS. are back in play and the level selection of SUPER MARIO BROS. 3 is in the forefront. Picking up this game provides a great nostalgic feeling but welcome new challenges added on. Any old school gamer will feel right at home with this title.
The controls are an advanced melding of moves well established in previous Mario games. While retro gamers may not have mastered the wall jump or ground pound, they can practice here or proceed without these new skills. That's the best part of this game - even people who haven't played a Mario game in twenty years can still pick it up an enjoy. Yoshi isn't here to confuse players, nor will taking down Bowser be that difficult of a task. NEW SUPER MARIO BROS. includes two new magic mushrooms that help Mario shift shapes. Both 'shrooms work just like in ALICE IN WONDERLAND, with one making Mario large and the other making him small. I loved the novelty of controlling a giant Mario through levels designed for a much smaller character. This was a welcome new variation to gameplay that provides a destructive outlet for players unfulfilled by Star Mario. The mini mushroom provides a less interesting variation that I rarely found use for. I'd much rather have Mario Sunshine or Cape Mario. Overall, NEW SUPER MARIO BROS. blends old school gameplay with new school technology for a wonderful mix of neo-nostalgia. Gameplay in a traditional Mario game is expectedly near perfection. The additions are fun but never take away from the overall feeling. Gameplay: 9.6/10
GRAPHICS:For a game designed for the Nintendo DS, NEW SUPER MARIO BROS. looks good. The decision to go with 3D graphics in a 2D environment was the correct one, connecting this game with history and making the game more cartoonish. While I can appreciate the technology of playing Mario in full 3D (like in SUPER MARIO 64 DS), Mario played in two dimensions is prettier.
All of the maps and stages are as they should be; pretty, pixelated, and fun. When connected with character models that add a rich canvas for Mario's animations to enjoy. I can't find a single flaw to mention in regards to the look of this game. I'm glad that Nintendo avoided tinkering with the graphical identity of 2D Mario games. Too often companies ruin an icon for the sake of trying something new. Graphics: 8.9/10
AUDIO:Because this game hearkens back to an era of straight forward and simple gameplay, the sound design follows the same ideals. There are no distinctly new songs to hamper your traditional thoughts on Mario. Nor are there any outrageously exaggerated orchestrations to make you sit up in awe. Mario is Mario and this game sounds like it should. AUDIO: 9.7/10
FINAL VERDICT:The Mario Franchise is the cornerstone of video games. While SUPER MARIO BROS. was one of the first great platform games, SUPER MARIO BROS. 3 was one of the biggest blockbusters of all time. Mario has continued to expand and grow since that time and NEW SUPER MARIO BROS. is no exception. While the overall play time is short and the level of difficulty is debatable, this game is still leaps and bounds beyond most games on the Nintendo DS. With the addition of excellent multiplayer games, there is no reason to ignore buying this game. If you own a Nintendo DS, you should own NEW SUPER MARIO BROS. OVERALL SCORE: 9.2/10
STATUS OF THE MOVIE:There are no current plans for a new Mario movie and that's wonderful. In 1993 SUPER MARIO BROS. was adapted into movie staring Bob Hoskins and John Leguizamo. SUPER MARIO BROS. was released with summer blockbuster hopes and quickly became lauded as one of the worst movies ever made. Luckily, the box office agreed and the likelihood of seeing a sequel is non-existent. SUPER MARIO BROS. 3 made a cameo in WIZARD and that went over much better.
MY XBOX GAMERTAG:
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