New Super Mario Bros. 2 Is Every Bit As Good As It Should Be - New Super Mario Bros. 2 - 3DS -
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New Super Mario Bros. 2

New Super Mario Bros. 2 Is Every Bit As Good As It Should Be

Nintendo may have focused on another Mario game during their E3 press conference, but they didn’t completely ignore the plumber’s other title on the show floor. 3DS units made their way to the publisher’s booth today, and I had a chance to play three levels of Mario’s new portable adventure.

Despite being on 3DS, I didn’t notice anything that stood out as particularly gimmicky when it came to 3D effects. The first stage was reminiscent of the original Super Mario Bros.’ levels that tasked players with avoiding mobs of Cheep Cheeps while crossing a bridge. Previous New Super Mario Bros. games have featured rings that trigger timed formations of red coins, but this game introduced a new type of these. These new rings caused a string of coins to follow all of the Cheep Cheeps, who temporarily turned gold.

The focus on coins was present throughout all three levels I played. One new golden flower power-up causes Mario to glow gold and throw giant golden fireballs, and it also causes this writer to write the word “gold” more times in one sentence than he ever has. These fireballs turn enemies and most blocks into coins, which can lead to an explosion of currency if you’re in a block-filled area. To give you a sense of how extensive the focus on coins is, I saw a counter at the end of the third level that told me I had collected 1,832 of them (although it wasn’t clear if this was for that single level or all three in total).

During the second, desert-themed level, I came across a power leaf that grants Mario his iconic raccoon suit. Note that this is the standard raccoon suit from Super Mario Bros. 3, not the Tanooki suit that was recently resurrected in Super Mario 3D Land. It behaves just as you remember, complete with the p-meter icons in the lower left. It can be used to fly and to swipe enemies and blocks, with the only difference being the behavior of the feathered descent it allows. In SMB 3, the tail could be wagged to slow your fall. In New Super Mario Bros. 2, it’s more of a Yoshi-like hover. A small detail, I know, but one that longtime Mario fans will most likely notice.

After beating the first two levels, I was treated to a final stage that was similar to the vertically-scrolling levels from SMB 3 and Super Mario World. Mario rode sliding blocks and avoided Dry Bones as he made his way to a boss door, where I was greeted by an old friend (well, foe). When I entered the door, I found myself against some Reznors. For those that haven’t played Super Mario World since 1991 (or not at all), they’re the triceratops that stand on rotating platforms above a fire pit. I dispatched of them just like I did on the Super Nintendo, which involves hitting the block they’re standing on from underneath. They fell into the lava, and the demo concluded.

Nintendo doesn’t seem to be drastically changing the Mario formula with this title, and I couldn’t be more okay with that. This series in particular exists purely to remind longtime fans of the gameplay they fell in love with, as well as to introduce a new generation of kids to an experience that created so many gamers. The publisher has a perfect track record when it comes to the core Mario franchise (in which I include the New Super Mario Bros. games), and my taste of New Super Mario Bros. 2 assures me that I’ll love this new entry just the same.

  • Nice lookthrough, love the gold theme, glad i got a 3ds

  • Dang it, double posted. Oh well. Go ahead and troll me...
  • I like this coin idea. Changes the formula just enough to differentiate itself from NSMB U. Really looking forward to this.

  • Looks like they are bringing back some Super Mario World also. Fireballs that turn your enemies into coins, and Reznor is coming back also, based on a screenshot. I love Mario games, hope they never change.
  • I still dont know how i feel about the "gold" theme, but then again its a Mario game and its all meant to be in good fun. I mean, really, i feel ashamed trying to critique the theme of a Mario game.

  • Wait is this a new game? I could have sworn this looks like 10 other games that have come out in the past few years. And people complain about COD. (No I am not a nintendo hater, I have played every mario game except super mario 3d land, I am just sick of the lack of innovation. Make a game where you can design your own levels then lets move on from these derivative 2d mario games. Nintendo has not made a new game in 11 years).

    Constructively, Glad they have a coin challenge thing, but why not have a time attack mode? a least amount of jumps? a least amount of time on the ground? Triple the speed mode? Expert mode where all the levels are much more difficult? have real online leaderboards that are not just between friends. Incredibly unique environments with NEW powerups and bosses. If people are going to spend 50 bucks don't make an expansion pack.
  • I already know I'll like it. This is more of a confirmation.

  • Great news!!

  • I am surprise. People go ape when a new Cod game is announced, but Nintendo gets a pass for banging out Mario games all the time? I know it's almost a sin to compare an OG like Mario to CoD but I mean really some complaints work for this series as well. At the end of the day all a new Mario game is is some levels you have (in essence) played before and a few new power suits and since Nintendo doesn't really do dlc they milk it by porting it and charging you for a full game.
  • Considering this game's focus on gold I wouldn't be surprised if Wario is included as an unlockable character.

  • Nintendo is always masterfully tweaking their formula to make it just that much closer to perfection.

  • Meaby people consider this as another Mario in the way of not beeing revolutionary, but why change a successfully concept? Nintendo is doing the 2d side scroller as one, if not the best on the market.

    These kind of games did me buy a 3DS and I can't wait for the arrival, looking forward to welcome Mario again, like I always do and will ;)

  • I dont mind a new Mario game at all but this just seems to be a bit over the top. I will still buy it just idk nothing will really change my love for Mario.

  • They tossed in some Super Mario World huh? That's great to hear.

  • Excelente idea!!! Hasta cuanto sera el modo de multijugador?

  • perfect

  • I guess I'm going to have to get a 3DS now. I love that nintendo is honoring some of their tried and true formulas, it's definitely a selling point for me (even if it comes off as repackaging an old game).

  • I was actually playing NSMB-DS last night. I don't want to sound like a troll, but for some reason I think I'm overwhelmed by Mario. I loved SMB1-3 + SMWORLD. Loved 64 and Galaxy 1+2. But as far as NSMBDS/WII and the upcoming sequels on WII U and 3DS version, I just don't feel them. When I Played DKC Returns I loved it from beginning to end. The newer 2D Mario games don't feel right and I never get the urge to go back to them like the old ones or even the Galaxy games. Maybe because the shock factor is gone and theres nothin' exciting about it, or the fact that they are releasing the same game on 2 of their consoles within  the same time frame. Does anyone else feel like this?

  • So will this be 3DS only?
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