Manic Multiplayer Introduces A Chaotic Twist To A Classic Formula - New Super Mario Bros. Wii - Nintendo Wii -
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New Super Mario Bros. Wii

Manic Multiplayer Introduces A Chaotic Twist To A Classic Formula

It’s no surprise that New Super Mario Bros. was a runaway hit on the DS. Longtime Nintendo fans loved the nostalgia value and familiar gameplay of the first true 2D entry in the series since 1995’s Yoshi’s Island, and a new generation of gamers discovered why the plumber is the most iconic character in the industry. With the success of the Wii and its focus on local multiplayer gameplay, New Super Mario Bros. Wii is a no-brainer. Take the classic series that gamers young and old adore, introduce four-player gameplay for the first time, and watch it fly off the shelves.

New Super Mario Bros. Wii takes the stellar core gameplay of the DS version, introduces far more creative and challenging stages, and includes riotous multiplayer gameplay. I hesitate to call it co-op gameplay, simply because of the sheer number of times you’ll accidentally (or sometimes, intentionally) screw your friends over in hilarious fashion. Mario games focus on running and jumping; and coordinating difficult platforming segments with three other people oftentimes means at least one of them is going to get stomped in mid-air, sending them to their death. Once that unlucky player comes back to the action, he or she can easily get revenge by picking up their killer and throwing him or her directly into a Goomba. It’s these chaotic moments that result in punched shoulders or players getting banned from future multiplayer sessions.

The Wii’s latest Mario game is far more than just a nostalgia act, as the level of quality is on par with the best from the NES and SNES days. Some stages are simple endeavors that give you experience with a new power-up, while others truly test your platforming skill. Later levels fill the screen with Bullet Bills, cannonballs, angry Crowbers, and parachuting Bob-ombs, ensuring that you won’t have a moment’s rest. Even the airships from Super Mario Bros. 3 return, complete with their memorable and ominous background music. Once you reach the end of the game, you’ll be treated with what might be the best boss fight in any 2D Mario title.

Playing with a few friends adds a new element to the Mario experience, but it’s not without its frustrations. Accidentally falling to your doom is funny when you have a healthy stash of lives, but later stages require precise platforming, and it’s much harder to perform quick, accurate jumps when there are three others trying to do the same thing.

Some gamers may be concerned about the addition of motion control, but like Super Mario Galaxy the game implements it sparingly and it’s never too gimmicky. Quick shakes let you pick up items or spin jump, and tilting the controller manipulates platforms and cannons. My only real complaint with the motion controls is that their inclusion means this game can’t be played with the Classic Controller. It’s a shame, as it would have been a perfect fit. There are enough buttons on the Classic Controller to handle the game’s various actions, and the L and R shoulders could have handled the platform tilting.

It doesn’t matter if your first gaming system was the NES or DS; New Super Mario Bros. Wii proves that 2D platformers are still a blast. Longtime gamers will love the countless throwbacks to previous titles, and the multiplayer gameplay is fantastic (albeit hectic) fun for everyone.

Second Opinion:


New Super Mario Bros. Wii is a joyous, chaotic return to the series’ side-scrolling roots. In retrospect, simultaneous multiplayer is such an obvious addition to the game that it’s hard to believe that Nintendo didn’t do it earlier. Single-player is fantastic, but having three more along for the ride profoundly changes the game. It was a lot more fun once I’d resigned myself to the fact that I was going to die a lot, and that many of those deaths would come courtesy of my so-called teammates. It’s a shame that a game that trades on tight controls forces in some waggle gimmickry, but it doesn’t take much of the sheen off one of this year’s most flat-out fun experiences.

User Reviews:

  • 6.50
    I've been a fan of Super Mario games since the 1990's and until I played this game I had loved every Mario platformer I've played with the exception of Super Mario Bros 2. The main problem I have with this game is it's controls are slow to respond which feels unlike a Mario game because...
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  • 8.50
    (This is for DS version) Well to start off its another Mario game... I know I'm writing this review a few years late but still it is an OK game if you are bored and want a fun challenge. I think the funnest part of this game is the 2 player option, i know you will never be disappointed with the 2...
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  • 9.00
    Most of us, including me, have fond memories of Super Mario Bros. introducing us to gaming the first time. Mario was the cool little plumber that made me a gamer, not Pong, nor even a DK entry. Both this nostalgia and improved gameplay make the Wii's New Super Mario Bros. entry a must-have for any...
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  • 8.50
    So... What do you get when you combine classic Mario gameplay and new polished modern graphics? This game. This game combines everything you know about 2D Mario and improves on it, just like it did 2 decades ago. This is a great game overall, and the next few paragraphs will tell you the reasons why...
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  • 9.25
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  • 9.25
    If you have ever played a mario game, you know what this is about. Princess Peach is captured by Bowser, Mario comes to Peach's rescue by platforming through several worlds and killing Bowser's minions along the way. The classic formula stays the same, but with a twist. The multiplayer option...
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