The Wii U got some flack, and rightly so, for launching last year without any games. Well, it had Zombie U and some third-party cross-overs, but what I really mean is that it didn’t have a recognizable Nintendo title outside of New Super Mario Bros. U.
Flash forward a year later and the Wii U has a game that is not only a potential system seller but a game of the year contender as well. Super Mario 3D Worlds, a console-sized semi-sequel of the excellent Super Mario 3D Land available on the 3DS, brings four-player co-op to a 3D Mario game.
While a year is a long time to wait for a 3D Mario title, Super Mario 3D Worlds absolutely nails it in every aspect. The game looks gorgeous in a way that New Super Mario Bros. U never managed to, despite also being a high-definition game. From sun-dappled beaches to lava-ensconced castles, Worlds is one gorgeous game. Although the Wii U might be a little behind the Xbox One and PS4 in terms of horsepower, you wouldn’t know it looking at this game. The level design is clever as well, with this game boasting some of the most memorable Mario levels. My personal favorites are a Mario Kart-inspired course or a level that opens up into a huge savannah.
If you’ve played either of the Super Mario Galaxy games or 3D Land then the controls will be instantly familiar to you. The only new wrinkle is that Luigi, Peach and Toad, the other playable characters, have their own quirks (Luigi can jump higher, Peach can Float and Toad runs the fastest) but are deficient in other areas. Mario, as you might expect, is the most well-balanced of the four. Rosalina from Galaxy can be unlocked later and she behaves similarly to Peach, and has a “double-jump” as her ability.
Having more than one person on the screen can sometimes make things a little hectic, especially since the interact action is mapped to the same button as sprinting, so more often than not you’ll end up accidentally carrying someone instead of running. With the ability to jump off people’s heads or butt-pound them off of their jumping trajectory, the co-op in Super Mario 3D Worlds can sometimes feel like “troll-op”. That said, playing with another person through this game is an incredibly unique experience and as a party game it can’t be beat.
Super Mario 3D Worlds works in a ton of new ideas into the tried and true 3D Mario formula and it manages that Nintendo trick of feeling nostalgic and fresh at the same time. For those of you who own a Wii U, this is a must-have game.
Has anyone else played 3D Worlds? Anyone wanting to check it out?