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Julius

Super Mario Bros. Wonder (20th October 2023)

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Looks like it's all done, bar less than 20 outstanding standees. Some overall thoughts:

I'll try and keep the spoilers vague.

Reckon I did the final level in 30-40 tries. A lot of it was just getting used to what was coming up and knowing how I'd need to adapt, then dying in the most stupid possible ways getting back there—it wasn't angering; the only pressure came from warnings the controller battery was low. Was actually intending to just run through a few levels as Daisy to gauge the purple coin return (did you find a good level for this, @killthenet?) but since I was right at the end I thought I'd have a peek to see what I'd be in for. It's a long one but I felt like I was still getting into it when the flagpole appeared. Went back through it as Mario for posterity since I'd done the rest of the game as him. It's a fun level to replay!

Now for some of the nitty gritty.

Search Party should have been its own separate multiplayer mode. In this game where you'd think nothing would be out of place, it didn't fit in. When I got to one it was more break time than the Break Time levels because I'd find myself on four golden flower tokens and have to suspend it and come back later to pixel hunt the fifth. If they have to be included, a Master of the Treasure Hunt Poplin should be present, teeheeing about how he's hidden five tokens and, should assistance be required, he'll allow a dummy like you to call on the services of Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker Extraordinaire... for a price. Or maybe these levels are best left for the sensor badge?

For all the creativity, I was expecting the flagpole to bend or even snap when I finished a level in elephant form. Maybe with four elephants?

Frequently, I was thinking there were enough ideas and new enemies in each world to iterate on for a full game's worth of worlds. Then in the Fungi Mines, the same Wonder Effect came up in consecutive levels (looks like a space hopper to me but it's a blob that functions like a transformation in Yoshi's Island) which caused me to rethink my stance on that. I enjoyed this particular Wonder Effect as much as the rest but I was already over it. Maybe because the entire game was non-stop throwaway segments?

Bosses. Bowser Jr brought something more creative to the table (for him) but it should have been the tip of the iceberg. Might be better off just doing a string of levels than interspersing these anti-climaxes.  MC Andross wasn't even close to having his way with me at the end of the Flower Kingdom's Greatest Hits level. I just ran back and forward, from one side of the screen to the other and jumped on the beat. The Mario Movie influence was Jack Black's Bowser personality.

On that note (!), can we get 6* levels? 7*? 10*? I don't want to be infuriated but I would like to feel like I overcame something. There's no curve. Flower Road didn't kick it up a gear at all. If you can do the Bullrush level from the opening, you won't face anything harder until the absolute grand finale which, in any case, is generously midwayed, and not really that hard. Spoilers: it didn't reward me with a badge of honour!

But yeah. A lot of really nice backgrounds, great music, expressive animations. Lovely colours and details. So much imagination on show. This was long overdue and I don't see them topping it any time soon. It draws inspiration from Mario Maker and can, in turn, breathe new life into a Mario Maker 3. Yesss, I was like "oh, custom scroll!" and things like that when I'd see it. 

They threw so much variety at me I'd feel like I'd been on it for ages when only 20 mins had passed. A fortnight of short forays into this candy shop of platforming yet it's all melded together. I liked the bob-omb fireworks baddies, the pull-chord guys and the flying Pac-Man gobblers. When I first came across them, I thought the popcorn dudes were so much more of a threat than they actually are. The Phanto fake out! Those top-down sections were good fun. Maybe they'll put out more K.O Arena's like they did the Ninji Speedruns in Mario Maker? Or just Ninji Speedrun events in existing levels because they can definitely be sprinted through. And for the last time, Prince Peasleypillar, I don't want to equip the new badge. 

Talking flower guy was by far and away the MVP. It wouldn't have been the same without him! Was that time he went Help! Help! a wink towards Pauline? Just me? Hearing him say I'm a wonder and thanks for playing was absolutely worth it.

Wonderful game but not beyond criticism, as it shouldn't be. :) 

"Come back again sometime, yeah?" ...seems if I want to start a new file it'll have to be under another profile... pfft. Must find out if there's warp pipes/ flutes (a flower horn Mario plays Manbo's Mambo on?)/  shortcuts for a quick run-through at a much later date. 

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@darksnowman It's still a bit of a grind but the best level I found for purple coins was The Sugar star Trial in W3 - you can get about 20 coins per run so I managed to complete all the standees in a couple of hours

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All seeds, Flagpoles and purple coins GET on all worlds up to Special World. I have 10 seeds on special world so far. 

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Still haven't touched this game. Been busy with others. From what i've heard it seems pretty fun all be it kinda short.

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I don't think it's that short. I reckon most people will spend 20 hours getting 100 % in the game, or at least getting all Wonder Seeds and Purple Coins. 

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Spoiler

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I didn't pick the game up at launch as I was busy other stuff and instead bought it the following week. I started it properly on Saturday, playing on and off throughout the day and ended up finishing it completely on Sunday morning. I'm certainly in the camp that feels the game was over too quickly. This may have had something to do with the lack of challenge in the game. Usually the modern Mario games offer a nice post game challenge but this wasn't the case here. Even the very final stage that gets unlocked offered very little push back, outside of one section that honestly felt a little cheap. 

Another thing I was disappointed in were the boss fights. To be honest they were all completely throw away and were probably the creative low point of the game. 

Spoiler

Having to take on Bowser Jr time and time again got old really quick. The final boss was pretty poor as well. I always get the feeling that if Nintendo hit a roadblock when making a boss fight they default back to a giant head with floating hands/arms. I wonder how many Nintendo games have featured bosses like this? :D 

Despite these small issues, I found the game to be an absolute joy to play. The level of polish and creativity on show here was very refreshing to see in today's gaming landscape. I get the feeling that the team were given the task of creating a Mario game but without any real limitations. Having new settings and enemies to explore and tackle was a very welcome change from the usual stuff that is seen in things like the New Super Mario Bros series and it's something that I've been wanting to see for a while now. 

Sometimes it's great to just pick up a controller, play a game without lots of loading or cutscenes and just play a game that is actually a game...if that makes sense? Nintendo's philosophy of wanting their games to make people smile was most definitely achieved on me with this. If a picture could sum up how wacky the game is and how it made me smile, I think this would be it.

Spoiler

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 Here are a couple of other things I laughed at whilst playing.

Spoiler

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It's crazy to think this game has launched at what is essentially the last days of the Switch. It's a title that you would expect to see maybe at launch or a couple of years into a system's life, not at the end. It's honestly nice to see this kind of support from Nintendo. They tend to have a habit of dropping a console/handheld pretty hard when it's nearing the end of it's life and it's nice they seem to have learned the value of having a strong transition from one console to the next. 

Oh, one last thing, I turned off the talking flower as soon as I started the game. :p 

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20 hours ago, MindFreak said:

I don't think it's that short. I reckon most people will spend 20 hours getting 100 % in the game, or at least getting all Wonder Seeds and Purple Coins. 

Mine says "played for 15 hours or more" but who knows, that might mean 19:59 and going for more flower bits could take it over the 20. Or perhaps your co-op partner cost you five hours. :D 

3 hours ago, Hero-of-Time said:

Oh, one last thing, I turned off the talking flower as soon as I started the game. :p 

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The hottest of Hot-Hot Hot takes from H-o-T there. :o 

(NO ONE should image search mario wonder hot hot hot. The things I've just seen.)

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Missus bought this, I've been busy with Spiderman, but she sure loves the Piranha Plant song, and has replayed the level several times to hear it again.

 

I'll get round to starting a file soon and overtake her with ease.

Edited by EEVILMURRAY
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I start off with an apology to those who completed it in a short space of time. I thought y'all were crazy and sad for ploughing through it so quickly. After being able to do the same I understand why it didn't take you this long.

Only Bowser and Special World to do, but my is this a short game.

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5 minutes ago, EEVILMURRAY said:

I start off with an apology to those who completed it in a short space of time. I thought y'all were crazy and sad for ploughing through it so quickly. After being able to do the same I understand why it didn't take you this long.

Only Bowser and Special World to do, but my is this a short game.

uWNaqbyB6wy78TybYhioLFa36NY=.gif

 

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7 hours ago, EEVILMURRAY said:

I start off with an apology to those who completed it in a short space of time. I thought y'all were crazy and sad for ploughing through it so quickly. After being able to do the same I understand why it didn't take you this long.

Only Bowser and Special World to do, but my is this a short game.

I mean, to be fair. A "short game" to @Hero-of-Time is something that he can complete in less then 10 hours.

Translated to "People who aren't crazy fast at games" that normally pans out to 50 hours.

Mario Wonder is a little shorter then other 2D Mario's though.

Edited by Glen-i
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22 hours ago, Glen-i said:

I mean, to be fair. A "short game" to @Hero-of-Time is something that he can complete in less then 10 hours.

Translated to "People who aren't crazy fast at games" that normally pans out to 50 hours.

Mario Wonder is a little shorter then other 2D Mario's though.

I would say it probably hasn't take me too far off the 10 mark to where I am now... I'll have a check, but I ain't collecting no standee bullshit.

On 11/3/2023 at 5:59 PM, darksnowman said:

 

For all the creativity, I was expecting the flagpole to bend or even snap when I finished a level in elephant form. Maybe with four elephants?

 

Were you not satisfied by the bukkake level facial the Poplin gets?

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Did 20 mins or so in 4-player last week. Even with no contact it wasn't pretty. It was a laugh but much longer would have been painful.

On 05/12/2023 at 3:12 PM, EEVILMURRAY said:

Were you not satisfied by the bukkake level facial the Poplin gets?

Fun for all the family indeed.

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My girlfriend gave me this as a Christmas gift. While I'm certainly having fun playing it, it isn't mind-blowingly fun like the internet made it out to be.

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