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New Super Mario Bros. Wii Review

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Developer: Nintendo Publisher: Nintendo
Release Date: Q4 2009 Available On: Wii

Fans of old-school platforming have a lot to be thankful for at E3 2009. Aside from the newly announced retro-styled Metroid game, Nintendo will also be releasing a follow-up in the New Super Mario Bros. franchise. This time instead of being on DS it will be on the Wii. And it couldn’t come at a better time. The Wii’s lineup has been slow for some time now. This game, along with Metroid and the 3D Super Mario Galaxy 2 should reinvigorate the market leading system.

If you have played New Super Mario Bros. for Nintendo DS then you mostly know what to expect. The game is 2.5D with 3D backgrounds and side-scrolling gameplay. Of course these are all original levels with the same great level design that you have come to expect from the franchise. Mario’s signature butt slam from Super Mario Bros. DS is back, as is the ability to leap from wall to wall, which is especially useful if you are about to fall to your death. The object of the game isn’t much different either. You still collect coins, mushrooms and strive to reach the flag pole at the end of each level.

The biggest changes come in the form of a multi-player aspect that is new and unexpected. The game supports up to four players on one console playing as Mario, Luigi and two Toads. Yoshi also makes an appearance as a character that you can ride on. This means that you and your friends can waggle their way through each level together while trying to score the most points. There are a few downsides to this. For one, you don’t want to play with people that are hogs of power-ups and foolishly collect mushrooms/fire power when they already have them. The other is that you can die if you don’t keep up on the screen.

From the twenty or so minutes that I was able to play of New Super Mario Bros. Wii at E3, I have to say that I had a lot of fun. This is classic Mario through and through. Clever and challenging level design reaffirm my love for this franchise. While Nintendo has not announced a release date, given that Super Mario Galaxy 2 was not on the show floor, I would expect this to launch sometime this year and Galaxy 2 sometime in 2010. My first impressions are quite positive. We’ll see what Nintendo can manage in the interim.

Written by Kyle Bell