New Super Mario Brothers – play this thing!

Originally posted at GameSpot on February 25, 2008

February 23, 2008, around 11:30 PM – Defeated Bowser to beat the New Super Mario Brothers game on the DS. I’m proud (or maybe I should be ashamed) to say it’s the first Mario game I’ve ever beaten completely on my own. I’ve had some help on the other games from either strategy guides or Game Genie (remember those?), but this time it was just me and my wits against Bowser Jr. and his crew.

This game has garnered a lot of praise, and I’m here to say it’s completely justified. Everything you remember loving about the world-famous plumber and his 2-D adventures can be found in spades here, from colorful worlds to excellent music. I haven’t had this much fun since Super Mario Brothers 3, and as I’ve mentioned in a previous blog this game will have a ton of replay value for me.

They say it’s not the destination, but the journey – and the New Super Mario Brothers proves that point. Standing in front of the final castle in World 8 was bittersweet, since I knew this was the end. Truly a great game and highly recommendable to anyone! Go out there and play this thing!

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The New Adventures of the Bros. Mario

Originally posted to GameSpot on February 22, 2008

There aren’t many positives when it comes to being sick, but playing the New Super Mario Brothers would have to be one of them. I’ve heard good things about the game and played the mini-games with a friend, but this was my first real chance to go through the single-player campaign.

In short, it’s fantastic. Since I’m currently playing through Super Mario World, I feel like I have something to compare it to – and I’m very impressed. The graphics are outstanding, the level design fun, and the time meter is longer! Just that last point alone means I’m having more fun with this game than the other.

So far I’m on World 3, and after finding the warp at the end of the World 2 castle I also have access to World 4.

I really enjoy the old school feel to the game. Fighting Bowers at the first castle on the drawbridge was a nice touch, and even some of the old platforms that were in the original Super Mario Brothers make a comeback.

Most games give me a feeling, and the feeling I get from this one is it’s something I’ll be able to enjoy and re-play for a long time to come. Much like Super Mario Brothers 3, this will be a game I can always pick up and know it will be just as fun as I first time I played it.

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The plumber-saves-princess groove

Originally posted at GameSpot on February 1, 2008

Super Mario World for the GBA (or my DS, in this case) arrived in the mail the other day and I’ve been privileged to begin playing this fourth installment in the Mario series.

My wife used to watch her brother play this game all the time, so she has been playing through it as well.

It’s a fun package, and the graphics seem amazing when compared with my last Mario game (Super Mario Brothers 3), and I really like the music as well.

But to be honest, I’ve realized something – something I did not expect: I stink at the game. Oh, I’m not the worst ever, but I can tell I’ve been out of the platforming genre for a long time. So far, the game is a little more frustrating than it is fun.

I’ve also found that the timer just seems to be a little bit too short. These worlds I’m exploring appear so much bigger than SMB3, I need more time! Maybe I’m just getting used to things.

Don’t get me wrong – it’s Mario, it’s old-school, and I do enjoy it! I just need to get back in the plumber-saves-princess groove.

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