Ramping up to MAR10 Day (March 10th), Nintendo has re-released the overlooked classic SUPER MARIO 3D WORLD and added BOWSER’S FURY- a new edition to the Mario family.
3D WORLD was originally released on the WiiU in 2013. It came out after the superior SUPER MARIO GALAXY 2 and was the last true Mario experience outside of MARIO MAKER. It led up to the release of the best Mario game of all time, ODYSSEY in 2017. In 3D WORLD, Nintendo decided to go against moving forward with open world level design and instead pushed backwards to a locked camera perspective with 4 player crazy action. If you think working together is hard in a 2 player game, try sharing your lives and adding 2 more players. Mayhem ensues. Unfortunately, the gameplay results are a mixed bag as some stages are just not that exciting. The game truly shines in the later challenging levels that have some of the toughest platforming since MARIO SUNSHINE. The overall experience is about 7-15 hours, depending on how much of a completionist you are.
The second game is the experimental success, BOWSER’S FURY. Although it’s short (3-7 hours), Nintendo took the best elements of 3D WORLD (the lovable cat suit) and put him in a miniature BREATH OF THE WILD like open world. It’s fun traversing the waterlogged environment via your dino friend, Plessie. There’s also a Kaiju style Bowser that appears every 10-15 minutes creating chaos and opportunities for oversized battles. There are a 100 Cat Shines total to collect and one that is so challenging you will more than likely fill up a swear jar. The game has a 2 player option, allowing a friend to play Bowser Jr. Although not as fun as controlling Mario, this creates some great co-op gameplay with Jr. acting as a shield to sway off baddies and using his paint brush to unlock hidden items.
If you didn’t experience it back in 2013, 3D WORLD is still worth a playthrough, but be prepared for a stepback from the brilliance of open world Mario games. The true hero in this package is BOWSER, giving gamers an exciting sneak peek at the hopeful future for the next Mario adventure.
It’s currently available on the Nintendo Switch.