At last we are finally able to get our hands on the New Super Mario Bros. game exclusive for the Nintendo DS. It's been a very long time since we had a Super Mario Bros. game. Worry no more - it's back with new enemies, new environments and new tricks. Mario and Luigi are out yet again to save our dearest Princess Peach in this extraordinary new title to the Super Mario Bros. series.
There are eight worlds for you to go through in New Super Mario Bros. You can either choose Mario or Luigi to play through these levels (hence the title) in the worlds. There are several new elements that you may notice in the game. The most obvious one is when you play through the very first level. Playing as Mario or Luigi you will probably pick up a gigantic mushroom which will make you very big. Being this big can make you walk right through enemies, knock over pipes and destroy some parts of the environment. This feature was also in Super Mario 64 DS. Another new feature is the complete opposite to the one I have just explained. There is a really tiny mushroom that (you guessed it) makes you small (I mean really, really small). You get a few advantages if you are the tiny Mario. Some levels have small pipes that only tiny Mario can fit into and you can breeze through the level because he jumps much further from platform to platform. One disadvantage of this is that you cannot destroy your enemies. Some moves you may learn across levels are the power bomb (used in Super Mario 64 DS) and one where you can slide under ledges. This can be useful if you have just eaten a red mushroom.
Many of the enemies from the previous games have been featured in New Super Mario Bros. In addition to these we have a few new enemies which may take you a bit of time to work out what they do and how to destroy them. So, be careful in later levels because of these new enemies. In the water levels you should notice different types of fish. Being careful here is important as one of them may indeed follow you and try to eat you. If you remember the eel from Super Mario 64 DS then he makes a return to. This time there are loads of small eels but in the level where they are featured, there is one gigantic eel ready to follow you until you reach the end of the level. He will eat anything that gets in his way.
Some levels are will have stuff coming down from the sky (such as molten) so you will need to be patient and avoid these. There is also one level where fire starts to follow you upwards and you need to walk off the screen onto the other side of the screen. This is a new feature which I think is okay but it has been done before. Remember the castles in the previous games? Well, this time you will get a castle with Baby Bowser (usually half way through a world) and another castle in the same world with a unique enemy. If you can't wait to melt Bowser then gladly you can do this in the early castles. It's hilarious when you defeat him as he becomes rather angry (as always). It's quite hard in some spots but does not live up to the challenging levels of the previous games. Defeating Baby Bowser is easy as all you need to do is throw a few fireballs at him and boom, his gone. I don't feel as challenged as I would in the other games. I think Super Mario 64 DS is possibly harder than this.
Many of the minigames are back from Super Mario 64 DS along with a few new ones. It's pretty much the same so it's unlikely you will be hanging around there for too long (unless you have not played Super Mario 64 DS). If you have a friend nearby you can go against them in the minigames which wasn't available in Super Mario 64 DS though. The main multiplayer though is by far the best...
You need not worry about the other person owning the game or not. New Super Mario Bros. can be played with another player who owns or does not own the game. One player is Mario and the other is Luigi. You set out on a level of your choice and try to grab as many stars. The level does not end like in single player - it is continuous and once you get to the end you are brought back to the front in a continuous cycle. Whoever gets the set amount of stars wins. If the other player has the missing star all you go is jump on them or just throw a shell at them - just as you would with the enemies.
It's a beautiful side-scrolling game. Even though it's a side-scroller Nintendo have managed to make it look 3D. Mario and Luigi look very much like they did in Super Mario 64 and Bowser looks more vicious than ever. The lively colours and awesome environments will most likely catch your eye. This game's graphics are definitely up-to-date and are in no way dull or boring.
The sound has taken advantage of the Nintendo DS's stereo speakers here. Like Super Mario 64 you can change the sound settings to suit you. So, if you are using headphones you can change to the sound option for headphones or if you want a surround experience you can choose that option. With the surround option you will know where your enemies are coming from. You can hear them coming from the left and the right. I think it's a great way of working out what's behind you and in front of you. Best of all - on surround mode it just sounds terrific!
As a player of previous Super Mario Bros. games I have to say it is worth getting just because it is a title in the series. If this is your first Super Mario Bros. game then you shall not be disappointed. You'll be getting used to bashing Baby Bowser and Bowser (along with all their enemies set out to prevent you from getting your princess back) in no time. It's worth it for just being a title in the series and also for the sometimes tricky but fun levels. Having played through most of the worlds I feel like I have gone through this game so quick but being New Super Mario Bros. it aims to trick you in certain levels and prevent you from defeating Bowser at the end. So, you are looking at quite a few hours of gameplay here as you are likely to die in some levels and start over. Of course there are some hidden extras for you to find as well just like the other games. In comparison to previous games this is not as long as those though.
Anyone who owns a Nintendo DS system needs to have this as Nintendo have done a very good job at creating yet another brilliant game in the Super Mario Bros. series. This game will sure be remembered in years to come just like its predecessors.
9 / 10