Super Mario 3D World was released on the Nintendo Wii U, however, the Wii U was a complete disaster, so Nintendo did what Nintendo did best. They decided to port Super Mario 3D World to the Nintendo Switch and they added Bowser’s Fury to the game to make it worth your while!
We’ll start off this review taking a look at Super Mario 3D World, a port from the Nintendo Wii U.
Story of Super Mario 3D World:
The story of Super Mario 3D World is the same as it has been since the 1980s. You have to save people from Bowser by going from world to world, defeating enemies, and traversing obstacles in order to reach Bowser. So overall, nothing severely crazy about Mario 3D World. However, the unique point of 3D World is the gameplay mechanics themselves.
Gameplay/Mechanics of Super Mario 3D World:
Super Mario 3D World is quite the interesting game. In my opinion, Super Mario 3D World takes the best of the 2D Mario world, and combines it with the 3D Mario world to make a unique gaming experience for anyone that tries this game. In fact, Super Mario 3D World can be best described as a 2D Mario game with a 3D perspective.
Here in Super Mario 3D World, you will choose between Mario, Luigi, Toad, and Peach, go from world to world, enter the levels, collect the green stars, traverse over obstacles, use power ups to defeat enemies, and most importantly, get to the end of the level before the time runs out. Each character is different in their own way, so you get to pick which character works best for you. For example, Mario is your jack of all trades guy. Luigi has the ability to jump higher. Toad is faster than the rest, which does make him hard to control at times. And then Peach has the ability to float, which does come in handy in certain points of the game.
Since this is a Wii U port, Nintendo did add some enhancements to 3D World when they ported it over to the Switch. For example, the game itself actually plays faster than it did on the Wii U. As someone who has played this game on the Wii U, I can confirm that Super Mario 3D World on the Nintendo Switch does play faster. In fact, when using Toad here in 3D World on the Switch, Toad moves a whole lot faster than I remember, and sometimes it is difficult to control toad when he gets up to full speed. Also, since the Wii U used a touch screen for certain elements of the game, Nintendo decided to add gyro control to Super Mario 3D World in order for you to move some things in the game. This element was not really used a whole lot, but I have to say, it does what it needs it to do. On Super Mario 3D World on the Wii U, there were certain portions that you have to blow into the mic on the Wii U gamepad in order for platforms to come to you, but here in 3D World on the Nintendo Switch, Nintendo completely removed that mechanic, which was kind of nice. I always thought it was a waste of time to even have that in the Wii U version.
In my opinion, 3D World is somewhat simpler than the other Mario games on the market. Since the game takes on the old Mario 2D world structure, 3D World is very linear in terms of how it plays, so there really is not much to talk about in terms of a story or even the gameplay. With that being said, I really enjoy 3D World for what it is. It’s a great game to play with friends and family, but at the same time, it is also a great game to play by yourself. It offers unique gameplay, and since the game is so linear, I felt like I never get bored with it because I move from level to level so quickly due to the time limit! Overall, if you did not own a Wii U and you are debating on whether or not you want 3D World, my advice to you is to pick up the game. I honestly don’t think you can go wrong with picking up the game.
Transitioning to Bowser's Fury:
Overall, 3D World is a good Mario game. It combines elements of 2D and 3D Mario, and offers a great gameplay throughout the entire game. However, since it is a Wii U port, I did not want to focus so much on 3D World itself, but instead, I wanted to focus on Bowser’s Fury, the new addition to 3D World. So without further ado, let’s dive into Bowser’s Fury here, and just letting you guys know, there will be no spoilers in this, so you are good to go!
Bowser’s Fury Story:
When you first launch into Bowser’s Fury, you are literally just dropped right into the game. You come to find out from Bowser Jr. that his father has become estranged, and that Bowser Jr. needs Mario’s help to get Bowser back to normal. So the story of this is pretty simple. The gist of it is, you have to help Bowser Jr. get his dad back. While this may sound simple on the surface, what impresses me is how Nintendo structured Bowser’s Fury.
Bowser’s Fury Gameplay:
Here in Bowser’s Fury, your objective is to go around to the locations on the map and get the cat shrines in order to activate the giant cat bells. Once you get so many cat shrines, the bells will activate when giant Bowser makes an appearance. Once giant Bowser makes that appearance, you grab the bell and become what I like to call giant cat Mario, and once you become giant cat Mario, you then fight Bowser until he sinks back into the ocean. However, in order to acquire giant cat Mario, you must have a certain number of cat shrines. If you do not have enough, you just have to avoid Bowser’s attacks until he goes away!
However, what I really like about Bowser’s Fury is that it is a true open world area. There are no load screens, no jumping through paintings, no waiting to go to different worlds, etc. What you see is what you get here in Bowser’s Fury, and honestly, I really like it. The game flows so smoothly, and the ability to just travel wherever you want to go in Bowser’s Fury makes the gameplay smooth.
When it comes to the cat shrines, it is to no surprise that this whole area is cat themed. I mean, literally everywhere you go, there are cats everywhere, and that pretty much makes sense given the whole theme of Super Mario 3D World and Bowser’s Fury.
In order to get the cat shrines, you must go from island to island, completing tasks in order to acquire the cat shrines. The majority of the time, the tasks are the same, however, in some different locations, the game does switch it up slightly in order for it not to get too repetitive. For example, when you go to the island that’s practically covered in ice, you will use a boot that can skate in order to grab some of the cat shrines. While at another island, you will jump to make the platforms switch from red to blue in order to grab the cat shrines. In essence, Nintendo took previous gameplay elements from 3D World and stuck them into Bowser’s Fury and just sort of separated them in the form of islands.
Also, another really great thing about Bowser’s Fury is the use of Bowser Jr. In other games, Bowser Jr. is just kind of a background character, however, in Bowser’s Fury, he is alongside Mario the entire time, fighting enemies and uncovering secrets with his trusty paint brush. The only other mainline Mario game that Bowser Jr. takes the forefront in is Super Mario Sunshine on the Gamecube, so it was nice to see Nintendo giving Bowser Jr. the spotlight.
One other thing I actually really enjoyed is the involvement of Plessie, you handy dandy buddy from 3D World. Plessie comes in handy pretty much the entire time since Bowser’s Fury is practically on an ocean, so you get to use Plessie to travel from location to location quickly. On top of that, Plessie is also used for certain cat shrines as well, so it was nice to see this character get the respect it deserves.
Overall, Bowser’s Fury’s open world is fantastic, and I really enjoyed the simplicity of it. The ability to just travel from island to island with no load times was really nice, and it was nice to have Bowser Jr. as a sidekick, helping you out when you needed him!
Bowser’s Fury Graphics/Performance:
When it comes to how Bowser’s Fury looks, I have to say, I think it is quite a scene when you first see Bowser in Bowser’s Fury. Nintendo really did a good job at creating an atmosphere when Bowser comes on the scene. The entire world gets dark, the music changes, and overall, it graphically looks good the entire time. However, there is one downside to Bowser’s Fury.
In docked mode, Bowser’s Fury runs at 60fps. However, whenever you are playing in handheld mode, Bowser’s Fury does run at 30fps, and it can be quite jarring to go from 60fps to 30fps. So for me personally, I just kept my Switch docked the entire time to fully enjoy Bowser’s Fury. But with that being said, I really enjoyed Bowser’s Fury, and I am kind of curious to see if this was Nintendo testing the waters for a future 3D Mario game that is truly open world. But, only time will tell if we get a true 3D open world Mario game!
Overall Thoughts/Rating the game:
While Super Mario 3D World is a Nintendo Wii U port, I still think it is a fantastic game. In my personal opinion, I am glad that 3D World came to the Switch, because with the Nintendo Wii U doing so poorly in sales, I felt that 3D World did not get the love it deserved on the Wii U. At the same time, Nintendo did make some changes to the game, but those changes were not groundbreaking and didn’t really add anything to 3D World in general.
However, the big news around 3D World was Bowser’s Fury. Overall, I enjoyed Bowser’s Fury. This add on added a completely new perspective of 3D World, with a completely free to roam open world on a vast ocean. Fighting Bowser as cat Mario was a lot of fun, and I’m curious to see whether or not Nintendo decides to build on to this open world mechanic for a future 3D Mario game.
When it comes down to it, I rate Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury a 9 out of 10. Super Mario 3D World offers the uniqueness of a 2D and 3D Mario game combined, and Bowser’s Fury just offers something different that Nintendo decided to offer to us. While some people may gripe about the $60 price tag, if you are someone that has never played 3D Mario World, it is definitely worth the price of admission. However, with 3D World being ported to the Switch, I am still crossing my fingers that we are going to get at least one more brand new 3D Mario game on the Switch before its life cycle is over with!
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