Thursday, January 31, 2013

New Super Mario Bros. 2

Console: Nintendo 3DS
Genre: Platformer
Release Date: August 19, 2012
Date Reviewed: Feb. 1st, 2013

New Super Mario Bros 2 is the second game for New Super Mario Bros. The original game debuted on the Nintendo DS hand helds. This one however is now on the Nintendo 3DS. The original NSMB was a huge hit on the DS because it was Mario, but Mario remade. It's basically Super Mario Bros. Remade onto the hand held systems. Everyone loved it. Now we have NSMB Wii and NSMB WiiU. The game play is your basic Mario plat former. You go through worlds, each world has a castle with a boss and when you beat the boss you move onto the next world. Not really much to explain more about the game play. However I had a few issues with it. Now it is a fun game don't get me wrong. But this game is missing a lot. The point in this game is to collect as many coins as possible. This is a nice new twist on a Super Mario game. They also introduced a coin rush mode into the game where you play a few levels that have a lot of coins to collect and a short time limit. The other nice thing about this one is it has DLC. The DLC content are new coin rush maps, one they included for free. When you get your one million coin goal all that happens is you get a new background on the game menu, that's it. Not really much of an award.

The Tanooki Suit is back!

The issues I have with this game is it is so plain. The backgrounds, the level designs, and the overall game play lasts only a couple of hours. Sure if your a perfectionist like me then you want to try and unlock all the levels and the star coins. But while your playing through the worlds or even navigating each world to your next level it's just so plain compared to NSMB for the Wii or even the WiiU. The environment in the Wii and WiiU titles are fun, interactive, and adds some life to the game. Compared to the first one on the DS, they really didn't change anything at all besides collecting coins. This I found was very disappointing. It's like they didn't care all to much about this game because they wanted to boost sales on the 3DS system because it is a Mario game. Maria game = sells a lot of consoles.

However when you complete the game you unlock Star world. I like the levels in Star World but when you beat the game and didn't really focus on collecting the star coins it's frustrating to try and go through these levels because it costs a butt load of star coins just to even go to the first level in star world. I do like how they added that feature to the game though. They do have a co op mode within the game as well where you can a friend can connect locally and play the game together collecting your coins or just plain and simple beating the game. I am happy they are sticking with the co op route of things even on the DS systems. Overall the game play is fun, just a bit upsetting with the lack of effort put into this game and the boring environments. I would recommend picking up Paper Mario Sticker Star before this game.

The 3DS uses the graphics very well in this game. The textures are crisp and it looks really good. The only problem which was mentioned up above is the plain environments and bad level designs. Almost all of the levels had a plain background and was really fast and easy to run through. Not a whole look of level creativeness in this version of the game at all. The animations on all of the enemies are great. Like in the first one the enemies dance to the beat of the music as they are walking. I still think it's funny when they hop around or swing their arms to the music.

Co op Style!

The soundtrack is basically the same one used in the DS title. Most of the levels have a good soundtrack and goes well with the game but it is all just from the original game. All of the audio in the game is what you'd expect from any Mario plat former game.

Overall the game is fun, just upsetting on the level design and environments. I mean go watch a video on NSMB for WiiU and compare it to the 3DS version. I wish I was playing the WiiU version is all I am saying. I do like the co op mode in the game and how you can also play as luigi. I also enjoyed the Coin Rush mode which you unlock after the first world is beaten. They have also included a free DLC coin rush map pack for free for a limited time to celebrate the anniversary of Mario. This map pack is known as the “classic map pack” because you play re designed levels from the original Mario games. They are also fun. If you are debating between NSMB or Paper Mario Sticker Star I recommend you pick up Sticker Star before this game.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Paper Mario Sticker Star (3DS)

Console: Nintendo 3DS
Genre: Adventure RPG
Release Date: November 11, 2012
Date Reviewed: January 30, 2013

Paper Mario Sticker Star is for the 3DS system. Paper Mario Sticker Star is not like the original Paper Mario for the N64 or the Wii versions. This version of Paper Mario is a new and fresh approach to the series. I personally loved the original for the N64 because of the RPG style. With Sticker Star there is still the RPG battle system but it's not nearly the same. With Sticker Star you actually go around peeling, buying, and finding stickers, You use these stickers as your battle commands. You have your basic stickers like the shoe (jump), and your hammer. But there are also a lot of different variations of these stickers like the fire hammer which does damage to all enemies. These stickers can also be powered up or you can even find them. These are known as shiny stickers or even flashy stickers which are much more powerful version of other stickers. There are a total of six worlds and each world has it's own different theme and style like with most mario games. Sticker Star does stay to it's routes by adding a lot of humour within the game. There were several times in the game where I had a good laugh.

So of coarse your roll is to save Princess Peach from Bowser once again. Basically what happens (without giving away spoilers) is everyone is at the sticker festival. While everyone is paying attention to Mario and Peach talking about the royal stickers Bowser sneaks in and steals one of the royal stickers. These royal stickers have great power within them and Bowser uses it to capture Peach and wipe the floor with Mario. Of coarse it is up to you to recover the seven missing royal stickers and rescue Peach.

The Battle System

With Sticker Star I found there was a lot more puzzle work to do than any other Paper Mario. What I mean by that is you have to do a lot of back tracking to other levels to progress. I did enjoy this aspect of the game but some of the times you have no clue where to go or what to do next. There were to much hidden paths to find to advance to the next level. I did enjoy that there was lots to do. If not rushed it is a 12 hour+ game. No replay value but it is longer than most recent Mario games out currently. The exploration is a huge part of the game which makes it even more enjoyable. Most of the bosses are challenging but have the option to make it easier if you know what stickers to use. I do wished they kept how the original one was. You get into a battle, earn XP, gain levels, etc... I am very happy that they added something new to the series but I missed the original game play style.

Sticker Star does stay true to the series of being a fun 2D style game with 3D environments and objects. These objects can be turned into super stickers which can deal a lot of damage or be a good support tool. Some of these include a fan or a vacuum or even a baseball bat. Each has it's own unique purpose. Overall the game play is as fun as it's always been and if your a Paper Mario fan I would check this game out you will have some fun. It is probably the worst one out of the three but still a lot of fun.

Paper Mario Sticker Star has your same 2D graphics as any other Paper Mario game in the past. You play as Mario who is made of paper and talk with NPC's who are also made of paper. Almost everything in the game is made of paper. You play as 2D but the environments are 3D. The game is very colourful and has a lot of variety. Each world you enter is a completely different environment. A little feature that I found really neat was whenever you got a shiny or flashy sticker and moved your 3DS around the stickers will shine as you move it around.

Water coming out of a cardboard bowser mouth?

Paper Mario Sticker Star also has a lot of great battle animations. The animations on the enemies and environment are very well done. They really did stay to the name of “Paper” Mario.

The sound track for the game is what you would expect from any Mario game in the series. So catchy and soothing for the most part. When you go underground they did re use the classic soundtrack from Super Mario Bros. The audio is what you would expect from any Mario game. Never bad, always good, and always catchy. It seems to relate to the game very well.

Overall Paper Mario Sticker Star is a very fun and enjoyable game. There are some things that do affect the overall score. Some of the younger audiences may find this game confusing at some parts and well get lost and will not be able to figure out where to go next. Most of the time they do not tell you where you need to go, it's basically go and figure it out for yourself. There were a couple of times I needed a small walk through to figure out where I needed to go next. I also believe they really didn't need to add the RPG battle system in this version of the game. Yes, battling with the stickers is a cool and new concept but when you win a battle it doesn't really feel like you've accomplished anything from doing it. Yes, you may earn coins or health when you defeat them but I missed when you gained experience, levelled up Mario, use badges, etc... That was very fun to me. Overall Sticker Star is a fun and enjoyable game but if your looking for the “old” Paper Mario this is not it. But try it anyways, you may have a good time as I did with it.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Fire Emblem Awakening early!

So I got my copy of Fire Emblem Awakening this morning for my 3DS. A whole week early. The game is wonderful so far. As for Paper Mario, that will be up at some point today as promised. Stay tuned!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Upcoming Reviews! (Currently working on)

Hey everyone. Normally I would only use this blog to post reviews and not updates but this is a big one. I recently had some time off so I have had the opportunity to play some new games. I am currently writing the reviews for each of them now. Down below is a list of reviews I will be posting shortly.

Reviews to come:
- Paper Mario Sticker Star - Jan 30th
- New Super Mario Bros. 2 - Feb 1st
- Tales of the Abyss (3DS) - Feb 8th
- Halo 4 - Feb 11th
- Borderlands 2 - Feb 14th
- Call of Duty Black Ops 2 - Feb 17th
- Diablo 3 - Feb 20th
- Smite - Feb 23rd
- Fire Emblem Awakening - Feb 25th
- World of Warcraft Mists of Pandaria - Feb 27th
- Minecraft (XBLA) - Feb 28th
- Awesomenauts (XBLA) - Feb 28th
- Trials Revolution (XBLA) - Feb 28th

Yes this is a lot. These are not in order but I will be releasing all of these as soon as possible. I am planning to have all of them uploaded no later than Feb. 28th, 2013. All the dates attached to the reviews are not final and may be adjusted or pushed back. I will do my best. Also the Arcade titles are much smaller so I will do all three on the same day. If you want to see any other reviews please feel free to comment, post on the facebook page, message me on twitter, or send me an email at

I also wanted to say I have reached a new milestone and I am doing all of these reviews to see if I can double what it is now. I am getting about 700 views a month now and am at 11k viewers.

Thanks everyone!