As you'll already know if you read my previous blogpost, Sophie was absolutely over the moon to receive a Nintendo 3DS device (click on the link to see my review of that) so that she can be the Madhouse Family's Official 3DS Games Reviewer ! She's been cutting her 3D teeth (so to speak !) on the Super Mario 3D Land game and has said it's the best game ever - high praise indeed, but I think that's partly down to the excitement of having a new gadget to play with (especially as it was on her Christmas list and she didn't get one !).
The game is a rather addictive platform game featuring Mario and all his friends that will have you racing across each level, trying to get there before the time runs out so that you can grab the flag. Any leftover time is converted into coins which will give you 1-ups and bonus lives.
Sophie has been playing it for a few weeks now and hasn't got frustrated or totally stuck and needed my help even once, unlike many of the games that she plays on her old DS or the Wii. This is great news for younger players (and their parents) but may mean that the game proves a bit too simple for more seasoned players. However, from reading various reviews online, it apparently gets much harder in the second half once the initial eight worlds have been completed, which I think is a good thing as it will make the game last longer. In the harder levels, you can also control Luigi and you'll need to overcome a new difficulty in each level. By the time she gets there, Sophie should have had enough practice in the earlier levels to be able to complete the worlds (and if not, me and Madhouse Daddy Mike will just have to take over the 3DS and play on her behalf hehehe !).
This is the first game that we've been playing on the 3DS and I have to say, despite my initial reservations, it really does add a whole new level to the gameplay, giving you different perspectives so you really feel like you're playing within the game somehow.
Sophie loves the brightly coloured graphics and the fun characters. She especially likes the costume changes that Mario goes through, including the raccoon's tail and the Tanooki costume. She likes all the different moves that Mario can do, such as rolling somersault attacks, hovering with his tail or floating jumps.
It's a game that at first glance seems quite retro, going back to the original Mario games that I remember from years ago, but the 3D aspect really brings them right up to date and into a new era of gaming. Sophie loves playing the game but so do the grown-ups - even Juliette has been playing but with the 3D turned off (as suggested in the 3DS safety guidelines because she is too young and it might damage her eyes).
So - a final word from Chief Tester Sophie ? Oops, I can't get any more out of her because she's disappeared back into Super Mario 3D Land and certainly won't be back out until her Nintendo 3DS reminds her that she's been playing for half an hour and needs to take a break and rest her eyes ! She doesn't say a word when it's the machine telling her, whereas if it was me, I'm sure she'd be rolling her eyes and saying I was nagging. I wonder if I can programme it to tell her she needs to tidy her room and do her homework too !!
star rating : 4.5/5
Disclosure : We received a review copy of the game, as well as a 3DS device, in order to write an honest review.
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