It’s a bit odd that this game’s called New Super Mario Bros as it’s not really that new if you’ve played the DS version. The game looks almost identical apart from a couple of extra little touches but the main fundamental difference between the console version over the handheld is the fact that you can now play the game with up to four players which certainly completely changes the mechanic of the game far from anything we’ve seen before.
Once again the princess has been captured and off you go from left to right, smashing blocks with your head, jumping on Goombas and of course collecting lots of power-ups to help you out. New to the game is a helicopter helmet which launches you into the air with a shake of the Wii Remote and a penguin suit which lets you fire balls of ice to freeze enemies and also belly slide into enemies. You can also pick up items, shells and even your friends by holding the one button and shaking the remote which is useful if they keep falling to their death but I’m not sure about using this gesture for a fundamental part of the game. Occasionally you’ll spin into the air or pick someone up when you don’t mean to or it won’t recognise your shake which can lead to some frustrating deaths.
There are also three large coins to collect on each stage and you’re encouraged to go back and look for them all if you’re a completist.
Playing the single player game is fun but as I mentioned before, multiplayer is where it’s really at. You’re supposed to play co-operatively which you may do with two players. Any more than that and it all turns into a rather comical game of trying to screw over your mates by nicking power-ups and chucking your friends off the screen. It’s a good thing then that if you die you float back onto the screen in a bubble which, when popped by another player, lets you join in the fun again.
There’s not really much more to say about the game. It’s Mario at its most classic so you know what to expect and it’s obviously not as in-depth as the full-blown 3D games such as Super Mario Galaxy. You won’t, however, be prepared for the multiplayer and it’s really very surprising how much it lifts the game into a whole new dimension without being as mental as the Smash Bros. games. New Super Mario Brothers Wii gets an excellent 8 out of 10.
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