GAMES - Review
09:00 - 16th May 2013, by Michael Dodson

New Super Mario Bros. U, Wii U Review Special!

New Super Mario Bros. U is the first Mario platformer to launch with a new console in a very long time. But just how 'new' is it, and does it do enough to satisfy Nintendo fans' yearning for a big first party launch game?

Plot-wise, NSMBU does actually do something slightly different, as, rather than kidnapping Princess Peach, Bowser simply takes control of her castle and hurls Mario, Luigi and a couple of Toads to the far reaches of the Mushroom Kingdom. The usual grass, desert and water levels that you need to traverse to get back to the castle are generally well designed, offering up something new every stage. However, when playing, it's difficult to shake off the feeling that you've seen it all before.

NSMBU's latest power up is the Super Acorn, which provides Mario with a cute flying squirrel suit, offering a slower falling speed and the handy ability to grab hold of walls. Also new to the series are baby Yoshis, each of which provides its own benefits when carried. For example, the first one you meet can puff up in size, and act a bit like a parachute.

Away from the main game, we found the Challenge Mode a pleasant distraction, in which you can earn medals by performing tasks ranging from simple time attacks to earning 1-ups by continually jumping on enemies' heads.

All in all, then, there's enough new here to justify the game's existence, but we hope it's not long before Nintendo gives Mario a proper shakeup.

A solid platformer with some creative level ideas, but not an essential purchase if you're already feeling New Super Mario Bros. fatigue.
SCORE: 4/5
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