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The Best Wii Mario Brothers
A Legacy of every Nintendo game console to hit the market, Mario has been there to help us rescue the princess, ever since 1981, when she was kidnapped by Donkey Kong. Over the years Mario has enlisted the aid of various friends and relatives, most notably his second-player brother, Luigi. And, together, the Mario Brothers have taken on a plethora of adventures and side-quests, over and above their platformer roots. Some installments within the expansive Mario series, including spin-offs, have unquestionably missed the mark, sometimes entirely. However, the best Wii Mario Brothers games show that the series is still capable of producing some of the most addictive and inventive video games, Nintendo or otherwise.
Super Mario Galaxy 1 & 2
Together, Super Mario Galaxy and Super Mario Galaxy 2 make up two of the three top-rated Wii games on both IGN and GameSpot. Super Mario Galaxy brought us an unprecedented and almost indescribably inventive style of gameplay. And, unlike the vast majority of flop sequels, Super Mario Galaxy 2 managed to improve upon that invention of video game genius. Both offer up insane amounts of playtime, and would take you weeks of non-stop play to beat every mission and side-mission.
Super Mario Galaxy
Rated a 9.5/10 and 9.7/10 at GameSpot and IGN, respectively, Super Mario Galaxy literally introduces a galaxy of playability. During the short-lived introduction to the game and controls (which are quite easy to learn), Mario is summoned to the castle, only to witness Bowser’s space invasion and kidnapping of Princess Peach. However, soon he’s taken in by the mysterious Rosalina and her weird star-friends, called “lumas.” They provide Mario with some gameplay advice, as well as a base of operations, from which to launch his counter-attack against Bowser, for the fate of the princess and the entire universe.
The actual gameplay involves various clusters of galaxies – each cluster being the relative equivalent of a “world,” and each galaxy being the relative equivalent of a “level.” As Mario, you must navigate increasingly insane and complex galaxies, filled with planets, asteroids, spaceships and other objects. Each large, floating object or planetoid carries its own, unique, gravitational field, and you must jump, fly and cannon between them, taking out both classic and new enemies, while collecting a wide variety of power-ups. Normally, you can perform jumps, spin-attacks and ground pounds, and even receive limited help from a second player. However, including all the various power-ups, items, switches, etc., Mario can, at times, spring super high, fly, turn into a ghost, throw fireballs, ice-skate, and even reverse gravity.
According to IGN, Super Mario Galaxy is “the pinnacle of three-dimensional run-and-jump gameplay.” And it certainly was, until Super Mario Galaxy 2 came along…
Super Mario Galaxy 2
With 10/10 ratings from both IGN and GameSpot, Super Mario Galaxy 2 manages to actually improve upon the first edition – nearly to perfection. The sequel offers up a short, sweet lead-in story, almost identical to that of its predecessor. Only now, Bowser has used some sort of growing potion, and the hulking giant takes up half the screen. Nevertheless, soon you are on your way to saving the princess and universe.
This time around, the game has gotten rid of Rosalina and her giant space-ship base of operations, and replaced them with a small, planet-like space ship, shaped like Mario’s face, and hilariously named “The Faceship.” The change is one of many improvements, eliminating the extra time it took in the first game to simply get from galaxy to galaxy.
The actual gameplay is incredibly similar to that of the first Super Mario Galaxy, but also with noted improvements. First of all, the optional second-player can provide much more meaningful help, and is, in general, given much more to do, making the game’s multiplayer aspect much more fun. Also, the creators have added in a number of awesome power-ups, including Cloud Mario, Boulder Mario, and Drill Mario. But, probably the most exciting addition to the new Mario Galaxy is Yoshi, along with all of his unique power-ups; with Yoshi you can run up walls, see invisible paths and balloon through the air. In addition, Super Mario Galaxy 2 manages to incorporate a startling amount of physics-oriented levels, designed around all of the possible abilities at Mario’s disposal. Play for a couple of minutes and it will become obvious why Super Mario Galaxy 2 is considered by many to be the best Wii game, if not the best Mario Bros. game, of all time.
Super Smash Bros. Brawl
Between GameRankings, IGN, and GameSpot, Super Mario Bros. Brawl averages a 9.4/10, making it the third highest-ranked Mario Brothers game for Nintendo Wii, and the highest-ranked Smash Bros. game ever. More of a Mario spin-off, the Smash Bros. series is famous for bringing together classic characters from a variety of Nintendo games, for fast-paced, multiplayer brawling action. And Super Smash Bros. Brawl is no exception to this rule, offering up an outrageous 35 playable characters, including Mario, Kirby, Link, Fox McCloud, Pikachu and, for the first time (since Nintendo acquired Sega), Sonic the Hedgehog. Each character comes with a variety of unique moves, attacks and power-ups. But, for the most part, Brawl sticks to the winning Smash Bros. formula, when it comes to level design. The Wii controls, a first for the spin-off series, add an exciting and action-packed twist to the game (like any good Wii game). In addition, the assortment of game-modes, including an exciting, new adventure-mode, makes Super Smash Bros. Brawl a huge hit among the 2D fighter genre.
New Super Mario Bros. Wii
The first, and only, traditional Mario Brothers game for the Wii, New Super Mario Bros. Wii combines the best aspects of nearly all of its predecessors, and includes classic Mario Bros. references that are sure to excite any Mario Bros. fan. However, the game also includes a wide variety of new and innovative mechanisms for getting Mario to the final showdown with Bowser, including a penguin suit and an especially awesome helicopter suit. As far as actual gameplay, this installment doesn’t stray far from the classic style – you essentially hold the Wii remote sideways, so it resembles a traditional game controller. However, the game does incorporate a flicking motion, which causes Mario to spin in the air. Also, probably the most unique, and yet insane, addition to this newest Mario Bros. is the ability to play every level on simultaneous multiplayer, with up to four players at a time.
Filled with inventive new worlds, levels, secrets and challenges, this game represents an exciting evolution in the classic Mario Bros. series. In addition, the final showdown between Mario and Bowser is possibly one of the most challenging of any Mario Bros game. True Mario Bros. fans will find themselves playing obsessively, all the way through to the final cut-scene and beyond.
Super Paper Mario
Actually tied with New Super Mario Bros. Wii for fourth place (both games averaged 8.7/10), Super Paper Mario once again proves that a Mario Brothers game can dominate an entire genre – in this case, RPGs. Despite the fact that Super Paper Mario was one of the first games released for the Wii, it holds a spot among the greatest games that have been released for the game system.
The gameplay, like other Paper Mario games, mixes some of the familiar, classic Super Mario Bros. platformer action with a complex and suspenseful storyline. Unlike the basic Princess Peach-kidnapping by Bowser, and subsequent level hopping by Mario, Super Paper Mario actual contains a well-drawn-out and often humorous storyline, filled with plenty of puzzles. This Mario game also features a brand-new antagonist, Count Bleck, who, oddly enough, forces Princess Peach and bowser to get married. And, new to the Paper Mario games, Mario gains the ability to shift the already somewhat trippy 2D environment into a temporary 3D environment, allowing him to access new areas.
The complex, entertaining and sometimes hilarious storyline of Super Paper Mario, combined with the cool new game features, make it a must-have for fans of the Paper Mario series.