Super Mario 3D Land
Super Mario 3D Land (Japanese: スーパーマリオ ３Ｄランド Sūpā Mario 3D Rando) is a game in the Super Mario franchise for the Nintendo 3DS. It is closely based on side-scrolling Mario games, but it is a 3D platformer in the vein of games like Super Mario 64 and Super Mario Galaxy. As noted by Reggie Fils-Aime, president and COO of Nintendo of America, at E3 2011, this game marks the first time a 3D Mario platformer has been built from the ground up for a handheld system. The game was created by the same development team that worked on the Super Mario Galaxy games and Donkey Kong Jungle Beat, currently part of Nintendo EAD Tokyo. As it is a new installment in the main Mario series, Super Mario 3D Land follows Super Mario Galaxy 2 in this respect.
Outside of Princess Peach's Castle stands the Tail Tree, a Tanooki-tailed tree with Super Leaves on its branches. All of the Mushroom Kingdom is familiar with the tree. One night, a huge storm blows all of the leaves off, as Bowser laughs in the background.
Later on, Mario and three Toads (Red, Yellow, and Blue) go looking for the princess. Eventually, they discover that she is missing and the Super Leaves are gone too. Yellow Toad notices a hovering letter near the tree, and the group of four goes to investigate. Mario grabs and opens the letter, and a picture of Bowser holding Princess Peach with Super Leaves flying in the background pops out. The message shocks the three Toads and Mario, and immediately, Mario and the three Toads run to save Princess Peach.[video 2] Throughout his adventure, Mario receives more letters about Peach's predicament and about various stages of Bowser's Super Leaf-related plan.
Becoming lonely due to Mario's absence, Peach ultimately attempts to escape from Bowser and his army, but she is soon recaptured. Mario travels through 8 worlds and defeats Bowser, only to be tricked as Bowser escapes with Peach. Mario eventually finds Bowser's lair, but before they can battle, the floor beneath them breaks and they fall. After being chased through various obstacles, Mario manages to press a switch making the bridge under Bowser collapse, sending Bowser into a pool of lava. At last, Mario and the three Toads find Princess Peach and, using their Tanooki powers, bring Peach back to her castle.
After that, a short cutscene appears with a letter floating down in World 1-1. It appears to be Luigi being kidnapped by Dry Bowser. Mario then sets off to save Luigi. After rescuing him in Special World 1-Castle, he becomes a playable character.
After Mario beats Special 8-Castle, another cutscene appears. Another letter has floated down on World 1-1, and the three Toads who accompanied Mario in his adventure investigates while sporting their Tanooki forms. To their surprise, Bowser has kidnapped Princess Peach again. Then, Mario or Luigi must play World 8-2 again to defeat Bowser. After that, a letter of Peach wearing a Tanooki Suit is unlocked. Once 5 stars are present on the profile, Special 8-Crown is unlocked.
The levels of Super Mario 3D Land are much more linear and compact than the other 3D titles, more along the lines of the sidescrolling games. Levels have a time limit and even feature flagpoles, a staple of the original Super Mario Bros. and the New Super Mario Bros. games, rather than Power Stars, as the level goals. When Mario is defeated, the "Too Bad" banner from every 3D Mario platformer since Super Mario Sunshine appears near the top of the screen and falls to the bottom of the screen, but a circle covers the screen instead of a Bowser symbol. Also, when the timer reaches zero, the "Time's Up" banner appears at the top of the screen. To enter pipes, the player must press or ; for the first time in the series, the player can re-enter areas through pipes at will (for example, after being transported to the above-ground flagpole in World 1-2, the player can go back down the pipe to go underground). The graphics of the game greatly resemble those of the Super Mario Galaxy games, while the levels show visual similarities to the New Super Mario Bros. titles. Gameplay also takes cues from Super Mario Sunshine, notably tight-rope walking. Unlike the 2D Mario games, the level themes in a world tend to be more generic like the galaxies of Super Mario Galaxy 2 compared to the world, instead of focusing on a particular setting per world.
Due to the merging of the 2D and 3D play styles, Mario's moveset is slightly more limited than other 3D games; he cannot triple-jump or even double-jump. He also cannot Spin Jump. However, the Wall Jump, Sideways Somersault, Long Jump, and the Backflip can still be performed. Other controls take cues from the 2D titles; Mario can crouch and slide while running, which now requires the use of a run button, like in the 2D games. In addition, the version of the Backflip seen in this game is the same as the type in Super Mario Bros. 2. Finally, Mario has a new roll move that can be used to break blocks from the side and fit through small gaps.
While giving examples of how the Nintendo 3DS enhances gameplay, Shigeru Miyamoto has stated that hitting blocks from underneath in 3D Mario games would be easier with stereoscopic 3D. Blocks are more prevalent in the title, unlike past 3D games, where blocks were more few and far between. Star Medals that have a similar design to the Comet Medals from Super Mario Galaxy 2 are found in each level, with collecting all three being part of the level's challenge, like in the New Super Mario Bros. games. Plus Clocks can be picked up to give the player more time to complete the level, the latter a mechanic only seen previously in Super Mario Galaxy 2's Speedy Comet missions. Mario himself returns with some of his trademark 3D abilities, such as the Wall Jump, Long Jump, and Ground Pound, and is now capable of performing rolling, which is done by crouching while moving. By rolling and jumping at the same time, the player can do a somersault during the long jump. Mario's health system is now based on the side-scrolling titles rather than being a numbered meter: one hit shrinks Mario to a smaller size and removes his cap, while power-ups give him an extra health point. These power-ups include the Super Mushroom, the Fire Flower, the Boomerang Flower, the Statue Leaf and the Super Leaf, the last of which has not been seen since Super Mario Bros. 3. Notably, the Fire Flower, unlike its previous 3D appearances in Super Mario Galaxy and its sequel, no longer has a time limit imposed on it and is retained until Mario is hit, as in the side-scrolling games. When Mario dies, he respawns in Super Mario form, not his Small Mario form, unlike previous titles. When Mario dies twice in one level, a flying Roulette Block appears. Unlike the previous Mario games, the lives counter in Super Mario 3D Land extends beyond 99 and goes up to the max of 1,110 (3 crowns). This 1,110 max lives counter is also included in New Super Mario Bros. 2.
The game also makes extended use of the Nintendo 3DS hardware. When the player uses a cannon or the Binoculars, the Nintendo 3DS accelerometer can be used to aim by tilting the 3DS. The game also includes a Streetpass option, where upon encounters, Mystery Boxes and Toad House items are exchanged between players. Items in Toad Houses sent by another player are recorded, including the amount of items sent by the user.
There are at least four returning tracks from Super Mario Galaxy: the Airship theme, the Sweet Sweet Galaxy theme, and a remixed version of Flipswitch Galaxy's theme, Ghostly Galaxy's mansion theme, and the Cosmic Mario theme. There is also one track returning from Super Mario Galaxy 2: the Peewee Piranha theme used on Bonus Planets. (This boss theme was also present during the battle with Boom Boom at the E3 Demo as placeholder music. The track is nowhere to be found in the full game). The "tick-tock" that is heard when a timed Ground Pound Switch in the Super Mario Galaxy series is activated is used for when a P-Switch has been jumped on.
 Nintendo eShop Description
Platforming with serious depth! With the 3D visuals of Super Mario 3D Land, players can see exactly where floating ? Blocks and flying Paragoombas are, so that they can jump and stomp with the precision of the pros. Expert gamers will appreciate the way 3D graphics reveal the true challenge of the levels, so that they can focus on nailing the perfect jump or shaving precious seconds off their speed runs, while new players will find that 3D makes platforming simple to grasp and satisfying to master.
Try on Mario's Tanooki Suit, and put some spring in your step! While longtime gamers will delight in using Tanooki Mario's tail-spin attack to sweep enemies off their feet and fluttering through the air to land super-long jumps, a new generation will learn what makes this classic suit a fan favorite. But even seasoned players will be in for a surprise--Mario's enemies may be sporting the familiar Tanooki tail too!
Mario at his very best! Mario returns to his roots in his first 3D platforming adventure designed exclusively for a handheld system. From the frantic race-against-the-clock dash through the Mushroom Kingdom to that final leap to grab the top of the flagpole, this eye-popping addition to the Super Mario series combines everything that makes Mario great from one generation to the next.
 Playable Characters
 Supporting Characters
 New Enemies
 Returning Enemies
 Other Items
 Normal Worlds
 Special Worlds
Super Mario 3D Land was first mentioned in an "Iwata Asks" interview with Shigeru Miyamoto in October 2010, where he confirmed that a brand-new Super Mario Bros. game for the Nintendo 3DS was already in development, but had not yet been given a proper title. It was known by its tentative title, Super Mario at the time. In November 2010, Shigeru Miyamoto announced that both 2D world and 3D world Mario games were in the works for the 3DS. Four screenshots were available on March 2 2011, and the game was officially announced during the Game Developers Conference, under the name Super Mario. The logo had a Raccoon Tail on the "O" letter, similar to that of Super Mario Bros. 3's logo, which had Raccoon Mario's tail shadow behind the "3". Available screenshots of Super Mario revealed that the game is a 3D platformer and the game was stated to be developed by Nintendo EAD Tokyo's same team which had previously developed Super Mario Galaxy and its sequel, as shown how a Goomba runs after Small Mario. It even contained features from the 2D Mario side-scrolling games. Satoru Iwata stated that a more official announcement would be shown at E3 2011 on June 7. According to Iwata, "it will be a game that will come with the kind of surprises and fun that only the 3DS can offer." Shigeru Miyamoto has stated that the development took over two years and started with 2 to 30 staff members working on the game.
In a later interview, Shigeru Miyamoto described the title as being a combination of Super Mario Galaxy and Super Mario 64, with a little bit of New Super Mario Bros. and New Super Mario Bros. Wii. He mentioned there would be an option for a fixed camera system, very similar to the one in Super Mario 64, to demonstrate depth and the 3DS's 3D. He added, however, that it was tough to describe it, before mentioning that not only would the title be shown, but that it would also be playable at E3 2011. Shigeru Miyamoto explained that playing it will give fans a better idea of what it's like. He also commented on the speculation regarding the temporary logo, already confirming that the tail on the end of the logo's "O" was a hint at the return of Super Mario Bros. 3's Tanooki Mario.
The game was given a full reveal with a trailer at E3 2011 and was playable on the show floor, as previously stated. It was announced that the game was targeted for a release by the end of the year. Attendees were allowed to try the game for themselves in four different levels - a standard plain area, an underground area, a level of switch-activated platforms, reminiscent of a few galaxies from the Super Mario Galaxy titles, and an airship level ending in a fight with Bowser's henchman, Boom Boom. In addition, the E3 2011 trailer and the conference trailer were put up for download on the 3DS eShop for a limited time. By playing the trailer on their 3DS, viewers could then see the game in stereoscopic 3D for themselves.
The main ambition of the design team was to "reset" the conventions of 3D Mario games, which were mostly designed for home consoles. One of the ways of doing that was to create short, pick-up and play levels more suitable to a handheld, as opposed to the Super Mario Galaxy series, and more specifically Super Mario Galaxy 2, which director Koichi Hayashida described as a "Manchu Han Imperial Feast."
The developers also wanted the game to serve as a jumping point for players that liked 2D Mario but did not want to play the 3D installments. One of the solutions was to eschew the exploration-based level design of the traditional 3D Marios so that the players would not get "lost", and return the focus on reaching the end of linear levels. The levels were carefully designed to lead the player toward the end goal. However, the developers included Star Medals hidden throughout the levels to cater to the 3D Mario players and thus bridge the two game design sensibilities.
The development was heavily affected by the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami. Damage to the train network led to developers visiting the Kyoto office to be stuck there, and fear of aftershocks and radiation emanating from the damaged Fukushima nuclear plant caused several developers to lock themselves in their homes. These events made Nintendo unsure of whether development could continue in Tokyo. Tired of not doing anything, Hayashida risked sharing his personal contact information with other members. This lead to a web forum being set up so that work could be continued while the Tokyo office was closed.
The developers were pressured to finish the game in time for the 2011 holiday Season, which lead to parts of 3D Land being outsourced to other Nintendo-affiliated developers such as Brownie Brown, something that does not typically happen with Mario games.
Since the Japanese release, the game has been reviewed positively by critics. IGN rated this game a 9.5/10, Euro Gamer 9/10, Joystiq 4.5/5, GamePro 5/5, GameInformer 9.5/10, N-Zone 90/100, Famitsu 38/40, and Edge with 8/10. As of December 10, 2011, gamerankings has an average score of 90.02% out of 46 scores and metacritic with an average score of 90% out of 71 reviews, 70 were positive, 1 was mixed. The game has sold over 8.29 million units so far and is causing a great boost in 3DS sales. It is also the fastest-selling portable Mario game ever.
 Beta Elements
 References to Other Games
 References in Later Games