Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem!

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Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem!
MvsDKMLM.jpg
Developer(s) Nintendo Software Technology Corporation
Nintendo SPD Group No.3
Publisher(s) Nintendo
Platform(s) Nintendo DS
Release date USA November 14, 2010
Japan December 2, 2010
ROC December 2, 2010
Australia February 3, 2011
Europe February 4, 2011
Genre Puzzle
Rating(s)
ESRB:ESRB E.svg - Everyone
PEGI:PEGI 3.svg - Three years and older
CERO:CERO A.png - All ages
ACB:ACB G.svg - General
USK:USK 0.svg - All ages
Mode(s) Single Player
Media
Nintendo DS:
Cartridge
Input
Nintendo DS:

Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! is an action puzzle game for the Nintendo DS and the fourth game in the Mario vs. Donkey Kong series. Notably, it is also the last Mario game released for the console, being first launched in late 2010. The base gameplay and objectives of this game are mostly the same as in previous titles, being centered on bringing all the Mini toys safely to the goal in each level. However, the gameplay is now focused on tracing paths and bridges for the Minis to use, more so than simply toggling blocks and buttons to determine their path as in previous games. Most future titles in the series, such as Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars and Mini Mario & Friends: amiibo Challenge, would continue to follow this construction-based gimmick. Mini Pauline toys make their debut with this game, joining the cast of Minis. They are the highlight of Mario's new theme park, despite them appearing late in the game as playable characters. Alongside the main game, a level editor is also present in a mode called the Construction Zone, where players could design their own levels. A significant feature of the game was its Wi-Fi compatibility, using the same system as in Mario vs. Donkey Kong 2: March of the Minis. Every two weeks, Nintendo held challenge contests where the player could submit a level that was subsequently judged by other players, with the top-rated level being announced as a winner candidate at the end of a contest.

Story[edit]

Mario is opening his new theme park with his honored guest Pauline, and as an opening gift he is giving Mini Pauline toys to the first 100 guests to arrive at the park. Donkey Kong desperately wants a Mini Pauline and charges through the line of Toads to get to the front, only to find out that he is the 101st guest to arrive and Mario informs him they are all out of stock. Donkey Kong loses his temper and kidnaps the real Pauline in a fit of rage, leaving Mario and his force of Mini Marios to rescue her.

After venturing through many attractions, the Minis reach the Final Ferris Wheel and defeat Donkey Kong. Pauline is then freed and Mario runs to hug her. However, Donkey Kong jumps and kidnaps her again, which allows the player to play the Plus Mode. In the second ending, when Donkey Kong is about to kidnap Pauline a third time, Mario offers him a Mini Pauline. Happy, Donkey Kong takes it and gets into the Ferris wheel along with Mario, Pauline, and some other Minis. Several Toads can be seen celebrating the end of the conflict between Mario and Donkey Kong.

Gameplay[edit]

Main Game[edit]

The player can move and trace various objects with the touchscreen in order to create a way for the Minis, as exemplified with a Purple Conveyor in this picture. While placing certain objects, every element stops in place, including the timer, and the background becomes gray-scale.

The game inherits the basic gameplay of its two closest predecessors, Mario vs. Donkey Kong 2: March of the Minis and Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Minis March Again!, in which the player has to complete levels by guiding a number of automated Mini toys to the exit door, under a time limit of 300 seconds. The Minis move by themselves and rely completely on the player dragging and moving objects such as girders, springs, conveyor belts, pipes, and ladders to modify their path, using the touchscreen to perform any action. In most levels, the player can set the course of the Minis in advance, then initiate the Minis by tapping on them. Minis are also set marching if other toys bump into them. The Minis have to be driven out of danger in every level, as taking one hit from an enemy or an obstacle is enough to grant a Game Over.

Most levels end in a single exit door that all Minis share. However, once the door is entered by a Mini, a timer is activated on it. If the door is not entered in time by another Mini, it will lock itself, leaving any other toys out and resulting in a Game Over. As such, the toys have to be grouped close together as they head for the exit. On the other hand, a few other levels designated as Multi-Door levels contain multiple doors that are only used by Minis shown on them and which do not activate a timer upon being entered. In these levels, most Minis are trapped in capsules which can only be broken by a free Mini.

Levels are laid across eleven attractions of the Mini-Land, two of which are extra attractions whose levels are unlocked under certain conditions. An M-Token is found alongside a Mini Mario Card in each level. Collecting M-Tokens is necessary to unlock levels in Rainbow Summit, a bonus attraction, while Mini Mario Cards enable the player to play Minigames in each attraction.

The performance in a level is measured through a score, which takes into account the items collected along the way and the time remaining to complete the level. A goal score is established for every level, which the player can pass to earn a gold trophy. With every ten trophies that are earned, the player unlocks a new level in Secret Storage, another bonus attraction besides Rainbow Summit.

The final score of a level, or "Total Score," is the sum of the following:

  • a "Game Score," which is the score obtained by collecting coins, large coins, Mini Mario Cards, and M-Tokens; they are worth 100, 500, 1000, and 2000 points, respectively;
  • a "Time Bonus;" 20 points are earned for each second left in the timer;
  • a "Collection Bonus," which is a set number of 6000 points awarded by grabbing all collectibles in a level.

Unlike in previous games, Minis themselves do not award any points upon reaching the exit, as the one-hit chance mitigates the option to lose Minis on the way.

Every attraction culminates with a battle against Donkey Kong, where the objective is slightly changed from other levels. Instead of an exit door, Minis are to be brought into certain devices or objects that inflict damage on Donkey Kong. However, as they attempt to reach these, Donkey Kong tries to impede them by changing the environment himself, such as making certain Red Girder rivets unusable, or by sending direct attacks.

Additionally, the game features an optional "Mini Guide" that becomes available in a level after 5 Game Overs in a row. If the player chooses to play the guide, they can see an example of how to get the Mini Marios to the end of the stage. The music played during these guides is an arrangement of the series' invincibility theme.

Minigame[edit]

The final reach in every attraction is a Minigame that is unlocked after all nine Mini Mario Cards are collected in that attraction. With regard to gameplay, these Minigames are similar to pachinko machines. During these levels, Minis continuously fall from pipes at the top of the screen and have to be driven into Toy Boxes located at the bottom of the screen, using mechanisms such as Red Girders and Conveyors to lead their way. The player scores points in the process, but there is also a time limit of 60 seconds. However, the remaining time can be increased with ten seconds by driving Minis into clock items that occasionally spawn on the screen. The layout of each Minigame varies from one attraction to another.

In uneven-numbered Minigames, there are star-stamped Toy Boxes called Score Boxes which offer different point values that change regularly between them. They can multiply the number of points by 1, 2, 3, or 4, with 100 being the default amount of points. However, there are also distinct, black-colored Minus Toy Boxes that feature a red cross sign. If entered, they decrease the score with up to 2 times their value.

In even-numbered Minigames, each Mini has to be driven into a specific box that depicts its face, obtaining 100 points. Dropping a Mini in the wrong box yields no points.

Help Mode describing the use of Cannons

There are three goal scores established for every Minigame. Passing one of them awards the player with an M-Token, making it possible to earn up to three M-Tokens in each Minigame.

Help Mode[edit]

While in a level, the player can press the L Button button on the console to enter Help Mode. During this mode, the game is paused and the player can tap any interactive object on-screen to learn how it functions with visual tips.

Construction Zone[edit]

Introduction and main menu of Construction Zone

Construction Zone is a mode which allows players to build their own levels, using assets that are unlocked over the course of the main game. To start using features in the Construction Zone, the player is required to create a user name. However, before delving into their own stage design, they must first complete a short tutorial presented in four lessons, which restrict the player to only using a specific type of object. These objects are ground tiles and Red Girders, which are essential concepts for the gameplay.

  • The first lesson, titled Ground Tiles 1, has the player position up to three ground tiles to form a staircase, enabling the Minis to reach an exit door.
  • The second lesson, titled Ground Tiles 2, is similar to the first lesson in that it requires the player to form a staircase and a bridge over a gap using six ground tiles.
  • The third lesson, titled Red Girder Rivets 1, has the player position two Red Girder Rivets beside two other that are already set up, then build a bridge of three Red Girders between them. During gameplay, this set up would allow the player to conveniently reposition the Red Girders, so as to prevent the Minis from falling into spikes.
  • The fourth lesson, titled Red Girder Rivets 2, has the player similarly place three Red Girder Rivets on different levels and six Red Girders between these rivets.

When play-tested, these lessons function as actual levels where the Minis can collect M-Tokens and Mini Mario Cards, and the player can earn a score based on their performance. Once all of these lessons are complete, the player can begin using all features of the Construction Zone.

The four lessons
MvDKMLM GroundTiles1.jpg
Lesson 1
Ground Tiles 1
(Goal Score: 14680)
MvDKMLM GroundTiles2.jpg
Lesson 2
Ground Tiles 2
(Goal Score: 14240)
MvDKMLM RedGirderRivets1.jpg
Lesson 3
Red Girder Rivets 1
(Goal Score: 14400)
MvDKMLM RedGirderRivets2.jpg
Lesson 4
Red Girder Rivets 2
(Goal Score: 14200)

Create[edit]

The level editor. Editing is restricted to the bottom screen—the touchscreen—while the top screen displays the whole level, with a yellow border framing the portion that is shown on the bottom screen.

The Create feature represents the level editor, which is grid-based. Before starting a new level, the player must choose a Game Rule and Template Type for the level. The Game Rule refers to any of the four level types, whether they are Normal, Multi-Door, Key, or Magnet-based. Template Type refers to the default proportions of a level, designated as standard, wide, or tall. The dimensions of a level can later be adjusted in horizontal, vertical, or all directions (depending on the Template Type chosen) by dragging a special cursor on the top-right corner of the editing space. Preferences for Game Rule and Template Type are unlocked as the player progresses through the game; for example, the "Key" and "Multi-Door" Game Rules become available after completing Coaster Hills. After choosing a preference, the player should tap "OK" to begin editing.

Building starts out from a floor of ground tiles, where two Mini Marios, a Mini Mario Card and an M-Token are ordered before an exit door. These elements cannot be removed, as they are mandatory to exist in each level. There are ten sets of elements that can be used to build a level, eight main and two extra, based on each attraction of the game. These sets include objects and background themes. The Coaster Hills set, which includes ground tiles and Red Girders, is accessible from the start; more sets are unlocked once their corresponding attractions are completed. Beating Final Ferris Wheel grants access to both the Rainbow Summit and Secret Storage sets.

The player has a number of editing options to choose from a toolbar at the top of the screen. In order, the toolbar contains:

  • two buttons that open drop-down menus where the player can locate and select elements to use in the level; each menu is divided into two separate columns that are navigated via a scrollbar;
    • the Object Menu features fixed objects (e.g. tiles, pipes, cannons) in one column and resource items (e.g. Red Girders, Springs, Green Pipes) in the other;
    • the Character / Item Menu features Minis and collectables in one column and enemies in the other;
  • a button that accesses the Background Menu, where the player can change the theme of the level;
  • the Move tool, a hand cursor that can be used to move elements on the screen; dragging it across multiple objects allows the player to move them all at once;
  • the Erase tool, which can be used to remove elements on the screen; dragging it across multiple objects removes them all at once;
  • the Flip tool, which can be used to swap the direction of Minis and enemies;
  • a System Menu, which the player can tap and then choose to save, play-test, reset, or exit the level;
  • two buttons that undo or redo actions.

In addition, the toolbar features a blue bar that drains as more entities are placed on the screen.

In the process of saving a level, the player has to give it a name. After play-testing a level, the player is given the option to retry it, edit it, create a new level, or exit.

Play & Edit[edit]

The Play & Edit feature lists the player's own levels, as well as levels downloaded from other users. Levels that had been uploaded online and those that were downloaded are marked accordingly as "Uploaded" or "Downloaded". Selecting a level from the list on the bottom screen allows the player to view its layout on the top screen. Tapping the level a second time opens a window where the player can see its name, creator, high score, number of downloads from other users, and type of level. Here, the player can also choose to play, edit, or delete the level. If a level has not been completed in Play mode, then it will be marked as incomplete. The levels can be sorted by latest, name, creator's name, and size. Up to 160 levels on eight pages can be found here. The topmost level of each page is viewed on the top automatically after a change to the page number or a change to the sort type.

Share[edit]

Share menu

The Share feature allows distribution of custom levels between users, either locally or online. In the "Share" center, there are two options to choose:[1][2]

  • Local Share, an option that allows users to send or receive levels from nearby players, which is done via the DS Wireless Communications.
  • Online Share, an option that made uploading and sharing levels online possible. It required Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection, which is discontinued as of May 20th, 2014, rendering the feature obsolete. The table below lists all actions that could be selected here.
Share My Levels Upload levels either publicly or privately. Public Upload enabled anyone to see the uploader's level, while Private Upload limited visibility to the uploader's contacts.
View My Online Levels View a list of the player's own uploaded levels. As in the Play and Edit feature, the player could tap any level to display its creator, high score, number of times it had been downloaded, and template. They could also choose to upload, rename, or delete the level in case it had already been uploaded. In addition, levels could be sorted by latest, name, and size.
Get Public Levels Search for levels made by other creators. The player could download and rate levels with up to five stars. Levels with a high general rating would appear as popular. By following a level's creator, the player registered their profile in the "Friends & Favorites" section. Levels could be selected by category, size and game rule.
Get Nintendo Levels Search for levels made by Nintendo themselves.
Friends & Favorites View and download levels from a separate list that only displayed friends and favorite creators. The player could register friends using Friend Codes; other creators could be marked as favorite by accessing their profile in the "Get Public Levels" feature. The player could store the profiles of up to thirty friends or favorite creators, and likewise delete them from the list at any time.

In addition, the Online Share menu would link to the Challenge Center menu.

Challenge Mode[edit]

Challenge Mode menu

Lastly, the Challenge Mode feature allowed players to take part in level creation contests run by Nintendo every two weeks[3] prior to the termination of the Nintendo WFC. Each competition had a theme that was announced by Nintendo via the newsletter in the Challenge Center. To enter a competition, players had to download a template issued by Nintendo and create a level based on the template, then submit their entry and wait for other players to vote them. The candidate that garnered the most votes would win the competition. Players could only participate with one entry per contest and could download up to sixty Challenge Mode levels overall onto their system.

Below is a list of all items that could be selected in the Challenge Menu, accompanied by a description of the action they allowed.

Create & Edit Level Design a level based on the contest's template. The feature functioned like the level editor in the "Create" feature, except the player was limited to using only a certain number of elements within the course. If the template had not been downloaded beforehand, the game would automatically connect to the network to fetch it. This would overwrite the template that was currently saved on the player's console.
Play & Judge Levels Play and vote levels designed by other players. The feature was similar to the "Play & Edit" feature, in that it listed the player's own levels along with levels downloaded from other users. After playing a downloaded level, the player could judge it by giving it a number of stars, which were submitted online as a rating for that course.
Challenge Center Get Challenge Template Download the template used in the current contest. The template could only be downloaded with the player's permission to overwrite the current template on their system.
Submit Challenge Template Upload a level, only after clearing it during a play-test. After submission, the level could not be edited again. Levels could not be submitted to specific contests if their deadlines were up or the contest itself came to an end.
View Challenge Entries Search and download levels submitted by other users. The player could choose to see levels from the current or past contests.

Additionally, the Challenge Center menu featured a button that linked the player back to the Online Share menu.

Options[edit]

Separate from the Main Game and Construction Zone, on the title screen, there is also an Options menu. Although it mainly serves in adjusting various settings, it also features a collection of unlockables. In the Options menu, the player can perform the following actions:

  • access the Audio menu, where the volume of the music and sound effects can be adjusted. In addition, there is a Sound Test that is divided into 137 musical tunes and 235 different sound effects from the game. The Sound Test is initially locked, and only becomes available after defeating the final boss.
  • access the Gallery menu, where the player can rewatch the game's cinematic sequences, attraction intros, DK intros, and game credits, provided they were triggered beforehand during the main game.
  • change user name.
  • toggle the Newsfeed feature to allow or prevent Nintendo from delivering information on the current running contest in the Construction Zone (see Challenge Mode).
  • erase all data from the game card.

Controls[edit]

  • Stylus – drag or tap objects; navigate menus
  • +Control Pad – navigate level
  • START - pause game
  • L Button - enter Help Mode

Characters[edit]

Mario, one of the titular characters, only plays a role in the story cutscenes. In cutscenes that play between attractions, he is seen chasing Donkey Kong and Pauline in a locomotive, the Super Mini Mario Express, where he is accompanied by a few Minis. After dropping at a station, Mario demonstrates the elements of the new attraction with the Minis. Meanwhile, Pauline cries for help in Donkey Kong's arms. Aside from cutscenes, Donkey Kong also appears in boss levels, where he is fought. Pauline is always kept beside him, where she watches the actions of the Minis as they unravel. Toads appear as visitors of Mario's newly opened theme park, but they are only figurant characters.

Only the Minis are directly used in gameplay, the help of which Mario uses to rescue Pauline. Although they are miniature versions of various characters from the Mario franchise, Minis do not act differently from each other. Being automated clockwork toys, they simply walk from side to side and are likewise able to jump over blocks to continue their march. However, they turn around when encountering a wall of two or more blocks, a tight entrance, or a conveyor going in the opposite direction. They are destroyed on contact with obstacles such as Spikes, Shy Guys, Pokeys and Thwomps, but can fight back with a pair of Hammers or a Slope Slide.

Attractions[edit]

There are a total of 103 levels in the game, counting both main levels and extra levels, spread across eleven attractions. As in previous games of the series, they can be selected from a menu. Each one of these attractions, except for Rainbow Summit and Secret Storage, acquaint the player with a new gameplay mechanic that is the focus of that attraction. The levels in all main attractions are built in a certain respect: a new mechanic is always introduced in the first level (and, sometimes, the second level), multiple doors appear in the fourth level, an enemy or more appear in the fifth level (though they are not exclusive to it), a type of Monkey Robot is present in the seventh level, a locked exit and a Mini Mario with a key are allocated to the eighth level, and the area closes with a boss battle.

Levels in the main game are unlocked one after the other in a classic manner, but levels in Rainbow Summit are unlocked with every ten M-Tokens collected in previous levels, while levels in Secret Storage require ten trophies each. Secret Storage is to be noted for puzzles that are more complex to solve than those of earlier levels, serving as an ultimate challenge for the player.

MvsDK1-2.png Attraction 1
Coaster Hills
An attraction whose levels are simple puzzles meant to initiate the player in the use of Red Girders, Pipes, and Ladders. A Shy Guy and a Circus Kong are present in this attraction as well.
Areas
1-11-21-31-41-51-61-71-81-DK
MvsDK2-2.png Attraction 2
Jumpy Jungle
An attraction where Vertical and Horizontal Springs are added to the gameplay.
Areas
2-12-22-32-42-52-62-72-82-DK
MvsDK3-3.png Attraction 3
Teatime Twirl
An attraction that highlights conveyors. It contains both Gray Conveyors and Purple Conveyors.
Areas
3-13-23-33-43-53-63-73-83-DK
MvsDK4-5.png Attraction 4
Warped Mansion
An attraction that introduces movable Green Pipes, as well as Piranha Plants and Fire Piranha Plants as enemies.
Areas
4-14-24-34-44-54-64-74-84-DK
MvsDK5-2.png Attraction 5
Sandstorm Steps
An attraction where Blue Ladders are introduced to the gameplay, alongside Fireball enemies, as an homage to the original Donkey Kong game. The Capture Kong also makes its first appearance in the game.
Areas
5-15-25-35-45-55-65-75-85-DK
MvsDK6-2.png Attraction 6
Cosmic Adventure
An attraction where the gameplay revolves around the use of the newly-introduced Magnet Rods and Blockers. Thwomps are encountered in this attraction for the first time.
Areas
6-16-26-36-46-56-66-76-86-DK
MvsDK7-6.png Attraction 7
Cannon Cove
An attraction whose primary gimmick are Cannons that shoot the Minis in various directions. A few Snifits also reside in this attraction.
Areas
7-17-27-37-47-57-67-77-87-DK
MvsDK8-1.png Attraction 8
Super Skywheel
An attraction that introduces enemy blocks that can be filled in by certain enemies, such as Shy Guys and Pokeys, the latter being seen within this attraction for the first time in the game. The attraction also recapitulates the mechanics used in previous levels.
Areas
8-18-28-38-48-58-68-78-88-8-DK
MvsDKFinalBattle.png Final Battle
Final Ferris Wheel
An attraction that hosts the final boss battle with Donkey Kong. It is also the last main attraction of the game.
Area
Donkey Kong Final Battle
MvsDKS-3.png Special Levels
Rainbow Summit
An extra attraction with a series of challenges referred to as "Special Levels," during which the player is only allowed to change the environment after activating all the Minis at the same time by tapping the "Start" button. The attraction does not introduce new elements, but reuses all of the previous ones. It is the largest attraction in the game, spreading on two level select menus.
Areas
S-1S-2S-3S-4S-5S-6S-7S-8S-9S-10
S-11S-12S-13S-14S-15S-16S-17S-18S-19S-20
MvsDKX-6.png Expert Levels
Secret Storage
Another extra attraction that resumes the main gameplay. Its levels are also referred to as the "Expert Levels," as it features previous game mechanics in puzzles that are considerably more difficult to solve.
Areas
X-1X-2X-3X-4X-5X-6X-7X-8X-9X-10

Plus Mode[edit]

After defeating him in Final Ferris Wheel, Donkey Kong manages to run off with Pauline once more, prompting the player to traverse all levels again in a new mode called Plus Mode. During Plus Mode, Minis must enter the exit door in a certain order, which is indicated at the beginning of each stage and also shown on the top screen of the console. While this complicates gameplay, there are otherwise no changes in level layout, although the background in each attraction gains slightly different aesthetics. In Plus Mode, all M-Tokens and Mini Mario Cards have to be collected again. The player can switch to Plus Mode anytime by tapping on the "Plus" button on the level select menu. In Plus Mode, the name of each attraction is written with a "+" at the end, such as:

  • Coaster Hills+
  • Jumpy Jungle+
  • Teatime Twirl+
  • Warped Mansion+
  • Sandstorm Steps+
  • Cosmic Adventure+
  • Cannon Cove+
  • Super Skywheel+
  • Final Ferris Wheel+
  • Rainbow Summit+
  • Secret Storage+

Pauline is rescued and the game is beaten after defeating Donkey Kong in Final Ferris Wheel+.

Items and objects[edit]

The game presents a wide variety of objects that fulfill certain purposes. The most represented objects in the game are the resource items, which can be taken, stored, and repositioned in special designated areas. There are also numerous objects that are fixed, but are similarly used to the player's advantage. Most collectable items have a direct role in completing the game, but a few others only have a function within levels.

Object About
MLM Blocker Activated.pngMLM Blocker Deactivated.png
Blockers
Blockers are metal blocks that act as either walls or floors that can be placed using the stylus.
MLM Blue Ladder.png
Blue Ladders
Blue Ladders are ladders that can be drawn using the stylus and climbed by the Minis.
MLM Cannon.png
Cannons
Cannons are objects used to shoot the Minis to a different part of a level.
MLM Coin.pngMLM Big Coin.png
Coins
Coins can be collected throughout the levels for points. Bigger coins appear and are worth 5 normal coins.
MLM Conveyor.png
Conveyors
Conveyors move the Minis either right of left and their directions can be changed by tapping a small arrow.
MLM Conveyor Pickup.png
Conveyor Pickups
Conveyor Pickups give the player more Conveyors to place. Bigger versions appear which give the player 5 Conveyor Pickups.
Mini Mario Door.pngMini Toad Door.pngMini Peach Door.pngMini DK Door.pngMini Pauline Door.pngMini Default Door.pngMini Locked Door.pngMini Closed Door.png
Exit doors
Exit doors are the goals of each level where the player must lead the Minis into them. Some Mini-specific exit doors appear later in the game. Locked exit doors that must be unlocked with keys and closed doors also appear.
MLM Girder.png
Girders
Girders are platforms that are used mainly for decoration in most levels. They are semi-solid and are not affected by anything.
MLM Girder Pickup.pngMLM Girder Pickup Big.png
Girder Pickups
Girder Pickups give the player more Red Girders to draw. Bigger versions appear which give the player 5 Girder Pickups.
MLM Green Pipe Activated.pngMLM Green Pipe Deactivated.png
Green Pipes
Green Pipes are Warp Pipes that can be moved and appear as dotted outlines.
MLM Hammer.png
Hammers
Hammers can be used to stun enemies such as Circus Kongs or break Crumble Blocks.
MLM Horizontal Spring.png
Horizontal Springs
Horizontal Springs bounce the Minis in a wide arc.
MLM Ladder.png
Ladders
Ladders are objects that the Minis are able to climb in order to reach higher levels.
MLM Ladder Pickup.png
Ladder Pickups
Ladder Pickups give the player more Blue Ladder to place. Bigger versions appear which give the player 5 Ladder Pickups.
MToken.png
M-Tokens
M-Tokens are collectibles found in each level that give the player 2000 points.
MLM Magnet Block.png
Magnets
Magnets are blocks that allow Minis to walk sideways and upside down on them.
MLM Magnet Rod.png
Magnet Rods
Magnet Rods are objects that flip the Minis in another path when they are walking on a magnetic surface.
MLM Mini Mario Card.png
Mini Mario Cards
Mini Mario Cards are found in each level spelling out "MINIMARIO" and unlock a minigame when all of them are collected in a world.
MLM Purple Conveyor.png
Purple Conveyors
Purple Conveyors are conveyors that can be drawn using the stylus.
MLM Red Girder.png
Red Girders
Red Girders are girders that can be drawn using the stylus.
MLM Rock Block.png
Rock Blocks
Rock Blocks are blocks that break and fall apart under a Mini's weight. They can also be destroyed by shooting a Mini from a Cannon or by having a Thwomp fall on them.
MLM Spike.png
Spikes
Spikes are obstacles that destroy the Minis if they are touched, causing the player to have to restart the level.
MLM Vertical Spring.png
Vertical Springs
Vertical Springs bounce the Minis straight into the air.
WarpPipeMvsDKMLM.png
Pipes
Pipes lead Minis to another area of a level by entering them. They can appear curved and in multiple colors.

Enemies[edit]

Enemies encountered over the course of the game, not counting boss-exclusive obstacles such as barrels, are represented by two types. The first type are malevolent enemies that destroy the Minis by touching or attacking them; however, most of them can be defeated with Hammers, a slope slide or a Cannon blast. The second type consists of large Kong-like toys that use the Minis in characteristic ways. Their actions may be helpful or dangerous, although they never inflict damage on the Minis. These enemies are invulnerable, but can be stunned by attacking them by the same means described earlier, which is necessary in certain situations.

Enemy About
MLM Barrel.png
Barrel
Donkey Kong uses barrels in a few of his boss fights by pounding the ground and causing them to fall.
MLM Capture Kong.png
Capture Kong
Capture Kongs capture Minis inside the barrel on their back and can end a level in failure if all Minis are captured.
MLM Circus Kong.png
Circus Kong
Circus Kongs throw Minis up into the air and can be stunned using a hammer.
MLM Fire Piranha Plant.png
Fire Piranha Plant
Fire Piranha Plants spit fireballs, which can destroy the Minis.
MLM Fireball.png
Fireball
Fireballs move along the ground and will charge at a Mini if they are holding a hammer, allowing it to be defeated.
MLM Pokey.png
Pokey
Pokeys move along the ground and will turn transparent yellow blocks into solid blocks called Pokey Blocks. They can be defeated by shooting a Mini at one using a cannon.
MLM Shy Guy.png
Shy Guy
Shy Guys can be stood on by the Minis and will turn some transparent blocks into solid blocks called Shy Guy Blocks.
MLM Snifit.png
Snifit
Snifits attack by moving quickly along the ground and shooting five successive bullets at the Minis.
MLM Magnet Sparky.png
Magnet Sparky
Magnet Sparkies move along magnetic objects and their path can be changed by flipping a Magnet Rod.
MLM Thwomp.png
Thwomp
Thwomps attempt to destroy the Minis by falling and crushing them. They can destroy objects such as Crumble Blocks.
MLM Donkey Kong.png
Donkey Kong
Donkey Kong appears as the boss of the last level in every world except for Rainbow Summit and Secret Storage. His attacks range from dropping barrels to hitting a switch which enables or disables an object.

Reception[edit]

Critical reception of Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! was positive, and the game was repeatedly stated to offer an entertaining experience delivered with an appealing presentation. It currently has a score of 79% based on 51 reviews on Metacritic, as well as an 80.08% score on GameRankings.

Daemon Hatfield of IGN "[could not] stress enough that [the game] is pure joy to play", stating that the variety of collectables brings a significant contribution to the game's replay value. He also described the game as "absolutely adorable," and the puzzles as "satisfying to work out" despite not being particularly difficult. However, he added that a speed-up option would have been beneficial for gameplay, as he found the movement of the Minis to be rather sluggish, especially in earlier levels.[4]

Philip J Reed of Nintendo Life debuted his review by describing the game as "stellar" and "an excellent place to start" for those unfamiliar with the Mario vs. Donkey Kong series. He noted that part of the fun stems from the game's spirit of discovery, which properly defines the levels from a design standpoint. He made mention of the game's level editor, describing it as simple to grasp, and further noted the ability to share and download custom levels, which he praised for greatly extending the game's replayability. The graphics were said to compose a "sweet, sunny atmosphere," and the cutscenes as well as soundtrack were also complimented.[5]

Nathan Meunier of GameSpot referred to the game's story as "bare-bones" and "esentially the same plot" as in past games, but favored the gameplay of Mini-Land Mayhem! over other titles in the series. In this regard, he appreciated the game's concept of building the environment for the Minis, instead of simply toggling blocks and other features to form their way as in past games.[6]

Reviews
Reviewer, Publication Score Comment
Daemon Hatfield, IGN 9.0/10 "The Mario vs. Donkey Kong series never fails to deliver enjoyable puzzle experiences. Mini-Land Mayhem essentially offers "more of the same," but when that same is so charming you're not going to hear too many complaints. The ability to create your own levels, share them online, and compete in Nintendo sanctioned design contests gives Mini-Land Mayhem major replay value. This is most likely the last Mario vs. Donkey Kong game we'll get for the DS, so don't miss it."
Philip J Reed, Nintendo Life 9/10 "Lots of gameplay, great graphics, a wonderful soundtrack and flawless touchscreen controls make Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! a worthy addition to an often-overlooked franchise. While the game's real-time puzzle element may not appeal to everybody, those who do take the time to become familiar with it will appreciate its unique and challenging approach. Mini-Land Mayhem! proves that – four games in – the Mario vs. Donkey Kong series hasn't lost one ounce of charm."
Nathan Meunier, GameSpot 8/10 "If you enjoyed the previous entries enough to crave more, or if you've been thinking about checking out the series for the first time, don't hesitate to give Mini-Land Mayhem a go."
Aggregators
Compiler Platform / Score
Metacritic 79%
GameRankings 80.08%

Gallery[edit]

For this subject's image gallery, see Gallery:Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem!.

Media[edit]

For a complete list of media for this subject, see List of Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! media.
Audio.svg Main theme
MvDKMLM Theme.oga

File infoMedia:MvDKMLM Theme.oga
Audio.svg Pauline screaming for help
Please! Save me! Pauline Mini-Land Mayhem.oga

File infoMedia:Please! Save me! Pauline Mini-Land Mayhem.oga
Help:MediaHaving trouble playing?

Staff[edit]

Main article: List of Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! staff

The game was developed under the direction of Yuki Shimura by the Nintendo Software Technology Corporation, which is also accounted for previous Mario vs. Donkey Kong projects. Development of the game was assisted by the Nintendo Software Planning & Development Group No. 3. Notably, the game's lead level designer, Stephen Mortimer, would be promoted to direct subsequent titles in the series. For Mini-Land Mayhem!, Mortimer designed over 50 stages, while the rest were created by two other designers under his supervision. In addition, he assisted the development of level editor features, and helped design various objects from the game as well.[7] The audio direction was provided by Lawrence Schwedler, whose work for Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! would be one of his last contributions at Nintendo before leaving the company in 2012.[8]

Glitches[edit]

Main article: List of Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! glitches

Off-screen death[edit]

During Area 5-DK, the player should connect a Red Girder from the top left to the bottom right rivet, located by the Mini Mario Card. A Fireball should be present next to the top left rivet. Eventually, the Fireball will go down the Red Girder, fall through the floor at the end, and the life lost jingle will play.

References to other games[edit]

  • Donkey Kong: The title theme of this game is arranged into the main theme. The introduction sequence when Donkey Kong climbs some ladders with Pauline is referenced at the end of each non-final boss battle through both music and action, as Donkey Kong similarly runs off with Pauline to another attraction. Objects such as Red Girders and Blue Ladders are reminiscent of stage elements from Donkey Kong, as are the Hammers which play their original jingle when in use. In fact, Area 5-2, a level that contains all these elements and Fireball enemies, appears to be a direct homage to levels like 25m and 75m from Donkey Kong.
  • Super Mario Bros.: The Overworld theme of this game is arranged into the main theme. The Underground theme is arranged for the soundtrack of Secret Storage.
  • Super Mario Bros. 2: The Overworld theme of this game is arranged for the soundtrack of Coaster Hills. The boss theme is likewise arranged for the battle with Donkey Kong in Coaster Hills.
  • Donkey Kong Country: "DK Island Swing", the music that plays in jungle levels of this game, is arranged for the soundtrack of Jumpy Jungle.
  • Super Mario 64: "Inside the Castle Walls", the theme of Princess Peach's Castle, is arranged for the soundtrack of Teatime Twirl.
  • New Super Mario Bros.: Mario's walk cycle from this game is reused for the final cutscene, when Pauline is rescued.

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese マリオvs.ドンキーコング 突撃!ミニランド
Mario buiesu Donkī Kongu Totsugeki! Mini Rando
Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Attack! Mini-Land
Spanish (NOA) Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! -
Spanish (NOE) Mario vs. Donkey Kong: ¡Megalío en Minilandia! Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Megamess in Mini-Land!
French (NOE) Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Pagaille à Mini-Land ! Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mess in Mini-Land!
German Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Aufruhr im Miniland! Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Turmoil in Mini-Land!
Italian Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Parapiglia a Minilandia Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Turmoil in Mini-Land

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! instruction booklet Pages 28-31
  2. ^ Official Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! English website "Share Levels!" section. Retrieved March 25, 2018.
  3. ^ NintenDaanNC (February 25, 2011). [NC UK] Mario vs. Donkey Kong Mini-Land Mayhem - Enter Challenge Mode Contests! YouTube. Retrieved March 30, 2018.
  4. ^ Hatfield, Daemon (November 12, 2010). Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-land Mayhem Review. IGN. Retrieved April 13, 2018.
  5. ^ Reed, Philip J (December 19, 2010). Review: Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! (DS). Nintendo Life. Retrieved April 13, 2018.
  6. ^ Meunier, Nathan (November 12, 2010). Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem Review. GameSpot. Retrieved April 13, 2018.
  7. ^ Stephen Mortimer on LinkedIn. Retrieved April 15, 2018.
  8. ^ Lawrence Schwedler on LinkedIn. Retrieved March 30, 2018.