Mario vs. Donkey Kong 2: March of the Minis
Mario vs. Donkey Kong 2: March of the Minis is an action puzzle game for the Nintendo DS and the sequel to Mario vs. Donkey Kong. This time, the focus is on the Mini toys created by the Mario Toy Company; along with the Mini Mario toys returning, more new toys were added for this game including the Mini Donkey Kong, Mini Toad, and Mini Peach toys. This game also marks the first appearance of Pauline in the Mario franchise since the Game Boy Donkey Kong game. The game's title is an allusion to the orchestral piece "March of the Meanies" from the film Yellow Submarine.
The game was rereleased for the Wii U's Virtual Console in Europe and Australia in September 2015 (the same day Mario vs. Donkey Kong was released on the same platform in those regions), in Japan in August 2016, and in North America in October 2016.
As a promotion for the game, Nintendo published a browser game titled Mario vs. DK 2: Cannon Kaos.
Mario's Toy Company returns with a commercial promoting the new Super Mini Mario World, which is an outdoor amusement park centered around the Mini Marios, Mini Peachs, Mini Toads, and Mini Donkey Kongs. A crowd of Toads is shown watching Pauline and Mario about to cut the ribbon to open it. Donkey Kong, one of the Mario Toy Company's employees, is also in the crowd. He immediately falls in love with Pauline and rushes to her with a Mini Donkey Kong to give to her, but Mario hands out a Mini Mario. She chooses the Mini Mario, so Donkey Kong is heartbroken and breaks down a sales post of Mini Marios, even crushing one with his feet. He then heads toward the elevator, grabbing Pauline on his way and knocking Mario to the floor. As Donkey Kong heads toward the elevator, Mario gets up and tries to get to the elevator, but he is too late to rescue her. Donkey Kong brings Pauline up to the roof of the building. Mario doesn't know what to do until two Mini Marios come to offer help.
In the ending, Mario finds Pauline safe with many presents in a room on the roof. Donkey Kong looks sorry for what he has done, when a Mini Mario races across the floor to meet a Mini Donkey Kong. Pauline picks up the Mini Donkey Kong and kisses it, making DK happy. Toads appear and everyone waves, leading into the credits.
Unlike in Mario vs. Donkey Kong, Mario is not a playable character, as he plays only a supporting role in this game. Instead, Mini Mario toys appear as playable characters in each level. The objective of each level is to control the Mini Marios, as well as manipulate the environment around them, in order to direct each Mini Mario to a portal-like doorway with a red "M" on top, known as the exit. This focus on controlling Minis laid the foundation for future games in the Mario vs. Donkey Kong series. Each standard level contains a minimum of two Mini Marios and a maximum of eight. There are 240 Mini Marios in total.
The player can scroll around each level using the or the buttons. Aside from this, gameplay uses only the stylus and Touch Screen:
To guide the Minis to the exit, the player must manipulate elements of the level itself as well as the Minis, so they can reach the exit without being destroyed. Level elements that appear frequently throughout the game include Color Blocks, which can be placed if the player has a sufficient number of them stored, as shown in the inventory on the Top Screen. For example, in Room 1-1, a wall of Pink Blocks can be picked up and placed elsewhere to form a floor, allowing Minis to cross and reach the level's Mini Mario Card. Other examples of level elements include elevators, which can be moved up and down with two separate buttons, and conveyor belts, which can be reversed using a conveyor switch.
At any point during the game, if the player enters the Nintendo DS's Sleep Mode by closing their system, Mario says one of four lines:
Mario says different lines if the player exits Sleep Mode by opening their system:
Each level features a time limit, which does not start counting down until either Color Blocks are picked up or a Mini is activated. The player can scroll around the level before starting its timer, in order to plan their actions.
A level's timer starts at 300 seconds of a Time Bonus. If this Time Bonus exceeds 0 after the level has been completed, it will be multiplied by 10 and added to the player's score on the results screen. However, if this Time Bonus reaches 0 and the level is still being played, the time counter on the Top Screen turns blue, and its text changes from "Time Bonus" to "Time Left". The counter then resets to 300 seconds and continues to count down. If the Time Left counter reaches 0 and the level is still being played, the game displays a "Time Is Up!" message, Mario exclaims "Mama mia, time's up!" and the game is over, regardless of how many Minis entered the goal. Therefore, the player has 300 seconds to earn a Time Bonus, and 600 seconds in total to complete the level.
Scoring and stars
Scoring is specific and precise for each level. Small and big coins are spread throughout the levels (worth 50 and 500 points respectively when collected). Collecting the level's Mini Mario Card is worth 1000 points. If the timer on the Top Screen reads "Time Bonus" instead of "Time Left", each second remaining on the timer is worth an additional 10 points. There are many bonuses that come into effect on the results screen after a level is completed:
By meeting all of the criteria above and earning every possible bonus, the player can earn a gold star for the level. Below it is the silver star and the bronze star. It is possible to get no star, especially if the player loses more than one Mini. Stars are used to unlock extras after completing the main adventure.
The following is a table of the bonuses for the number of Minis that appear in each level, and the minimum scores needed to obtain each type of star. A indicates that a Gold Mini Mario is one of the Minis present in the level.
Each of the first nine levels in a floor contains a Mini Mario Card, a card with a letter on one side and a Mini Mario head on the other side. When collected, all of the cards on a single floor spell "MINIMARIO", and appear in that order (i.e. Room 7-3 contains an "N" card).
Finding every Mini Mario Card on a single floor unlocks a minigame (parsed as a Mini Game) for that floor. In the minigame, titled Shy Guy Smash!, the player uses the stylus to tap Shy Guys that appear from Warp Pipes. Tapping a Shy Guy breaks it, adding 1 point to the score. Starting in Tropical Island, Bob-ombs also appear from the Warp Pipes; however, tapping them causes them to explode, subtracting 5 points from the score. The player must earn at least 25 points within 30 seconds to reach the minigame's goal score. If the player exceeds the goal score, it is set to the player's new record.
Each floor concludes with a boss battle against Donkey Kong, with a time limit of 180 seconds. The player must shoot Mini Marios upward from a cannon to hit Donkey Kong either directly or indirectly. On odd-numbered floors, the cannon can be moved left and right by swiping its handle with the stylus, and the cannon only shoots Minis directly upward. On even-numbered floors, the cannon can be rotated in an arc formation by swiping its handle, and can shoot Minis at various angles. To shoot a Mini Mario, the player must tap the Attack Button labeled "SHOOT". Additionally, the player can hold or to activate the Boss Cannon Indicator, a guideline that indicates where a Mini Mario will travel when fired.
During the first seven boss battles, Mini Marios can hit Donkey Kong directly to damage him. However, in Boss Game 2, Boss Game 4, and Boss Game 6, Donkey Kong is protected by the spiked platform he is standing on, making it more difficult for a Mini Mario to directly hit Donkey Kong. In Boss Game 8, Donkey Kong punches a Mini Mario if it touches him, causing the Mini Mario to break. Boss battles on even-numbered floors feature objects suspended from platforms at the top of the screen. Mini Marios can land on these platforms with proper timing to cause the objects to fall on Donkey Kong and damage him.
The number of Mini Marios the player has depends on how many Mini Marios they directed to the goal in the floor's first nine levels. A Mini Mario breaks if it touches a projectile. If all of the player's Mini Marios break, the game is over. After Donkey Kong takes six hits in each battle, he is defeated and the level is completed.
The player can also earn a score and a star for each of the first eight boss battles, but the score is calculated differently than in standard levels. The minimum score to receive a gold star is 1,000 multiplied by the total number of Minis on the floor. Each second left on the timer is worth 10 points, and each of the player's remaining Mini Marios is worth 1,000 points. Therefore, to earn a gold star for a boss battle, the player must direct every Mini Mario to the goal in the floor's previous levels, then defeat Donkey Kong without breaking a single Mini Mario. Alternatively, if Donkey Kong is defeated with 100 seconds or more left on the timer, the player can finish the battle with one less Mini Mario and still earn a gold star. Generally, a silver star is earned for retaining 75% of the total number of Mini Marios on the floor, and a bronze star is earned for retaining 50% of the total.
Mario vs. Donkey Kong 2: March of the Minis introduces a game mode known as Construction Zone, where the player can create and play their own custom levels, as well as share these levels with other players. The player can use the Multi-Card feature to exchange levels with another player who has a separate Nintendo DS system and game card. Prior to the discontinuation of the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection service, players could use the Nintendo WFC feature of the Construction Zone to send and receive levels online.
In addition to the Main Game and Construction Zone modes, the game's title screen also features an Options menu, where the player can adjust settings and view unlockables. There are six buttons present in the Options menu:
Mario, one of the game's titular characters, only plays a minor role in the game, only appearing in cutscenes and assisting the Mini Marios during the final battle on the Roof. Mario is also seen entering each floor of Super Mini Mario World, along with Mini Marios. Donkey Kong appears in cutscenes and is fought as the boss of each floor; he is also seen entering these floors. Pauline and Toads also appear in the game's cutscenes. The cast of characters primarily consists of the Mini toys, which are the only playable characters in the game. Mini Mario returns from Mario vs. Donkey Kong as the primary playable character of the Main Game mode. A variant of Mini Mario known as Gold Mini Mario is introduced, which is worth extra points if it is the last Mini Mario to reach the exit. Mini Toad, Mini Peach, and Mini Donkey Kong also appear in the game's cutscenes; however, during gameplay, they can only be used in the Construction Zone in Special Kit 1, Special Kit 2, and Special Kit 3 respectively. All of these Minis behave identically to each other. Each Mini can turn into its fire form upon collecting a Fire Flower.
Each floor of Super Mini Mario World is diverse and has its own unique elements that sets it apart. The eight primary floors in the game (excluding the Basement and Roof) each consist of nine levels, a minigame (marked by a button labeled "MINI"), and a boss battle against Donkey Kong (marked by a button labeled "DK"). In the PAL version of the game, the floor count for the eight primary floors starts from "Ground Floor" and ends at "Floor 7", whereas in all other versions, the floor count simply progresses from "Floor 1" to "Floor 8".
Items and objects
Pre-release and unused content
Most of the music tracks featured in the game are arrangements of music from other games in the Mario franchise. The only entirely original compositions in the game are the themes that play in Pipe Works levels and the theme that plays in various menus, such as the floor selection screen, the Construction Zone, and the Options menu.
In levels from each of the first eight floors, the music loops through the three different tracks for that floor.
If Mini Marios appear on the title screen, a trumpet arrangement of the title theme from Mario vs. Donkey Kong plays. If Mini Toads, Mini Peaches, or Mini Donkey Kongs appear on the title screen, the Mario vs. Donkey Kong title theme itself plays.
References to other games
References in later games
Names in other languages