The 'Shroom:Issue VII/Review: Super Mario World

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Review: Super Mario World

by Phoenix Rider

Phoenix Rider here, your roving reviewer for games new and old. This month we’re taking a stroll down memory lane with Super Mario World. Now, for those of you who don’t own a SNES, no worries. It’s a mere $8 to purchase off the Wii Shop Channel. You’ve probably got more than that in loose change beneath your couch.

Gameplay- ****

There’s a reason why this game’s a classic. It introduced Yoshi! Well, not really, but it introduced him as we know him. The levels are challenging, but not impossibly challenging, save a few. Finding the secret levels is a great challenge as well. Caped Mario’s controls can take some getting used to, but once you do, you’ll find it’s one of the best, if not the best power in the game. The game also has its share of secrets, most notably the Star Roads and the Special World. You’ll have to search everywhere and do some backtracking to find them all, though. Controls are well thought-out, though knock a star off the category if you’re playing on the Wii with the Gamecube controller. Like the advice blip says when you start up the game: You will need the Classic Controller. Or you can just play the real deal on the SNES and not worry about it. All in all, the story is lacking, but it is a Mario platformer, and an early one at that, so can’t blame the game too much for that.

Sound- ***+

Tunes in this game are bright, cheery and fun, just as you’d expect a Mario game to be. Even beneath the dark exterior of the Castle and Ghost House themes, there’s a nice feel to them. Sound effects are another matter. I found most of them annoying after a short while, mostly the Koopa shell kicking sound effect. Still, it wasn’t enough to hurt the category too much.

Graphics- ***+

I’m going to be fair and rate the graphics for the SNES’s time. The palette is nice and diversified, even if there is an overabundance of those primary colors. This is Mario after all. Still, there’s very few shades here. The game demonstrates its potential greatest after the Special World is completed. Not only does the entire scenery perform a pallete swap, but most, if not all of the enemies are replaced with totally different sprites. The demonstration of such a great use of memory so early in the games’ timeline boosted its score in this category.

Replay Value- ***

Well, you can go back and try and unlock all the secret exits. But the main reason for the score here should be pretty obvious: The game is flat-out fun to play. Most platformers lose a bit during the second time through, but Super Mario World is great for a second, or even a third run-through. The game’s got 95 levels in all, so it’s got a good meat to it. Levels will feel fresh the second time through because there’s so many of them in between.

Overall- ****

Highly recommend this one for all SNES and Wii owners. It’s fun, just challenging enough, and long. For a platformer, it’s a pretty good one. It has many paths you can take, more so even than newer platformers like New Super Mario Bros., making it a little less linear. Super Mario World will be a welcome addition to your library.