New Super Mario Bros. U
|New Super Mario Bros. U|
Packaging artwork released for all territories
|Developer(s)||Nintendo EAD Group No. 4|
|Distribution||Wii U Optical Disc
New Super Mario Bros. U (ニュー・スーパーマリオブラザーズ・U Nyū Sūpā Mario Burazāzu Yū ) is a side-scrolling platform video game in the Super Mario franchise developed by Nintendo for the Wii U. It is the fourth title in the New Super Mario Bros. series of Mario games. It was released as a launch title in North America on November 18, 2012, in Europe and Australia on November 30, 2012, and in Japan on December 8, 2012. An additional campaign for the Year of Luigi, New Super Luigi U, was released as downloadable content on June 20, 2013, and was released as a standalone package on July 13, 2013, in Japan, July 26, 2013, in Europe and August 25, 2013, in North America.
New Super Mario Bros. U started development shortly after the release of New Super Mario Bros. Wii and took three years to develop.
The game, initially entitled New Super Mario Bros. Mii, was first revealed at E3 2011 as one of several tech demos demonstrating the capabilities of Wii U. The demo's visual style duplicated New Super Mario Bros. Wii, but featured high-definition graphics, and Mii characters were notably featured as playable characters alongside Mario and Luigi. Shigeru Miyamoto later announced that the Mario demo was going to be released as a full game for the system, and would be demonstrated in its revised form at E3 2012. The new game, titled New Super Mario Bros. U, was revealed at the event and was announced to be released alongside the Wii U console.
In a change of pace from his usual kidnapping routine, Bowser, along with the Koopalings, decides to invade Princess Peach's castle, using a giant mechanical arm to throw Mario, Luigi and two Toads far away. Mario and company must now travel across this new land and find a way to go to the Princess' castle in order to save Peach again. On the way, they encounter each Koopaling and some minor enemies found inside levels. By conquering all of them, they inch closer to Peach. The heroes reach Peach's castle, which has been transformed into an evil reflection of Bowser. By defeating Bowser, the castle returns to normal. As the heroes celebrate, Bowser and the Koopalings are forced to escape.
New Super Mario Bros. U iterates on the gameplay featured in New Super Mario Bros. Wii. The objective of each level is to reach the goal flag at the end of each level while avoiding enemies and hazards.
The game can be controlled either using Wii Remotes or the Wii U GamePad, the latter of which allows for Off-TV Play, where the game can be played strictly on the GamePad's screen, without the use of a television. Wii U Pro Controller support was added in the 1.3.0 patch.
Up to five players can play simultaneously. In multiplayer, the player using the Wii U GamePad cannot control a character, but instead can interact with the environment, such as putting down blocks down or stunning enemies. As such, in multiplayer, there must be an equal number of controllers, excluding the GamePad, to the desired number of on-screen characters.
Certain game modes also allow players to play Mii characters saved on their console. New to this version is an asymmetric multiplayer experience called Boost Mode. In this mode, the player with the GamePad can use the touchscreen to place blocks on the screen or stun enemies to aid the other player(s). This can be used to both assist amateur players and allow expert players to perform speed runs. The Koopalings, Bowser, Kamek, Boom Boom and Bowser Jr. appear as the game's main villains.
Along with returning elements, such as Ice Flowers and Yoshis, New Super Mario Bros. U introduces new power-ups, such as a flying squirrel suit that allows players to glide across long distances or slowly descend down vertical paths and cling to the side of the walls. Baby Yoshis can be carried by the individual players. Each baby Yoshi has a special ability based on its color, such as inflating in midair, blowing bubbles to attack enemies and illuminating dark areas. Some older power-ups also have new abilities; for example, the Mini Mushroom now allows players to run up walls. Unlike the previous New Super Mario Bros. games, which have separate maps for each of the game's worlds, New Super Mario Bros. U features one large map containing all the game's worlds and levels, similar to that of Super Mario World. Some levels have multiple exits that lead to the different areas on the map. The Super Guide, which takes control of the player's character and moves it automatically through a level, is available in case the player has failed a level many times.
The game features two new modes of play, Challenge Mode and Boost Rush. Challenge Mode adds unique challenges, such as clearing levels quickly or earning as many 1-UPs in a row as possible without touching the ground. The Coin Battles from New Super Mario Bros. Wii also return and this time, the player can customize the battles with the GamePad to place the coins and Star Coins on the course.
Boost Rush takes place on an automatically scrolling level which increases in speed as players collect coins, with the goal to clear the stage as quickly as possible. The game also utilizes Miiverse, allowing players to share comments about particular levels with one another.
The game received mostly positive reviews from critics. GamesMaster magazine called it "a great excuse for families to gather round the TV, and an enticing glimpse of Mario's HD future". IGN stated that "Nintendo's approach here strikes a great balance in all areas, ranging from its difficulty to design to enemies and bosses". Joystiq commented "There's a sense of wonder again, of exploration and discovery. I'm not quite prepared to say New Super Mario Bros. U fully recaptures the spark of Mario's 2D heyday, but it's an impressive step in the right direction". Game Informer considers it the best game in the New Super Mario Bros. series, saying it has "Some of the most creative NSMB levels Nintendo has created". GameSpot observes "It's a challenging platformer, an excellent recreation of Mario's best moments, and it's the perfect way to kick-off Nintendo's journey into HD."
Giant Bomb was slightly more critical, noting "Everything about New Super Mario Bros. U is pretty exciting, except the game itself. Is it possible that this is the best game in the 'New' series to date--not to mention one of the best exclusive Wii U games on the market, by default--and at the same time kind of flatly uninteresting? Apparently so. The game is perfectly well made for what it is, and I had plenty of fun playing it in short bursts here and there, but at this point the series' by-the-numbers design philosophy is starting to lend the name 'New Super Mario Bros.' a degree of unintentional irony". At the 10th Annual Spike Video Game Awards on Spike, New Super Mario Bros. U won "Best Wii/Wii U Game".
|2012||Spike Video Game Awards||Best Wii/Wii U Game||Shigeru Miyamoto||Won|
New Super Luigi U
|New Super Luigi U|
North American box art
|Distribution||Wii U Optical Disc
New Super Luigi U (ニュー・スーパールイージ・U Nyū Sūpā Ruīji Yū ) is the fourth game focusing on Luigi (the others being Mario is Missing, Luigi's Mansion and Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon), released in two different versions first being the downloadable content (DLC) package for the main game on the Nintendo eShop released on June 20, 2013, and a standalone retail version released on August 25, 2013 in North America. Unlike the downloadable content game, the retail version does not require having New Super Mario Bros. U to play it.
The game was announced along with Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon to celebrate 30 years of the character; Nintendo also proclaimed 2013 "The Year of Luigi."
With Mario excluded from the main playable character, Luigi fills in the role and gameplay is similar to that of New Super Mario Bros U, with all levels in the game redesigned specifically for Luigi's abilities and play style, including his higher jumping ability, floatier physics and less precise handling, which is described as shorter but harder. Another change is to Nabbit (previously an enemy from New Super Mario Bros. U), who physically replaces Mario as a playable character while also becoming mostly an ally; however, the game still retains the feature from New Super Mario Bros. U of Nabbit being chased, making him a partial antagonist again. This can only occur if Nabbit is not selected as a player. When chosen as an actual player, he is immune to enemy damage, and while he cannot use power-ups himself, any he does collect are converted into 1-Ups at the end of the stage.
The game received mostly positive reviews. Official Nintendo Magazine gave the release 78% out of 100, summarizing that "[New Super Luigi U is] the platforming equivalent of rubbing your tummy and patting your head while your childhood enemies tickle your armpits with a dead pigeon. Luigi U is cute, but scattershot in its approach. Mario remains the 2D king... for now". Gamespot gave the game an 8.5 out of 10, stating that "New Super Luigi U may not offer new worlds or powers, but its emphasis on skill and precision reinvigorates the series in a meaningful way." Digital Spy's Liam Martin gave the release 4 out of 5 stars, stating that "as somebody who has been craving a challenging Mario platformer in the mold of the NES originals, the increased challenge is most welcome, even if it comes at a small cost. It would have been nice if Nintendo had added some new challenges and mini-games, especially given the cost of the retail version, although for the cost of a premium DLC pack, the omission is much more forgivable."
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- Official website
- Official European website
- Official Japanese website
- New Super Mario Bros. U at MarioWiki
- New Super Luigi U at MarioWiki
- New Super Mario Bros. Mii at MarioWiki