Mario Features

  • Review It's All Business As We Play Monopoly Gamer

    Monopoly meets Mario Party

    A few months ago Hasbro and Nintendo announced a brand-new board game: Monopoly Gamer. After a first glance of the packaging we instantly thought it’d be yet another skinned Monopoly board. However, after watching a video of how the game works it's easy to be sold on the idea. Monopoly Gamer isn’t just a Super...

  • Book Review Super Mario Adventures

    A wonderfully bizarre tour of the Mushroom Kingdom

    He's undoubtedly one of the most recognisable faces ever to grace the box art of a video game, but aside from his blue-collar occupation and a dislike for turtles, fans in the early '90s didn't know a whole lot about Super Mario himself. Beyond the pixels onscreen and information found buried...

  • Feature A Close Look at New Super Mario Bros. Wii Coin World

    Taking a unique Mario game for a spin

    Think you've played every Mario game out there? There may be just one that's off your radar and you may have missed, but now you can take a look at it in detail. New Super Mario Bros. Wii Coin World was a special arcade collaboration between Nintendo and Capcom from back in 2011. With a name like New Super...

  • Talking Point Mario's Cameo in Rio Showcases Nintendo's Enduring Brand Power

    A much needed reminder of the big N's ongoing popularity

    Sports fans have no doubt spent decent chunks of the past two weeks tuning into various events from the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. For many observers sports like Synchronised Diving, Handball and Taekwondo are only particularly interesting once every four years, as dedicated athletes have their...

  • Parent Trap ​Mario & Sonic At The Rio 2016 Olympic Games Scores With Download Play

    Andy Robertson builds up a sweat on the 3DS

    For families it is often the games you least expect to be a big hit that get played more than any other. While I liked the look of Mario & Sonic at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games I wasn't expecting it to turn into my family's go-to game this month. There are a few factors here that make it a great fit for...

  • Feature Nintendo Life's Favourite Mario Spin-Offs

    The mascot's about more than platforming

    This past week brought us Mario Day, or 'Mar10 Day' as Nintendo of America promotes it. Goofy campaign it may be, but it's nevertheless an excuse to celebrate the mascot and his many, many games. Having already extensively covered the series for its 30th Anniversary and having considered our favourites out...

  • Poll Which Is The Best Mario Spin-Off Series or Game?

    There are so many...

    Nintendo of America is keen for today to be 'Mar10 Day', a charming little spin on date conventions which doesn't have the same ring to it elsewhere - it's 10Mar day in the UK, for example, which isn't anywhere near as catchy. With a cute video to celebrate and some social media shenanigans afoot, it is at least an opportunity...

  • Talking Point Each Super Mario Maker Update Promises Much for the Future of the Franchise

    Flying levels, helmets being vital to gameplay - the game has changed

    The latest major Super Mario Maker update is live, being the second of its kind (outside of minor Mystery Costume additions) at the time of writing. The first notable update was, in some ways, focused on fixing perceived shortcomings of the launch code - it included stacked...

  • Mario History Mario Kart 8 - 2014

    Taking racing to a new level

    In this series of articles we'll write about one or more Mario games per day (apart from when we miss a day), each representing a different year as part of our Super Mario 30th Anniversary celebrations. Despite its ups and downs the Wii U has delivered a relatively small but distinguished library of excellent...

  • Mario History Super Mario 3D World - 2013

    A new generation of hybrid (no it's not a car)

    In this series of articles we'll write about one or more Mario games per day (apart from when we miss a day), each representing a different year as part of our Super Mario 30th Anniversary celebrations. We have a fond story we like to recall about Super Mario 3D World in Nintendo Life HQ. It was E3...

  • Mario History New Super Mario Bros. 2 & U - 2012

    So. Much. Mario.

    In this series of articles we'll write about one or more Mario games per day (apart from when we miss a day), each representing a different year as part of our Super Mario 30th Anniversary celebrations. We're now well into the current generation with this series (which ends soon, we promise). 2012 was also a weird year for 2D Mario...

  • Mario Memories Getting Creative With Mario Paint

    "And then... We clicked on the coffee mug icon..."

    In this series of articles celebrating the upcoming 30th Anniversary of Super Mario, various members of the Nintendo Life extended family will share their memories and thoughts on the iconic franchise. This time we have our wannabe hipster reviewer Jose Acosta. When I think of Mario Paint the...

  • Mario History Super Mario 3D Land - 2011

    Literally 3D Mario

    In this series of articles we'll write about one or more Mario games per day, each representing a different year as part of our Super Mario 30th Anniversary celebrations. Super Mario 3D Land wasn't the first 3D Mario to grace a Nintendo portable - that honour goes to Super Mario 64 DS - but it was the first original game of its...

  • Talking Point Nintendo's Challenge With Super Mario's 2D Future

    Vocal fans prefer a retro style, while modern entries are sales leaders

    With Super Mario Maker around the corner there seems to be a consensus - at least in this pre-release stage - that Nintendo has got it right with this creation tool. When you combine the excellent tool-set with a potentially endless supply of levels you arguably have - as we...

  • Mario History Super Mario Galaxy 2 - 2010

    Some say sequel, some say level pack - we say brilliant

    In this series of articles we'll write about one or more Mario games per day, each representing a different year as part of our Super Mario 30th Anniversary celebrations. Nintendo has some rules that it follows with its games and franchises, particularly in terms of frequency. There's one...

  • Mario History Super Mario Galaxy - 2007

    Out of this World

    In this series of articles we'll write about one or more Mario games per day, each representing a different year as part of our Super Mario 30th Anniversary celebrations. In our previous entry we highlighted how New Super Mario Bros. was the first new 2D Mario title in some time; that was due to a general focus on 3D Mario...

  • Mario History Super Mario 64 DS - 2004

    3D Mario on the go

    In this series of articles we'll write about one or more Mario game per day, each representing a different year as part of our Super Mario 30th Anniversary celebrations. If you'd have said that one day it would be possible to play Super Mario 64 on a handheld console back in 1996, you'd likely have been laughed out of the room...

  • Mario Memories Super Mario RPG Opens Up The World (and a Boss's Big Mouth)

    "Mario! Prepare yourself for the great beyond!"

    In this series of 30 daily articles celebrating the upcoming 30th Anniversary of Super Mario, various members of the Nintendo Life extended family will share their memories and thoughts on the iconic franchise. Next up is reviewer and news contributor Tim Latshaw. Super Mario RPG: Legend of the...

  • Mario Memories Playing Super Mario Bros. 3 In The Garden

    Darren recalls a stolen moment in his back garden with Mario

    In this series of 30 daily articles celebrating the upcoming 30th Anniversary of Super Mario, various members of the Nintendo Life extended family will share their memories and thoughts on the iconic franchise. Next up are the hazy memories of Operations Director Darren Calvert. In my...

  • Hardware Review Awesome Super Mario Inspired Watch - Sun and Moon Miyamoto

    Partner in time

    A while ago we reported that Mr Jones Watches had produced a limited edition wristwatch inspired by the Super Mario series. The response to the design was so positive that the watch became a permanent fixture in their lineup after a small design change to differentiate itself from the limited edition variant. We were kindly given...

  • First Impressions Celebrating a Gaming Icon With Super Mario Maker

    Let's Super Mario!

    Super Mario Maker, recently powered-up from its initial moniker of 'Mario Maker', was a huge part of Nintendo's E3 presence both this year and last. Just a few months ahead of its September release it still had plenty of new surprises in store for this year's show, and still managed to captivate attendees' imaginations. The...

  • Talking Point Super Mario Maker Stole the Show at the Nintendo World Championships 2015

    A game changer for the franchise

    The Nintendo World Championships 2015 was an event that had various similarities to the Super Smash Bros. Invitational from E3 2014 - it was charming, had some flat moments, the occasional hiccup, yet managed to seize momentum at key moments to keep us watching. It was a lengthy event that actually started rather...

  • Feature What the Heck is Puzzle & Dragons? - A Brief History, and Why Mario Got Involved

    Match three with a difference

    YouTube recently released a presser in anticipation of its 10th anniversary. Listed in acknowledgement of the milestone were several "top 10's", including the top 10 most viewed video game videos, as ranked by watch time: Minecraft Grand Theft Auto (series) League of Legends Call of Duty (series) FIFA...

  • Preview Puzzling Our Way through Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars

    Tips go in the jar, mate

    Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars is just a few days away for North American fans, and those in Europe will only have to wait a little bit longer to get their hands on it. With the release date rapidly approaching, we've put together a short video to show you what you can expect to see in the game when it hits the 3DS and...

  • Book Review Boss Fight Books - Super Mario Bros. 2

    Subcon-text

    For how unique it is compared to other games in the Mario line, it’s amazing how easily Super Mario Bros. 2 is taken at face value or glossed over entirely. Many fans are happy to share the fact that the game is actually a reskin of Japanese title Doki Doki Panic after the original Super Mario Bros. sequel was deemed too difficult...

  • Feature The Nintendo 64 Controller and the Rise of 3D Gaming

    The three-handled situation

    The Nintendo 64 controller is one that has fallen out of favour with some gamers – its outdated control stick and limited number of buttons leaves it and its parent system in a state of being old but without necessarily being seen by the general public as 'retro'. You could easily say the same for Sony's original...

  • Poll Which Is The Best Super Mario Platformer?

    2D or 3D, old or new, you decide...

    Not too long ago we asked you to vote for the best Legend of Zelda game; plenty of you participated. You made the impossible decision, as it's never an easy pick with so many world class games on the list; in the end the iconic and memorable The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time seized the crown. We r

  • Feature 12 Days of Christmas - Super Mario 3D World Captures Hearts

    A perfect Christmas Day game

    Over the past two weeks we've covered eleven games, trends or events from the year that we feel represent some of the best of Nintendo in 2013; we'll have a lot more 2013 reminiscences and Game of The Year awards in the coming week, too. Yet it seemed appropriate to end this series on potentially the biggest high for...

  • Soapbox Super Mario 3D World's Playful Whimsy is Refreshing, But Faces a Vital Commercial Test

    Will an overwhelmingly positive critical response and buzz deliver success?

    Something slightly surprising, to me at least, happened yesterday. Super Mario 3D World had a wonderful series of reviews that went live, on any major outlet you'd care to name, bang on the embargo. I'm not talking about the scores — which were excellent — but the...

  • Preview Super Mario 3D World

    A brave new world

    Some things in life are unavoidable. Death, taxes, and disappointing Wii U sales in its first nine months of life. Nintendo has a plan for the rest of 2013, however, which is encouraging for its fans — we've had the enthusiast's favourite The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD, and soon we'll have the return of styles and...

  • First Impressions Mario Kart 8

    Turning things upside down

    Imagine the Mario Kart series as an enormous living being made out of adorable cars, happy drivers, delightful loops passing through volcanoes and haunted houses and vicious blue shells. Envision this being, this body of Kartdom, and now answer this simple question: where is its heart? What is the thumping engine within...

  • First Impressions Super Mario 3D World

    Stranger things have happened

    Sometimes it’s easy to forget how weird Mario games are. Think about it: A pudgy plumber in overalls who can jump ridiculously high, throw fireballs when he touches flowers, get huge when he eats mushrooms and make it with a princess provided he kicks the seven shades of crap out of a giant turtle dragon. That is...

  • Ninterview Charles Martinet, The Voice of Mario

    We caught up with the man himself at the recent EB Expo in Australia

    He voices one of the most iconic characters in global culture yet he could probably walk down the street and not receive a second glance from passers-by. He is Charles Martinet, the man behind the voice of Nintendo's Mario, and has lent his vocal chords to the world-famous plumber...

  • Talking Point The Possibilities of New Super Mario Bros. 2 DLC

    More Mario per system

    We’re well aware that some of you may read the headline and tagline for this article and immediately think that we’re losing our minds, foolishly allowing ourselves to be suckered into paying more and more for our Mario fix. That’s a danger of course, which we’ll come to, but with this week’s first batch of New...

  • Feature In Defence of Super Mario Sunshine

    Do or don't look back into the sun

    Ten years ago today, on 26th August 2002, GameCube title Super Mario Sunshine was released in North America to an abundance of critical acclaim, with relatively muted murmuring that it was an unworthy follow-up to Super Mario 64. Gradually over the past decade opinions have grown more divided and gamers have...

  • Round Table Let's Talk About Super Mario

    Get a comfortable seat

    We've already unveiled our favourite Super Mario games, but it's a series with plenty of talking points. We're in the middle of the busiest spell of new Super Mario games in the history of the franchise, with two 'New Super Mario Bros.' titles arriving this year, which will mean that three new entries will have arrived...

  • Feature Our Favourite Super Mario Games

    The impossible list

    With New Super Mario Bros. 2 about to hit stores, it's prompted a lot of debate about the Super Mario series as a whole. We decided that we'd take on the list that cannot win, and declare Nintendo Life's favourite Super Mario games. In total, 16 members of staff rated their top 10 Super Mario titles from a list of 14. Only games...

  • First Impressions New Super Mario Bros. 2

    Master of coin

    New Super Mario Bros. 2 feels like any of the other games in the New sub-series. The look of it, the audio, the themes of the worlds – they're all safe, familiar comfort blankets that hit the same beats as the rest of the family. That is, until you encounter the central focus that Nintendo is betting its coin on: this time, Mario...

  • Feature Wario is Missing?

    Mario returns with an uncharacteristic greed

    When Nintendo announced New Super Mario Bros. 2, reactions were certainly mixed. Many greeted the news with immediate excitement and anticipation, whereas others were less enthusiastic about what they felt to be underwhelming news of a predictable sequel. Whichever side of the argument you fall on,...

  • First Impressions New Super Mario Bros. U

    Mushroom magic?

    It's OK to say you were disappointed that New Super Mario Bros. U is Wii U's first Super Mario game. You may have wanted something groundbreaking like Super Mario 64, and Nintendo revealed a shinier, sharper version of a Wii game from 2009. You're entitled to be disappointed. Your excitement for Mario's next home adventure all...

  • Feature Three Reasons Why Mario's Next Adventure Should Visit Subcon

    It's from Super Mario Bros. 2, if you didn’t know

    By the mid 1980s the world had fallen in love with a stocky Italian plumber named Mario. With the release of Super Mario Bros. on NES, the gaming icon left an indelible boot-shaped impression on the minds of gamers around the world and forever changed the landscape of the video game industry...

  • Talking Point What New Super Mario Bros. 2 Means for 3DS and Nintendo

    Aside $$$

    The biggest news that came out of Nintendo Direct yesterday was the announcement of New Super Mario Bros. 2 for Nintendo 3DS. To say that the revival of 2D Mario has been a gigantic success for Nintendo is somewhat of an understatement; both New Super Mario Bros. on DS and New Super Mario Bros. Wii sold over 25 million copies each worldw

  • Feature Super Mario on Wii U - Crowd Pleaser or Game Changer?

    The plumber's conundrum

    The news that Shigeru Miyamoto will show off Super Mario Bros. on Wii U at E3 is more or less confirmation of what we all expected. When 3DS faltered many said Nintendo needed to show the way with a Mario game, and Super Mario 3D Land's Christmas appearance gave the console a big shot in the arm, becoming its first...

  • Talking Point Is Nintendo Over-Reliant on Super Mario?

    Lots of plumbing to do

    Back in 1985, no-one could have imagined that a plumber saving a princess from the clutches of an evil turtle king could become one of gaming’s defining moments. Since the release of the original Super Mario Bros. on the NES, Mario has become not only the face of Nintendo, but arguably the face of gaming as a whole. Shigeru...

  • Feature The Super Mario Renaissance

    We've never had it so good

    When we think about Mario's glory years, it's easy to get lost in nostalgia. We might think back to the first time we played Super Mario Bros. and learned what a platform game was really capable of. We might think back to Super Mario World, which expanded upon the ideas of its predecessors in so many ways that felt...

  • Feature Nintendo Characters Looking for Love

    Will you be their player two?

    Like so many others, we at Nintendo Life get swept up in the romance that is in the air during St. Valentine's Day. We love the smell of the flowers, the taste of the chocolate and the irresistible allure of digging through the online dating profiles of strangers, hoping to find something amusing. Surprisingly, we got...

  • Feature Keeping Mario at the Top

    A never-ending icon

    Mario is the face of Nintendo, a fact that is clear to most. As a character, however, he lacks any depth or back-story. Although some titles, such as the Mario & Luigi RPG titles on the Game Boy Advance and DS, apply a simple and humorous story to Mario and his world, he is often simply rescuing a Princess from a giant turtle creature. In fact, games writer James Leach said..

  • Feature How Japanese Folklore Inspired Mario's Tanooki Suit

    What’s a Tanooki, anyway?

    Ever since Super Mario Bros. 3 landed on store shelves, when Nintendo fans hear the word “tanooki” they almost always produce an excited smile and start reminiscing about days spent flying through levels as Racoon Mario. If you were to utter this same word today around these same Nintendo fans you’d probably get a...

  • FAQ Your Super Mario 3D Land Questions

    Updated! New questions! New answers!

    We've played the first two worlds of Super Mario 3D Land, and so we opened our inboxes to invite questions from you, the information-hungry Nintendo Life readers. Of course, the game isn't out yet so there are some questions we simply can't answer, but in the interests of fairness we'll reproduce those questions...

  • Preview Super Mario 3D Land

    It's all about perspective

    The last time we played Super Mario 3D Land, we came away confident that Nintendo was taking its mascot forward, as our preview explained. That was based on a four level demo but we've since played the game's opening two worlds, so does that first impression still hold true? Well, it all depends on your point of view...

  • Feature The Future of Nintendo Gaming - 2D or Not 2D?

    That is the question

    It’s been a busy year for Nintendo as it seeks to move onto a new generation of consoles. The 3DS is already here and, despite a sluggish start, has some big releases ahead. Then of course there is the Wii U, boasting a unique touch screen controller and the promise of much greater processing power than the Wii. Both devices...