Games I Play: Super Mario Bros. Wonder

I’ve played Super Mario Bros. Wonder, a game that I can only assume is Nintendo’s swan song on the Switch. The latest take on the 2D Mario formula, Wonder is still about a plumber who jumps. However, like in Super Mario Odyssey before it, Nintendo’s crammed it full of unexpected delight.

I imagine the offices in Kyoto being plastered with sketches and post-its with every crazy idea anyone in the team could come up with. Then they actually implemented them all! There are singing piranha plants, riding flying dragons, Mario turning into all manner of things, top-down segments, racing a wiggler, and much more. There are so many great ideas, most appearing just once throughout the game, that it’s a joy to play through. One could even say it’s filled with wonder-

Still, a platform game can’t run on just fun ideas. Luckily Mario’s as nimble as ever. Both the movement and controls, even with some new power-ups that give Mario even more ways to move, are absolutely flawless. This is textbook platform physics in the best possible way and I’m sure it’ll be a speedrun darling. The game looks and sounds great too, even though the music isn’t quite as catchy as some of Mario’s earlier romps.

Things I liked:

  • Incredible level design with just the right amount of challenge and secrets for me
  • Flawless controls
  • No new gameplay element is overused, they all feel surprising and welcome
  • A nice amount of collectables that feel achievable yet a fun challenge
  • Short and sweet, I clocked in at around 10-15 hours

Things I didn’t like:

  • The music isn’t very memorable
  • Could do with a few more challenges for the hardcore player

To sum up, Super Mario Bros. Wonder was a great game that fit me perfectly as a distraction between pinball tournaments and long-ass JRPGs. It was fun every minute of my playthrough, a thing very few games manage nowadays. I highly recommend it!