With this year marking the 30th anniversary of the release of Super Mario Bros. it is clear that Nintendo as a company are excited about the series and its history, and the newly titled Super Mario Maker is the centrepiece of their celebrations.
It began at the Nintendo World Championships on Monday, when the game’s new branding title was revealed and was featured as the final challenge for contestants to compete in. The levels featured in the competition really highlighted the elaborate stages you can make, essentially showing that you can create levels as expansive as what you could expect in a side-scrolling Mario title. The levels demonstrated some of the creative ways creators can make difficult but fun levels that perhaps Mario players wouldn’t normally see.
Super Mario Maker also played a major part in Nintendo’s Digital Event. During the entire presentation Nintendo would used clips of the title, showing off Mario picking up a mystery mushroom that would turn Mario in to a different Nintendo character like Link, Marth or Isabelle. This has been revealed to be one of the ways Nintendo are implementing amiibo support, though don’t worry, if you aren’t a fan of Nintendo’s plastic money makers they have also announced that some of these costumes can be unlocked simply by completing challenges in the game. Speaking of amiibo support, Nintendo also revealed a pair of special Super Mario 3oth Anniversary amiibo that when used in Super Mario Maker will cause Mario to expand in size (similar to the Mega Mushroom powerup in past titles) as well as have a crazy effect on certain enemies, with the Goomba’s on screen also increasing in size, while being donned with Mario costumes and moustaches. Overall the amiibo support seems to be simple, novel but fun ideas that don’t drastically improve the game, but are a nice bonus for those who have invested in their collectible toys.
Nintendo then finished their event with the creators of Super Mario Bros, Shigeru Miyamoto and Takashi Tezuka showing off some of the original design documents from the original game and discussing their design choices to help inspire potential Mario Maker’s to be as well as discussing how you will be able to use familiar elements from the Mario franchise, but in ways that you haven’t been able to previously (for example you can ride Yoshi in underwater levels). They also announced that the game will come bundled with a special book that contains artwork and images of stages people have made in the game to give players an idea of the kind of levels they may themselves make.
The trailer for the game (which can be viewed below) not only gave fans a better look at some of the absolutely insane levels that can be made using this title but also gave us our first proper look at how players can access user created courses online. In the ‘Course World’ where players go to access new levels, you can pick from three options. The first option is aptly names ‘courses’ where players can go to discover highly rated courses and pick and choose which ones they wish to play. The second option is ‘Makers’ where players can view all the courses made by specific people, as well as create a list of their favourite creators to keep up to date on their latest and greatest levels. And lastly there is the 100 Mario Challenge mode, where players are given 100 lives and are tasked to play as many randomly selected courses as they can before running out of lives. It seems like Nintendo have not only given players a simple way to find the best levels being designed, but also created a fun creative way to discover new levels in a more natural way then selecting them from a menu.
Future game developers can get their hands on Super Mario Maker in Australia on September 12th 2015