Mario shoots off into space for his next adventure....

Our favourite plumber has pretty much done it all, from karting to brawling to platforming.  We can safely say that Mario has been a busy guy. However has Mario ever been in space? He has now, as he embarks on yet another platformer travelling from planet to planet. Does Galaxy live up to Mario’s Legacy of brilliant platforming?  In short answer, yes.

From the opening of the game straight away it is clear that the game has had a lot of work put into it. The graphics for a start are miles ahead of 90% of Wii games, with some excellent lighting effects and texture detail. The models are great and the worlds even better. Everything seems to have a beautiful Nintendo gloss over it. The game is so full of character from the rabbits to the Lumas. Mario has never looked so good.

In terms of gameplay the game excels. Mario wonders around the Hub world and much like Sunshine’s Delfino Island and 64’s Castle, areas gradually open up as Mario collects more power Stars. The ultimate goal being to acquire all 241, however the final boss can be accessed from 60.  Each power star is a challenge of its own, some being more tricky than others, which get progressively harder as the player moves through the story. Collecting each star gives the player a feeling of pleasure, as it is a reward for what they have just accomplished, this could be jumping platforms dodging massive Thromps which come crashing down, or duking it out with Bowser.

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Mario aquiring a power star “Wahoo!”

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The thromps return in Galaxy

The controls in Galaxy work perfectly, with triple jumping the same as it always has been, a succession of 3 presses on the A button will make Mario triple flip, it feels great to pull one of these off.  Mario’s long jump and backflip moves also appear as well as the quick dash jump. A quick shake of the Wii remote performs Mario’s new ability, the Spin. You would be surprised how much unique gameplay opens up just from adding this simple move to Mario’s arsenal.

The story in Galaxy is that once again Peach has been kidnapped (Yes I know!) taken off to Bowser’s new base of operations in space. Mario meets up with a great new character that really fits into the Mario universe, her name Rosalina. Rosalina promises Mario to help fly him to Bowsers HQ in return for him powering her ship with Power stars. The story then sounds pretty basic, but I can assure you that it’s a magical experience, and it’s a Mario game, since when were they about story?

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Rosalina appears before Mario

Onto the soundtrack, well what else can I say other than stunning. The game is fully orchestrated, with the music really matching the gameplay, each world having its own tune; it won’t be long before you are singing along to them. Mario’s classic tunes return as music notes so you actively control Mario and collect them to play out the song, a very nice little extra for Mario Vets. The Bowser boss battles are a special highlight with some epic music playing while Mario fights his arch nemesis, you may even find yourself delaying the boss battle just to hear the music, I know I did.  The usual classic Mario grunts are there as he jumps around and says very little as usual, he’s a busy guy after all, there’s no time for chatting.

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An epic Bowser showdown

The game features no multiplayer as such, but a second player can join in and help Mario at any time, performing ultra moves, and extinguishing flames for example while player one guides Mario through the universe. It’s a nice extra, not ground breaking, but it successfully allows for a second player to join in the fun, so in no way is it a bad thing. Being a Mario veteran I have played this game for countless hours over and over again, having collected all 241 Stars with the secret character as well, which I won’t spoil for you, I can say it will last quite a while collecting every star. Once that’s done the game has nothing else to do other than to replay it and enjoy once more its wonderful moments, which I’m sure you will be doing.

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Mario being pulled through space

In conclusion Super Mario Galaxy continues Mario’s dominance of platforming, everything in the game has been lovingly crafted, the graphics the gameplay and the music, it all just works perfectly. If you are a Mario veteran there’s a high chance you don’t even need to read this or won’t be, but for those new to Mario there’s never been a better time to experience not only one of Mario’s finest moments, but also one of the finest moments in gaming itself. Super Mario Galaxy 2 announced at this year’s E3 has a lot to live up to in what is a truly fantastic game; I just beg that more developers make games like this for the Wii. Buy it, play it, love it, you won’t regret it.

 

Overall Rating: 10/10 :Miyamoto has once again produced one of the best games of this generation of consoles.

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