NEW SU­PER MARIO BROS U

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - FUN & GAMES - CIARA O’BRIEN

Mario is back and look­ing good in HD. The Wii U’s im­proved graph­ics mean that

New Su­per Mario Bros U is vis­ually more ap­peal­ing, although the ti­tle doesn’t ex­actly test the con­sole to its lim­its just yet.

You al­ways know what you’re get­ting with Mario: Princess Peach needs sav­ing from Bowser, and Mario & co are just the peo­ple to do it. That means travers­ing the dif­fer­ent worlds to ul­ti­mately come face to face with Bowser and save the day.

The cam­paign mode is fun in a typ­i­cally Mario way. There are plenty of coins to col­lect, power-ups to nab and en­e­mies to stomp on along the way. Lev­els are dif­fi­cult, but not overly so, and if you get really stuck, the “su­per guide” will help you solve a tough sec­tion.

There’s a lot of fa­mil­iar ter­ri­tory here, as you’d ex­pect. But there have been some new features added. For the most part, the GamePad’s screen in Mario

Bros U is used as a play­ing screen and con­trol. But when you’re in mul­ti­player, four peo­ple can play on­screen, with a fifth plac­ing blocks that can ei­ther help or hin­der us­ing the GamePad. It’s a nice touch that makes use of the Wii U’s ca­pa­bil­i­ties and adds to the gen­eral chaos of the mul­ti­player mode. In ad­di­tion, you can choose to play as your Mii avatar, bring­ing you face into the Mario worlds.

There are more ad­dic­tive modes to tackle. Coin Boost mode pro­pels you through the Mario worlds at speed, auto scrolling and forc­ing you to keep up or pay the price. Chal­lenge mode, mean­while, sets you spe­cific tasks – avoid­ing col­lect­ing coins is harder than you’d think, and try travers­ing a Mario level with­out touch­ing the ground. While a lot of New Su­per

Mario Bros U brings back el­e­ments of pre­vi­ous ti­tles, the whole thing ties to­gether quite well.

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