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Mario has got up to some weird old shenani­gans in his 30-year ex­is­tence. He’s been a doc­tor, Olympic ath­lete and graffiti re­moval ex­pert – but those dal­liances will never ri­val the mad­ness of Su­per Mario Odyssey. In this new adventure Mario can as­sume the form of a fire hy­drant, a flag­pole or even a di­nosaur by fling­ing his hat at them.

An open-world plat­former that’s ev­ery bit as am­bi­tious as Zelda: Breath of the Wild, it tasks you with travers­ing var­i­ous worlds, each with its own unique art style and chal­lenges. And rather than stick­ing to the usual for­mula, Nin­tendo has done its ut­most to break con­ven­tions.

The weak­est Mar­ios of the past have been con­tent to rely on a cock­tail of nos­tal­gia and for­mula. Odyssey sees such at­ti­tudes as an af­front to fun: it’s big, risky and cre­ative. Even if that doesn’t all add up to a great game in the end, we have to ap­plaud Nin­tendo’s in­ten­tions. due 27 Oct

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