With some exciting new features in Super Mario Odyssey, it’s shaping up to be another stellar instalment in the Mario franchise.
The excitement is brewing amongst Nintendo fans and the larger gaming community.
E3 had some great reveals this year, but Youtube seems to have delivered the verdict on the most popular game announcements for the year. Whilst Odyssey had the second highest viewings a week out (but has silently taken the lead since then), Star Wars Battlefront II took the lead. It became the most anticipated game at E3 by getting the most Youtube viewings in 24 hours.
Since then, it seems that Odyssey has taken over Star Wars Battlefront II, having reached 13 million views comparatively to 12 million views. So what’s all the hype all about? Have we finally found a Mario game that can transcend and deliver both Super Mario 64 and Super Mario Galaxy?
Mario rides around in the Odyssey!
In Super Mario Galaxy and it’s prominent sequel, Mario uses Rosalina’s starship and then his own faceship (harhar) to get around the cosmos. It gave Mario access to more levels as he collected stars on his adventures. The first game of the two followed in the footsteps of 64 allowing the player to wander around the hubship to enter new levels. And then its sequel brought the player back to a more classic exploration of Mario’s galaxies, using the ship to travel linearly from level to level.
The Odyssey, Mario’s sail-ship for which the title gets its name, serves as his carriage similarly to the latter of these two games. This allowed Mario to select different worlds to travel to at any time. Mario will of course need to find special ‘Moons’ in order power the Odyssey, progress the game, and unlock new Kingdoms.
Mario will visit several kingdoms on his new adventure, many of which serve as nostalgic throw backs to previous Mario adventures from other games. So far 6 kingdoms have been confirmed, with more to be revealed closer the release of the game.
Mario gets new forms of transportation
The second of the exciting new features in Super Mario Odyssey is about transportation. Whilst Yoshi has been known as Mario’s preferred way to travel across the vast expanses of the Mushroom Kingdom, Mario will need to rely on other forms of transportation to get around.
By the looks of things each Kingdom will have it’s own form of transportation, such as the scooter in New Donk City and the Jaxis in Tostarena Town. Both of which are just smaller parts of both the Metro Kingdom and the Sand Kingdom.
These forms of transportation, based on various gameplay demonstrations, can be used to help Mario reach somewhat unreachable areas of each Kingdom. One such example sees Mario using a Jaxi to run through poison gloop. This is in a minigame similar to blooper surfing in Super Mario Sunshine, to grab unreachable Moons and coins.
Mario can take over enemies and use their abilities
Gone are the days of past Mario games, where Mario would find his power-ups in the form of Fire Flowers and Mushrooms. In Super Mario Odyssey, Mario gains all his power-up transformations through the capturing capabilities of Cappy. This is Mario’s companion throughout the entire game.
Cappy has the peculiar ability to “capture” opponents and objects, allowing Mario to use that object or enemies moves in order to traverse the world. With Cappy, Mario can explore areas normally unreachable to the plumber’s various jumping abilities. As seen in the E3 trailer, Mario can take over a range of enemies, including goombas, hammer bros, cheep-cheeps and even a T-Rex!
Mario can collect coins to buy outfits and customisations for the Odyssey
The Super Mario games have made themselves somewhat distinctive through the collection of coins in Mario’s journey. In the 2D games, the coins were collected in order to get the most points at the end of the level, whilst in 3D games they were used to regain lost health, collect One-Up mushrooms and unlock hidden stars.
Mario will have a new use for coins in his new outing, which now will allow him to use the coins to buy items, and will also replace traditional One-Up mushrooms. Mario won’t just have his classic golden coins to collect this time around, with each Kingdom having it’s own purple coloured currency to gather.
Using his collection of gold and purple coins in Crazy Cap stores, Mario will be able to buy items to furnish the Odyssey. He’ll also have to purchase costumes to aid in his exploration of these new worlds. Coins can also be collected a lot easier this time round through the aid of throwing Cappy. This saves Mario precious time in his coin collecting escapades across various the Kingdoms.
Mario has to collect hearts
A first for the Mario franchise, Mario will no longer be able to replace his health by collecting coins. Instead he will have to rely on finding rare hearts in his quest. These hearts aren’t as abundant as coins. Mario will need to use his wit and curiosity in discovering their hiding places in the ground and hidden blocks.
Mario will once again only have 3 health points in this game. It will be crucial for him to collect these items in the worlds he traverses in order to stay alive. And of course, to thwart Bowser’s latest plans. If all else fails, Mario will be able to buy health at Crazy Cap stores located in every Kingdom.
These new features in Super Mario Odyssey, along with the game will launch globally on October 27th.