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Super Mario Odyssey (Switch) Review

November 2, 2017 | Posted by Stewart Lange
Super Mario Odyssey
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Super Mario Odyssey (Switch) Review  

Some things in life are absolute certainties. Death, taxes and Nintendo pulling out all the stops to make a new Mario title as great as they possibly can. With Super Mario Odyssey, I actually feel like they could have surpassed what they were even aiming to achieve. A small spoiler for the coming review: there is almost absolutely nothing wrong with this game at all. The first Mario title for the Switch (I’m not counting a Kart remake or whatever the Rabbids thing was) is a 3D title with several sprawling, interesting open areas to explore as you journey around the globe trying to prevent the pending nuptials of Bowser and Princess Peach.

The game starts with Bowser defeating Mario and sending him crashing down to earth, destroying his iconic red head in the process. Thankfully, the first thing Mario meets is a hat that can possess beings simply by being thrown onto their head, gaining their abilities for the whole time that you control them. This can go from the high jump of a frog, to tanks that shoot at enemies. Everything you will possess has an integral part to play in gaining Power Moons, which you require to power the Odyssey, the hat-shaped spaceship you’ll be using to chase down Bowser. The constant thought involved in using these powers to solve the puzzles to earn your next moon is what makes it so addictive. Even revisiting old worlds gives you new characters to possess and new parts of the level to discover. I found revisiting also made me think slightly differently having done something in another level. It pays to go forwards, backwards or wherever you can if you have the slightest idea of how to grab another moon.

Thankfully, each and every world that you’ll visit is a vibrant delight so you won’t mind revisiting any of them. From beautiful forests to icy lakes, deserts all the way to a busy metropolis, each world you visit is full of things to do, creatures to possess and puzzles to solve. This is the first time the graphics on the Switch have truly impressed me, with it looking absolutely sharp as a tac running on a 4K television. It doesn’t look any less impressive than anything I’m currently running on a PS4 Pro or Xbox One S. Considering these graphics hold up on the tablet as well as docked to the big screen I can barely believe this is a game on a Nintendo console- as backhanded a compliment as that may be.

Loading times are virtually non-existent, with skippable cutscenes showing the Odyssey flying and a small reminder of some of your skills the only break in the gameplay. This makes it even easier to lose yourself in the game, as at no point you’ll be sitting idle for long enough that you’ll remember that you were running the sink to do the washing up. This makes it all the more playable, but when you’re stomping around as a T-Rex you’ll forget more than what you should be doing instead, you’ll forget about your worries in life as well. You might just collect coins to buy new outfits with in the shops in each level, to make Mario look fancier. There’s plenty to see, do and collect.

Now, I said there was ALMOST nothing wrong with this game. I do have a minor niggle with it, which is that when you’re at the end of a level having beaten one of the two bosses, it automatically teleports you right back to the start of the level. This bugs me as there is usually a moon, or a clue as to how to get closer to one when you’re at the top of the hill. There is a warp point right back to the start so you’d be able to get there on your own quickly enough, but your last checkpoint will still be a few hazardous jumps away from the very top of the level. That’s literally the only fault I can find, though. Otherwise, this is the most fun I’ve had with a video game in months, on any console. It’s the first game I’ve been proud to say I’ve been playing on my Switch and one I hope to get a lot more enjoyment out of to come. I just hope there isn’t too long to wait before we see a sequel.

The final score: review Virtually Perfect
The 411
A near faultless game, Super Mario Odyssey is great fun and totally accessible for all ages and ability of gamer. A vibrant, exciting world to explore with a gimmick that breathes new life into a franchise that everyone will have experienced mean Nintendo have truly hit it out of the park for the first truly accessible must-have title on the Switch.