MAN, was 4-3 a gorgeous level. Atmosphere out the butt. I'm still getting a handle on the swimming controls in this game, but the stage was still a joy to play through due to the sheer beauty of the art and the music. You really get a sense of place in these levels, and it's something I'd like the Mario series to cling to a little better these days.
Looks like Pikmin 3 and Nintendo Land have been dethroned as the best on the system. Hail to the king of the jungle, baby!
Just a fun* fact for everyone: Went to GameStop today to pickup Prof Layton for my wife's birthday gift. The store did not have any copies of Prof Layton IN THE ENTIRE CITY because all they did was pre-orders and "1 or 2" extra copies per store.
I post this here because this particular location had done the same thing for Tropical Freeze and thus did not have any copies available for purchase.
Economics 101: You cannot sell products you do not stock!! ... *shakes head* The deck is so stacked against Nintendo ....
GameStop is depressing. I managed to get my copy of DKTF from there, but the guy said they had 12 preorders and 2 (!!!!) available for sale, of which I got the last one. Seriously, twelve preorders and they only sell two actual boxed copies in-store!? Ridiculous, I say!
I think the last time I tried to buy a game at Gamestop, I was in a mall and tried to get Mario Galaxy on launch. The guy smugly responded "everyone knows if you don't preorder, you won't get the game. You'll never find it now." So I went across the street to Wal-mart and bought it off the shelf.
And the thing is, for us very savvy gamers (I originally tried to get Prof Layton at a retro store today but their shipment was late) it's OK to say "well, I just don't shop at GameStop." But, a lot of people who really enjoy games and don't spend all day on gaming websites need to be able to BROWSE at a place like GameStop in order to know what to buy. Otherwise it's like cutting your own sales off at the knees.
If you hang out in any game store and listen to the people around you, you will hear a genuine enjoyment of games but not necessarily a great deal of knowledge on details or current events. Honestly, I cannot blame these people; that is possibly a more enjoyable way to consume the medium. Anyway, they need to have games on the shelves to choose from! Before I even asked about Prof Layton, a little kid and his mom wanted a Modern Warfare game (I didn't hear exactly which one). They saw it on the shelf and then asked the kind man behind the counter if he had any "with the disc inside" for sale. To which he replied, "oh yea, I got tons of those back here, want me to grab you one??"
That is how the market should work and I never understand why retailers, developers, etc. don't seem to understand these things when it comes to Nintendo. I've said it before and I'll say it again, it seems like there is a genuine lack of interest in money if it means playing nice with Nintendo. Maybe there is something I'm missing.
Is everyone experience the stuttering during loading screens? I thought it was just me because I got the digital version and I'm running it off a Y-cabled USB to portable HDD.
@NinSage Nice choice of birthday gift! I'm so swamped, but I'm still super excited for the Layton finale. The low stock is due to Nintendo undersupplying retail since you can buy the game digitally nowadays. I got DK digital but I definitely want a physical copy of Layton.
4-3 followed by 4-4 was back-to-back greatness, soundtrack included. Too bad that world kinda peters out in the back half, IMO. Still awesome to hear that music again, though--took me back to some good times.
I hate that this came out in the middle of my midterm exam schedule. After tomorrow, I should have a lot more time to play. I've only scratched the surface (currently at 2-3), can't wait to dig in some more.
I beat World 4 this afternoon. In my estimation, each subsequent world has been better than the previous one (though I prefer the style of the Autumn levels, I think that World 3 had better overall stages). World 4 was excellent. Top-to-bottom, it had the strongest set of stages and Retro's most creative and ambitious thus far in the game. In a way, that's hard to believe for a world with a lot of water stages, but they did a great job of making the swimming stages really stand out. Also, the music in this world was phenomenal, beginning-to-end.
World 5 kicked ass. Kicked my ass too, at times. The challenge level has definitely ramped up quite a bit...the rocket barrel level was pretty tricky, as was the last stage (the introductory ice-themed level, looks like a sign of things to come). Also, I think it was level 5-4 where they really made it a challenge to get the KONG letters. That was the first time I all game where I really had to work to get those.
Beehive Brawl is maybe my favorite level in the game so far; it's definitely in the top 2 or 3. It had that crazy, off-the-wall level design that I was hoping there would be a little bit more of (there's still a bit left to go, though; hopefully there are more stages like that one).
I'm deep in world 5 as well now. It's been excellent so far--2 is probably still my favorite at the moment, but I haven't played any of 5's unlockable stages or the boss yet, so we'll see where it stands. 5-1 through 5-6 have been consistently strong, though, with my favorites being…I dunno, maybe 5-4 and 5-6, but it's all close.
I really like the progressive narrative of this world as well:
5-1: We see the fruits being harvested directly from nature 5-2: We burst into the processing factory via rocket, complete with fruits on the assembly lines and such 5-3: We're on-foot inside the factory now, dodging the various obstacles and using fruits as platforms 5-4: The fruit juice is collected into a massive stockpile here, which we swim through 5-5: The fruit juice has become solidified somewhat and now functions as gelatinous cubes 5-6: The cubes have been frozen solid in the southern icy part of the island, and many of them have been converted into giant popsicles
I love how cleverly Retro thinks on both the macro and micro scale!
The game is pretty darn generous with both lives and banana coins. Probably to make up for the lack of Super Kong. But yeah, I kinda wish the lives went to triple digits just so I'd have more reason to grab balloons more often.
In other words, you are merely average at the game.
I hate that it stops you at 99 lives. I mean, I should never have a lives issue but still. I'm racking up bananas and balloons and for nothing right now. At least banana coins go in triple digits. I keep missing 1 or 2 puzzle pieces so I'll need that squawker to help at some point.