I was going to hold off on buying this because its supposed to be same old Mario but I played it instore today and have decided to pick it up as a pay day treat next week, and its because its the same old Mario. Go figure.
@PogueSquadron The 3DSXL is amazing, up there with the iXL and the SP+ in terms of greatness. It's a thousand times better than the old 3DS in every way, and even though it's bigger it doesn't feel huge or heavy, it feels just right. Now if only it had the 2nd pad so I didn't have to buy another ungainly CPP, that would have made it perfect.
@GameDadGrant I really like the effects they add to the music when certain things happen (reminds me of the Yoshi-drums from Mario World), but the melodies have been used in far too many games. I have yet to hear one new track, and that makes me sad.
I don't think the NSMB music is as terrible as some people seem to, but I don't think that it is particularly great either. Would definitely be near the bottom if I started ranking Mario soundtracks. Whatever the case, reusing it over and over... ug.
Got to Bowser's Castle during my break, today. I gotta say, if this is the whole bag of tricks, this one is too easy, at least for an old Mario hand like me. Agree?
I'm still excited by the number of hidden secrets, though. I'm still playing the game in a slightly different way from my usual coin-ambivalent approach. And that's helping to make a below average Mario game more memorable.
EDIT: I've always thought the NSMB music was decent, but not as classic as the original soundtracks. I don't knock it too hard for that, because that's one hell of a reputation to live up to, but the reuse of this fairly average soundtrack is more the issue. Smash Bros Brawl got dozens upon dozens of new arrangements of songs. You're telling me a numbered Super Mario Bros game can't get a shred of that royal treatment?
Agreed. Animal Crossing: City Folk is guilty of the same thing. If it's the same for the 3DS version, then that's overkill (though it already sounds different...NSMB2 sounds almost like a direct copy-paste from NSMBW).
The funny thing is, I think the "New" games are pretty different from one another. That is to say, the DS and 3DS offerings feel very similar to one another (aside from the raccoon tail), while the Wii one has a different "feel" to it. Maybe it's just the amount of the screen characters take up.
I've done the first two main worlds and the first hidden world. At first I was pretty underwhelmed (I didn't even die in the first world), but I'm starting to enjoy it more now. It's basically what I expected--fun, but relatively low on real surprises. The stage design is often quite clever and makes me smile, though, and the Ghost Houses have been noticeably stronger than the tepid ones from past NSMB games.
Coin Rush mode is pretty compelling and a nice diversion, but I think Nintendo sort of missed the mark a little if they were shooting for capturing score-driven gamers' hearts with it. As someone who enjoys arcade-y high score stuff like this, a few issues keep it from achieving greatness:
-Clunky interface: you can only save a single high score for your file, and can't share it online. To attempt to keep beating a StreetPass record, you'd have to pass the same person more than once to send the score back to them--fun for friends and family, but nigh useless for the chance StreetPasses you'd get in public.
-A topped-out score that some have already reached. Combined with the fact that you only have one high score, once a player reaches the max of 30,000, there's no real purpose for them to play Coin Rush anymore (except to add to their coin total). They've "beaten" it, and there's nothing to shoot for beyond that (since that's as high as the counter will go in Coin Rush).
-Randomness/Luck, a high-scorer's bane. This is the biggie for me. Basically, you've got too many variables out of your control. The three stages are chosen at random, making for a pretty major factor determining score, and elements within the stages are semi-random, such as the slot-machine-esque rotating multi-coin blocks and power-up blocks (which contain a game-changing Golden Flower).
Those three things aside, I have been enjoying Coin Rush anyway, more for the sake of seeing how high my own score can get, but it frustrates me that these things could be easily fixed and it could make for an extremely competitive and addictive side-mode.
I'd suggest keeping the core concept of Coin Rush, but allow players to select their stages, replace all "rotating" coin blocks and power-up blocks, and possibly start players off with a Golden Flower in each level as well, to really encourage chain-hopping and such. And then throw the whole thing into online leaderboards!