Despite my thinking that I wouldn't feel like going back to the game, I had an urge to start playing again. And it's still fantastic. But now I just feel like I want more levels again.
I know this is an unreasonable ask, but I kind of feel like I would have wanted 200-ish levels instead of 100-ish, just so that they could have explored every single idea at least twice. Like, go nuts with a creative idea, and then go even nuts-er in an almost irresponsible way. Combine shit in inadviceable ways.
Put me inside a friggin' pinball machine populated by hoppos, bloomps and robbirds, have me escape from rising lava using hoppycats to push up platforms while avoiding some kind of lava smackerel cruising the bottom of the screen like the fish from Balloon Fight, or just give me more flippin' ghost houses! More! I want more!
I gotta say itís crazy to me that Mario and crew just feel so much better to control than in the NSMB games. I donít know if Iíd say itís Super Mario World level, but everything feels more responsive. And itís great to be able to flick loops shells upwards again. NSMB just never felt like a proper evolution of Mario World and this feels much more in line with that.
Alright, finally finished all of the stages. Awesome game. Best 2D Mario in a long, long time.
BUT. Whoever decided that you should end the game with a complicated section WHERE YOU CAN'T SEE WHAT YOU'RE DOING should just... give up on game design. Get out. Go sell cars or something. It felt like sheer luck that I got past that. And of course I kind of forgot about the purple coins until I got past the section with the first one, so if I want to be a completionist I need to go get that purple coin and then beat the level again. Oof.
Final Mario levels for the last decade or so have felt really incongruent with the rest of their respective games, focusing their level design less on creative combinations of elements and more on reflex test gauntlets. I 100%ed Wonder, except for that last level, which I won't be touching. I get the motivation, giving the player one last thing to chew on for a long time, but I think I'd prefer a more definitive ending than that.