New Super Mario World; What We Know
Well, assuming that New Super Mario Bros style game shown off at yesterday’s Nintendo Direct video/conference is a genuine Wii U game and not merely a tech demo that is. But assuming the obvious answer that said game is a new Mario platformer in development for the Wii U and potentially a launch game, here are some interesting things I’ve noticed about it.
First things first, let’s look at this level screenshot:
We already know from the last post that the background seems to be a reference to Super Mario World, which indicates this game could be moving towards the style of Super Mario World rather than Super Mario Bros 3.
But it’s not the only interesting thing. There’s also Peach’s Castle in the background, but it looks a lot more distant than in any other Mario game since. Compare it to say, New Super Mario Bros 2:
The castle’s like, right next to the level! Does this potentially imply a storyline reason for the level shown being quite far away from Peach’s Castle? Maybe Mario and co got thrown out after Bowser attacked like in the Mario Galaxy games and RPGs, or maybe this level shown is actually the second or third level and hence Mario is getting further and further away as he goes. Either works.
The other thing you’ll notice is a lot more detail than the earlier New Super Mario Bros games. I mean, sure the style is roughly the same, but there’s definitely a gradual shift towards the graphics in the series getting better and better. Compare them below:
New Super Mario Bros
New Super Mario Bros Wii
New Super Mario Bros 2
New Super Mario World
The differences are a bit more subtle than the likes of how the Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time went to Wind Waker to Twilight Princess to Skyward Sword or how Pokemon went from Pokemon Red and Blue to Pokemon Black and White after a few games, but there’s a definitely a pleasant increase in detail across each game in the series. Indeed, you could potentially split the NSMB series into two now, the DS/3DS games and the Wii/Wii U games, with each installment being a marked improvement from the last.
Most minor things from New Super Mario Bros Wii seem to be returning. Coins and Star Coins seem to both be confirmed by the user interface/HUD, time seems to return as does points and lives. Even the Bowser face displayed when you die is back!
Of all elements from Super Mario 64, Nintendo sure does like using the same death animations and fade out style, don’t they?
We can also assume a few more things from the video, as seen here:
Koopas, Goombas and Piranha Plants return as enemies.
Brick Blocks return, like in most games (this isn’t certain, hence why it’s mentioned).
Flag poles seem to return at the end of levels like in most New Super Mario Bros style games. Pity, I really wanted the giant goal gate from Super Mario World complete with the victory march, that was awesome.
That block structure meant to look like stairs seems to be in this game as well.
There are also some comments you can see from people on your friends list (and maybe random strangers) after the level ends/you die. Have to admit this will be either the coolest thing in the world (if your friends are relatively mature and have interesting things to say about video games) or absolutely depressing as hell as if they’re not/don’t.
However, the overworld is what has the more interesting details:
First of all, it looks very much less like a cliched ‘elemental’ themed grass land and almost like a real place, similar to Dinosaur Land in Super Mario World. Like the rocks…
(see circled in green)
Or the Piranha Plants by the side
(see circled in red)
The rocks look pretty much like direct HD equivalents to the larger ones used in Donut Plains in Super Mario World, and the Piranha Plants look a bit like the ones used as decoration in the same game.
Well sort of, I had to edit them back in due to the fact the sprite was removed during the beta testing process for whatever reason. But it looks like Nintendo is bringing the idea back for New Super Mario World.
You can also see different Toad Houses, presumably used to get items and play mini games, and some Piranha Plants in the middle of the path.
There are two potential things that Piranha Plants in the path could mean.
1. You’ve got to defeat them to move on, like the enemy encounters in New Super Mario Bros Wii.
2. They represent a Piranha Plant filled pipe level like in Super Mario Bros 3’s ‘Pipe Maze’ world.
Hard to tell which of the above is the case.
Something else strikes me as interesting too, namely that the paths seem to leave the map.
That seems awfully like how the overworld map in Super Mario World worked, where instead of using seperate map screens to much of a degree, the overworld was just a big map with about half the worlds on it. Maybe the area you’re in here is a ‘submap’ akin to Yoshi’s Island from Super Mario World and going up takes you to the New Super Mario World equivalent of Donut Plains.
It would make sense given that the world seems to be designed more like a proper country rather than just a generic ‘grass land’. The geography actually seems interesting enough to make me think the world map could be really good this time around.
We can also see that Mushroom top levels seem to return, as evidenced by the Mushrooms that a level dot is placed on top of to the left of the green Toad House. It also seems likely that this level is meant to be more difficult than the rest and a secret one used to access the bonus area.
There’s also a castle/fortress level here, which seems like it could be halfway through the first world.
But all of these pale to one thing, the power ups hinted at by the messages.
Ok, being a flying squirrel is way more fun than it should be!
A baby Yoshi that balloons up to carry you? Too cute!
Yeah. The first one really makes me think it’s the game’s equivalent of the cape. I mean, look at your average ‘flying’ squirrel:
Looks a lot like Mario using the cape, doesn’t it?
My guess is that it’s a new item which works just like the cape. And considering how fun it was to fly about with that item, the person who said it’s way more fun than it should be seems to be right.
Or they got Cape Mario mixed up with a flying squirrel, but that’s too much of a stupid mistake even for video game marketers to make.
The Baby Yoshi that balloons up makes me think the Blimp Berry/fruit from Mario Galaxy 2 will be returning, and possibly work like the P Balloon from Super Mario World. Hopefully there’s no Tubular equivalent this time around. Oh yeah, and it’s confirmation that Yoshi’s in the game, and that he has alternate forms, another similarity to Super Mario World.
Another interesting thing is the mention of lava and a tough level to the north of the map. Possibly that’s the location of the world 1 castle level given how very few non castle levels in recent Mario games have even featured lava in any capacity (really, the first level in any Galaxy game, Mario 3D Land and the New Super Mario Bros games to feature lava as an obstacle has always been a castle, and it was also like that back in Super Mario World if you ignore the one room bonus area in one of the Yoshi’s Island levels).
It also seems like an achievement/mission system might be in this game too, note the orange box with the text ‘Cleared in under 100 seconds!’
This reminds me a lot of Wario Land Shake It, which had the exact same system including the colour/general design of the ‘achievement’ boxes:
Sure the design of the message on the overworld is simpler (and it appeared on the map rather than at the end of the level), but I think the same general concept is probably being used in New Super Mario World.
This makes me wonder a few more things, namely what the secrets are in this game.
Because in all games with ‘missions’, you’ve always got something by beating them all. And in all games with Star Coins/Medals, the same applies.
I’m assuming the coins are used to unlock secret world stuff. Maybe it turns out you can only use the warps in the Star Road if you pay to open them, and the same for the Special World. Don’t know if I’d want this to be honest, there’s something more fulfilling and more logical found in actually ‘unlocking’ areas by finding secrets and alternate exits than just paying for them from in game currency. The system in New Super Mario Bros Wii seemed a little too close to Yoshi’s Island and its secret levels if you ask me.
But that still leaves the question of how the mission system works. I presume it’s not going to be for unlocking new music like in Wario Land and some other games since Mario games always reuse music in more than one level, but what could it be used for?
So from just a few details, we can find out all kinds of interesting things about New Super Mario World, including some signs that it’s going to be the 21st century equivalent to Super Mario World on the SNES and others that indicate a far more interesting Mario platformer than the previous New Super Mario Bros titles were.