Currently Playing: Super Mario Odyssey

Despite starting other games, how can I refuse a one-way ticket on the Mario hype train?  I decided to jump right onto the Amazon Prime preorder discount, thinking that Nintendo titles are hardly ever discounted, and surely they’d deliver on this title.

Super Mario Odyssey Mario and Cappy

A few weeks ago I posted about what I had hoped the series would be able to bring to the table.  In addition, I recently posted a review compilation of what the big review outlets thought about the game.

Having played through several kingdoms so far, I can say that (1) my hopes for the series have been shining and (2) the reviewers unanimity on the strength of the title appear to be real,

First, when I got the game I immediately popped it into my Switch.  There was a minor update required, but then I was right into the game. I’ve grown slightly accustomed to having download some large update either the game or the system so it was nice that I could actually just plug and play.

Super Mario Odyssey Lion Ride

The opening sequence got right down to business, with Bowser stealing Peach away once again and Mario left behind to figure it all out.  The opening sequence was pretty straight forward and the “story” is not the main focus of a Mario platformer.

After the brief cutscene introduction, you are put into the first kingdom which happens to be inhabited by a variety of hat-like creatures, with of course, Cappy, finding and pitching to Mario to team up services.

Super Mario Odyssey Moon

On your way to the opening objectives the game does a slick job of introducing you to the mechanics and how the controls work.  Perhaps my familiarity with Mario titles made this feel more seamless than it was.

However, I have had some consistent controller problems so far in my playthrough.  Not that my controllers don’t work, but that the motion controls (which can be turned off) are sometimes difficult to get just right.  I have also heard that the actual motion controls are optimal in terms of game play.  I have been playing with loose joycons.

Super Mario Odyssey Goombas

The big new mechanic — throwing your hat to “take over” enemies — is fully at work in Odyssey.  Taking over enemies adds a new twist for each new enemy in each new kingdom.  It adds a twist to the platforming and the ability to reach strange places.  I’ve enjoyed its implementation so far, however it has felt strange that the cap attack has replaced the “punch” attack of Mario, making jumping attacks the main form of basic damage.

The basic structure of the game definitely echoes the Mario 64 and Sunshine predecessors.  This is exactly what I personally wanted, although some more prefer a Galaxy or more traditional Mario platforming experience, and thats OK.

Super Mario Odyssey Hat Ship

The sandbox of the kingdoms makes for some fun exploration.  As you acclimate to Mario’s platforming abilities, as well as that of the enemies, you start looking around for ways to “break” the level and get to places you thought impossible.  It feels like the developers have purposefully built the game with this in mind, and anticipated this devious exploring (and reward those able to pull off fun stunts).

Finding moons is a satisfying experience (although I wish they were stars for pure nostalgia sake), although the sheer amount of them may give the illusion of “easy” difficulty.  While I think that some of the moons are easy to obtain, its not at the expense of the more creative moons.  There’s simply a balance of reachable moons, making the game even more enjoyable.

Super Mario Odyssey Mario and Cappy Spin

The sound, music, colors, and movements all invoke the great Mario platforming feel that I have not fully embraced since Galaxy.  While most of the 3D Mario titles are all strong, Odyssey seems to just hit a slightly different note that is perfectly timed, equal parts familiarity and refreshing newness that makes it potent blend.  I’m definitely excited to play it thought to completion.

Have you played Mario yet?  What are your thoughts?  Did you preorder? Comment below!

 

9 thoughts on “Currently Playing: Super Mario Odyssey

  1. I’m on the fence about buying a switch. All my friends have got one and I’ve played enough Mario to know I’ll love it. However, I’ve just had a kid so have to put a hold on any big purchase. Send me your thoughts and prayers lol.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve got a buddy in the exact same situation. I will pitch that the Switch has easy pick up-put down in the middle of game to you know, cater to those who also need to tend to their offspring and only have 10-15 min in between lol

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Loving Mario Odyssey. Even thought you don’t need to get many moons to move onto the next world, I can’t help but stick around in each and keep exploring.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve really enjoyed it. Lives up to everything all those reviews claimed. It’s a game with a huge amount of creativity on top of the established model, and it’s just made to be fun throughout. The motion controls don’t work for me as well as I wished they would, but that just loses me access to one move in a sea of other options. Having a great time with it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • As I’ve progressed it’s not lost any shine yet for me. I do agree about the motion controls, I’ve had my moments with them. But given the death system, it’s not been anything too consequential. I would like slightly tougher boss battles I think.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I have not played this game. I have enjoyed other 3D Mario games (such as Super Mario 64, Sunshine and Galaxy), so I was interested how this game compared to the others. I enjoyed exploring the different levels in the 3D Mario games and trying to work out how to collect the items. I remember the games had distinct colours and sounds (usually bright colours and loud, cheerful music).
    What does the player collect in the game? Is there an explanation where the kingdom’s come from? How does using Cappy on different characters change the game? What are the creative moons?

    Like

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