In 1991, the SNES was released in North America (1990 for the Super Famicom in Japan). It was intended to be released later than that, but the Sega Genesis was starting to pick up steam and Nintendo panicked, releasing its system sooner than it wanted to (yet somehow, it still ended up being the greatest console of all time, in my opinion). In North America, it launched with three games: F-Zero, Pilotwings, and the game I’m about to review, Super Mario World. Okay, enough of the history lesson. You didn’t come here to learn stuff. You came here to read a review of Super Mario World (or whack it to Pokémon hentai and erotica if some of the searches that people used to find my site are any indication). So, without further adieu, let’s begin.
The story in this game is that Bowser has once again kidnapped the princess and it’s up to Mario (and Luigi) to save her. Wow, what a surprise. You know, I’m starting to think that Princess Peach isn’t getting kidnapped at all. I think she’s willingly going with Bowser and secretly screwing him behind Mario’s back. I mean, in Super Mario Sunshine, Bowser Jr. flat out tells Peach that she’s his mother, and she doesn’t even deny it. Anyways, along the way, you meet Yoshi and his friends, who were trapped in blocks by Bowser. Oh, and the Koopalings return from Super Mario Bros. 3 to try to foil your plans. That’s pretty much it in terms of story.
The music in this game is amazing. Alright, all the overworld themes are just the same song remixed in a different style, but actually, the fact that it’s the same song is a testament to the sheer genius of Koji Kondo and his immense talent for composing music. You see, although they all have the same basic melody, they are all played in a different style, and somehow, they end up feeling different from each other as well. The regular theme is cheery and bouncy, as is expected from a Mario game, and I love how bongos are added whenever you hop on Yoshi. The underwater theme is slowed down, and it sounds very dreamy. The underground/cave theme is also slowed down, and an echo is added that gives a true sense of exploring deep into a big cave. The Ghost House song does the job and succeeds in being creepy. The castle theme is dark and ominous, and you get a feeling of evil from every castle. Not only are the overworld themes great though, but so are the other songs. I love the intro cutscene, and the map songs are also great. Oh, and that Bowser boss battle has a kickass Metal song. Mario + Metal= Awesome! Seriously, listen to this and tell me it doesn’t kick an ungodly amount of ass:
All in all, this game has a fantastic OST.
The graphics are also good. Now, admittedly, the Super Nintendo would, over the years, get games that put Super Mario World’s visuals to shame, like Donkey Kong Country, Super Mario RPG, and Killer Instinct, but when it was released, it looked amazing. The game is bright and colorful, though that’s to be expected from a Mario game. The visuals are fairly detailed as well compared to earlier games in the series, especially the movements of the characters. And to add to the overall experience, there are some cool Mode 7 effects, such as Bowser zooming in before the final boss fight. So yeah, I would say that this game has some nice, appealing graphics.
Awesome music and good graphics would mean nothing if the game wasn’t fun. Thankfully, Super Mario World delivers. It has the same great running and jumping gameplay from past Mario games, and adds much more. Now, there are only three powerups in the game, two of which are the Mushroom and the Fire Flower. While this may discourage people used to the many powerups that Super Mario Bros. 3 offered, the Cape more than makes up for that. I freaking love using the Cape to fly, and if you ask me, it’s one of the best powerups in the entire series because it really made the Super in the title mean super. I like it even more than the Raccoon Tail and Tanooki Suit. However, the biggest addition in the form of gameplay is definitely Yoshi. And let me tell you, he is awesome. I mean, who wouldn’t want to ride a dinosaur that just ate all their enemies? Not only that, but depending on his color or which Koopa Troopa he puts in his mouth, he can also spit fireballs, create a little earthquake by jumping, or fly. And just when you think Nintendo did all they can do by adding Yoshi, they add even more cool stuff to the gameplay experience. They added a spin jump, and there are some other cool things, like climbing fences (it’s way more fun than it sounds, trust me), and carrying around baby Yoshis that can swallow enemies whole.
Oh, and I love the level design in this game. The varying paths of the Ghost Houses and the different ways to reach Bowser in Bowser’s Castle are standouts that come to the top of my head. Speaking of levels, did I mention that there are 96 of them? No? Well, there are. The game is positively huge, and it feels like a true adventure the whole way through. Luckily, there’s enough variety so as not to make the game drag on and seem too long. I like how all the levels are on a convenient map that you can travel across. It makes it a more unified and cohesive experience. There are all sorts of secrets in this game, including a hidden set of levels you get after beating Star Road, plus many more. It adds a lot of replay value to the game, as even if you beat it, you’ll want to keep playing to find them all. There are many, many enemies, from the old standbys like Goombas and Koopa Troopas to new faces like Wigglers and Rexes. Finally, the boss fights are also great, and the battle with Bowser has to be one of the all time greatest boss fights in Mario history. Throwing the Mecha-Koopas up and hitting Bowser while trying to dodge everything he throws at you? Simply outstanding, and intense.
As you can tell from my review, this is simply an amazing game. Nay, it is a perfect game. While maybe not my all time favorite game, it is definitely up there. I know a lot of people will tell you that Super Mario Bros. 3 is the ultimate traditional Mario game, but I must respectfully disagree. While SMB3 is another amazing game, I feel that Super Mario World one upped it in pretty much every way, and I feel that this is the best traditional Mario experience. Truly one of the all time greatest Platformers. All in all, it’s a fantastic game that I would recommend to anyone who’s never played it, and it was the perfect introduction to the Super Nintendo.