New Super Mario Brothers Game Is Spectacular in 3D

Courtesy of Nintendo
If there's a Mario fan in the house, November 13 is probably going to be a big day for him or her. Next week Nintendo officially releases Super Mario 3D Land, a game that brings everyone's favorite red-hatted plumber into the third dimension.

Since the launch of the Nintendo 3DS, there have only been a few games that would compel anyone to pick up another handheld console. But with this new title, Nintendo fans may find something to finally make them break out their wallets.


Courtesy of Nintendo

The game features Mario in a full 3D world. He runs, jumps, and scoots over obstacles and can collect a Tanuki raccoon suit that lets him smash enemies and even fly.

The game is completely three-dimensional, and you can move all around the board, grabbing coins and jumping up walls in what amounts to real space. The gameplay is compelling and smooth -- more of a platform puzzle game than a traditional run and jump adventure. I'd recommend it mostly for older players.

The most interesting part, however, is the help system. Folks (like me) who are stuck at different levels receive power-ups when they die too many times and a super power-up when they're clearly out-matched. Meaning if you die three times, you get a Tanuki suit, and when you die five times, you get a super suit that can knock enemies out of the way and essentially ensures that you survive the level without incident.

Super Mario 3D Land is officially available on November 13 for $40 and truly showcases the 3DS' three-dimensional capabilities. Thus far, the 3DS has been hit or miss for me. Although I was excited about Star Fox in 3D, for example, I found that game to be quite difficult to play because you were constantly moving the entire device around to aim at enemies, resulting in a loss of the three-dimensional effects at times and a blurred screen.

Super Mario 3D Land, on the other hand, is just like good old Mario -- but in 3D. Nintendo tried to add those features to a lot of its games in the past, but this looks to be the one they finally got right. If you're in the market for a Christmas present over the next few months or so, this might be a good choice, especially considering the run on toys and games that's sure to overwhelm stores come Thanksgiving.

Do you plan on buying your kids video games this holiday? Would this one be on the list?

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