Super Mario for the 3DS is one of my most anticipated 3DS titles.  It’s no secret that Mario is my favorite Nintendo franchise as it’s the game series that got me into Nintendo in the first place.

Super Mario 3DS is completely different than any other Mario title out there.  The game plays more like a 2D Mario game in a 3D world.  So unlike the other 3D Mario games the goal is to get to the end of the stage instead of collecting stars.

Mario does, however, have many of the moves that he acquired from the 3D Mario games.  Mario is able to hold down the L button to charge up a jump and do a back flip.  Additionally Mario can ground pound, wall jump, do a twisting flip, long jump, and more!

The demo featured four stages to try out.  All of which feel very Mario in nature and offer some great 3D platforming.

The last stage took place on an Airship, originally from Super Mario Bros. 3, which was awesome.  The boss was even Boom Boom from Super Mario Bros. 3.  In fact the entire game has a Super Mario Bros. 3 vibe right down to the power ups.

Speaking of power ups, the Tanooki Suit is back!  While using this suit Mario has the ability to float in the air and to attack enemies with his tail.  I found it disappointing that there appeared to be no way for Mario to fly with the suit, or turn to stone, but I hope these are features that make it into the final game.

The other power up I came across was the Fire Flower that gave Mario the ability to shoot fireballs.  This power up felt great and was extremely useful in dealing with enemies.

Each stage in the demo also had three hidden star coins.  Nintendo has been hiding the same type of coins in the two New Super Mario Bros. games, so I’m sure collecting them all will lead to good things in the final game.

During my time with the game I was also fortunate enough to discover that the trick to get 99 lives, that is featured in many Mario titles, has made its return in Super Mario 3DS.  Additionally other Mario secrets, such as hidden 1-up blocks, can be found in the game and some of them in familiar places.  This adds a bit of nostalgia to the title that long term Mario fans will love!

Super Mario 3DS is going to be a must own title for every 3DS owner.  I may have only played a short demo of the game but it was more than enough to make me want more.  Luckily 3DS owners won’t have to wait too long since this title is scheduled to be released before the end of 2011!

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