Gamer’s guide to Super Mario 3D All-stars

Nintendo’s re-released game has some unfortunate flaws

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Ty McNeece, Staff Member

Super Mario 3D All-Stars is a collection of re-released games that contain three of Mario’s best journeys. Nintendo released it for the 35th anniversary of the Mario franchise. It is a way for players to revisit or discover some of the best Mario games of all time with the new Nintendo Switch. However, the remastered versions of these games are remarkably unremarkable.

Super Mario 64

The first game on the list of remasters is Super Mario 64. In 1996, the release of Super Mario 64 paved the way for some of the best games in history. It had a charm that most games back then didn’t and still don’t. Nintendo takes that charm away in the 3D All-Stars release when they radically mess with the art style.

Nintendo took the textures and made them look like an early 2000s flash game that one would play when they should have been listening to a lecture in Digital Art and Design. The roundness of Mario’s eyes don’t fit well with his jagged, low-poly count body, and the trees look like they should be pixelated instead of their new bubbly rendition.

Worst of all, the game’s aspect ratio doesn’t match that of the Switch’s hardware, in spite of the fact that other games in this release do.

Super Mario Sunshine

Next up is Super Mario Sunshine. This is one of the best Mario games ever, but Nintendo still had to toy with the mechanics to the point of losing the game’s original spirit. For example, they give the player no control over how much Fludd they can spray. It’s binary.

The only options are big spray and no spray. Meanwhile, they only took the time to upscale the 2D elements of the game, without doing anything to improve that which is three dimensional. This leads to a strange juxtaposition of elements that doesn’t seem to make much sense.

Super Mario Galaxy

Finally, there’s Super Mario Galaxy. While the game was controversial upon its initial release, overall this is a fairly decent remaster. While there are some nitpicky things, There’s nothing that detracts from the experience as a whole.

In conclusion, Super Mario 3D All-Stars is all over the map. While it allows players to experience some old classics, the quality of the remasters is radically incoherent. While Sunshine and Galaxy fit within the native aspect ratio of the switch, 64 didn’t. They were inconsistently selective about the choices they made in remastering each game, and that incoherence is tangible.

This release gets 3 out of 5 Super Stars.