Review by SuperKing

Reviewed: 11/30/04

Is it just another port?

Super Mario 64 DS
The port that turned heads.

As you know by reading some reviews and seeing some screenshots, SM64DS is a port of the brilliant game Super Mario 64, which debuted in 1996 on the Nintendo 64 gaming system. The great thing about this particular port though, is that it is an impressive 3-D world moved to a handheld system… and it’s not even a direct “port.” There are plenty of new additions to keep any Mario freak busy for a while. Let’s break this game down.

Gameplay: (9/10)

The controversial topic. Everyone has their own two cents on how the controls were in this game compared to the N64. There is no analog stick in this game, but you can use the D-Pad or Touch Screen in it’s place. The touch screen does a nice job of emulating the Analog stick, giving you great control over the characters, but it feels a bit awkward having your thumb there. The D-Pad works well enough to get the job done, and Nintendo put in a little smidge of old-school in the game by having to hold Y if you want to run using the D-Pad. Maybe it was just a coincidence. This game still plays as well as the version in 96’, and if you like the DS’s button scheme you will love the controls in this game. On a side note, the minigames included run amazing. The controls vary in those games, but all of them are superb.

Story: (9/10)

It’s about time the fat plumber stopped playing golf and tennis and got back to his roots. Peach is gone, and when Mario, Luigi and Wario try and get her….. they don’t come back. Yoshi, the forgotten dinosaur missing from the 96’ version has to save them! Nice little twist at the beginning, but eventually just turns back into the original plot from Mario 64. Nothing really new here. I would lower the score if it weren’t a port, because like the old saying goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

Graphics: (10/10)

Amazing. The best graphics so far on a portable system. Everything is shown in crystal clear color and smooth, brilliant animation. Astonishing 3-D worlds are just gorgeous on this handheld. Even the additions on the game stay true to the “classic” look of the old game.

Sound: (10/10)

Same old, same old. New levels get new music and new characters get some new sound bytes. If you loved the soundtrack and effects in the last game, you’ll love them through your headphones. Another little easter egg is when you shut the DS (sleep mode) Mario says “Bye!” and when you open it up again, it’s the classic sound of the opening to the original. (“It’s-a me, Mario!”)

Play Time/ Replay Value: (9/10)

If you’re playing this game, there is a great chance you have played the original. After you beat the game with 150 Stars, there is still a slight bit of replay in here with the multiplayer and the minigames. Other than that, you are pretty much done with the main game. Mario64DS should take a gamer about 50 straight hours first time through, shorter if you played the first. ;D

Final Recommendation: (9/10)

For 30 bucks, this game is a hit. Anyone who is a fan of Mario platforming owes it to themselves to pick this game up. It’s decent in length if you like taking trips down memory lane, and is a better port than the “Classic NES Series” that came out for Game Boy Advance with nothing new added in. There will be enough extras in this game to keep you busy for a while.

Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Would you recommend this Review? Yes No

Got Your Own Opinion?

Submit a review and let your voice be heard.