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Super Mario ReMaker photo
Super Mario ReMaker

Enjoy this fanmade Mario Maker clone on PC while it lasts


Probably not long for this world
Dec 31
// Nic Rowen
Anyone want to take bets on how quickly the cease and desist orders will come in for this one? Super Mario ReMaker is a fanmade effort to bring the delight of Super Mario Maker to PC fans. While still very much a work in proc...
Mario & Sonic photo
Mario & Sonic

Mario & Sonic at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games amiibo functionality detailed


Costumes, basically
Dec 29
// Chris Carter
I still can't believe that Mario & Sonic at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games exists. If you would have told my younger self that both characters would be teaming up for not one, but multiple games, including Super Smash B...
Excitebike photo
Excitebike

Excitebike and Birdo join the cast of Super Mario Maker this week


Footage available
Dec 29
// Chris Carter
Super Mario Maker continues to impress with post-launch DLC, and as of December 31, you'll be able to download two new costumes. Excitebike and Birdo are in, with new event courses to boot. While the latter operates exactly ...
Super Mario Maker photo
Super Mario Maker

Sure, I'll take more Mario Maker costumes


Special request: Ninji
Dec 23
// Jordan Devore
So long as Nintendo continues adding costumes to Super Mario Maker, I'll keep unlocking them (except for the Fighter Fly; I simply do not have the skill or patience to beat Gnat Attack on hard mode). EarthBound's own Master B...
Super Mario Galaxy photo
Super Mario Galaxy

Super Mario Galaxy hits the Wii U eShop tomorrow


Bee Mario!
Dec 23
// Jordan Devore
Super Mario Galaxy 2 was made available for download on Wii U at the beginning of the year, and now Nintendo is closing out 2015 with the first game. Super Mario Galaxy joins the Wii U eShop on December 24 in North America. I...
Mario Maker site photo
Mario Maker site

Super Mario Maker course finding website is up


But why isn't this just in the game?
Dec 22
// Nic Rowen
I love me some Super Mario Maker. I think it's one of the coolest things Nintendo has done in years. But its lack of in-game course browsing and searching tools is utterly baffling. The rudimentary tools for finding the level...
Super Mario RPG photo
Super Mario RPG

Pick Me Up! Super Mario RPG being revived for Wii U


European Wii U, though
Dec 21
// Brett Makedonski
A Geno costume in Super Smash Bros. isn't the extent of Nintendo's short-term plans for Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars. The revered and beloved Square-developed SNES game is getting a full port on the Wii U's Vir...

Score attack! Mario, Metal Gear, Witcher, and more games better than Star Wars

Dec 21 // Steven Hansen
Now, at year's end, Destructoid's Brett Makedonski rekindled this bonfire in my head with an innocuous tweet, "How does Rotten Tomatoes work? If something's a 6/10 or better, does that review count as 100% fresh for the aggregation?" I replied, "yeah." And then, [embed]328101:61584:0[/embed] What Brett gets at seems like a no-brainer concern for anyone who works in video games. What happens when the average games gets across-the-board 7s and then comes up as a perfect? Well, thankfully movie reviewing is a bit less insular than video game reviewing and there's a bit more disagreement. There are more people giving negative reviews -- even to almost universally praised things. And that's okay! Let's look at 2015's common Game of the Year award candidates and, via Metacritic, see what their RottenTomatoes "freshness" might look like (the percent of reviews that are positive, versus the average score). The closest thing to a negative review among the 874 total are two instances of 5/10. The lowest Metacritic score here is an 81 (Splatoon) while the highest is 93 (Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, Undertale) for an average of 88. For a more direct comparison, Star Wars: The Force Awakens' Metacritic score (they do movies, too) is 81. RottenTomatoes, which also displays an average rating, albeit less prominently, has the film at 83. I don't think anyone who worked on the project is going to miss his Xmas bonus. This isn't to rail on Metacritic, a common target for its reductionism, for game developer bonuses contingent on its averages, for failing to include individual writer names on its listings. Nor is it to kick the tires on the "do review scores matter" question, crossing up hypothetical opponents and swishing a "read the words" as if it were a mic drop. What these trends point to is a blind spot in game reviewing and the lack of diverse opinion. There are reasons for this, but first, note that the above comparison is, admittedly, not one-to-one. There are publications rating games not on Metacritic, there are game and movie publications that don't score reviews, movie aggregate sites have a wider pool to cull from because of the prominence of movie reviews as newspaper/magazine staples. But the Metacritic sample size is still a large representation of major outlets writing about games. Okay, so, why? Oh, man, so many reasons, most of which overlap in various ways. First let's try this out: You can be smart about games, but absolutely terrible at actually playing Bloodborne, for instance. And that's not me projecting -- I'm the best Souls player on staff. It does get to a good point, though, which is how game reviews are assigned. Familiarity with the French New Wave canon may inform your thoughts on the new CGI Samey Explosions, but lot of styles and techniques work across eras, genres, etc. This knowledge is more cumulative. Games? Content, style, presentation, physical means of interaction vary so wildly. Someone joked they need a community college course on Xenoblade Chronicles X. Twitch shooters and Devil May Cry-style action games require additional physical skill and execution. Sure, knowing about RPGs and progression systems helps a critic working on a sports or action game when those genres started adopting those systems regularly, but god damn, some people just can't do a Dark Souls. And so there are often experts. There's "the Dark Souls woman," or the "the JRPG guy," or the "the MOBA person." And that's not all bad. Sometimes the expert or genre fan has broader context or deeper insights. However, the setup is fated towards homogeneity. Especially when coupled with -- I'd be remiss not to mention this -- the tendency of major video game writing publications towards hiring middle-class-and-up white dudes. Similar types of people with similar experiences all reviewing the same stuff. And there are reasons for this, too: members from that group are most likely, especially in this economy, to be able to work unpaid internships or for the bum rates that writing gets these days, period, while having financial security or backup otherwise. Sometimes it's just a Rolodex problem, as Jenn Frank noted.  It is much more sane to write a review of a 100-minute movie for $50 than a 100-hour game for $50. With its shorter history, gaming media exists more so in the current era of devalued writing that has felled everyone from, well, all the game sites that have closed down recently, to the best film (The Dissolve) and sports/pop culture outlets (Grantland). I think this translates -- to the sincere dismay of everyone involved -- to a lot more "good enough" writing than we'd all like, especially when most of the people who are writing about games are underpaid, hustling freelance, or both. This is a general publishing woe perhaps exacerbated by games writing's shorter canon and fewer agreements on how even to talk about games (aside from the established, book report-y "is it fun?" style). Demanding more rigor from overtaxed, underfunded writers and editors working in a devalued, fraught industry within a generally struggling economy, well, damn, it's tough. A doable step, though, is actively hiring from a wider pool of applicants than your typical just-graduated-22-year-old-Nick. I think here at Destructoid we do a good job simply encouraging our reviewers to be as straightforward and honest as possible without kowtowing behind cookie cutter review formulations and tasteless writing that goes down without a fuss, but serves no one (I'm cautiously optimistic that fans of the genre will enjoy this return to the series roots). Average starts at 5, and all that. Some of the biggest holiday releases (Fallout 4, Halo 5, Rise of the Tomb Raider) came in under 8. But it's almost more disheartening for the state of gaming as a whole that folks across the net will point to an incredibly good score like a 7/10 as rabble rousing, as trolling for hits, and that collectively -- as in the Chart Chart Binks above -- it's rare to even end up on the "negative" side of the spectrum. Someone has to dislike something.
Fun with graph photo
Yes, they all reviewed better
There are exactly 100 professional reviews culled on the Bloodborne Metacritic page. Of that 100, 99 are "positive" and 1 is "mixed," a lowly 7/10, which I'd suggest is still positive. Oh, so nobody dislikes this game? When I...

Mario Maker leak photo
Mario Maker leak

New Super Mario Maker costume leaked


Those cheeky dataminers
Dec 20
// Nic Rowen
Looks like those dang dataminers are up to their old tricks again. According to this video by the YouTube channel GameXplain, they've plied their wicked ways on Super Mario Maker and dug up an as of yet unannounced costume fr...
Super Mario Maker photo
Super Mario Maker

Super Mario Maker is getting a ton of new costumes this week


Badge Arcade Bunny
Dec 18
// Chris Carter
As I've said recently, Nintendo is doing a commendable job of supporting Super Mario Maker. Sure it still has a ways to go until it becomes the definitive level-making tool it was touted as, but a lot of these updates are ge...
Super Mario Maker photo
Super Mario Maker

Super Mario Maker is getting three new elements in a free update


This is how we do it
Dec 17
// Chris Carter
Nintendo is constantly adding new things to Super Mario Maker, and now three new course tools are coming to the game as a free update. You can get the bumper by shaking a grinder (the spike wheel), doors can be turned into wa...
Monster Hunter photo
Monster Hunter

Monster Hunter makes its way into Super Mario Maker


I'm ok with this
Dec 16
// Chris Carter
Bring on the event stages and costume rewards, I say!After plowing through all of the new events this week, I'm ready for more. Thankfully, Nintendo and Capcom are willing to oblige, with a Monster Hunter themed 8-bit fe...
Nintendo photo
Nintendo

Mercedes-Benz explains Nintendo partnership, doesn't mention bags of money


'Many gamers are skeptical about brands'
Dec 16
// Chris Carter
Once a year now or so, the irregular Mercedes-Benz and Nintendo partnership rears up, only to be quickly forgotten in a few weeks. Last year it was free Mario Kart 8 DLC, and recently, an 8-bit car costume for Super Mari...
Nintendo photo
Nintendo

Nintendo partners up with Mercedes-Benz again for Super Mario Maker


Haha
Dec 09
// Chris Carter
Haha, okay. Following up its partnership with Mercedes-Benz for Mario Kart 8 cars and commercials, Nintendo has announced that there will be a new Mercedes GLA "costume" for Super Mario Maker. But completing a special ev...

Review: Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam

Dec 07 // Laura Kate Dale
Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam (3DS)Developer: AlphaDreamPublisher: NintendoReleased: December 4, 2015 (EU) / January 22, 2016 (NA)MSRP: £29.99 / $39.99 USD Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam tells the story of a crossover between the Mario franchise's two RPG iterations, the Mario & Luigi series and the Paper Mario games. In the world of Mario & Luigi, the cowardly green brother and an inquisitive toad go exploring in the depths of Princess Peach's castle, and happen upon a dusty old book. Upon opening the book, which just so happens to be the book in which Paper Mario's universe is contained, our heroes' wafer thin counterparts are unleashed into the 3D world, alongside a number of side characters and villains who also escape with them.  From here it's pretty predictable. Two Bowsers meet, they steal two princesses, two sets of brothers attempt to rescue them. Pretty predictable Mario plot. The narrative presentation on the whole is one of the strongest points on the whole of this latest RPG adventure. The dialogue, character interactions, and general writing were constantly cute, intelligently written, and surprisingly creative for what could easily have been a paint-by-numbers affair.  The localisation of the script is superb, a real step above what you see from most text-heavy adventures. The writing is consistently charming, intelligently self aware, tuned for cultural tastes, and snappy. When not trying to explain mechanics the writing is incredibly well paced and a joy to experience. [embed]324775:61431:0[/embed] The biggest issue for the narrative presentation and writing from moment to moment is the fact that Mario and Luigi remain mute throughout the adventure. This often leads to characters around them explaining their intent in less than elegant ways. Far too often a Toad might interject with a line like "What's that Mario, you think Bowser might have gone this way?" just so Mario could nod yes and the scene could progress. It's a minor issue with an otherwise good set of writing. While the overall plot may play things a little too safe, the journey to get there is very well written. Right, let's get on to the meat of what you're actually doing when you play Paper Jam. You explore the main world from an isometric view, with both Mario and Luigi following your control stick movements. You use the A button to make Mario jump, the B button for Luigi and both if you want them both to jump. This concept of having one button tied to each brother carries over into the combat system and actually works really nicely. At all times both brothers are under your control, it's just up to you to manage both in real time. Combat feels very familiar if you're a long time fan of the Mario RPGs. Enter a turn-based battle, select your attack, and time button presses to deal more damage to enemies or take less damage when being attacked. What helps the combat in Paper Jam stay fresh is the way this individual buttons for each brother mechanic fits in. If you decide to do two-person team attacks, you'll have to keep an eye on which brother is about to be active in the attack and make sure to press his button in time with the attack. If you're being attacked, you'll not only need to time your defense, but keep an eye on who the target is and defend him rather than the other brother. This mental back and forth in combat may seem a small addition, but it really helps freshen up an already strong combat system. The increased difficulty this brought to combat was a really nice thing to see. Boss battles will start as standard fight, but as they progress take some really interesting turns mechanically. From minigame integration to rhythm-based giant papercraft battles, boss fights throw a handful of new battle experiences at the player, ensuring each becomes a really memorable and unique encounter. Occasionally these experiments are more minor misses than hits, but overall I was thankful for the attempts at creative boss battle types. They were usually not too tactical, but it did feel rewarding to watch these bizarre spectacles unfold. The biggest problem with the core gameplay is that outside of battles, much of the it felt very much like things I have already seen and done in other Mario games. Hit blocks with your head, jump on platforms, go down pipes, and collect mushrooms. It's rarely a challenge to move between fights, and very little in the environments felt like it was new, or pushing the creative limits of a Mario environment. Another minor issue Paper Jam struggles with is excessive hand holding when new mechanics are introduced throughout the adventure. Every time something new is expected of you, the game makes sure to spend considerably longer than is necessary overly cautiously explaining what is expected of you. It's painstakingly thorough, which is certainly going to irritate more experienced players. Overall, Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam is a really rock solid game, with a few visible creases that need to be noted before purchase. It captures the bright colorful fun of the Mario universe perfectly, pairing it with incredibly well-localized dialogue and a very strong combat system. While it sometimes holds your hand for a little too long and at times fails to take proper risks, it was consistently polished, enjoyable and memorable. [This review is based on a retail build of the game provided by the publisher.]
Paper Jam photo
Sharp seams, minor creases
Ever since Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars for the Super Nintendo, I've been a big fan of the concept of the Mario-centric RPG. Take characters we know well, bring them into a world with a more structured narrative...

Not for poor people photo
Not for poor people

You can buy designer Super Mario clothes for probably hundreds of dollars


Official partnership with Nintendo
Dec 03
// Steven Hansen
Sure, you can get a knockoff Super Mario Bros. shirt with the plumber, slightly discolored, fighting Darth Vader with a Mickey Mouse head in Chinatown for $5, but ain't nothing like the real thing, baby. Nintendo has partnere...
Mario Maker photo
Mario Maker

Paper Mario is the next Mario Maker costume


Poor Luigi
Dec 01
// Jordan Devore
Nintendo keeps adding new levels with unlockable costumes to Super Mario Maker, and I'm loving it. The next Mystery Mushroom outfit is based on Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam. It's a little weird looking, but that's part of the...
Super Mario Maker photo
Super Mario Maker

Dtoid Designs: The Mario at the Movies Challenge


Let's make some Oscar bait!
Dec 01
// CJ Andriessen
Update: The submission period has expired. Thank you to everyone who entered. Dtoid Designs is back for the threequel and this time, it's personal. Originally for the third month of the contest I was going to go with a festiv...

Dtoid Designs: The five best Un-Mario levels

Nov 30 // CJ Andriessen
[embed]323057:61316:0[/embed] Thank you to everybody who entered this month. We will have a new contest starting on December 1. If you'd rather play these fine levels than watch, here are the level IDs you need: #5 Out of Another World (v 1.1) Disqus User: Algator C8B5-0000-00E0-E743 #4 DonkeyKong Country Jungle Hijinx Disqus User: Anikid 443B-0000-00B9-9B52 #3 Mario RAMPAGE *Post Your Score!! Disqus User: Alfonso Navarro B36A-0000-00E1-CFB3 #2 Pitfall II - The Lost Caverns (Atari) Disqus User: GameMakr24 A4B4-0000-00EC-8BCA #1 Super Sniper Bros: Aim & Fire Disqus User: CTMike 16E0-0000-00E0-4AF8   If you would like to try out the level I created for the Un-Mario Challenge, check out Arino Hawkins & the 1001 Flames here: 43AF-0000-00DD-02F8
Dtoid Designs photo
Check out the winners of round two
This month for the second Dtoid Designs contest, I challenged you to use Super Mario Maker to create the Un-Mario level. How exactly does one create a level that doesn't play like it comes from a Super Mario game using only S...

Mario Kart 8 photo
Mario Kart 8

Mario Kart 8 is getting a TV special on Disney XD this week


Haha what
Nov 30
// Chris Carter
Mario Kart 8 came in with a bang, and ended up lasting quite a while with its two amazing DLC packs. While I still play it on occasion, its fire has unfortunately died down a bit, partially due to the horrible battle mode tha...
Super Mario Maker photo
Super Mario Maker

Super Mario Maker adds the frog suit, NES Remix course


Great news
Nov 27
// Chris Carter
Nintendo has provided a new course for Super Mario Maker, based on the NES Remix series. After completion, it will net you the frog suit from Mario 3, which wasn't in the game previously -- it's important to note h...
Modern Mario photo
Modern Mario

Don't go to a Walmart tomorrow: get the Modern Mario amiibo online now


It's up
Nov 26
// Chris Carter
Recently, Walmart tried to tempt folks into walking into a store and picking up one of "at least" 21 Modern Mario amiibo, but don't do that -- instead, just pick one up casually online. Why are these such a big deal? Well, th...
GameBarcodes photo
GameBarcodes

GameBarcodes distill games down frame by frame


Journey's is the best
Nov 19
// Darren Nakamura
A couple weeks ago an imgur page was floating around the Internet showing various films with each frame reduced to its average color and represented as a single vertical line in what turn out to be often vibrant barcodes. Thi...

Review: Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash

Nov 18 // Chris Carter
Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash (Wii U)Developer: Camelot SoftwarePublisher: NintendoMSRP: $49.99Release Date: November 20, 2015 There's no two ways about it -- Ultra Smash  is a bare-bones game. If you came to this court expecting anything other than basic tennis, you will walk away disappointed. And even then, it doesn't handle the basics as well as its predecessors. There is a degree of strategy at work in Ultra Smash, just like in the past games in the series. Serves can be timed for greater effect, specific hits can be returned as direct counters (such as returning a topspin with a slice), while twitch movement and the ability to predict your opponent's moves are still paramount to your success. In that regard, nothing really has changed. You do have a few extra control options as the GamePad can mirror the TV (and I do mean "mirror," as perspectives aren't shifted for same-screen play, sadly) or function as a scoreboard. The Wii U Pro Controller and the Wii mote can also be used, though the latter does not feature motion support. The core modes are Classic or Mega Battle, the latter of which just throws in a Mega Mushroom occasionally to allow your characters to grow larger for a limited time, with enhanced stats to boot. Yep, the big gimmick this time is a power-up, and only one of them, on top of the fact that only one player per side can get it at a time. There's no story mode and no real experience to gain outside of coins (which unlock a mere four characters and courts paved with new material, like carpet) -- what you see is what you get. [embed]320462:61082:0[/embed] Other modes are just as paltry. There's the Mega Ball Rally, which tasks players with slicing a ball back and forth until someone (either another person or the CPU) screws up. It's literally one round and then it's over. It's almost indistinguishable from the other modes. Then there's the amiibo-based Knockout Challenge, which is the closest you're going to get to a progression-based system. In short, you'll be pitted against a crescendoing circuit of matches one after another, earning some bonus rewards (which again, can just be bought with coins) along the way. It's basically Classic mode with the ability to play with an amiibo partner, without any of the amiibo depth from other games like Smash Bros. I had a chance to try out online play before launch, and things seemed rather smooth, even if there are no lobbies or extras of any kind. It's probably the only real shining light of this package, but even then, it feels odd that it's a surprise for a Nintendo game to feature it in 2015. Of course there's a caveat -- you cannot play directly with friends. And... that's all you're getting. If you can stomach playing classic mode for hours on end with someone local, you'll probably find something to love here. Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash feels like it was rushed into the holiday season to mask the absence of Star Fox. You're better off just playing any other previous game in the series, which is particularly easy to do since the first game is on the Wii U Virtual Console for just 10 bucks. [This review is based on a retail build of the game provided by the publisher.]
Mario Tennis review photo
Swing low
Once upon a time, Mario Tennis was a national pastime at pretty much every household I visited. Back in the year 2000 there weren't a whole lot of alternative sports games outside of a few gems (I miss EA Sports Big), an...

Now I've got your power! photo
Now I've got your power!

Check out all of Mega Man 1, recreated in Mario Maker!


Promoted from out community blogs
Nov 17
// Tony Ponce
[As someone who joined Dtoid in what I call the silver age, I know of past alumni of Dtoid but nothing specific. Decommissioned fighting robot Tony Ponce swings by show us his extremely ambitious remake of Mega Man 1 through ...
Mario & Luigi photo
Mario & Luigi

Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam finally has a release date


Europe, then North America
Nov 12
// Laura Kate Dale
Hey 3DS Mario fans, we finally have a firm release date for Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam. During today's Nintendo Direct presentation, we learned that the game will be releasing in Europe on December 4, 2015 and North America...
Huzzah photo
Huzzah

Finding new Super Mario Maker levels gets easy in December


Website to queue up levels
Nov 12
// Jed Whitaker
A new website for Super Mario Maker is going to be released in December to make it easier to find levels and queue them up to be played the next time you're at your console. The site will be available on both PC and Mobile. Players can search for various parameters to find the kinds of levels they want.  More details to be revealed closer to launch.
Meet your maker photo
Meet your maker

Uh, Mario? Is that you?


Mario Maker easter egg
Nov 05
// Jordan Devore
Super Mario Maker got an important update last night. My focus was drawn to the new costumes and much-needed ability to lay down checkpoints in levels, but Nintendo also slipped in an easter egg. It's super easy to access, bu...
Super Mario Maker photo
Super Mario Maker

Mario Maker has new costumes and checkpoints


Totem Link!
Nov 04
// Jordan Devore
It's a great time to get back into Super Mario Maker. As of tonight's update, we can now place mid-level checkpoints. Finally! They're going to have such a big impact on my willingness to clear people's levels. To add a check...
Ultra Smash photo
Ultra Smash

The Mario Tennis roster has at least one pleasant surprise


Obligatory spoilers
Nov 04
// Jordan Devore
The more I see of Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash, the more I want to wait for an eventual sale. I've played a little, and it does feels good, but my concerns about Camelot not breaking enough new ground persist. There are also too...

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