zipped through the first wario land game (for the original game boy) this week. as you may know, the game is sub-titled “super mario land 3” but has pretty much nothing to do w/ super mario land 2 (which i reviewed a year ago here). wario land features the newly minted nemesis from that game in the starring role, and although it’s a fairly typical platformer, it’s a breath of fresh air from the regular mario series. instead of jumping on enemies as with mario, here wario uses brute force to charge into them and flip them over. powerups are provided in the form of three hats, a dragon hat (which enables you to shoot fire), a bull hat (increases charge ability and speed), and a jet hat (for flying).
the gameplay, as you’d expect, is tight, and there are several moments of brilliance scattered throughout. there’s also an increased emphasis on exploring, more so than in super mario world (1990) or mario land 2 (1992), which is enjoyable. this game (from 1994) has 15 treasures hidden among its 40 levels which really adds to the gameplay in a way that collecting dinosaur coins in mario world didn’t, along with a handful of second exits. the different endings, dependent on how many coins and treasures you have, do a good job providing additional motivation to not just rush through each level. all of this along with entertaining enemies and graphics and good music make this one worth playing, despite its only mild difficulty. like sml2, wario land was also developed by nintendo’s R&D1. i’ve inadvertently played a lot of their games, so i’m going to have to work my way through the rest of them. and yes i def. have wario land 2 lined up for next year.
la la la, la la la la la links:
– text from the instruction booklet, where you’ll learn the crucial info that up+A jumps will allow you to jump higher
– good walkthrough at IGN
– page at wikipedia
– screenshots of the six endings