Nintendo told us we could only stream New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe for the Nintendo Switch for exactly twenty minutes. So that’s what me and Paul did. You can relive our frantic act of improvised content-creation right here in this convenient YouTube archive.
The game’s not out until January 2019, though we have it now thanks to Nintendo (hence the restrictions). To capitalise on our early access, I played as the new character, Toadette. Toadette, like Super Luigi U’s Nabbit, is recommended for beginner players. Paul played as Nabbit, so that, for investigative purposes, we could fairly compare these two “easy mode” characters.
Nabbit was previously only playable in Super Luigi U, though now he’s playable in the main New Super Mario Bros. U campaign as well. Nabbit runs turbo fast and does not die from touching enemies. Only pits can devour Nabbit’s soul. When I first co-oped Super Luigi U with friends, the most Mario-inexperienced player in the room controlled Nabbit. That player decimated us in every stage. Nabbit isn’t just easy mode. Nabbit is baby mode. He is hilarious, and I love him.
Toadette is a much subtler easy mode. I’ve only spent an hour or so with her, though seeing as I’ve personally obsessed over the controls in Mario games since about 1985, I noticed the difference before I could collect my first mushroom: she accelerates and stops with pinpoint accuracy. There’s far less meat and weight to her than to Mario or Luigi. Some critics might eventually say she’s more “responsive,” and I don’t disagree. Though I will say I have developed a taste for Mario’s lovingly slow responses when it comes to stopping or turning around.
Things get wild when Toadette eats a mushroom. (Aside: ain’t that cannibalism?) She doubles in size just like you’d expect a Mario character to do. When you get a fire flower or an ice flower her head-shroom colours change up and she stays big.
Then you touch a super crown and New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe does the video game equivalent of slapping you in the face to wake you up. She just turns into a human-like person all of a sudden.
Yes, we all reacted viscerally to the super crown back at E3. It resulted in a beautiful avalanche of what-if conversations that climaxed with the birth of Bowsette, the greatest internet meme of 2018. I’d thought that clearly I’d be over it by the time I first played the game.
Well, I wasn’t over it.
That first crown weirded me out, man. The peppy little sound effect when you collect it simply does not match up with the weirdness of what just happened. Faster than you can snap your fingers, Toadette’s entire genre of creature changes.
This effect is incredibly pronounced once you progress to some of Super Mario U Deluxe’s more elaborate stages. New Super Mario Bros. U, perhaps in response to the criticism that New Super Mario Bros. Wii was too crowded in multiplayer mode, features much more wide-open obstacle courses, with power-ups popping out like Halloween candy.
So when you’re really trucking through a stage, you’re going to see Toadette grab a mushroom and get big, grab a fire flower and change colours, grab a super crown and become a humanoid, then accidentally touch a fire flower and become a walking fungus again, before getting another super crown—she’s just flip-flopping back and forth between humanoid and mushroom person and it really rips my skull apart, man.
Peachette is interesting to control. She’s essentially Toadette’s own unique version of the squirrel suit that Mario and the other characters gain when they collect a super acorn. If you hold the jump button after jumping, you float. As with Toadette’s basic movements, there’s less weight and heft to her floating than with other characters’ squirrel suits. Even in midair, she can turn on whatever the Mushroom Kingdom equivalent of a dime is. (A piece of ten?) Also, her hang time is drastically boosted from that of her more squirrel-prone companions.
I want to play the whole darn game as her, just because I love Mario games about as much as I love new experiences. I played this game as Mario already.
I absolutely must see the look on Princess Peach’s face when this body-snatching Eldritch monstrosity struts up and throws open that jail door.
I loved New Super Mario Bros. U on the Nintendo Wii U. I only ever played it once, though it was a heck of a once. I only ever played through Super Luigi U once, too, and that was also a heck of a time. Now, arriving just in time for me to play it during my holiday break in Indianapolis, Indiana, New Super Mario U Deluxe is here to put my memories to the test.
For example, it’s already testing my memory of its name. There was New Super Mario Bros. on the DS. Then there was New Super Mario Bros. Wii on the Wii. Then came New Super Mario Bros. 2 for the Nintendo 3DS. Why wasn’t it “New Super Mario Bros. 3DS”? Then there was New Super Mario Bros. U on the Wii U. We were back to including the hardware in the game. Then Super Luigi U—no “New,” no “Mario,” no “Bros.” Now we’ve got New Super Mario Bros. U and Super Luigi U in one package, and it’s called New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe.
They kept both the “U” and the “New.” Is the “New” Super Mario Bros. series not too old to be new? The first one came out in 2006. 12-year-olds are not “newborns.” When is New Super Mario Bros. going to just become Super Mario Bros.? Is the next Super Mario Bros. iteration going to be called New New Super Mario Bros.?
Couldn’t they have gone for maximum combo effect, and called this game “New New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe For Nintendo Switch?”
Okay, I’m done with that “joke.”
I hope to make a video about New New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe For Nintendo Switch closer to its release.
It runs in a rock-solid 60fps in handheld mode, by the way.