Before reading our Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS review readers should know that this is simply a port of Super Mario Maker for the Wii U that released back in 2015. The Nintendo 3DS version makes many attempts at bringing players the same experience as its Wii U counterpart, but fails to deliver key features that made the Wii U version so good. Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS does supply players with a mobile way to craft levels and stages, which at its core was the meat of the Wii U version. The powerful array of tools & items make it easy to create and edit stages using the 3DS touch screen.
Making Mario Levels The Easy Way
Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS makes creating Mario levels easy as 1,2,3! Simply drag and drop different stage components just like the Wii U version. Testing a stage is easy, and works like the Wii U version. The only complaint I had when using the stage editor was the smaller screens of the 3DS, which can make creating extra large levels harder due to the systems smaller screen size.
Playing the 100 Super Mario Challenge – Nintendo Designed Levels
Nintendo did include 100 pre-made levels in Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS. While some of these are versions of the same levels featured in the Wii U version of the game it does provide a break from the level building portions of the game. While none of these 100 levels are truly memorable, they do provide the player with some core level creating concepts and ideas. When I was playing through the 100 pre-made levels I couldn’t help but think that the levels we’re more of a tutorial on creative level building than an actual Mario adventure. Simply put – the 100 included Mario levels are shallow in comparison to full-fledged Mario adventures you’ve played in the past. As you complete the 100 Super Mario Challenge levels you can earn in-game medals. At first you can only play 88 of the 100 available Super Mario Challenge levels, with the remaining 12 only unlockable after you complete all the stage orientated medal challenges (like not using Mario’s jump on a certain level).
Super Mario Maker for the Nintendo 3DS does provide the system with another great platforming game. The finely tuned gameplay mechanics of Mario’s Goomba stomping and jumping mechanics are on-par with previous Mario games. This concept at it’s core makes it a great game for Mario fans, who can now enjoy Nintendo’s great platforming engine on levels designed by the player.
No 3D for Super Mario Maker 3DS
Graphically Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS is about the same as the Wii U versions. Levels can be created using different art-styles from the many different generations of Super Mario games. For instance, you can make levels in 8-bit (NES style) graphics, 16-bit and more. My only complaint about the graphics is the name of the game – Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS. Having the words “for Nintendo 3DS” is a little misleading. The game doesn’t support 3D, which was a letdown for me as I’ve become accustomed to playing 3DS games with the 3D turned all the way up.
Multiplayer & Sharing in Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS
One of the best features of Super Mario Maker for the Wii U was the ability to share and download custom stages designed by others around the world. Unfortunately this is one of the features missing from the Nintendo 3DS version. The only way to share stages for Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS is by using local wireless or StreetPass, which requires the users to be in close proximity to each other to get the feature to work. Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS does allow users to collaborate on stages together, which is something the Wii U version didn’t allow. Being able to work on stages with a friend does cut down on the amount of time needed to create larger levels, and can be quite fun when working on a stage with a friend or family member. But the removal of all the online stage sharing features from the Wii U version hinder the replay value of Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS. Hopefully Nintendo opts to update the game sometime soon, as this feature was one of the best features on the Wii U version.
What No Mystery Mushrooms?
While never intended to add significant gameplay value, the Wii U version of Super Mario Maker did have a special item called a Mystery Mushroom that allowed players to scan their amiibo characters into the game. This allowed players to craft stages that centered on different themes, like scanning a Pikachu amiibo and making a stage themed after Pokemon. The Mystery Mushroom feature is missing from Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS. This doesn’t make a whole lot of sense considering Nintendo’s big push for the New Nintendo 3DS which includes an amiibo reader built right into the system. While not a deal breaker entirely, I was disappointed by the absence of the Mystery Mushroom feature.
Final Thoughts on Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS
While the core concepts of Super Mario Maker have made their way into the 3DS version it feels like a watered down copy of the Wii U version. I don’t understand why Nintendo didn’t include some of the best features from the Wii U version in Super Mario Maker for the 3DS. Features like being able to share and receive customized stages from the internet extended the Wii U versions replay value greatly. Also, not supporting stereophonic 3D was also a letdown, as the retro & contemporary art-styles of the levels would have looked good in 3D. If you already own a copy of Super Mario Maker for the Wii U than you may want to pass on the 3DS version. The 3DS version doesn’t bring anything new to the table besides being able to collaborate on stages with a friend over local wireless play. If you don’t own a Wii U or Super Mario Maker for the Wii U than the 3DS version might be right for you. Having the ability to create almost unlimited stages can be fun. With a steep price ($39.99) – Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS needs more something more to put it over the edge of its Wii U counterpart. I wish Nintendo had opted to include more levels designed by the development team.
Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS Final Review Score
- Gameplay : 9 / 10
- Graphics : 7 / 10
- Replay Value : 7 / 10
- Music & Sound : 8 / 10
- Final Review Score : 7.7 / 10