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Nintendo made a ton of announcements during E3 2013, and among them was a brand new multiplayer
Mario game in the form of Super Mario 3D World for the Wii U
But they didn't just announce it, as we actually got to play it too. So we figured we'd do
what we do best and analyze everything shown of the game so far, including the footage
we took ourselves, to see what secrets it all might be hiding!
And with that, let's get started.
Okay, so as the game's title suggests, Super Mario 3D World is obviously a sequel to Super
Mario 3D Land for the Nintendo 3DS. Big shocker I know.
After all, 3D Land did have a pretty distinct feel to it compared to the other 3D Mario
games and that's still very much in-tact here as well.
Take moving-around for example. The game still features the sticky 8-way directional movement
as 3D Land. Basically, if you're playing using the GamePad's control stick, the game generally
locks you into 1 of 8 directions, almost as if you were using a Control-Pad.
But like in 3D Land, you actually do have slightly more control control if you nudge
the control stick slowly, which allows for an even greater freedom of movement.
And running still works the same way too, where you get an additional speed-boost after
dashing for a second or so, as indicated by the spark here
But this time, if you keep on running, you'll actually get a second speed-boost as indicated
by an even larger spark, and the dust cloud
Now speaking of movement, there are now 4-playable characters as you probably well know, and
they are Mario, Luigi, Peach, and Blue Toad, as compared to just Mario & Luigi of the previous
game. And they all move handle noticable differently from one another.
Take their running speed, for example. As we can see here, while Mario and Luigi run
at an average pace, Toad is the fastest of the bunch and Peach is the slowest--hey cut
her some slack, she does have to hold her dress after all.
Though interestingly, if we take a look at this clip, we can see Mario actually gains
some slight ground on Toad briefly, as he seems to reach his top-speed just a bit before
Toad does
And they all handle differently while jumping too. Now although Mario, Blue Toad, and Peach
all jump at similar heights, Luigi leaps noticeable higher. And he gets some additional hang-time
both too, though Peach outclasses everyone with her ability to hover in the air for an
extra second or so, which can be a real life-saver.
Now if any of this sounds familiar, that might be because this is practically identicial
to Super Mario Bros. 2 which featured the same four characters with the exact same running
and jumping traits. In fact, even the character's artwork is more reminiscent of the cartoon
characters of the NES era than it is of their more modern 3D representations
In addition, the characters even retain the abiltiy to perform a super jump by crouching
for several seconds. Now while this also appeared in Super Mario 3D Land, in hasn't been seen
otherwise since its original appearance in--you guessed it--Super Mario Bros. 2.
So it seems pretty clear the game is taking at least some inspiration from that title.
Now besides the crouch jump, the characters also have access to every move that was available
to in 3D Land, such as wall-jumps, long-jumps, side-jumps, backflips, roll-attacks, ground-pounds,
and yes, you can still climb trees and even perform a hand-stand on top of them too, before
flipping off in spectacular fashion. You go Cat Luigi
But it's not all just old news as the characters have learned some new tricks too, like being
able to pick each other up and throw them around, just like in the New Super Mario Bros.
And that's not the only element being lifted from those game, like the 4-player co-op we
already mentioned. And as part of that, the bubble ability also returns, and it functions
much like before, with characters who have died floating back into the level inside bubble,
which can then be popped by another player who touches it.
But this time, the bubbled-player can also pop out of it themselves at any-time, which
a nice addition
So that about covers it for the core move-set, but of course, the power-ups allow access
to even more moves.
So let's start off by taking a look at the brand new Cat Bell power-up that turns your
character into an adorable cat. Awwww.
In Cat form you gave access to a wide array of moves, like a new claw swipe, a slide that
replaces the roll, and if you're in the air, you can even perform a dive attack
But the main addition is that they can now scamper up walls cat-style--and they can even
move side-toi-side while doing this--which is useful for finding all kinds of secret
areas, as we discovered during our play-time with the game.
They can even scamper up flag poles too for an easy 1-Up.
But you can't climb forever, as you can tell by Mario tiring out here.
Now while The Cat Bell is the only new power-up we've seen, there are a bunch of returning
ones too.
Like Mushrooms, which makes sense as the game retains the classic power-up based health
system used in Super Mario 3D-Land instead of the health-meter used in every other 3D
Mario game.
Fire Flowers are also back--and in this brief scene, we can see that the Tanooki suit is
too. And it appears to function just like it did in 3D-Land, allowing you to gain some
additional airtime by gliding slowly back to the ground--and we're going to guess the
tail-whip move is back too. But what we don't know is if it'll let you turn into a Statue,
like in Super Mario Bros. 3, or if you'll have find the special Statue Leaf, like in
Super Mario 3D Land
And based on our play-time with the game, we know that the invincibility Stars also
return, but they have a new ability this time: Sharing. You see, if you collect a Star for
yourself, you can now share the wealth simply by touching any of your teammates, making
them invincible too--cool!
Finally, while we were searching for secrets during the E3 demo, we discovered that the
Question Boxes from Super Mario 3D Land that you can wear are also back. And like before,
you'll earn more coins the faster you move while wearing them.
And speaking of Power-Ups, you can still store a spare one just like in 3D Land which you
can access at any time by pressing the Minus-Button.
Now as you might have noticed, all of the power-ups shown so far, besides the Cat Suit,
return from 3D Land. But they're far from the only returning element, some of which
go back much further in the Mario series.
Such as checkpoint flags, 1-Ups, or Red Rings, which still spawn 8 Red Coins and award a
power-up for collecting them all in time.
Then there are the Clocks which add precious seconds to the timer
Oh, and Warp Boxes are back too, which transport you to another part of the level. Though this
time, they'll automatically pull everyone else into it just a second or so after the
first player hops in
So there's really no mistaking this game for anything but a sequel to 3D Land, but there
are quite a few elements being taken from other Mario games too.
Like the POW block, which believe it or not, is the first time it's actually appeared in
a 3D Mario game.
Then there's the ? Coin in this clip, which first appeared in the Mario Galaxy games.
Typically, these cause any number of things to happen depending on the situation, but
we've only seen one example thus far, and that is you need to collect 5 of them here
in order to reveal a Warp Box.
And speaking of Mario Galaxy, we can see that the Green Stars that first appeared in those
games are back too. But this time, they appear to be scattered around each level from the
get-go, as opposed to Mario Galaxy 2, where they only appeared after first beating the
game. And in both Mario Galaxies, they unlocked additional levels. Now if you've played Mario
3D Land, then you might have noticed this sounds awfully similar to the 3 Comet Medals
hidden in each level of that game, which were also used to unlock levels. So it seems they've
simply been replaced by Green Stars instead.
Now interestingly, in the demo that we played at E3, all 4 of the main levels had 3 Green
Stars to find, as indicated by the icons on-screen here.
But in the trailer, we can see a couple of clips that also appear to show areas that
contain only 2 Stars, or up to 5.
Now one of these clips appears to take place inside a bonus room of the demo's first level,
which we played at E3, except as we mentioned, there were 3-Stars for us to find in the level
instead of just two as shown here.
And then we have this scene, which shows there are 5 Green Stars to find--and we can see
at least 4 of those Green Stars in this scene alone, and so we're guessing the 5th one is
probably hidden here too--maybe the tunnel here leads to it, as there seems to be no
other way to reach the ledge on the backside
All of this suggests that this area--and ones like it--might actually be self-contained
levels. So maybe these levels are actually similar to the Mystery Box levels in Super
Mario 3D Land? Supporting this idea is that those levels only had 2 Star Medals instead
of the usual 3, which remember, are what we think the green stars are replacing
And on top of all that, it appears you'll be playing as an entirely different character
here too: Red Toad here, as opposed to the Blue Toad seen elsewhere in the game. He even
gets his own portrait in the corner, which suggests he is in fact player-controlled.
But he's not just any red toad, because if we look close, we can see he's wearing a headlamp,
just like the captain of the Toad Bridgate in the Mario Galaxy games. So if it is indeed
the same toad what's he doing here--how's he involved in all of this?
Well, we have an idea. Based on this, admittedly very short clip, it seems that he'll actually
play entirely different than th e rest of the characters. For instance, he walks throughout
the entire clip, and doesn't run at all.
And he doesn't jump here either. But it seems like he may not need to, as all 5 of the stars
appear to all be reachable simply by using the ramps and various platforms--though we
are assuming the one in the corner here will travel upward once Toad steps onto it.
So it seems these levels may actually have a slower, more deliberate pace to them, perhaps
being puzzle-focused in figuring out how to actually get around and collect the stars,
which could be why camera-control seems to factor in so heavily here. It's actually a
little bit like the 3D Challenge rooms from 3D Land.
Now we couldn't help but notice that we only see one character here--is this a single-player
only challenge? If not, who will the other players play as? Perhaps the other members
of the Toad Brigade
So between the red Toad and the other 4 characters, it seems there are a lot of returning good
guys. But what about the bad guys?
In typical Mario fashion, there are a lot of returnning baddies, such as Pirhana Plants,
Stingbies, Fuzzies, Biddybuds. Boos, Goombas, in both original form that only take one-hit,
as well as their Super Mario World form that takes two, Bullet Bills, Bonzai Bills, Fire
Bros, Fire Bars, Spikes, who now throw Spiked Logs instead of Balls, and Chargin' Chucks\,
who also haven't been seen since Super Mario World.
But this time it appears you can knock their hlmet off, which might suggest they'll take
2-hits instead of Mario World's 3. Oh, and he sure doesn't look happy when you knock
his helmet off, so maybe he'll grow even fiercer when that happens, sort of like when you knocj
the flower off of Wiggler's head
And of course, there are a host of new enemies too, such as these odd-looking fish, Mice,
and Spiked Mice, both of which are seen running on rolling hills, Caterpillar-like enemies,
and a Snowman that looks strangely like a Pokey.
So it seems that'll be a good mix of both new and old, and that's only based on the
few levels we've seen thus far. And speaking of which, let's yake a look at those levels,
starting with the 5 we played in the E3 demo.
The first one we played was 2-1, which bears a suspicious resemblance to the very first
level of Super Mario 3D Land, right down to multi-colored blocks scattered around the
course, as well as the white birds that fly away when you get close.
Because of this--and the fact that it feels very much like a tutorial-type level--iut's
odd that it's evidently not the first level this time around, but is instead the first
level of the Second World--weird. Now the level itself is split into 2 outdoor sections
that are joined together by a brief underground area where you'll find the bonus room we've
talked about before. And this level also places a heavy focus on the Cat power-up which is
found throughout the level
And surely you noticed the rolling rills from the New Super Mairo Bros series
Then we have World 1-5, where everyone catches a ride on a large Yoshi-like Sea Creature
for most of the level. Now in order to control this creature, you need to work together as
a team to lean in the proper directions using the control pad--the more people that lean
together, the faster you'll turn.
NOw because this is such a unique mechanic, we'd be very surprised if it didn't appear
at least once more elsewhere in the game. Especially when you consider this was the
case for the similar Mantra Ray sequences in Mario Galaxy 1 and the Bird-riding sequence
in Mario Galaxy 2, both of which were made bu the same development team at EAD Tokyo
Next up we have World 4-2, which takes pl;ace highy above the clouds and places an emphases
on another of the game's brand new gameplay mechanics: Clear Pipes.
Now although you are propelled through them automatically, you can actually choose where
the direction you take at each intersection. Which is important to dodging enemies travelling
through them, as well as for choosing which end of the pipe to exit out of
In addition, you can even use the pipes offensively by launching fireballs into them--it's cool
stuff. Oh, and there's a freakin' slide later in
the level. Weeeee!
After that, we have World 6-3 where you'll ascend some tall structures using platforms
that look like clouds, spring platforms that also appear in Mario & Luigi Dream Team, as
well as a new conveyor-belt wall that allows your Cat characters to climb super high. Oh,
and you'll have to dodge Bullet Bills for much of the level too.
The final level in the demo is World 4's Boss Battle, and it appears to take place during
a castle's carnival.
And the snake-like boss you're battling appears to be the king, at least based on crown he's
wearing which also marks his weakspot. But you'll have to use his plate-wearing henchmen
as platforms to reach it.
But there's something a bit different about this battle
In vritually every Mario game to date, the boss fight came at the end of an ordinary
level. But this time, the boss battle is basically the entire level, with only short platforming
book-ending the fight.
And then there's the fact that there appears to be no hidden Green Stars on this level
either, as their icons are missing fromt he HUD.
So all of this suggests that the bosses may actually be their own self-contained levels
this time around, which would be an interesting change. Of course, it is possible it was only
set up this way for the demo too.
Alright, and that about covers it for all the 5 levels playable at E3, but the trailer
for the game actually reveals several more.
Such as the Ghost House here, which appears to take place on a dark and stormy night as
we can see rain through the window, and lightning flashes that light up the entire room
And if we freeze the clip at the very end, we can see some pictures of Boo hanging on
the wall--are they just there fo decoration, or is it possible Boos will come out of them,
like in Mario 64?
And finally, keep a close-eye on the bottom-right corner as we loop the clip a few times--do
you see how the floor's moving? Looks like convener belts will play a role in this level.
Then we have this desert level, which shows off the new bug-like enemy which can crawl
up walls, and apparently can be used as platforms to reach high areas. And in another clip from
that same level, we can tell that it appears the Cat power-up will appear here too.
Another clip shows off--at first--what appears to be another desert level, but upon closer
inspection, seems to be more of a dessert level, at least if the multi-layered structures
and the cookie-looking there are any indication
Now we we also see that the flipping Red and Blue platforms from Super Mario 3D Land play
a large here. Now in that game, they flipped every time you jumped--at the exact moment
that you jumped. But this time, there seems to be a slight delay as the platform appears
to flip exactly 5-frames after the first person jumps following a flip--which still isn't
much time, but might make it a little easier to maneuver them with 4-players
And in the background we can see what we're guessing is a pit of quicksand.
Another part of the trailer shows off a Snow level that features snowballs you can not
only pick up, but even pass to each other before throwing them to take out enemies.
Now it could just be a matter of perspective, but it looks like the snowball Peach is carrying
here is bigger than the ones resting in the background--is it possible you'll be able
to roll them to make them bigger , like in Super Mario Galaxy 2?
And check this out--Mario can apparently perform a rather fancy move when leaping from the
ice, just like he could while Ice Skating in the Galaxy games
And speaking of Ice Skating, in a clip from what might be an entirely different snow world,
Mario and friends can ice skate here too...by literally riding inside an ice skate. And
it looks like Goomba's can too! If this seems at all familiar, it's because it's remarkably
similar to the Goomba's Shoe item from Mario 3, which is a neat call-back
Next up is what appears to be a Ruins-type area, where you'll battle the Chargin' Chucks
and Spike enemies we noted before.
Then we have what appears to be an underground level where you'll have to keep moving to
avoid being touched by the flood of Fuzzy enemies,
And of course, there's the requisite lava level where we can see Mario and Peach literally
fighting Fire with Fire to protect themselves from the Fire Bros. fireballs. And unsurprisingly,.it
seems Fire bars will play a pretty big role here too.
Finally, there's this clip which shows off a 3D-Land style bonus area that you can reach
via Warp Boxes found throughout the levels, only this time you'll encounter Speed Pads
to give you a huge speed boost.
Okay, so that covers every level shown off in the trailer. But what about the game's
structure in general?
Based on the demo, we know there are at least 6-worlds since one of them took place in level
6-3. Which is no great surprise as Super Mario 3D Land had 8 Main Worlds, though that number
jumped to 16 if you count the addition 8 that are unlocked after beating the game
And so we wouldn't be surprised if something like that is the case here too, especially
considering how easy World 6-3 was for one that supposedly comes late into the game.
Now normally, we would take a stab at what each world's theme might be based on what
we've seen so far. But if the game sticks as close to 3D Land as we think it will, then
there probably won't be any overall world themes, as each world in 3D Land 3D Land features
a mixture of different theme, which might be the case here too
Alright, we're almost done here. But as usual, there are still just a few final details left.
For one, there's the GamePad, which now allows you to interact with he world directly simply
by tapping on objects on the touchscreen just like New Super Mario Bros. U--but it goes
even further this time. You not only can freeze enemies and obstacles like the rolling hills,
but you can collect coins, and even reveal invisible objects in the environment too.
And speaking of invisible objects, the other players can get hints as to where they're
at too simply by ground pounding, which makes any nearby ones shimmer briefly.
Also, based on this clip, it looks like you might be able to perform a more powerful groundpound
by performing it in unison with a teammate, as it activates all the floor tiles here
And then there's the nifty lens flare effect in the top-left corner here
Then there are the small graphical touches throughout the game. Like did you notice the
rolling cloud shadows in several of the levels? Or how about the lanternb in the underground
area you can actually interact with?
And speaking of small details...the game may actually have even more in common with Super
Mario Bros. 2 than we first thought.
Like the fact that the main playable Toad here has Blue spots, just like his in-game
sprite did in Mario 2
Now this is interesting because his spots were changed to red for the Super Nintendo
and Gameboy Advance remakes, which also matches up with how Toad is most-often portrayed,
so it seems the developers may be using the super old-school version of the game as reference.
And speaking of old-school, let's take a look at this desert clip. See those Onion domes
in the background? It looks like at least some levels will have an Arabian theme.
And that's interesting because, as you may already know, Super Mario Bros. 2 was actually
a reskin of a Japanese-only game called Doki Doki Panic, which featured an even more prominent
Arabian theme. And you can even see Wart descending from a similar looking palace capped with
Onion Domes on the boxart. So this may be yet another subtle throwback
Now let's take a look at that World 1-5 clip again. Did you notice the small flying creature
next to the Sea Serpent? It looks strikingly similar to the inhabitants of Subcon that
you liberated at the end of Mario 2...And that would be a pretty big deal since they
haven't been seen again since
If they are indeed the same, could it have even greater implications for the story--After
all, they were just part of Mario's dream in the original game. Could this possibly
mean that Wart might be involved in some level here too?
Well, as much as we wished that was the case, it seems that Bowser will the main villain
once again. because if we take a look at that Boss level, we can actually see Bowser's head
located just above the trolley you ride down to the boss.
But what's his end game? I mean, what's he after? After all, if we're able to play as
Princess Peach, that means he couldn't have kidnapped her again. Hmmm, it seems that the
story for this game could actually be pretty different after all!
And with that, we're done covering everything we could dig up on Super Mario 3D World
As usual, let us know if we missed anything by posting in the comments
If you liked our analysis, please make sure to Like us on Facebook or Follow us on Twitter
@ GameXplain--there are even easy to click links in the description below.
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Super Mario 3D World - E3 Gameplay Analysis (Secrets & Hidden Details)

5185 Folder Collection
阿多賓 published on July 15, 2013
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