Sep 17, 2020

A New Classic Collection

Super Mario 3D All-Stars
Nintendo Switch (2020)
Nintendo is celebrating the 35th anniversary of the Super Mario Bros franchise by releasing a compilation of the first three 3D games of the series tomorrow.  The Super Mario 3D All-Stars collection includes three games: Super Mario 64 (originally released in 1996 for the Nintendo 64), Super Mario Sunshine (originally released in 2002 for the GameCube) and Super Mario Galaxy (originally released in 2007 for the Wii).

I remember getting the first Super Mario All-Stars in the mid-90's when I was a teenager.  It was a Super Nintendo cartridge that included a graphically enhanced version of Super Mario Bros 1, 2 and 3 from the NES, as well as a game called "Super Mario Bros: The Lost Levels", which was a repackaged version of the Japanese Super Mario Bros 2 that was released only on Famicom.  If I'm remembering right, I think I traded a different game with a friend to get this cartridge, and I still have it today.  I played the hell out of that thing over the years.

The original Super Mario All-Stars was re-released on the Nintendo Wii ten years ago to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the series.  Like the new 3D All-Stars, this compilation was advertised as a limited edition game, but within a year of it's release, the company mass produced the hell out of it as a part of their Nintendo Selects line.  Unlike the original SNES cartridge, the Wii re-release was little more than a disappointing rom dump that added no additional features - not even the option to play the original NES versions of each game, or Super Mario World, which was included in later cartridge releases, which were called Super Mario All-Stars + World.

Despite the shady marketing behind the 2010 release, I pre-ordered a physical copy of the new Super Mario 3D All-StarsSuper Mario 64 was one of my favorite games when I was a teenager, and it still holds up today.  I haven't played as much Sunshine or Galaxy, but I enjoyed them too, and I'm looking forward to being able to play them all on the Switch without having to hook up three different consoles.