Super Mario Odyssey  Tagged Articles RSS Feed | Super Mario Odyssey  RSS Feed on en Launch Media Network 2007 vs 2017: A Decade in the Making Sun, 31 Dec 2017 14:15:34 -0500 H. Rhodes Hancock

Around a decade ago, I watched a video on GameTrailers called the Top 10 Years of Gaming, and the #1 was 2007. Considering that this video was made and uploaded at the tail end of 2007, it almost seemed presumptuous to call a year that was just on its way out the “Best Year in Gaming.” Now here we are, 10 years later, and people are already declaring 2017 to be another “Best Year in Gaming.” And you know what, both are right.

2007 and 2017 are two great years in the history of video games. 2007 gave us Assassin’s Creed, Mass Effect, Portal, Modern Warfare, BioShock, and Super Mario Galaxy. 2017 gave us Cuphead, NierAutomata, Horizon: Zero Dawn, Breath of the Wild, Persona 5, and Super Mario Odyssey. And those are just all I can name off the top of my head. The sheer volume of quality games that came out in both years is amazing.

However, in retrospect, it wasn’t just the quality and the quantity of the games released that made it a historic year for the medium. It was how those games changed the landscape.

[Image courtesy of BioShock Wiki]

Take BioShock for example. The ideas it helped popularize have become so commonplace that its impact almost feels subdued. The way it uses audio logs to tell you its story, or how you are given moral choices that will impact the outcome of the game, were brought into the mainstream by BioShock and have become mainstays of video game design to the point that those once revolutionary mechanics feel clichéd.

How about Call of Duty: Modern Warfare? Not only did it break the military shooter subgenre out of World War II and into the modern era, but it also promoted the perk system in multiplayer and (for better and for worse) the idea that single-player campaigns could be highly scripted, cinematic roller coaster rides where you are taken from one set piece to the next.

In fact, when you think about it, the franchises and trends that defined 2007 either reinvented themselves or were phased out. In 2007, the Assassin’s Creed franchise begins. In 2017, the franchise gets a soft reboot with Assassins Creed: Origins. In 2007, the Call of Duty franchise does a huge shakeup by going to the modern era after the World War II setting begins to grow stale. In 2017, the Call of Duty franchise decides to go back to the World War II setting after the modern era setting grows stale. In 2007, Half-Life 2: Episode 2 ends in a huge cliffhanger that will ultimately set-up Half-Life 3. In 2017, Half-Life 3 is released in the form of a plot summary on Pastebin.

2017 feels like a new chapter is currently being written. The Nintendo Switch is blurring the lines between handheld games and console games. The surprise success of Nier: Automata saved Platinum Games. SEGA’s long-standing Yakuza franchise finally broke out of its niche. Cuphead surpassed the sales of the more heavily marketed Star Wars Battlefront II by a huge margin. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild reinvented the open-world mechanic.

The game industry is always changing. But this past year, just like 10 years ago, is where we are going to see the roots of many defining trends for years to come. Games will start taking cues from Breath of the Wild and how it constructed its world, while companies will begin to start assessing the Nintendo Switch and its potential after its first lucrative year.

What do you think? Are we gonna see some trends emerge from this year like we did from 2007's releases? What's it gonna be like reading this article in 2027? Let us know in the comments.

The Full Version of Super Mario Odyssey’s Theme Song is Now Available Sat, 21 Oct 2017 10:41:01 -0400 KatherineZell

We all heard two minutes of it with the Super Mario Odyssey trailer at E3, but now you can experience the whole four minutes. It's titled Jump Up, Super Star! by The Super Mario Players featuring the talented Catherine Davis “Kate” Higgins (You might know her as Sakura from Naruto or Tails in Sonic or Tina Armstrong in Dead or Alive or Pauline in Super Mario Odyssey or etc.). I might be lying if I said I was happy with the title being Jump Up, Super Star! and not 1-UP Girl.

We all loved this. Let us watch it again.

You can jump over to iTunes and get this wonderful song for $1.29. It is worth every cent. Not only does it set the tone nicely for the E3 trailer and all my hopes and dreams surrounding Super Mario Odyssey, it also sets the tone nicely for my soul. Kate Davis’ voice and the big-band jazz feel make me want to both jump up in real life and in Odyssey. I will have to wait until October 27th for the latter.

Anecdotally, it also cures cancer.

What more could we ask for?

Another Feature Super Mario Odyssey Should Have Dropped Thu, 14 Sep 2017 17:20:26 -0400 adam.leviness

Next month the highly anticipated Super Mario Odyssey will come to the Nintendo Switch. Super Mario games have always found new and exciting ways to lift the platformer genre to new heights; Nintendo constantly elevates the genre with innovative features such as jumping on enemies, 3D platforming, or even popularizing power-ups. But this time, in case you haven’t heard, they will be taking out an old feature, the game over screen.

That's because that screen has become obsolete. Like wisdom teeth or the appendix, the game-over screen is a relic, something that used to serve a purpose but is now unnecessary. Unfortunately, there is one other feature that Odyssey seems to be keeping that should also be laid to rest.

Since Super Mario 64 was released on the N64, Mario games have forced you to collect a certain amount of items in order to progress further in the game. In Super Mario 64 it was stars that you collected to open up new levels, while in Odyssey it looks like moons will be the main collectible you'll need to advance.

In September's Nintendo Direct a new video showed that Mario travels the world in a air ship in the shape of a top hat, and that top hat is powered by collectible moons. That means for this game it will be a requirement to replay levels over and over again just trying to find hidden moons to power your hot air balloon, or get stuck trying.

Now, in all fairness, this isn’t a completely pointless feature. It's there to serve the progression of the game, while also adding extra content and increasing replayability. The problem is it’s a poor, lazy way to add that content. Rather than pack in more levels to pad the playtime, Mario games force you to constantly replay the same levels over and over again, finding stars (or moons) by running through each level in a slightly different way each time.

Odyssey could have been the game to buck this tired, played out trend. Nintendo is even aware that their level progression in games is a problem. They addressed the issue earlier this year with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the WildFans had been clamoring for years for Nintendo to give people more freedom in Zelda games. The slow play style of entering a dungeon, finding an item, then using that item to open the next area in the game finally become a problem for fans.

Unfortunately, fans of Breath of the Wild don’t seem to be complaining about what amounts to basically the same problem in the Mario games. Generally, you reach a spot in the game where you don’t have enough stars to advance, then you have to go back and replay a level that was either too hard or not fun enough to replay, to begin with. If it’s the former you end up playing, dying, and replaying, ad nauseam, until you either get the star by sheer dumb luck or give up in a fit of rage.

It’s time for Nintendo to stop subjecting us to this antiquated play style. While I’m not suggesting that Nintendo makes the next Mario game an open world platformer I do think it’s time to return to the format they used before Super Mario 64 changed the rules. When you beat a level you beat that level and move on.

They wouldn’t even have to stop adding all of the extra missions and hidden areas in the game, they just wouldn’t be necessary to progress through the game. A system like that would still pad the game's playtime without infuriating its fans. Let people replay levels because they're enticed by the possibility of discovering new secrets, excited for finding new paths, and enthralled with the level design. Not because the game forces them to retread old paths to open new ones.

Right now it looks like this gameplay mechanic is here to stay; Odyssey won't be making that change for now. But there is still always hope for the future. If there is one thing Nintendo is good at it's changing up a formula that isn't working; and collecting for collecting's sake is one formula that is in drastic need of a change.

Nintendo Hits a Home Run with its Nintendo Switch Presentation Thu, 12 Jan 2017 20:27:32 -0500 David Fisher

As of 11PM EST on January 12, 2017, Nintendo has unlocked all the secrets behind its latest console. Rumors have been confirmed and debunked, launch titles have been revealed, and those who bet on the Switch costing $299.99 USD are now a bit richer than they were only hours ago. If you missed the presentation, however, here's everything you need to know!

Switch on the Console Factoids!

As mentioned before, the Nintendo Switch's release date will be on March 3rd, 2017 - a full two weeks earlier than the March 17th rumors. The retail selling price stands at $299.99 USD. Included in that price are the following:

  • Nintendo Switch Console
  • 2 Joy Con Controllers (Neon Blue/Red Combo, or Grey)
  • 2 Joy Con Grip Straps
  • Nintendo Switch Dock
  • HDMI Cable
  • AC Adapter

The console was also advertised as being a console that brings in multiple features spanning the entirety of the company's history. Each Joy-Con will have its own L and R buttons, feature special cameras used to detect range and shapes, and NFC and RFID support. What's more is that the Joy-Cons feature a brand new feedback system. Dubbed "HD Rumble", the Joy-Cons can simulate the movement and feel of ice cubes in a glass of water.

According to Nintendo, the console also supports social media sharing of videos and screenshots. The battery life is also reported to last approximately 2.5 to 6.5 hours depending on the game in use. In comparison, the Nintendo New 3DS XL lasts between 3.5 to 7 hours. Furthermore, the Nintendo Switch is compatible with portable battery chargers, and comes with an AC portable adapter.

The console will support multiple online functions as well. According to the presenters, the Switch will support social media interactions (i.e.: sharing video and screenshots) as well as the ability to use a smart device app for interacting with other players. This app will tie into an online service that from the sounds of it will be fairly similar to Xbox Live and PlayStation Network.

Multiplayer play is also much easier, as the Nintendo Switch supports multiple game modes including: TV Mode for split screen, Tabletop split screen and local multiplayer, as well as handheld local wireless multiplayer supporting up to 8 players.

The best part of it all? No more region locks!

The Games!

The Nintendo Presentation included multiple first party and partner titles, many of them ready to blow the viewers away. Among them were the following:

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild finally has a release date! According to the above trailer, players can expect to finally get into the game on March 3rd. That makes The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild a Nintendo Switch launch title, and it looks amazing.

But don't just take my word for it. Check out the above trailer!


1-2-SWITCH is a game with a fairly simple premise: playing without using the screen as the main tool. In 1-2-SWITCH, players will engage in various simple minigames such as a western showdown, eating competitions, samurai fights, and boxing. The game has a very strong Wii Sports vibe to it, but the catch is that all the games are played by using a Joy-Con for each player without the screen being the focus.

1-2-SWITCH releases alongside the Nintendo Switch on March 3rd.


ARMS is a sports fighting title for the Nintendo Switch. It is a 2-player battle game that uses the Joy-Con Controllers in a method fairly similar to dual-joystick arcade titles such as Virtual ON - Cyber Troopers in that tilting the controllers controls movement, while pressing the buttons and swinging is used to attack.

The game can be played in a variety of modes including online, local wireless, as well as local split screen.

The game will launch later in the Spring of this year.

Splatoon 2

Those of us who didn't get the chance to figure out if we're a squid or a kid will get the chance to do so once more on the Nintendo Switch! Coming out in the summer of 2017, Splatoon 2 is everything fans loved about the original Splatoon and more!

Splatoon 2 will feature brand new stages, hair styles, clothes, and other neat gear. It also features a brand new weapon style called the "Splat Dualies" which are a pair of paint pistols. New special abilities including summoning paint clouds, jetpacks, mortars, and more will be included. What's more, Nintendo has promised that there will be more free DLC with the game - just like the original. The game will also improve on the predecessors multiplayer components by allowing for both online and local wireless multiplayer.

Super Mario Odyssey

What's a Nintendo console without Mario? Coming to the Nintendo Switch is a new Super Mario title dubbed Super Mario Odyssey. The game takes Mario outside of the Mushroom Kingdom, and into none other than our own world! With various locales inspired by real life areas, Super Mario Odyssey will be an open sandbox style platformer similar to Super Mario 64 and Super Mario Sunshine.

The game will be much more exploration oriented, separating it from titles such as the Super Mario Galaxy series and other recent 3D titles. Sadly, Mario won't be on the Switch until the holiday season. Thankfully, other titles are still on the way.

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

Speaking of Mario, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe will also be coming to the Nintendo Switch. The trailer (above) shows off various new features, including none other than new playable characters: the squid kids! Furthermore, battle mode has been improved with specific battle mode stages. Not many other details have been released, but it appears that all DLC from the previous title will be included.

Fire Emblem Warriors

A teaser trailer for Team Ninja and Koei Tecmo's next Nintendo crossover title was released, and it is none other than Fire Emblem Warriors! In the trailer we see various legendary blades from the series, originating from Fates, Awakening, Shadow Dragon, and Sacred Stones.

For the time being, all we have is this short teaser, but hopefully we'll get more soon!

Xenoblade Chronicles 2

Just when you thought it was all over for the original Xenoblade Chronicles, Monolithsoft just announced Xenoblade Chronicles 2. Little is known about the title outside of its teaser trailer, but the "2" might suggest that this is a direct sequel to the first title. More information is sure to come, but without a doubt this trailer makes a great first impression.

Other Upcoming Titles

Multiple other titles were confirmed for the Nintendo Switch as well. Among them were the following:

  • Dragon Quest X
  • Dragon Quest XI
  • Dragon Quest Heroes I + II Combo Pack
  • An upcoming Shin Megami Tensei
  • Octopath Traveler (an upcoming title by Square Enix)
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - Definitive Edition
  • A No More Heroes series title
  • FIFA
  • Sonic Project 2017
  • Sonic Mania
  • Puyo Puyo Tetris
  • Disgaea 5
  • An unknown Dragon Ball Z title
  • Minecraft
  • Fast Racing Neo

Keep in mind that these are only the titles that were seen and/or mentioned during the presentation. Even then, the final part of the presentation flashed many titles - some of which were more recognizable than others. If you'd like to pick them out for yourself, the montage starts at the 1:25:00 mark on the YouTube video.

That's all for now!

With all the information delivered during the Nintendo Switch presentation, Nintendo has launched a powerful head start for the console. Fans on both the Twitter and the YouTube livestreams were in utter chaos, excited beyond belief about the upcoming hardware and software lineup. So much so that it was difficult to keep track of a single comment as barely a letter was readable before disappearing off screen.

With the console just over 2 months away, Nintendo seems set for success with this new product. Only time will tell, of course, but for now it seems like smooth sailing.

Let's just hope Nintendo can match the demand with equal fervor!