About Mario Game
We can’t be the only ones who believe a new Mario game is on the way, can we? It has been five years since the release of the Super Mario Odyssey. While there have been games such as Mario Party Superstars and the upcoming Mario & Rabbids: Galaxy of Hope, the most exciting thing to happen to the plumber since the release of Odyssey was the porting of Super Mario 3D World to the Switch. Sure, it was exciting because that game is incredible, but what made it truly enjoyable was the addition of Bowser’s Fury.
In case you missed it, the Switch version of Super Mario 3D World included a second, short-ish campaign called Bowser’s Fury. Bowser has grown large and powerful, perhaps too powerful, and Mario needs to collect some Cat Stars to fight him. It may not sound like the most original premise, but how Nintendo realized that vision bodes well for the future of the world’s most famous plumber.
Instead of selecting individual levels, Bowser’s Fury introduced an open-world element into the Mario formula, similar to the level design in Odyssey but blown up across the entire map. The entire map was covered in water, with some islands scattered about, but the sheer size of the overall map felt like something never seen before in a Mario game, and it should continue into the next one as well.
Not only that, but Bowser’s Fury had an incredible level of spectacle that, once again, was lacking in other Mario games. The day/night cycle coincided with Bowser’s transformation into a massive rage monster at night, adding a level of extravagance rarely seen in Mario games. They’re fantastic games but don’t always focus on memorable set pieces. The Jump Up Superstar section in Odyssey was probably the exception, but Bowser’s Fury felt like a game-long display of Nintendo’s showmanship rather than just one section.
Bowser’s Fury felt like a proof of concept for Nintendo to create a Mario game that broke from the conventions and tropes of previous games, and I hope they stick with this new formula in the future because there’s so much they can do with it. To begin, they can make half of the map not be an ocean. That would most likely be an exciting starting point.
The point is that a Mario game in which you can go wherever you want should be developed and expanded upon in a future game. Keep the mini levels within the world because that’s where Nintendo’s magic shone, but combine them into a single explorable world that allows players to develop inventive solutions.
Making certain platforming puzzles easier because you’ve obtained a power-up from another part of the world added a level of satisfaction to Bowser’s Fury that other Mario games might not have.
Bowser’s Fury was the natural progression for everything that Super Mario Odyssey attempted. Given that Odyssey blew our collective socks off half a decade ago, it’s about time we saw a Bowser’s Fury 2. It doesn’t matter if that comes from Odyssey 2, a sequel to Bowser’s Fury, or an entirely new Mario game. Regardless, Mario’s future appears to be bright.