Put your hand up if you bought either the original Mario Vs Donkey Kong game on the GBA, or its DS sequel March Of The Minis. Unfortunately, if you put your hand up you're probably in fairly small company. Both of these cracking puzzle platformers weren't exactly best sellers and as a result we feared the series might be at an end. Thankfully, Nintendo has decided to bring the third game, Minis March Again, to DSiWare.
Don't be under the illusion that because this is a DSiWare game you're not going to get as much value for your money. Minis March Again is just as big as its cartridge-based predecessors, with as many levels to choose from and even more features than before.
Although the size of the game doesn't differ from March Of The Minis, the gameplay does. In case you're not familiar with the series, the aim is to get small clockwork Mario toys to an exit by making sure they avoid obstacles along the way. It's a little bit like Lemmings.
In March Of The Minis, players had a lot of control over the Minis - you could tap them to make them stop walking or swipe the stylus across them to make them change direction. This time, once they get going, they're pretty much out of your control and will continue to walk in whatever direction they're facing until they either reach the exit or are destroyed by an enemy or obstacle.
This makes Minis March Again the hardest game in the series by far as it requires you to properly think each level through before you attempt it. It's a nice challenge and it should take you a while to finish all of the game's levels, not to mention unlocking the bonus ones by collecting letters on each stage. However, it also means the game can get really stressful in the latter stages!
But what happens when you've finished the game? Do you just delete it from your DSi and never look at it again? Nope. The game has a level editor which lets you create your own stages and, crucially, upload them to Nintendo's servers. Mario Vs DK: March Of The Minis game only let you send stages to another friend using their friend code, so the fact they're now being uploaded to Nintendo servers means anyone can download your levels and, obviously, you can download stages made by others. Essentially, this means the game is virtually endless.
With the ArtStyle games, DSiWare certainly isn't without its fair share of puzzlers. However, Minis March Again is a fantastic addition to the service and a must-have game for anyone looking to have their mind melted by some tricky action-based puzzles.