Official Nintendo Magazine

Log in to access exclusive Nintendo content, win prizes and post on our forums. Not a member yet? Join for free

New Super Mario Bros. Review

The boys are back in town to take you back in time

Ever since we battered Bowser out of the Koopa Klown Kar, uncovered the 96th exit, and discovered the formation of coins that spelt "YOU ARE A SUPER PLAYER" on Star Road, we've prayed to the gods for another episode of pure 2D heaven to match the unparalleled joy that was Super Mario World. That was in 1991.

Since then Mario has ridden on Yoshi's back as a baby (that was great, but not quite the same). We've seen the re-release of his 2D classics on the GBA with the Super Mario Advance series (but they don't count). And even Peach has her own 2D adventure on DS (which we like but what's all that umbrella-floating about? Peach should stick to being kidnapped). But, finally, the game we've been waiting for has arrived. We've been waiting 15 years for this and we can tell you right now - New Super Mario Bros. is one of Nintendo's finest creations. Every last one of you should have this sitting at the top of your wish list because it's going down as one of Nintendo's all-time classics.

Click to view larger image
Just take a look at New Super Mario Bros. for a second and you can tell that this is Mario going back to his roots. This is proper Mario. There are no cheating hover jumps like in Yoshi's or Peach's games. You land on small platforms using bad-ass skills. There are no hearts or petal-leaf health bars. Touching an enemy makes you shrink, and then it kills you. Enemies don't stay alive when you stand on their head. And you can't lift them up or hit them with an umbrella either. You stamp on them and they cop it. No messing about. This is how Mario games are supposed to be. But above all, this is immense fun. It defines what videogames should be about, just like the classics did.

Old-time Mario fans will be overcome by nostalgic joy as they kick Koopa shells through rows of enemies, go down green pipes to underground rooms full of coins or hear that distinctive 'grow' sound when Mario grabs a mushroom. But this isn't just another page in a 20-year-old book. New Super Mario Bros. is as fresh as it is nostalgic, packed with loads of new elements and concepts that really progress the series as well as taking full advantage of the superior power of the DS. You'll meet enemies you've never seen, use powers you've never used, and overcome challenges unlike any in previous Mario games.

Even if you've hammered through every Mario game in existence, New Super Mario Bros. will still give you plenty of 'wow' moments. You'll press a switch and watch in surprise as the DS's power kicks in to bend and morph the floor, forming new hills and dips in the environment. You'll be amazed when you play in fully rotating environments, like in Yoshi's Island but better and smoother. Your eyebrows will hit the ceiling in shock when you first see the enormous 3D bosses that stomp onto your DS screen with a menacing prowess, and feel a new sense of satisfaction when you overcome giant obstacles that simply weren't possible back in the old days. The experience is classic yet fresh.

Click to view larger image

Old But New

Mario's newer, more acrobatic abilities really enhance the traditional 2D gameplay. His ground pound makes a return allowing him to smash bricks beneath him, along with the familiar triple jump which has Mario performing three consecutive jumps for extra height. Best of all is the inclusion of the wall jump, where Mario kicks back off vertical surfaces to gain extra height or bounce between two walls like a ninja.

You'll also see Mario tip-toe precariously over tightropes Mario Sunshine-style, with the ropes bending convincingly under his weight; he can bounce off spinning springs that send him twirling through the air with his arms out like a helicopter as seen in Mario 64; the blue climbable fences have returned, complete with the rotating sections that Mario can bash to flip the other way; he can swing from ropes with physics that are far superior to the old games, forcing players to time their jump perfectly to carry the right amount of momentum to the next platform.

Previous 1 2 3 Next page


24 comments so far...
Add a comment

  1. Shadowphantom Sunday 3rd Feb 2008 at 12:45

    this game is AMAZING!! i still play on it sometimes to unlock new levels . i now have all the cannon levels :D

  2. mario-9 Saturday 23rd Feb 2008 at 14:17

    it's a really good game but it's easy to complete

  3. deku-shrub Friday 14th Mar 2008 at 19:22

    great game but i find it quite boring playing it now i got 100% so...

  4. deku-shrub Friday 14th Mar 2008 at 19:25

    great game but i find it quite boring playing it now i got 100% so...

  5. Anonymous Monday 26th May 2008 at 18:48

    It's a brillant side-scroller but a tad too easy(way to easy atually). Oh well, it's a good Mario game none the less.

  6. mj scorpz Saturday 31st May 2008 at 03:54

    My friend reckons phantom hourglass is the best game on ds, i think its third with mario kart ds second and NEW SUPER MARIO BROS FIRST!! Its a great game although there isnt on thing i have not unlocked.

    So maybe a better difficulty and i would have gave it 98%. :D

  7. theherooftime Thursday 12th Jun 2008 at 20:42

    It really is a good game much like its prequel. I'll have to admit that the game is quite short and easy but then i think people would complain if it was too long and hard. The graphics as usual are great and i think the rating is as well.

  8. m4r1o0 Sunday 29th Jun 2008 at 16:17

    E! V! E! R!
    I don't get multi player mode though :lol:

  9. Aiwi Monday 5th Jan 2009 at 15:30

    I am so gald that this game got the rating it deserved. It's such a classic game, a must have for all DS gamers. A classic style of main gameplay with extra minigames, and the download play multiplayer option, how could it fail!?! For the first time in ages I don't want to go on about the game, playing it is all you have to do to realise how great this game is.

    Aiwi. Xx. :wink:

  10. DBZFan355 Monday 19th Jan 2009 at 19:07

    Not owning this, along with never owning Pikmin is one of my greatest gaming regrets. Even though I don't own I have played it many times and unbelievably, I found more enjoyable than the originals. And it's actually challenging! Unlike the originals! It's that good! The multiplayer has been perfected, and whenever me and my friends are bored he says, "Fancy Mario vs Luigi?" Own this now or die!

  11. Munchie156 Monday 28th Sep 2009 at 03:36

    I don't own this so I might be wrong.. but whenever I played it it was way too easy! :evil: I liked the multiplayer but I reckon it's a game only Mario fans should get.

  12. mint45 Tuesday 27th Oct 2009 at 16:35

    long ith Pahntom Hourglass this is the best game on DS if the wii verson is better than I know were my christmas money is going

  13. Rabbid_girl Saturday 7th Nov 2009 at 19:02

    I used to have this game and got all the way to the last level..... then it broke. My brother trod on the game card and all the info on it crashed into pieses. And if that wasn't bad enough, when he tried to put it back in the ds, the ds broke. So all that info was lost. I haven't bovered to get a new one, instead I play it on my cousine's ds and help her with the missions. It really deserves 100%

  14. E3rob Thursday 19th Nov 2009 at 19:04

    I hope a Wii one comes out soon...That would be great!

  15. Splinter435 Sunday 29th Nov 2009 at 20:54

    This game=Mario Kart. And multiplayer rocks, especially on the ice level with the only blue koopa in the game!

  16. mariostar6 Saturday 8th May 2010 at 08:21

    This is the best DS game ive ever played. I like the multiplayer,visuals and gameplay. Still play it nearly all the time. Bit easy though.

  17. geengy Sunday 17th Oct 2010 at 18:43

    Multiplayer is the Ultimate! I think scince this game has no down-points, Maybe it should get 100%. Just asking, not mad.

  18. geengy Sunday 17th Oct 2010 at 18:45

    I'm no mario expert, so I think it's a decent game. World 1's the only easy bit.

  19. geengy Sunday 17th Oct 2010 at 18:45

    I'm no mario expert, so I think it's a decent game. World 1's the only easy bit.

  20. Quantum Raven Thursday 7th Jun 2012 at 09:47

    Peach should stick to being kidnapped

    Tom are you nuts? because Peach deserves more than just being kidnapped all the time. In fact I would like to see a follow up to Super Princess Peach myself.

  21. Rory2808 Tuesday 4th Sep 2012 at 11:14

    One of the best ds games and remakes ever made. :D :) 8) :lol: :P :wink: :mrgreen:

  22. SM3DL2 Thursday 8th Nov 2012 at 21:48

    Still SM3DL here. Just had to make another account and couldn't keep the same username. lol :lol:

    f you're thinking of buying this game, I would recommend Super Mario 3D Land. I think it is much better.

    96%? Seriously? I would give it 90%, NSMB2 93% and I agree with the score SM3DL got (94%).

  23. SM3DL2 Thursday 8th Nov 2012 at 21:49

    Just got to say, loving your animation mint45. !!! :D 8)

  24. SM3DL2 Thursday 8th Nov 2012 at 22:05


    This is a beginner question, but in games like NSMB DS, in tutorials and the trailer, Mario does a running jump (X and A or B), then skips a few steps, turns aroundd, bounces of an enemy, and then land on top of the goal pole. How do you do this? :( :? :cry:

    You may be wondering what I am talking about, but watch the trailer and yourself when you play next time. Please help.

    You can leave a comment or email me at

Register or log in to commment
Add a comment
Nintendo Co., Ltd. is the owner of certain copyright which subsists and trade marks and other intellectual property rights in certain content, characters, artwork, logos, scripts and representations used in this publication. All rights are expressly recognised and they are used by Future Publishing Limited under licence © 2006 Nintendo Co., Ltd. All rights reserved. "Nintendo", "International Nintendo Licensed Product" "Nintendo DS", "Nintendo DS Lite", "Nintendo DSi", "Nintendo 3DS", "Nintendo DSi XL", "Nintendo 3DS XL", "Wii" and "Wii U" and the associated logos are the trademarks of Nintendo Co. Ltd. All rights reserved.