Review: 'Super Mario RPG' – A retro role-playing game for the Switch


Nintendo's very first Mario role-playing game is back with a remake. In order to save Princess Peach, the plumber has to work together with his arch-enemy Bowser, of all people. — Photos: Nintendo/dpa

BERLIN: Most video game fans probably know Mario from jump’n’run, fighting or car racing games, but the Italian plumber has also been around for a long time in the world of role-playing games.

Since 1996 to be precise, when Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars came out. Now with Super Mario RPG for the Switch console, Nintendo is reissuing Mario's very first foray into the genre.

The game begins where many Mario games end. The hero rushes to rescue Princess Peach from the castle of his arch-enemy King Bowser.

Timing is of the essence in the attacks as you have to hit the buttons at the right time to cause enough damage. Winning a fight earns you experience points, which you can use to improve your skills.Timing is of the essence in the attacks as you have to hit the buttons at the right time to cause enough damage. Winning a fight earns you experience points, which you can use to improve your skills.

But a giant living sword called Exor suddenly appears and throws both Mario and Bowser out of the castle. The two rivals now have to join forces.

Players control Mario from a bird's eye view and explore environments such as forests, castles, and pirate ships. In turn-based battles, up to five characters take on plastic crocodiles, monkeys reminiscent of Donkey Kong or flying Shy Guys.

Mario's jumps are joined by fireballs as a method of attack. Although the options are simple and offer little tactical depth, the variety of enemies and game worlds promises plenty of variety.Mario's jumps are joined by fireballs as a method of attack. Although the options are simple and offer little tactical depth, the variety of enemies and game worlds promises plenty of variety.

Timing is of the essence in the attacks as you have to hit the buttons at the right time to cause enough damage. Winning a fight earns you experience points, which you can use to improve your skills.

Mario's jumps are joined by fireballs as a method of attack. Although the options are simple and offer little tactical depth, the variety of enemies and game worlds promises plenty of variety.

Players control Mario from a bird's eye view and explore environments such as forests, castles, and pirate ships. In turn-based battles, up to five characters take on plastic crocodiles, monkeys reminiscent of Donkey Kong or flying Shy Guys.Players control Mario from a bird's eye view and explore environments such as forests, castles, and pirate ships. In turn-based battles, up to five characters take on plastic crocodiles, monkeys reminiscent of Donkey Kong or flying Shy Guys.

The game certainly shows its age, but the remake is still plenty of fun, thanks to slightly modernised graphics and a timeless battle system. Super Mario RPG is available for the Nintendo Switch and costs around €60/US$60 (RM219 in Malaysia). – dpa

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