New Super Mario Bros. U Hands-On Preview -- More Great 2D Side-Scrolling, Now With Wii U GamePad SupportBy Leah Jackson - Posted Jun 07, 2012
New Super Mario Bros. U brings the Wii's version of Mario Bros. to Nintendo's new console in style. It follows the now standard Mario platforming elements where you jump from one area to the next, dodging Goombas and Koopas and collecting power-ups. However, in the Wii U version of the game, there are a few twists.
In our E3 2012 demo of New Super Mario Bros. U, we got to play through three excellently-designed levels, which all showed off the new elements of the game in clever ways.
The first level introduced the flying squirrel suit. If your character grabs an Acorn Mushroom, he'll gain the ability to glide, cling to walls, and flutter down. As a side note, I chose to play as Yellow Toad, and he's sickeningly cute when he goes squirrel mode.
The second level featured the first appearance of Baby Yoshi in New Super Mario Bros. U. The baby Yoshi in New Super Mario Bros. U look just like they did in Super Mario World for the Super Nintendo, and different color Yoshi have different abilities. For our demo, we got to play around with the purple baby Yoshi, who inflates when you swing the Wii Remote around. It's great for gliding over enemies, and even difficult parts of levels. Purple baby Yoshi can also eat certain enemies like goombas and koopas. Yum!
The third level was the most aesthetically pleasing of the bunch. The starry night sky lit up the background, and instead of grassy platforms, your character had to jump from one rotating star to the next, carefully, with the help of the flying Squirrel suit.
While up to four characters can be on screen at once in New Super Mario Bros. U, a fifth person can join in via the game's nifty Boost Mode. Boost Mode utilizes the new Wii U controller and allows players to place block platforms wherever they touch on the screen. If you only have two people playing, for example if you're a parent who's teaching your kid to play the game, Boost Mode would be perfect because you could put a platform over a gap to save a character from potentially falling through. More malicious players can also use Boost Mode to trap their friends in a rough spot, getting them killed, which is always humorous in a game like this.
New Super Mario Bros. U is shaping up to be the next great Mario game in the series. It's still your favorite 2D sidescrolling plumber and friends, yet now they've got some new tricks up their sleeves and dozens of whimsical levels for you to explore. Expect it out for the Nintendo Wii U this fall.