Mario and Luigi: Partners in Time

August 16th, 2007 by exolstice

MarioandLuigi

It’s yet another game in a long line of Mario-based RPG games starting with Super Mario RPG on the SNES all the way up to Super Paper Mario on the Wii. They’ve all had their strengths and weaknesses, and although most critics would consider every one of those games a classic, I’d disagree. Not in this case however, this one’s a real hit.

For starters, it’s cute, but in a good way. Now the last two Paper Mario games had me cringing at their childish dialog, this one had me grinning. It’s genuinely funny, especially the fake gibberishy Italian dialog from Mario and Luigi (they never speak actual words, aside from the frequent Luigi exclamation: Babies!). The story which has you chasing pieces of the Cobalt Star whilst saving Princess Peach in the process won’t win any awards for originality (it’s cut from the standard Nintendo mold) but it gets the job done and the action moving forward.

Basically, you control Mario, Luigi, and baby versions of them both which ride on their backs. You usually control all four at once, but you occasionally need to split the adults and the babies to solve puzzles. Each character is assigned a different button, which can get confusing at times. You do get used to it, but in the heat of a battle it’s not uncommon to press the wrong character button by mistake, especially when trying to dodge attacks. Certain items require time button presses that just keep getting faster and faster. It’s annoying at first, but eventually you’ll be mashing those buttons without thinking.

Unlike console-based Mario RPGs, this game relies on skill only, as opposed to skill and random chance. If you die, it’s because you screwed up, not because the computer decided to take away half your remaining HP in the middle of a final boss battle (i.e. Paper Mario on GameCube). Overall I enjoyed this one, especially since I was able to beat it. Also note that as in most Mario RPG games, you can’t skip the cutscenes, but at least they’re actually entertaining, as opposed to mind-numbingly tedious. Try not to die during a boss battle though, because some of them do run a little long.

All told, there’s about 20 hours of game play in here, maybe a little more if you like returning to areas. Recommended.

****

Screenshots (click the thumbnails for a larger version) :

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Buy from Amazon.com : Mario and Luigi: Partners in Time (DS)
Buy from Amazon.ca : Mario and Luigi: Partners in Time (DS)

Posted in Nintendo DS

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