Super Mario Galaxy, the Wii's best-reviewed game, has sold 8.6 million copies to date since 2007. New Super Mario Bros. Wii, a modern riff on 2D Mario games of old that came out just six months ago, has sold more than 14 million. Super Mario Galaxy 2 represents the second 3D mind-bending platforming he's gotten himself into since Super Mario 64, a game that is already looking at its 15th birthday.
The Wii has been slow to release many games, but incredibly busy at churning out Mario titles. Super Mario Galaxy 2 is Nintendo's fourth on the system, not counting Karts, Parties, and other spin-offs (we count Super Paper Mario). Is it overkill? Well, not when the gameplay and platforming are this satisfying and addictive. In fact, it would be great if Nintendo turned around franchise sequels this quickly a little more often.
Jeff: No matter how few triple-A titles come to the Wii, its games like Super Mario Galaxy 2 that make those droughts of quality software tolerable. Not only is Super Mario Galaxy 2 an absolute must-have for Wii owners, it's quite possibly Mario's best adventure yet.
Though there's a lot of what we loved in the original here, the game improves upon its predecessor most notably by introducing brand-new galaxies to explore and ramping up the difficulty. This time Mario also has his dino-companion Yoshi at his disposal, and with that comes new moves and controls. Also new is the World Map navigation that past Mario games have popularized.
Level design has to be the title's most impressive trait; it's something aspiring gamemakers should be forced to play early on in their careers. Galaxy 2 provides subtle moments of brilliance and overwhelming environments and boss battles. The clever use of gravity-based antics shine right from the get-go and come into play more than ever before.
There have been more Mario games on the Wii than any other franchise, and though that might seem overkill for any other franchise on any other platform, we'd be happy to see Nintendo continue to pop them out this regularly. Not only are these games high on production value and sheer entertainment, they are timeless and completely accessible, appealing to gamers of any age.
Scott: What's different from the universe-spanning, gravity-bending 3D puzzle-gaming in the first Galaxy? Not a whole lot, just more great levels and clever ideas. There is a subtle but clear shift, however, toward ideas that seem more like Mario games of old: the world map now looks like the classic Mario overhead maps, complete with boss castles.… Read more