Mario & Luigi team up for RPG action!
Mario & Luigi is the next title in the Mario RPG series. As the title indicates, the game stars both Mario and Luigi. Players control both characters at the same time. Mario is controlled with the A button, and Luigi with B. They can be swapped with a press of the Start button. Swapping characters is important, as it allows you to perform different moves depending on which character is on A and which is on B.
The game, in a word, is fun. The combination of a pseudo-platforming overworld with RPG battles is quite enjoyable. The battles are very similar to those found in Super Mario RPG and Paper Mario. The two types of attacks possible are Solo and Bros. Solo attacks are standard, and include Jump and Hammer in the E3 demo. Bros. attacks are the game’s version of magic. Using “Bros. Points," Mario and Luigi team up to deal a bunch of damage to their foes. Both the Solo and Bros. attacks have a timing system that lets you deal extra damage. These are accomplished by pressing the character’s button right before a Solo attack lands, and for Bros. attacks, there is a series of buttons that must be pressed at the correct time. The more correct buttons pressed at the right time, the higher the damage dealt will be.
There are also numerous overworld platforming elements. The end of one level saw Mario and Luigi playing a game of jump rope in order to raise a flag and get to the next level. Pressing the L button will switch the B character’s jump to a super jump. Luigi can jump extra high, and Mario can do a spin jump which allows the brothers to hover across pits and reach other secret areas.
The game has a very classic feel to it. There are many returning characters such as the Hammer Bros., Goombas, and Dry Bones. The timed attacks keep the battles lively, just like they have done in past Mario RPG games. If there is anything wrong with Mario & Luigi it's that it seems very easy.