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Mario Maker E3 Hands-on Preview

by Aaron Kaluszka - June 14, 2014, 9:37 am PDT
Total comments: 7

Mario Maker's real, and you can make your own Mario levels real.

Fans have been asking for a Mario level editor for years, and there have been plenty of unsanctioned attempts. Where Nintendo differs is polish, and through the Wii U touch screen, editing is made as easy as tapping and dragging items around. As you design, a hand -- likely more beautiful than your own, appears on the TV screen. Unlike the NES original, there aren't major limits to the number of objects that can appear at once, so you can fill every grid tile with enemies, items, and obstacles.

The editor itself is full of little tricks -- for example, if you pick up and shake a green Koopa Troopa, it will turn red. Shaking other enemies causes various effects -- Hammer Bros. dropped hammers and Goombas disintegrated in Micro-Goombas. Another cool feature is the ability to swap between original and New Super Mario Bros. graphical styles. Nothing changes but the graphics. You can also quickly switch between playing and editing, and the editor shows the last few seconds of Mario movement as ghosting. As you place items, the music adjusts dynamically to punctuate your interactions.

If you stack enemies on top of each other, they'll maintain their totem pole stature, allowing for new types of challenges. Additionally, you can add wings to any of the enemies, which will make them hop. The editor also lets you place any of the enemies inside of pipes, which creates auto-spawning pipes. Enemies and objects bounce off of the springboards, and Nintendo's sample levels made heavy use of that interaction to create a set of twitch-action levels.

Mario Maker takes some hints from another famous Nintendo editor: Mario Paint. The title screen looks like the SNES classic, and you can even tap on the "O" in Mario to make the mustachioed man pop out. Certain other elements like the dog undo icon also make an appearance.

The E3 version was somewhat limited -- only mushrooms were available as a power-up, though sometimes the block would randomly spit out a skinny mushroom, which would make the overall-ed hero tall-but-skinny. Additionally, you could only create single standalone levels -- without pipe travel. There's also no word on how sharing will work.

An official Mario level editor is an exciting prospect, and I hope we'll hear more about how it will get fleshed out soon.


StratosJune 10, 2014

Really hoping they include all of the major graphical styles. Especially looking for SMB3 style.

KITT 10KJune 10, 2014

I assume there'll be a level sharing feature online with this. And I wouldn't be surprised if people recreate past Super Mario Bros. levels.

AVJune 10, 2014

I really hope they don't go bare bones for the sake of simpicity.

I want invisible blocks, beanstocks, pipes that lead to places, fire sticks, bullet bills, etc.

I wonder how they will make this a complete package. 

marvel_moviefan_2012June 10, 2014

I used one of those SMW editors and re-created Super Mario Bros. using SMW assets, it was a terrible play but it was fun to make. Aside from that it was a one off project I did and have no desire to do again. That being said, if they do include additional games in the series or release those either latter or as DLC then maybe something to reconsider. Still its a new game and that is most important here.

yoshi1001June 10, 2014

Hopefully they include some good tutorials, similar in scope to Wario Ware DIY. I've picked up a few things (like putting a power-up before the boss  ;) ), but I'd love to learn more.

azekeJune 10, 2014

I laughed at fly swatting Mario Paint-style.

But otherwise, yeah looking very barebones.
My biggest disappointment is that SMB1/NSMB switch is purely visual, which means we won't have new moves for Mario such as wall jumping, triple jump and such.
Levels Treehouse made were crazy and hilarious:
Reminded me of Kaizo Mario World which was full of hilarious BS like that.

MythtendoJune 15, 2014

I'm pretty interested in Mario Maker, and hope that before it releases Nintendo expands it more and does stuff like add assets from SMB3 and SMW, as well as more level types (like underwater levels). They can even keep expanding it by selling DLC containing stuff like new backgrounds, new items/enemies, etc. I'd love to be able to do stuff like create tons of Chargin Chucks. And there is a YouTube user who makes videos of crazy shit he could do to games with Game Genie (like having Koopa Troopas constantly flying at you in SMB and fire bars randomly popping up during levels. Or in SMB3 where Munchers automatically generate behind Mario when he moves, making it almost impossible to go back)

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Game Profile

Super Mario Maker Box Art

Developer Nintendo

Worldwide Releases

na: Super Mario Maker
Release Sep 11, 2015
jpn: Super Mario Maker
Release Sep 10, 2015
RatingAll Ages
eu: Super Mario Maker
Release Sep 11, 2015
aus: Super Mario Maker
Release Sep 12, 2015
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