Saturday, June 26, 2010

A Look to the Past: Games of the Years 1991: Super Mario World


Super Mario World (SNES)

To say that Super Mario World was the best game of 1991 is no light statement. Sega was right behind with the release of Sonic the Hedgehog, Mario's only true rival, and the epic Final Fantasy IV was right in there too.  However, if ever a perfect platformer were to exist, Super Mario World would be it. A big, colorful world comprised of locations named after various foodstuffs awaits the player, throwing wonderfully-designed level after level at him every step of the way. Vanilla Dome hid within its caverns more giant, angry moles than you could ever hope for, as if taunting Mario to venture their twisting pathways. Butter Bridge boldly tested the player's wits, but a magic cape will drastically reduce the probability of plummeting plumbers. The Forest of Illusion is confusing and mystifying, but its hidden secrets keep even the most hopeless adventurers coming back for more. Needless to say, Super Mario World is a huge game.  Hours and hours can be poured into this game, and if you can finally unlock all the devious secrets, you can do it all over again to find it as fun as ever.

The music playing here is so groovy it's almost painful.

The fact that you can do all this on a dinosaur named Yoshi makes it even better. Yoshi, of course, debuted in Super Mario World, adding lovable drum beats to all the already amazing songs! I'm not sure if it's possible to get tired of this game's music. It's as classic as the game! But the true crowning achievement, and why Super Mario World snagged this award in the first place, is the gameplay. Of course almost every game, in the end, depends on its gameplay; but Super Mario World thrives upon it. The gameplay is without a doubt what every 2D platformer aspires to reach even today. In fact, I'm pretty sure that even some of the 3D ones do too. Forget 1991; Super Mario World is up there for Game of the Ever!

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