Friday, 21 October 2016

Nintendo Wii U: Paper Mario Color Splash


Nintendo Wii U, Paper Mario Color Splash, adventure game

We've really enjoyed playing Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam Bros. on Nintendo 3DS, and it's still being played (we are in no rush ending the game haha), but we all agree that the latest Paper Mario Color Splash on Wii U is even better than Paper Jam Bros, and is now our favourite Nintendo game (we play it together and it's now part of our breakfast conversation!)! I think the humour and gameplay has a lot to do with it.

Read on to find out more about the latest Nintendo Mario game that we are definitely recommending, whether it's for Autumn half term or Christmas.


Nintendo Wii U, Paper Mario Color Splash, adventure game

In Nintendo Wii U Paper Mario Color Splash (pegi 3, RRP £39.99, comes with a sticker sheet and key ring), Mario had to visit and safe Prism Island from losing its colour (story told at the beginning of the game). With the help of Huey the paint pot, it's blood, sweat and tears (the game has its creepy yet funny moments!), a Paint Hammer and Battle Cards, Mario set off to find all the missing Big Paint Stars by following the Small Paint Stars, re-colour areas that has been drained of colour ("It's bone white!") on his way, and eventually restore the whole island.

It is a single player game, where the player plays as Mario. The kids were fighting over it until we found out through the in-game manual, that individual players can go on their own adventure by logging on through their own Nintendo ID. Does this apply to all other Nintendo games? If only if I knew this sooner, I could have saved myself from a lot of kiddy fights!

The game saves automatically or at check points, but whenever you log into the game, it always starts at the World Map (picture on the left is when an area is being unlocked):

Nintendo Wii U, Paper Mario Color Splash, adventure game
Unlocking new areas through clearing courses
Right: Areas unlocked
Gameplay:

Nintendo Wii U, Paper Mario Color Splash, adventure game
Repainting spots using Paint Hammer
Painting -
On his way to find clues (mini paint stars) to unlock other areas in the island that leads to the Big Paint Stars, Mario will have to re-colour patches of colour-drained areas using paint collected from items around the island.

For example, if he hits a tree (squeezing the colour out of it) with his normal hammer, he will get green paint, which will refill his blue and yellow paint storage. If he use his Paint Hammer to hit a colour-drained wall, it will be coloured and Mario can collect coins and sometimes Battle cards.


Nintendo Wii U, Paper Mario Color Splash, adventure game
Battle sequence: Pick a card, colour it for maximum power, the flick it from the Gamepad to the TV screen
Nintendo Wii U, Paper Mario Color Splash, adventure game
Winning a battle - final hit and loot
Boss Battle
Battle -
To fight his way through the island, Mario will have to play card battle! Simply pick a card from the inventory, colour it for maximum power (it uses paint from his reserve though), and flick it off the Gamepad to make it appear on the main screen (this part is so cool!).

Players will have to skillfully hit the A button at the right time to make the most of their battle card though. There are also cards that will replenish Mario's health and paint reserve.

When a battle is won, players will be rewarded with coins, sometimes battle cards, and hammers, which increases the paint reserve capacity when a certain number of hammers are collected.

Players can also attempt to flee the battle for whatever reason, although it's not always successful, and it takes a turn in battle (so if you fail to flee, it will be the mobs' turn to attack).

Although you can flee, increasing your paint reserve capacity is very important especially for boss fights. The more paint you have, the more powerful cards you can use.

Players will get a chance to win a battle card by paying 10 coins before each turn starts.


Battle cards - 

Nintendo Wii U, Paper Mario Color Splash, adventure game
Battle cards shop
Nintendo Wii U, Paper Mario Color Splash, adventure game
Special Battle Cards has really funny effects
Battle cards can also be bought from the Battle Cards shop in Port Plaza (first stop on Prism Island), and special battle cards can be obtained during your adventure, as well as from the shady Toad dealer at the Port Plaza Harbour District. They are really powerful cards, and have really funny effects as well! I wanted to show you the Plunger here, but you will have to listen to the music and opening scene when the Plunger enters to get it!

The Battle cards are weak unless it's completely coloured. However, fully coloured cards are a lot more expensive. So the more coins you collect during your adventure the better!


Nintendo Wii U, Paper Mario Color Splash, adventure game
Area on the map is cleared as soon as a Mini paint Star is collected.
Right: a great bonus to collect after
Clearing an area/ course -
When Mario reached a mini Paint Star and takes it, the course will end (even if you aren't finished yet. So do make sure that you've done everything you want to before taking that star). He will be rewarded with a shower of coins and multi-coloured paints to refill all 3 colours in his reserve.

Each course has at least 1 mini Paint star for players to find. You will know how many there are by looking at the course title in the world map.

Each mini paint star is a clue to find the same colour Big Paint star, so it will unlock a course that's in the same colour as well (red mini paint star unlocks Cherry Lake, for example, that leads to the Big Red Paint Star).

Sometimes players will have to go back to the same course to find the other mini paint star that leads to another path.


Nintendo Wii U, Paper Mario Color Splash, adventure game
Cut Out function in the game
Left: Cut out to place battle card to use    Right: Cut out to open a new pathway
Cut Out -
Cut Out is a very useful tool, that makes the adventure more interesting by increasing the things you can do to help Mario progress. For example, when Mario couldn't get further because of a broken bridge, simply cut out the paper world around a lined up water wheel to act as a bridge!

Sometimes it really makes you wonder what just happened, and how the developers can think of things like this! 


Hidden Treasure and Classics:

Nintendo Wii U, Paper Mario Color Splash, adventure game
Left: classic Mario pipe   Right: hidden treasure
You can't not have pipelines and hidden treasures in a Mario game! It brings that "ahhh classic!" feel whenever you see one, and we love it!


In-Game Menu:

Nintendo Wii U, Paper Mario Color Splash, adventure game

You can access your in-game menu throughout the game using the GamePad. The manual was really helpful, to pick up tips that you might have missed.


Humour:

Nintendo Wii U, Paper Mario Color Splash, adventure game
Top left: Plunger!            Bottom left: How insulting!
Bottom right: Sound (Ee! Ee! Ee!) and action behind the waterfall referring to the classic horror movie: Psycho
Nintendo Wii U, Paper Mario Color Splash, adventure game
The chosen Toads used to unlock the gate. How fantastically weird is this!
To us, the most notable and attractive thing about Nintendo Wii U Paper Mario Color Splash isn't the colourful, cute papery design (with the occasional 3D real life items appearing!), the great orchestral soundtrack, nor the fun gameplay, but the hilarious conversations throughout the game! We have been laughing along since we started, and are looking forward to our next game time!

What we also like, is that the game isn't one where you simply complete one area after another. In Paper Mario Color Splash, players will have lots of opportunities revisiting previously completed area to finish essential quests and collecting other clues to the Big Paint Stars' whereabouts. It's just like a proper Role-playing game, making the game more fun to play!

Also, although in this world everything is meant to be 2D, the game itself is very 3D! Mario can walk to the back and foreground (not just left and right), and the camera will turn too, so you can see the back of the cliff where Mario has turned into, for example. It really is a whole new Mario experience!


Overall it's a brilliant game that we'd love to continue playing, and would absolutely recommend it for adults and children alike.