It should be no surprise to anyone then that the new trailer for Super Mario Odyssey had me wide eyed and mouth agape as I watched it. The presenters even said it, capturing that feel of Mario 64 and Sunshine. It’s an open world, a new adventure—because of course Peach has been kidnapped again and is being forced into marriage…everyone here has issues—and a treasure of wonders from what I saw. The castle in the N64 title was one of the best hub worlds and such a joy to explore, but I always wondered what more there was to see like it to see. Now, Nintendo is delivering.
The trailer opens up on a city street, beautifully rendering and feeling fluid and alive, still with a hint of that cartoony tone I love in Mario games. I actually wasn’t sure what it was at first until I thought back to the snippet we saw previously. By the time I realized though, the manhole cover was shaking and my hero popped out into the ‘real’ world in glorious fashion. Watching him run around this mock New York was the realization of nostalgia from desires long past, when I used to watch the cartoons and wish for more episodes where they would take power-ups back to the real world (really, that happened a few times in the Super Mario Bros. 3 cartoon). I’m not going to question the flying magic tugboat, but after Mario Galaxy it seems to fit, and as the clip continues we saw new worlds, rich environments, inanimate objects interacting, Mr. Steal Your Girl, Bowser, and other bosses to fight. The new hat throw mechanic looks fun and fresh, especially being able to jump off of it, but beware, the King of Koopas and his much fancier headwear looks fierce.
I’m excited, if that weren’t obvious. In their hour plus presentation Nintendo managed to blow my mind for two and a half minutes in between some other games no one really asked for, a few interesting things that are still in development, Splatoon 2, that Skyrim everyone knew they were getting, and a beautiful Zelda: Breath of the Wild trailer, but Super Mario Odyssey is what had me instinctively reaching for my wallet to throw money at the computer.
Well, until the initial elation and awe wore off that was. I had to think for a moment longer about what was actually said. This title isn’t coming out until the fourth quarter, and surely there will be a bundle then, right? Zelda will be on my dust covered Wii U if I can’t wait to play that one, and the only other thing that really got my attention was another version of a Street Fighter game I’ve played a ton and some of the bonuses of the online, which also won’t be ready until the Fall it seems. With that in mind, I honestly can’t see myself buying one until I can take part in the Odyssey.