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Mario Sports Mix game review

Nintendo knows arcade games and does them extremely well. So when I received Mario Sports Mix, I thought: so cool and you can play online. This must be like Mario Strikers Charged, one of the early games for the Wii.

MARIO SPORTS MIX
Nintendo for Wii

Gameplay: 7.0
Graphics: 8.0
Sound: 6.0
Replay Value: 7.0
Overall Score: 7.5

Official Web Site

Pros: Many lovable Nintendo characters, fun arcade sports play, online play (rare on Wii)

Cons: Not enough depth to half the games, games sometime play slowly

Strikers was hilarious and fun. It also was a completely immersive sports game that took the reflexes of a tiger and nerves of steel to win.

By now, all the games in Mario Sports Mix have already been on the system – multiple times in various ways. You’ve seen NBA Jam as the premier arcade basketball game. And you’ve seen NHL Slapshot as the killer arcade hockey game.

So why get Mario Sports Mix?

FOR THE CHARACTERS AND THE POWER UPS

After you download a three-minute upgrade, it’s all about the zany characters: Mario, Luigi, Bowser, Wario and Donkey Kong and eight others. If you’re a true Nintendo fan, there’s nothing like playing as these animated wonders and adding your Mii as you play on their team.

Beyond the wacky personalities, it’s all about power ups. At the opposing team, you can throw slippery bananas, blasting bombs and mushrooms that make you tiny. Pass over a question mark on the floor, and you’ll get a coin that adds points to your score. Using power ups, I added about seven points to a Basketball game when I was behind. And then I came out as a winner.

Plus, as each game progresses, you have enough strength to pull off your power move once or twice. That comes with a powerful but chuckle-worthy animation and an almost indefensible move that results in needed points. Save it for the right time. But don’t wait too long.

BASKETBALL AND HOCKEY RULE

Basketball is really sweet, although the characters sometimes move like they have weights in their shoes. Still, only with the creative minds of Nintendo can you find a basketball arena with a Luigi’s Mansion haunted theme. The court can get dark and ghosts can grab the ball. And your basket? It’s a big, creepy chandelier!

Hockey, too, is superior fun. You can scuffle (Nintendo’s term for a hockey brawl) and get the puck away from someone hugely monstrous, like Bowser. In the western-themed rink, you’ll have a goaltender who also uses a kind of train. His tracks come out to center ice and he’ll throw bananas all over. If you can get close to the net and pass the bananas while he’s out, you can score easily.

VOLLEYBALL AND DODGE BALL, NOT SO MUCH

Volleyball, certainly in the single person mode, feels slow as you play. Much of it is also controlled by the Wii, unless you change the settings. The game’s OK, but not that interesting.

While Volleyball is kind of fun, Dodge Ball is really kind of boring. Dodge Ball is the kind of game you need to play in real life to enjoy. There’s not enough nuance to Dodge Ball. It just doesn’t lend itself to being a great video game – even with unusual power ups.

GO ONLINE

Online play is relatively easy to enjoy in Mario Sports Mix. It’s a breeze to go online with your broadband connection. You’ll play with folks from around the world – the same way you do with Mario Kart. And you can add your Mii to the games.

But if you want to invite your pal to play online, you have to enter that long string of numbers called the Friend Code. It should be a little easier to get online with your besties. There’s no real keyboard with the Wii, just point and click with the remote. Adding those numbers for multiple people you know is kind of a pain.

START EASY, AND TRY BEFORE YOU BUY

When you begin the games in Mario Sports Mix, try Easy Mode. It’s a great way to hone your chops. Move on to Hard Mode when you’re comfortable with pulling off your many moves. Expert Mode is nearly impossible to win (as it is with most games). Expect to get a royal beat down against the Wii.

The game’s music is iffy. You really don’t want to hear the casual Wii Bowling-type elevator music as you play a tense Hockey or Basketball game. It just slows you down mentally. Sometimes you’ll hear some powerful trumpets of victory, though.

While Mario Sports Mix can be a ton of fun to play, it’s only the Hockey and Basketball games that are truly worthy efforts. With these sports, you’re transported to fun worlds and you stay focused on the game.

My suggestion is to rent the game first. See if you like it enough to plunk down $50 for it.

67 Comments on Mario Sports Mix game review

  1. ilove it but its to easy.

  2. i love basketball but wifi players are hard

  3. This game is awesome! I like Luigi’s supermove.

  4. dan de man // July 5, 2011 at 7:15 pm // Reply

    Dodge Ball looks awesome, I think its the best one on there.

  5. Dodge ball is so fun

  6. boredguy101 // June 28, 2011 at 11:19 am // Reply

    Well, I have it, and i say it’s great.

  7. It’s reel fun!

  8. i want it

  9. Ninja Scout#2 // May 29, 2011 at 9:57 am // Reply

    I want it on ds.

  10. i don't eat candy (dara) // May 25, 2011 at 6:26 pm // Reply

    it would be so much better if it were on gb…(game-boy)

  11. I like this game because its fun and awsome and cool!

  12. bluebaer // May 1, 2011 at 4:38 pm // Reply

    cool

  13. I LOVE IT!(:

  14. who would want mario sports mix I LOVE IT!!!!!!

  15. luckyman555 ,i agree with you.

  16. Awesome

  17. luckyman555 // April 19, 2011 at 8:58 pm // Reply

    i wood get the 3ds

  18. Gameinformer gave this a 4.5! It cant be good. I love the gameinformer reviews. Sorry games guru. :(

  19. A mario sports game. Nintendo must be running low on ideas.

  20. My cousin has one only his is a gameboy!

  21. it would be fun, Ilike Mario. but I woul rather get 3ds.

  22. how do you get to the behemoth after you already beat him once, and how do you play against others online

  23. bowsers course on hockey,basketball,dodgeball and volleyball are hard for me

  24. How do you get luigi in his red ninja costume

  25. I borrowed it from a friend and it rocks!!!

  26. I have it and it is awesome i already beat it. it has special characters named slime,ninja,black mage,white mage,cactuar,and moogle

    • Yea Slime is from Dragon Quest and Black Mage and White Mage are from Final Fantasy. (Final Fantasy used to be by Nintendo.)

  27. I want it!!!!!!!!!!!

  28. All of them are AWSOME!

  29. MARIO SPORTS MIXS IS A AWESOME FOR BOYS TO PLAY.

  30. starfall1234567890 // March 23, 2011 at 1:26 pm // Reply

    i think this review is more bogus then my viola stand which i did not think was possible.when i get the game i know you will be wrong ………..

  31. I have this game and it is the best game I’ve ever gotten!!!!!!!!!!!

  32. i want it …

  33. I want to to get it for my wii!! i would play the game all the time!

  34. It’s too bad I don’t have a wii……

  35. Looks Fun to me

  36. this game is esey. how did you make it.

  37. it looks okay

  38. This website is so awsome I love it i hope i win the 3ds

  39. its pretty cool but it would be cooler on the 3ds,we all know that

  40. It looks awesome, but I wonder if there is one for the Nintendo DS.

  41. professor wood // February 24, 2011 at 4:05 pm // Reply

    Okay……not that The Games Guru isent awesome and has neat tips, but his reviews are loose and from only reviewing the lame E rated games that come out he’s never really reviewed any exeptionally good games, so he is not all that hard to please. from one of the proffesional reviewers at gameinformer, this game soundslike another gimmick to get more money from the sports fans. let’s face it….nintendo isen’t very good at sports games. This one requires absolutely no skill or timing or strategy to use the special moves or even win. I saw a video online showing someone getting an eight point lead in the first half in all four games (it was a splitscreen and they all showed at once) then doing absolutely nothing in the second half, watching the computers run around like headless chickens and getting 1 point at maximum and then still winning by at least 7. the games are all boring and slow and the music is boring and slower, the controls are clunky and it has no strategy. everything is incredibly simple and if midway had made it, Tom Cruise and Val Kilmer would be unlockable characters. and just to finish it up: Game informer didn’t even give it a score it’s so terrible.

  42. It’s like 99 coins!

  43. thebestguyever // February 22, 2011 at 6:41 pm // Reply

    I want this game so much!!

  44. awesomedude591 // February 22, 2011 at 9:27 am // Reply

    I NEED TO PLAY THIS GAME…and maybe own it.

  45. I saw it on a commercial yesterday and i want it so bad!

  46. I WANT IT!!!!!!!

  47. this looks like fun!

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