GBA Review: Super Mario World: SMA2
Review by: Hairball (hairball@sm128c.com)

Game Info

 System: Game Boy Advance
 ESRB: Everyone
 Genre: Platform
 # of Players: 1-4
 Size: 32 Megabits
 Developer: Nintendo
 Publisher: Nintendo

 Game Save: Yes
 Multi-Pak Link: Yes
 Single-Pak Link: Yes

 Release Date:
 US: Feb 11, 2002
 EU: Apr 9, 2002

Screenshots:

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Final Score:
8.0/10

Reviewed on: February 17, 2002

Mario is making his second appearance on the Game Boy Advance. Mario and dino-friend Yoshi are back in the release of Super Mario World: Super Mario Advance 2. This game is a Game Boy Advance port of the original Super Mario World on the Super NES released back in 1991.

Super Mario World features the original Super Mario World from the SNES, and the original Mario Bros. arcade game, the exact same version in the first Super Mario Advance. Besides the arcade game, there are no bonuses or extras at all. But, it is possible to link this game with Super Mario Advance to have expanded multiplayer modes of the arcade game. An original mini-game, or some extras like in Super Mario Bros. DX would have made this game have more value in it.

The graphics in Super Mario World are pretty much exactly the same as they looked like on the Super NES, all the sprites are exact proportions as they were in the original. The only difference however is the resolution, the GBA does not have the same aspect ratio as a standard television, so this led to part of the game screen to be cut off, and sometimes it is necessary to scroll around. SMW has some of brightest graphics so far on the GBA, which has been constantly blamed for a low-quality screen.

The sound has not changed much, the same SMW soundtrack is back in the game. Mario and Luigi also have voices in the game, that sound an awful lot like the ones in SMA. The controls in SMW have a few minor changes compared to the original, mainly because the GBA does not have the extra 2 buttons. Spin jumps are now performed by using the R button, B is to run, and A is the regular jump. Combining L with a direction allows you to look in that direction, this will be used quite often because of the smaller GBA screen, which doesn't allow you to see as much as a TV.

For those that have played Super Mario World, the game is not much different than the original. Princess Toadstool (Peach) has been captured, there are still 96 course exits in total, same Koopa Kids, and the same stubborn Bowser at the end.

It seems as though that SMW has been made much simpler than it was before. It is now possible to save at any point you want to, not just beating a castle, ghost house or switch palace. Also, when Mario becomes Cape or Fire Mario, and he touches an enemy, he will turn into Super Mario, and along with the item storage box at the top, which means you can be hit 4 times without dying! There are even half-way points in ghost houses and castles! It is also much easier to get various coloured Yoshis in this game, they will show up randomly in regular item boxes that would normally contain a Yoshi. It's also possible to switch between Mario and Luigi on the map screen, Luigi can jump a little higher and run a little faster, but he's a little harder to control.

Super Mario World is one of the best Mario games ever released. But if you have played and beat the original on the Super NES, there is little reason to make a purchase on this GBA port, unless you really want to play Super Mario World again, or really want to have a portable version of the game.

-- Hairball (hairball@sm128c.com)

Bottom Line: If you haven't played Super Mario World before, don't let this opportunity for an encore run away like Yoshi!