E3: Hands On With ‘Super Mario Maker’

© Nintendo
© Nintendo

Kids and grownups who have daydreamed of becoming a game designer can make that wish come true in Super Mario Maker, coming exclusively to Wii U. Turn the Gamepad into your level designer as you place pipes, power-ups, Koopas, Goombas, and more into your dream Super Mario level, and invite players worldwide to take on your one-of-a-kind challenge!

Players choose one of four styles for their custom levels: Super Mario Bros., Super Mario Bros. 3, Super Mario World, and New Super Mario Bros. U. The style can be changed on the fly at any time when designing, and whichever style you choose isn’t limited to items or enemies from that game only. In fact, there are few rules at all when it comes to designing your level.

Instead of tucking away a mushroom power-up in a question block, hide a Koopa Troopa inside! Forget Bullet Bill; why not have your Bill Blaster fire invincible stars? Kids can pick up the intuitive UI within minutes to drag and drop enemies, platforms, coins, blocks, and more. Your imagination can be unleashed on your level almost without limit.

Kickstarter Alert: SwapBots Augmented Reality

© Nintedo
© Nintendo

One of the few rules is that your level must be beatable in order to be shared worldwide. You have to be able to reach the goal pole yourself before the level can be uploaded. Uploaded levels will be moderated, and inappropriate content can be reported and removed, so you don’t have to worry about your kids accidentally seeing something they shouldn’t (as in certain words spelled out in coins).

You’ll also get the chance to try out other levels that have been designed by fellow Super Mario Maker players around the world. Find a favorite designer whose levels you can’t get enough of? Subscribe to him or her and you’ll know when they share a new challenge. You can even see the top-rated levels and search by difficulty to find a new favorite easily.

© Nintendo
© Nintendo

Like many of Nintendo’s new games, Super Mario Maker will take advantage of the amiibo functionality to put those figures to good use. Tap your favorite amiibo to the GamePad, and take the reins of that character for an amusing run through your level.

Super Mario Maker accomplishes the difficult task of appealing to both the nostalgia of parents who grew up on Super Mario Bros. along with the Minecraft generation of kids who love to build as much as they do play. The game is currently slated for release September 11, 2015.

GeekMom attended a preview event courtesy of Nintendo.

Get the GeekDad Books!

   

Kelly Knox is a freelance writer in Seattle, WA, where she contributes to local parenting magazines. She also writes for StarWars.com, Geek & Sundry, Forever Young Adult, and more. You can find crafts and art projects for geeky families at her blog The St{art} Button.