I’m a bit gutted, to be honest. I’d spent some cash (not a lot but still) on a Wii U and Super Mario Maker for that console, only for Nintendo to announce Super Mario Maker 2 shortly afterwards. If I’d known! Still, I’ve had the opportunity to practice on the first installment of this franchise, and I dare say the levels I’ve made for 2 are better than anything I made for 1.
Making is at the very heart of this game. Super Mario Maker 2 is by any definition, what you make of it. Creativity is key here. The end result of Nintendo giving the keys to the (Mushroom) kingdom away, is a huge variety of different ideas and styles, in no small part due to the vast array of gadgets and toys at our disposal. From one-screen puzzle levels, to fiendish speed runs (which take full advantage of 2‘s new on-off switch), to kaizo levels (the ultimate test of skill), and clever tributes to other games, there is so much fun to be had! In fact, at the time of writing this, in just over a week and a half, two million levels have been uploaded (of which, I have made ten). Of course, Mario Maker’s greatest strength is also its biggest flaw – there is no end to the levels to be had and anyone can make levels, which leads to some deliberately awkward and to be frank, bad levels being created. These are all about causing grief more than anything else, and so-called ‘hot garbage’ isn’t enjoyable for anyone other than the maker.
Don’t let that stop you from experimenting. Whether you make levels or play them, this game has many different styles and mechanics to enjoy and exploit. I’ve not yet scratched the surface of the tools to make levels, whilst there are new levels daily which are worth playing. From tricky traps to dancing on Koopa shells, from Bullet Bills to Cat Bowser, Super Mario Maker 2 is a greatly enjoyable experience and will remain that way as long as people are making levels!