When we use the expression ‘reinventing the wheel’, we are usually referring to a pretty remarkable update to an existing invention. It could be argued that mobile phones are a demonstration of this; the arrival of Apple’s iPhone drastically reshaped mobile phones, and helped transform them from relatively humble devices, into machines that are as almost as powerful as computers.
When I talk of reinventing the wheel, I’m referring to something quite specific:
The bread and butter of Mario games are the 2D sideways scrollers. The original game took this format, and to me personally, the best Mario games have invoked this style. Graphically, things have been continuously updated, but the core gameplay has been pretty much the same. Sure, things have been added (Super Mario Bros 3 introduced flight, Super Mario World gave us Yoshi), but this has generally felt like an evolution of the series, as opposed to anything dramatic. Super Mario Bros Wonder (henceforth referred to as SMBW) looks like it’s going to subvert a few of the franchise’s established tropes. It certainly looks like a bright, colourful, and somewhat trippy update to the series!
It also appears that Nintendo have kept this game pretty quiet. I was unaware of any whispers or inklings as to a new 2D Mario platformer, but here we are. It appears the classic concept is about to be reinvented.