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Mario 35 is actually really great

Mogri

Round and round I go
(he)
Staff member
Moderator
So it turns out I'm basically the best Mario 35 player of all time, and I never would have known this if they didn't release Mario 35. I shouldn't give away all of my secrets, but I like you guys, so here we go.

First, this is kind of obvious, but the goal is to be the last one standing. You can die to enemies or pits, but once you're not dying to those, your main concern is time.

You max out at 400 seconds on the clock, and you should be reaching that fairly easily and staying there for most of the game. The best way to increase your time is to defeat enemies. You get the most time from consecutive jumps and shell kills. You get more time from starman kills than from single hops, and you get more time from hops than from fireball kills. Even so, you usually have enough enemies onscreen that you can afford to fireball as many as you care to do.

For 20 coins, you can spin the item roulette, which will give you a mushroom, fire flower, starman, or POW block. Save your coins for when you're small, unless you're really short on time and need enemies dead now.

You can take levels at a fairly slow pace for most of the game. Rushing will not usually benefit you. When it gets down to a couple of players left, the timer will run way faster. (It will also go turbo if you stop moving for too long, so don't actually stop moving.) As long as you're staying near 400 seconds, don't feel pressured to advance.

Learn the location of the power-ups in the first two levels at the very least. There are two power-ups and a starman in 1-2 before the first pit. There are even more hidden goodies in world 2, although in my experience, you spend almost all your time in world 1.

You get a big coin bonus if an opponent dies to an enemy you sent. It can be worthwhile to go out of your way to kill hammer bros or Bowser.

The warp zone gives you a random selection of levels. This is always better than advancing to 1-3, a level with unpredictable enemies and few power-ups. Relatedly, water levels are awful and should be avoided whenever possible.
 

jcole459

Blip blip blip blip blip blip blip blip
(he/him)
I downloaded it last night thinking it'd be a fun little novelty to play for the next few months. But holy hell I'm finding that I'm really into it! For the moment at least, it's de-throned Hades as the game I'm most likely to "just one more session" into hours of play.

As with many other games that require strategy, I'm finding that my impatience and desire to overpower is shoving aside my better decision-making - but it's working so far. After 31 years of playing SMB I often find myself running through each level attempting to not stop at all, and SMB 35 is no exception. I'm basically jamming through as fast as I can, fireballing everything in my path (but making sure to get those power-ups for the +15 sec if nothing else). Water levels do suck and if I find myself in one without being armed with a fire flower, I'm jamming the X button as quickly as I can to get another or at least something helpful. For now it's working but when the higher levels open up for me (8-3... *shudder*) I'm sure it's going to fall apart and I'll be forced to slow down.

Still haven't quite figured out how new levels open up, or how the game determines which you'll go to next, but I'm sure it'll become clear in due time.

I'm probably going to end up disappointed but it would be really, really nice if Nintendo decided to keep this one around for longer than the few months they're planning on. Hell, put some microtransactions/DLC in it if that makes it more viable, I'm sure there's a chunk of the user base that will spring for it. Maybe even me.
 

Becksworth

Aging Hipster Dragon Dad
Got 2nd place last night. Had like 380 on the clock still only to fall in lava on the first jump on 1-4. So close...
 

Tiers in Rain

Gaming Replicant!
I love this game. It is very good. Highest I've gotten yet is 5th place, but I'll get there and beat everyone soon, just you watch.
 

jcole459

Blip blip blip blip blip blip blip blip
(he/him)
Got 2nd place last night. Had like 380 on the clock still only to fall in lava on the first jump on 1-4. So close...

I went to show my mom the game yesterday. I was like OMG LOOK AT THIS AN ONLINE GAME I'M FINALLY GOOD AT WATCH ME CRUSH IT

And 1-4 popped up first. A certain first jump was mistimed, and a certain jcole459 was immediately exposed as a fraud.
 

ShakeWell

Slam Master
(he, etc.)
So it turns out I'm basically the best Mario 35 player of all time, and I never would have known this if they didn't release Mario 35.

This is obviously not true, since *I* am the all-time Mario 35 champ.

This game rules, I've won a handful of games so far, and I keep waiting for the novelty to wear off, then I see a host of Bloopers and Cheap-Cheaps floating through World 1-4 and I'm like "this game rules."
 
The novelty wore off very quickly for me. I dunno, just feels like there's something fundamentally missing here. I feel like it's the same levels repeated over and over, you quickly get down to the last 4-5 people remaining and then it lasts forever. I'm really not sure why you need to "unlock" the levels at all, I feel like just giving everyone pick of the levels would liven this game up a lot more and cut down on the repetitive nature.
 

Mogri

Round and round I go
(he)
Staff member
Moderator
The level progression is a total mystery. I don't know how I keep ending up in 1-1.

Here's my secret tech for today: set your strategy to Attackers, and you'll max out your timer easy. I noticed I had a harder time getting time today, then I switched to Attackers, and boom! Instant 400 seconds. I think what's going on is if at least one player you're sending to also has Attackers set, you're ping-ponging the goombas back and forth, which works out to a very healthy timer.
 

ShakeWell

Slam Master
(he, etc.)
The level progression is a total mystery. I don't know how I keep ending up in 1-1.

Here's my secret tech for today: set your strategy to Attackers, and you'll max out your timer easy. I noticed I had a harder time getting time today, then I switched to Attackers, and boom! Instant 400 seconds. I think what's going on is if at least one player you're sending to also has Attackers set, you're ping-ponging the goombas back and forth, which works out to a very healthy timer.

Yeah, attackers has been my go-to. Also, I finally got to a stage with a Lakitu today, and that shit gets BONKERS.
 

Becksworth

Aging Hipster Dragon Dad
I got 1st place, so now I’m more interested in figuring out how to progress to levels past 4-1, because this game REALLY wants me to play 1-1 and 1-2 over and over again.
 
Yeah, Attackers seems to be the only way to attack multiple players so there's really no better way.

I'm also getting bored of playing 1-1 over and over again. Still a very cool idea and I bet they could improve on this a lot. Not bad at all for something free!
 

ASandoval

Old Man Gamer
(he/him)
Took about four or five rounds before I got first place twice in a row (once in the special mode the first time I tried it!) and then I shut it off.

I feel like this game is really a test to see whose been playing SMB1 consistently for the last 35 years.
 

spines

behold my godlike
(she/her, or something)
played for about an hour or so, highest place was sixth so far. smb has never been something i played a ton, but i can't say i'd especially mind getting a little better at it, so something silly like this is a bit of incentive to try since it seems funnier to grind over and over than just playing the game, even if i'm not sure i'll stick with it. the chaos of having just TONS of enemies (and often the wrong ones) on the screen is pretty fun even if it mostly comes down to "better have a fire flower or starman or you're done" it feels like. i dunno. the resource deficit as the game drags on gets real obvious as a factor even beyond my obvious lack of skills. although i've spent long enough playing shmups to not be that put off by dying at the literal first possible instant :v
 

Ludendorkk

(he/him)
Current any% world record holder Kosmic plays the game, lots of commentary on the idiosyncratic changes to the physics in this one (Nintendo loves tinkering with SMB1 physics)




Got a win and called it quits for the night, this is a very well-executed concept
 

spines

behold my godlike
(she/her, or something)
that is EXACTLY something i've been looking for, because i definitely noticed that the "you always win if you're falling" rule is not true in this game but didn't know what else might be odd about it (many changes probably make sense given the nature of the game though, this isn't some "not arcade perfect" line of complaint)

also damn his roulette luck is terrible hahaha
 
This game is really fun, but the first part of the gameplay loop can be very boring or tedious with the constant 1-1/1-2 repetition. Those levels can be made interesting when you have Bowser, hammer brothers, bloopers, latiku and other things showing up, but it takes a while for that to happen and is based on the levels people are able to select.

I feel like the game could be improved a lot with a couple adjustments:
1 - Don't lock any of the levels. Also adjust the rotation somehow so you don't end up playing 1-1 30 times per game
2 - Speed up the timer based on how long the game has been going, not how many players are left. Have had some particularly boring games where the last 10 people refuse to die, so you do a loop of the same few stages over and over and over and over
 
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I've unlocked all the levels through 4-4 now. I've found that selecting a water level is pretty good at getting people knocked out, as it's more difficult to rack up a lot of time in the water since you can't stomp anything. If someone starts a water level without much time left, they're semi-screwed.
 

4-So

Spicy
Played about 15 minutes of this yesterday; managed a second place on my second go-round. Super fun. It's a shame this is supposed to go away next year.
 

ShakeWell

Slam Master
(he, etc.)
I feel like the game could be improved a lot with a couple adjustments:
1 - Don't lock any of the levels.

I feel like sending new/young players who have never played SMB to 8-4 without any ability to learn the game would immediately turn them off. I think the stage unlocks could go faster, but I don't think none is great for easing new players in.
 

Bongo

excused from moderation duty
(he/him)
Staff member
My first run, I finished in second place. Soon after, I died to the first goomba in 1-1. I die most often to slipping and falling off a ledge. This is fun.
 

jcole459

Blip blip blip blip blip blip blip blip
(he/him)
I think the stage unlocks could go faster, but I don't think none is great for easing new players in.

Still wondering exactly what the mechanic is for stage unlocks. At first I was thinking that time itself was a factor, i.e. Nintendo might "release" the ability to unlock new levels based on some kind of semi-daily schedule. But after 20-30 runs in, I've only unlocked to 3-3, yet I've seen people in World 4 when spectating (and folks here have been just as far).

I do tend to pick Special Mode a lot though, which maybe has something to do with it. Speaking of, anyone noticed anything particularly different about Special Mode? In-game explanation aside, I haven't seen much that distinguishes it from regular yet, aside from not being able to pick a stage at the outset (which you may not even see until several stages in, anyway).

Weird, but still quite enjoying it all.
 

Red Silvers

Pokemon Red w/ 1 Nidoran
I'm guessing that the special mode right now cycles though 1-1 to 2-4, with a random starting level, though you can use the Warp Zone in 1-2 to skip ahead, and that after the current one ends, the next one will feature some later levels.
 

Octopus Prime

Mysterious Contraption
(He/Him)
Starting on 1-1 every time is a bit of a drag, but on the other hand, I haven’t gotten bored of 1-1 in 30+ years, so... I’m okay with it showing up a lot
 
As far as unlocking goes, there's currently a glitch that will let you select levels that aren't available to you.

Also, I don't think you even have to GET to a level to necessarily unlock it. During one run, I got to the Warp Zone in 1-2 and 2-2 was listed as a possible destination. I didn't take that pipe or ever go to 2-2 that session, but once I finished the run, 2-2 was unlocked as a level I could pick. It just didn't have any flag on it that said I had beaten it.
 

Bongo

excused from moderation duty
(he/him)
Staff member
Once you've visited a course in any mode, you unlock it and can select that course at the start of play. When you clear a course, the next course seems to be chosen proportionally from the courses selected at the start by the players. What I don't know is how new courses are added to the population.

I like the idea that it uses the special mode to add new courses. That would allow Nintendo to introduce new ones over real time at a rate they control. I have yet to see any spinies or lakitu, so unless they're just extremely rare, I'd be willing to believe that nobody has 4-1 yet because Nintendo hasn't released it through special mode. (I also haven't seen buzzy beetles, but I don't know where those come from)
 

gogglebob

The Goggles Do Nothing
(he/him)
I've seen things you wouldn't believe. Lakitu throwing their terrible payloads while underwater. I watched spinies rain down by the flagpole of 1-1. All those stages unlocked up to 4-2, like tears in rain. Time to play again.
 
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