If you’re a console gamer, it wouldn’t be uncommon for you to say that one or more of the following games is among the greatest games of all time: Super Mario Bros., Super Mario Bros. 3, and Super Mario World. New Super Mario Bros. Wii takes elements from all three of these games and combines them into one new(er) Mario game, with some unique elements of it’s own (namely power-ups).
This game will be a nostalgic throwback to your youth. Running and jumping through the game feels like Mario, and clearing levels is as fun as it’s always been. It’s not without it’s flaws though. I thought the level design was somewhat uninspired. It kind of felt like “Let’s just throw some blocks here and enemies there and call it a level”. Poor level design actually leads to a number of cheap deaths. Having played the original New Super Mario Bros. for DS, this is not nearly so easy.
Boss fights were often very fun. They’re extremely similar to the one’s found in Super Mario World. There are two boss fights per world, and the second one adds a twist to the first one making it more challenging. Getting a key at the end of the second boss fight is a great feeling.
Graphically, it looks great, and is very colorful. Personally, I would have preferred if the graphics were truly 2D, as opposed to 2.5D. But we live in the 21st century, and it’s well known it’s cheaper to make 3D games than pixel art. The levels were graphically consistent on the plus side.
If you want a great 2D platformer and have never played one of the first three games mentioned in the first paragraph, go play one of them now. But if it’s more Mario you want, it’s more Mario New Super Mario Bros. Wii provides. Just don’t expect it to rank as one of the greatest games in the series. It’s iterating on an established formula, not reinventing the wheel.