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Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam review
Note: If you haven't played or beaten this game yet and are planning on to, there will be some spoilers so read at your own risk! Anyways, time for my second review on a game and it's on the most recent Mario game: Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam. I will be going over things mainly the plot, the gameplay, the soundtrack, and the overall characters. Let's get started.
For the plot, well, let's just say it's not the best in the series (I mean the Mario & Luigi series since this game counts more of a Mario & Luigi game than a Paper Mario one as well). It's really just two Bowsers trying to kidnap the two Peaches. The Marios (Mario and Paper Mario) and Luigi managed to rescue them midway through the game and the plot shifts over to the Bowsers bascially trying to destroy the Mushroom Kingdom. Wow...to be honest, I'm not a fan of the main plot of an RPG game that revolves around Bowser kidnapping Peach. The two games that has done this right is the original Paper Mario and Mario & Luigi: Dream Team. That's bascially it. Nothing too exciting. There is no "unique" antagonist to help make the story unique such as Cackletta, Fawful, or Antasma. Just Bowser and his paper self. Nothing special really.
Now for the gameplay which, fortunately, is one of the good things about this game. Mario and Luigi attack with their classic jump and hammer techniques and Paper Mario does the same but a little differently and with the Y Button. A unique item called the Dash Socks allow you to run fast with all three characters making adventuring around an area quicker which a lot like. Most of the Bros. Attacks return from Dream Team especially my two favorites: Bomb Derby and Dropchopper. This game introduces Trio Attacks which can help big in enemy hordes and boss fights. My biggest grip about this game gameplay wise is the dreadful Papercraft battles. I'd say they're a horrible replacement for the epic giant fights from Bowser's Inside Story and Dream Team. They're way too easy and the camera is awful during the battles and you're most likely able to get hit from behind due to the weird camera. I like there is different Papercrafts for different fights but that doesn't make up for how easy they are. Oh, and the horrible camera. This game doesn't have any save blocks anymore so you'll have to rely on instincs and heart blocks to notify when you need to save. The finding the Paper Toads missions can get annoying too especially those guys love to run away from you...
Soundtrack time. Nothing too rememberable. However, there are three I want to point out. One of them is called Come On! which is a remix of the epic enemy battle theme from Superstar Saga. I really love Superstar Saga as it's my favorite Mario & Luigi game in the series but that epic song was soon replaced by Mix-up Scramble after Paper Mario joins your team. I don't like that theme because it doesn't sound like an enemy battle theme. It sounds too...peaceful. Another epic theme comes in the form of the two final themes: Double Bowsers! and Final Battle. Double Bowsers! is a perfect penultimate theme that leads up to Final Battle which is so freaking good! I even enjoy it better than Adventure's End to an extend! However, that's pretty much it theme wise. The boss battle theme has nothing on the last games not even Partners in Time.
Finally, the characters. Mario and Luigi are good as themselves and Paper Mario retains his silent behavior with indications done by hand gestures just like in the Paper Mario games which is good. However, aside from the main characters, I really like how Toadette is given a major role in this game. Toadette hasn't been seen much outside the Mario Party games so it's good she is in another series game with a major role in it. I really like how the Koopalings are finally given extended dialogue in the game! We finally get a true indication of their personalities and I'm not counting the Super Mario Bros. 3 cartoon since it's non-canonical. The Kameks were pretty good in being the sneaky advisers of the Bowsers by getting in the heroes way but the Bowser Jrs. were plain annoying. The game didn't really need them but since Bowser. Jr. is the secondary antagonist of the entire series, it makes since to include him in there (and his Paper self since he had a semi-major role in Sticker Star).
Overall, Paper Jam seems like a hit and miss for me. Out of the five Mario & Luigi games, I rank it #4 since the gameplay is way better than Partners in Time's. However, it's pretty boring and reduantant plot and the easiness of this game makes it sorta lacking. It's not a bad game, it's just not good enough.
Past reviews... Mario Kart 8 Review... Super Mario Bros. 3 Review... Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars Review... Super Mario 64(beta) Review... Donkey Kong Review... Luigi's Mansion Review... Super Mario 64 Review... Paper Mario Review...
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