GAMING WITH THE KIDS: SUPER MARIO MAKER

Let your kids relive your childhood with Super Mario Maker

It’s a common dream among older gamers to take their kids through gaming history by introducing them to the classics. I’ve even heard of some parents starting their kids on older consoles and slowly moving up through history one gem at a time. While this sounds like a cool idea, the reality is that once your kids get a taste of the wonders of modern games, many of the classics are really hard to go back to.

That said, there are heaps of games that stand the test of time, particularly those where the brilliance lies in the gameplay. The 2D Mario games are perfect examples of this. I highly recommend playing through Super Mario Bros and Super Mario World with your little ones. Bros to show them the brilliance of the original and World as it is gaming perfection. A few years ago I handed my son a SNES controller and we played World together and loved every minute.

Super Mario Maker
You can even play around with the title screen

The stuff of dreams

Super Mario Maker for the Wii U and 3DS (and surely eventually the Switch) is a build-it-yourself approach to the Mario franchise, everything we dreamed of when we were kids.

The Super Mario Maker games come with already built stages and the ability to play the creations of others (although this is a far simpler and more user-friendly process on the superior Wii U version). The real fun in the game comes from creating your own custom stages, or, in the case of GAMING WITH THE KIDS, creating themed stages for your little ones.

Super Mario Maker
Create it your way

Nintendo have outdone themselves by creating such a simple to understand User Interface that had my daughter (who was two when we were right into the game) placing coins and blocks with ease, followed by a huge smile and laughter as I played through her stages. My son, who is three years older than her, can create far more complex stages. He would switch between create and play modes to ensure that his stages can be completed.

In Super Mario Maker, you can switch graphical styles between different 2D Mario iterations…

Super Mario Maker

…and change the course style (such as water themed, cave, etc).

Super Mario Maker

Custom fun for the kids

Then there is the other side of the fun, as mentioned, where I would create stages for my son and daughter to play through.

Stages where Princess Peach has a leisurely stroll collecting coins and making simple jumps (with no pits or enemies) had my daughter completing her first video game stages and loving every minute. The pipes spitting out coins always got lots of laughter.

For my son, I’d have stages where blocks would spell out his name, enemies would be flying around the stage and Mario would change into different Nintendo characters. If ever he got to a part he found too hard, he’d just pop over to create mode and cheekily laugh as he’d bypass the tricky parts I set up for him. This is where the beauty lies, no matter what your little one faces in a created stage, they can go in and soften it up.

Check out how it all goes down by watching the official E3 trailer below:

Get your game on

Our motto at VERSUS PLAYER is Games, life and everything in-between. GAMING WITH THE KIDS is an ongoing series where we look at games that you can play with kids, to help you balance life (and everything in-between) with your gaming time.

If you liked this you might like our previous GAMING WITH THE KIDS picks, the wonderful Lego Video Games and LittleBigPlanet 3. I’ve just noticed there is a customisable trend here!

Happy gaming!

*GIFs from Mario Wiki

Joe

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When not playing with the kids or pottering in the garden, Joe is jumping between console and PC gaming, watching anime or sci-fi, reading comics or seeking out a new addition for his R2 collection.

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