Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars, released in 1996, has been long considered a classic in the world of role-playing games. Developed by Square (now Square Enix) and featuring Nintendo’s iconic character Mario, the game combined the beloved platforming elements of the Super Mario series with the depth and strategy of RPG gameplay. As we celebrate Mario’s 35th anniversary this year, it’s the perfect time to revisit this beloved game and see how it holds up.
Super Mario RPG starts with a story about the evil Smithy Gang who are on a mission to take over the Mushroom Kingdom. Mario, joined by his friends and new allies, sets out to stop Smithy and his minions, embarking on a journey across different realms, each filled with unique challenges and puzzles. Players must strategically navigate battles, solve puzzles, and level up their characters to progress through the game. The game’s colorful and vibrant world, paired with its engaging story and memorable characters, has made it a fan favorite for over two decades.
One of the standout features of Super Mario RPG is its innovative combat system. Battles occur in real-time, with players timing their button presses to deliver more powerful attacks or defend against enemy strikes. This system adds an exciting layer of skill and strategy to the traditional turn-based combat found in many RPGs. The game also utilizes a unique leveling system, allowing players to increase their stats by collecting different items and equipping them to their characters. This customization gives players a sense of agency and control over their play style, making each playthrough feel personalized and rewarding.
In addition to its gameplay, Super Mario RPG’s visual style and music are also worth noting. The game features charming 3D-rendered characters set against hand-drawn 2D backgrounds, which was a groundbreaking achievement for its time. The game’s soundtrack, composed by industry legend Yoko Shimomura, is a delightful mix of whimsical tunes and epic orchestral pieces, perfectly complementing the game’s varied settings and moods.
Super Mario RPG has continued to be celebrated and remembered fondly by fans and critics alike, standing the test of time as one of the most beloved games in the Mario franchise. It’s a testament to the game’s enduring quality that it remains a fan favorite even after 25 years since its release.
For those who have yet to experience Super Mario RPG, or for those looking to revisit the game, it’s available on the Nintendo Switch through the SNES Online service. Whether you’re a longtime fan of the Mario series or a newcomer to RPGs, Super Mario RPG offers a delightful and engaging experience that is sure to impress. Mario’s big year may be coming to a close, but his legacy in the world of gaming continues to shine brightly, and Super Mario RPG stands as a shining example of his enduring popularity.