Dr. Mario passes consultation on mobile phones with a videogame that recovers the essence of his puzzles, under a new perspective, with adventure mode and numerous playable novelties. The question is whether it is a good antidote to the boredom virus. We tell you in our analysis of Dr. Mario World for iOS and Android.
Each error counts. Probably, we can not summarize more briefly the essence of Dr. Mario, that video game for NES of the nineties produced by Gunpei Yokoi himself. It was a puzzle game in which you had to be fast, because the colorful pills fell to the rhythm of Tetris, and you had to think fast to eliminate bacteria, making columns of colors very much like Columns. It was a fusion of concepts that ended up giving an own essence, achieving a title that with the passage of time has become very charismatic.
Nintendo has decided to rescue him. Those from Kyoto already said they wanted to increase their mobile presence, and the move made with Dr. Mario World is another good example of the strategy adopted. It is a Free to Play (F2P) made in collaboration with NHN and Line that traces the scheme of great successes like Candy Crush, with counters that prevent us from sticking long sessions in front of the screen. The app has a series of limitations that we will discuss more in-depth. However, the biggest conclusion is that the formula has more successes than errors when recovering a license that adapts correctly to iOS and Android devices.
Along the way, three important changes are made at the level of gameplay. The first is that the pills no longer fall from top to bottom, but from bottom to top. The second is that there is no continuous progress, but we have all the time in the world to think about where to place them. The third is that the number of pills is limited by each level. This leads to more brainy puzzles and with surprisingly high difficulty (already from the first bars). But above all, that is what I said at the beginning: every mistake counts … and now more than ever. Like in a game of chess, a false move will make you lose the game. And that can be frustrating, but at the same time very comforting.
Mario passes consultation on mobile
Dr. Mario World is composed of an adventure mode with five worlds that host about 200 levels of increasing difficulty. The numbers are very good, with approaches that are based on different bacterial schemes, with the presence of blocks that hinder us, but also of pumps that explode when making combinations of colors. There are variants in the way of interacting with the puzzles, with shells that activate and another series of elements that add some variety to the proposal … although not enough.
The biggest problem I have detected is that the statements are repetitive. Although the playable scheme is remarkable, it is not so much the scarce inventiveness present, with phases that differ very little from each other. It’s not that I miss things like those made in Dr. Luigi of Wii U. I like the new approach, with a pre-set number of pills that you must know how to combine into well-studied levels: a badly placed pill can mean the end. However, the feeling of monotony is pronounced, with few introductions that make you surprised as you go. There are few incentives for the user to stay playing.
This is due not only to the playable scheme itself but also because each life (retry) takes 30 minutes to recover. That is if you fail a lot – which will often happen – the best option is to try again after a few hours. This has the positive aspect that the game encourages you to return daily (there is a new gift every day), but also the negative aspect that breaks the pace a lot. Of course, micropayments are here, which helps you solve the waiting problem.
I get the feeling that the formula does not finish taking off
Also to hire personnel, which is quite expensive. It can be done via in-game, but it takes a lot of time to get the assistants or new doctors … although the truth is that they are useful and add variety to the gameplay. Each doctor has a special ability (Mario eliminates the last line of the puzzle) and each assistant activates a different potentiator (Goomba increases the score by 1%). Therefore, I see good ideas, but maybe they do not have the best fit.
In a certain sense, Dr. Mario World has been a difficult title for me from the first world, and that is not to mention the time trial, which can be exasperating. For that reason, I get the feeling that the formula does not finish taking off, and that the duel mode(compete online with another player) has seemed to be one of the best things that the video game has. The pairing is excellent because it usually puts you in touch with users of your level. The ranking system is also successful and also rewards with coins, which is always an incentive.
You can play with friends and link the application to Facebook or Line to find our contacts. There are not a few options, and all are within reach of the finger, with a clear system of menus. For these purposes, the accomplishment is outstanding. Although the levels themselves can be simplistic, everything that surrounds them is done with care, including the representation of each world: meadow, desert, snow … What have been the classic scenarios of the Super Mario saga, with all its universe? That’s why characters like Bowser, Luigi, Yoshi, Peach, Toad, and even Toadette are here.
The music is the iconic Dr. Mario, only recomposed, with some very interesting results … because unlike the levels, the melody never tires. It is one of those things that you do not explain yourself, but that is there, to make clear the magic of Nintendo when it comes to making productions. Yes, I’m left with a bittersweet taste because the idea of this mobile game promised, but I think it stays halfway. And I do not think it’s just a matter of micropayments or the chosen platform … but it required a bit more dedication and, above all, balance.
Dr. Mario World is a good videogame for mobiles, which presents successful changes in its playable scheme, in order to adapt to these devices. However, although the levels are very numerous, and its mode promising adventure, suffers from a certain monotony in its proposal, as well as some imbalance in the relationship between possibilities, difficulty, and micropayments. Nice attempt by Nintendo, which leads to the recovery of an iconic saga as Dr. Mario … but without the success of other times.
- The playable changes are successful to adapt to mobile devices
- Good presentation: clear menus and with the Nintendo touch
- The duel mode (online) has a correct match and operation
- You can play in full without having to resort to micropayments …
- … although getting it can get very complicated: bad balance
- The levels are quite repetitive