This past weekend on Saturday in downtown Melbourne, a curious sight greeted visitors to the streets in the CBD. Loads of people dressed up as Mario, Luigi and even a Baby Mario running through the streets and alleyways all in search of an elusive something. That something was a poster, as seen below, and the reason for it was a Gold Coin Rush all to promote the upcoming launch of New Super Mario Bros. 2 on the Nintendo 3DS.
The promotions were hosted by The Nintendo Experience which is based inside the EB Games store in Swanston St in Melbourne’s CBD. There were over 10 teams with four people each all dashing through the city, finding the posters then having three team members in the pic while the fourth took the snap. After the Gold Coin Rush, which lasted 90 minutes, we all trekked back to the store for a count and onto the second part of the proceedings. Playing the new Coin Rush mode from New Super Mario Bros. 2 on the new fangled Nintendo 3DS XL unit.
New Super Mario Bros. 2 Preview
All the teams had a turn at the game, which I’ll talk a bit about now. We only were allowed to run through the Gold Coin Rush mode which is based in the same levels that the game is based in. The two levels I played were very similar to the NSMB but with a lot more activity going on with different enemies and some activity going on in the background. The new Coin block which when hits turns everything in the near vicinity to gold coins is a nice touch and it’s not hard to see how the game does challenge you to find all one million coins. They really are everywhere and in places that are only accessible with the Tanooki suit allowing Mario to reach new heights. This looks set to be another fantastic game in the Mario canon, watch out for it when it launches later this week on August 18th.
Nintendo 3DS XL Preview
First os all, wow, this upgrade to the 3DS is extremely impressive. Let’s start with the screen, it’s absolutely stunning with the colours jumping off it and really bringing an impressive polish to the in-game graphics. The 3D effect seems to work better on the larger screen, either the 3D ‘sweet spot’ has been increased or the screen technology has been changed and upgraded. It works loads better than the current 3DS with a more forgiving angle view as you naturally move the 3DS during those frantic gaming sessions. The 3D slider now has an audible click to it when you switch it off and slide it down, this seems to prevent accidental activation of the 3D effect when you don’t need it.
The top screen hinges now has two clicks when you open it as opposed to the current 3DS only having one meaning it’s harder for the screen to flip close when playing games and natural motion taking over. This is a nice touch as is moving the stylus back to the original position on the side of the 3DS XL and not on the top making it easier to access. The only downside is that the stylus is no longer telescopic but still, small price to pay. The case itself has a nice matte finish to it preventing ugly fingerprints or smudge marks from marking the body.
But more importantly, one of the major design faults has been addressed…the dreaded circle pad and the lower screen leaving marks on the top screen. I know my 3DS personally has two permanent lines on the top screen from where the bottom screen has rubbed against it when closed and in pants pocket. The circle pad also used to leave a circular mark on the top cover just to the side of the screen. Both these issues have been looked at and fixed with a visible gap between bottom and top screen when closed and looked at sideways. The top screen rests comfortably on the Home, Select and Start buttons preventing this from happening as easy as it did with the 3DS.
All in all, an awesome upgrade to the 3DS worthy of your purchase. Get it when it touches down on August 23rd.
So all in all, an awesome if somewhat tiring day but made the better by being teamed up with some great team members which brings me to the last point. A massive thank you to Ty from Aussie-Gamer.com for making the whole thing possible and giving me a pass to the invite only event. Check out their version of how the Sydney event went down, the Melbourne and Sydney event occurred at the same time. P.S. By all accounts the Melbourne one was better!
The winning team received some cool Nintendo freebies and will also be receiving their very own 3DS XL three days prior to launch.
And now the pictures!