The Isle Delfino is in trouble! The normally pollution-free paradise is now covered in sludge! The citizens are in an uproar! Entire buildings have disappeared! And to top off matters, ALL THE SHINE SPRITES HAVE GONE MISSING!! To whom can the peaceful island dwellers turn in their time of need? To Mario, who has conveniently arrived on the scene!
Mario had been hoping for a peaceful vacation with the Princess, but wound up getting more than he bargained for. The moment he steps onto the beautiful Isle Delfino, he knows something is wrong. Maybe it’s the fact that he just met a talking power washer named F.L.U.D.D., or the fact that he just battled a 10-foot sludge-covered piranha plant, or the fact that a starburst-shaped demon popped out of the ground and informed him to collect all 120 of his brethren. Of course, there’s also the small thing of him being arrested and being put under island arrest. Oh yeah, and this is all being caused by an imposter with a magic paintbrush.
Super Mario Sunshine certainly is an interesting game. It harkens a little bit too much back to Super Mario 64, with all the running around and collecting, whether it be Shine Sprites, or coins, or different kinds of fruit. It adds a unique aspect to the Mario engine, which is blue coins. For every 10 blue coins, you get a Shine Sprite. Rather predictable, yes, but what did you expect? A ticket to the all-night salsa dance in Club Flamenco Domingo?
In order to add a generalization into this review (just because they are fun to do), I’m going to clump replay value, sound, and graphics into two words: nothing special.
The graphics are rather cartoony, and though fun to look at, are, as stated above, nothing special. The sound is tropical, and easy to listen to, but it just gets tuned out after a while. Because it also is, as said previously, nothing special. There is very little replay value. I beat it once, explored the one new area, and haven’t picked it up since. There’s just no motivation to beat it with 120 Shine Sprites unless you’re one of those people who likes to fully complete a game in every aspect before picking up another one. Because, you guessed it, the replay value is nothing special.
One of the best aspects of this game is definitely the plot. Though extremely weird, this is one part of the plot that I particularly like. WARNING: SPOILER AHEAD. IF YOU DO NOT WISH TO SPOIL ANY PART OF THIS GAME, EVEN THIS TINY PART, SKIP ON DOWN. When you finally rescue Peach from “her son,” Baby Bowser (don’t ask, just play), it zooms in on his magical paintbrush. The logo on it is the same logo the F.L.U.D.D., namely, the logo of Professor E. Gadd. He also made the Poltergust 3000 in Luigi’s Mansion. Let’s see…that’s two gadgets for the good guys, and one gadget for the bad guys. I see a deeper plotline running here…
But the worst part about it is that there’s no resolution to that part of the cutscene. It never tells you about why Professor E. Gadd sold the magical paintbrush to Baby Bowser. Maybe the Professor thought Baby Bowser was Mario. Or maybe he wants to make money from selling to both sides. Or possibly Baby Bowser stole it. Hmmm…or maybe that’s what the 120 Shine Sprite ending explains…
Super Mario Sunshine is an okay game. The controls are solid, like in all the Mario games. It will keep you occupied for many hours, and is very fun. But, to be blunt, it is not nearly the best game for ‘Cube out there.