PLOT The worlds of Mario and the Rabbids collide.
RATED E 10+ for everyone age 10 and older
DETAILS Nintendo Switch; $59.99
BOTTOM LINE A super Mario game.
Players can feel the sentiment behind every pixel, the consideration behind each gameplay mechanic and the joy within each puzzle in Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle, a well-crafted game that successfully combines two disparate universes through humor. It marries the precise mechanics that define Mario’s adventures with the chaotic nature of Ubisoft’s Rabbids.
Disastrous circumstances cause the Rabbids to invade the Mushroom Kingdom and, in the process, corrupt it. A Rabbid called Spawny is attached to a headset with the ability to combine any objects he sees. If he spots a Rabbid and a paintbrush, they turn into a mohawked foe called a Ziggy. That same Rabbid combined with a gorilla can turn into the Rabbid version of Donkey Kong. In the wrong hands, Spawny’s power could be devastating.
Players must venture through four worlds to restore order in the Mushroom Kingdom. Along the way, Mario and company pick up Luigi, Princess Peach, Yoshi and their Rabbid doppelgangers. All eight characters have their own strengths and weaknesses. Rabbid Mario excels in close combat with his explosive dash and boomshot. Rabbid Peach and Princess Peach are the healers who restore allies’ life points in different ways.
Because players can bring only three heroes into a battle, there’s plenty of strategy in devising the lineup. A squad of Mario, Rabbid Mario and Peach is an offensive juggernaut, but its weakness is long-range attacks. Players must take account of the diverse mission objectives and adversaries before deploying their team.
With a co-op mode and plenty of secrets scattered throughout the world, Mario + Rabbids has enough content to keep players busy beyond a weekend. It’s a collaboration that begs to be mastered and brings the best out of both Nintendo and Ubisoft.
— East Bay Times (TNS)