Nintendo’s partnership with Lego seems to be getting even deeper, with seven new Super Mario sets including a Lego Tanooki Suit.
So it looks like those Lego Super Mario sets must’ve been a big hit, because they’re already releasing another seven of them next year.
Rather than just being recreations of buildings or vehicles from Nintendo games, the Lego Super Mario line is considerably more imaginative and features a Bluetooth Mario minifigure that interacts with Lego-built levels that you and your kids create.
Rather than Lego doing everything on their own the whole line was designed with the help of Nintendo, including veterans of the Super Mario series, and now there’s a new set of expansions due out on January 1st next year.
As you can see, the sets feature brick-built characters rather than traditional minifigures, with the Mario one having a sensor in his feet that detects colours and special bricks with barcode-like symbols – so the figure reacts when you jump on a bad guy’s head or land in lava, including playing sound effects and little animations in Mario’s chest and eyes.
The idea is that kids can create their own levels out of bricks and use Mario to navigate them, complete with a time limit and rules about how you earn coins and where the level finishes.
As such, the biggest of the new sets is the Master Your Adventure Maker, which costs £49.99 and includes a whole bunch of new pieces and characters, as well as the ability to change how the Mario minifigure reacts to three special bricks and a new start pipe that randomises the rules of playing.
The Mario minifigure only comes with the Lego Super Mario Starter Course, which costs £49.99, but as the sensor detects colour (including a new one where purple equals poison) you can still use normal Lego bricks with it as well.
There are also three new mid-priced expansions, with the Chain Chomp Jungle Encounter (£19.99), Piranha Plant Puzzling Challenge (£24.99), and Wiggler’s Poison Swamp (£34.99).
They all look great – we especially like that Wiggler – and there’s also two new Power-Up packs, for £8.99 each, that let you dress the Mario minifigure up as a penguin or a tanooki. That grants him the same powers he’d have in the game, so sliding on his belly for the penguin and a spin attack for the tanooki – although obviously you have to do the spinning.
Plus, there’s a Series 2 of the blind bag character packs, where you got a random bad guy and stand, now including more obscure enemies such as a Huckit Crab, Foo, and a Ninji.
This all implies that the collaboration between Lego and Nintendo is going well, which begs the question of whether more sets might be produced based on other Nintendo properties, or perhaps just traditional minifigure scale versions of iconic Mario landmarks like Peach’s castle.
A Lego-built version of Hyrule Castle or an Arwing sounds pretty good to us, but so far the only thing that hasn’t been part of the Super Mario line is the amazing Lego NES console and TV – which also optionally works with the Mario minifigure.
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