What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Mario's foray into baseball is harmless, sporting fun. The worst thing players will do in this game is thwart defensive plays by tossing objects like turtle shells, banana peels, or bombs.
What's it about?
Mario has always been known as the sporting type. The Nintendo icon flashes his athletic prowess on the diamond in MARIO SUPER SLUGGERS, an easy-to-learn baseball title ideal for younger gamers. The main challenge requires players to field a baseball squad to take on Bowser and his minions. To do this, you must visit different baseball stadiums and convince players to join your team. Most times, characters want you to complete a skills test before they hop aboard.
A sequel to GameCube's Mario Superstars Baseball, Sluggers includes mostly minor adjustments. Among the key changes is the incorporation of motion controls. Using only the remote, you can pitch, hit, and throw. To pitch, you'll flick the remote back then quickly forward. Unlike in Wii Sports, where you hold the remote like a bat, here you're told to flick the remote across to hit (although you can hold the remote as bat, but if you do, you seem to lose a little accuracy). If you prefer more complexity, you can attach the nunchuk for more precise control and player movement.
Is it any good?
The best part of Sluggers is actually playing the baseball games. You choose a captain and then eight teammates based on hitting, pitching, and other attributes. Recruiting players with the right special "talents" allows you to thwart opponents' efforts by tossing turtle shells and other objects. Chemistry also comes in handy on the field, in the form of blistering Buddy Tosses and high-flying Buddy Jumps to rob homeruns.
While this simple baseball game is good for kids, it won't satisfy more sophisticated Mario fans. The Challenge Mode only requires you play two games: One against Bowser and one against Bowser Jr. Most other activity involves smaller skill tests. An online mode is not available. Fortunately, you do get a ton of minigames from pitching events to a variation of the homerun derby. While Sluggers isn't as thrilling as Mario Kart or Wii Sports, it's a solid Mario-centric title.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about baseball video games. Do you prefer simple games like this or more robust experiences like Major League Baseball simulations? Did Mario and his friends make playing this game fun?