New Super Mario Bros. was developed by Nintendo EAD and published by Nintendo on May 15, 2006 in North America, May 25, 2006 in Japan, June 8, 2006 in Australia, and June 30, 2006 in Europe. The game retains all of the traditional gameplay of the original, all whilst adding new features, power-ups, and a large graphic facelift. New Super Mario Bros. also added two-player wireless multiplayer for battles, and up to four-player wireless for minigames (similar to those found in Super Mario 64 DS). New Super Mario Bros. was very well received, with critics praising the updates in the game. New Super Mario Bros. currently has an 89.42% average on Game Rankings, and an 89% average on Metacritic. New Super Mario Bros. has sold 29.09 million units worldwide as of April 2012.
The story of New Super Mario Bros. is essentially one and the same as the NES game's plot. The game follows Mario, on a quest to rescue Princess Peach (after she is kidnapped by the evil Bowser). Mario fights many of Bowser's peons, from Goombas to Koopas. Bowser Jr. also is a prominent enemy in New Super Mario Bros., and Mario fights him several times.
New Super Mario Bros. retains much of the gameplay aspects that the original Super Mario Bros. contained, all while "modernizing" the ideas presented. One such way the game does this is by having the entire game in 3D one a 2D side-scrolling plane (known as 2.5D). Playing as either Mario or Luigi, the player traverses one of several levels, with the goal to reach the flag at the end of the level. Along the way, there are enemies and obstacles to contend with (with varying environments, from the well-known World 1-1, to later levels containing lava). Bowser's henchmen are also there, ranging from the cannon fodder Goombas, to nigh-invincible Piranha Plants. There are other ways to die other than landing in lava or getting hit by an enemy. Falling into a pit or getting crushed by collapsing ceilings or spikes, for example.
Naturally, there are power-ups and moves to assist Mario on his quest. One addition includes the wall jump making its first appearance in a 2D Mario game (since its introduction in Super Mario 64). Another technique that has been added is the ground pound (which was first seen in Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island, and first used by Mario in Super Mario 64 ). Power-ups for Mario include the original power-ups: Super Mushroom (grows Mario in size), Fire Flower (gives Mario the ability to throw fireballs), and Starman (makes Mario temporarily invincible). Other power-ups have been added: Blue Koopa Shell (allows Mario to travel inside a shell, invincible against almost anything), Mega Mushroom (grows Mario into gargantuan proportions so that he can crush anything in the stage), and Mini Mushroom (shrinks Mario down into minuscule size, so he can fit in smaller holes).
In New Super Mario Bros. there are eight worlds, each consisting of ten levels. Each level contains a flag (the goal), and at the end of each world is a boss. Every world ranges in design, usually presenting a new idea or obstacle that must be surpassed. The worlds include a typical valley (World 1), a desert (World 2), a tropical area (World 3), a rain forest that contains poisonous water (World 4), an ice world (World 5), a mountainous region (World 6), a cloudy world (World 7), and a lava-filled area that is Bowser's home (World 8). Worlds 4 and 7 are only available to a player after beating the previous world's castle (Worlds 3 and 6, respectively) while under the effects of a Mini Mushroom.
The multiplayer mode in New Super Mario Bros. places two players in an area based off of one of the worlds in New Super Mario Bros. There are five places to go to: Grass Stage (World 1-1), Underground Stage (World 1-2), Ice Stage (World 5), Pipe Stage (World 7), and Castle Stage (World 8). The multiplayer mode is simple; the player to collect the most stars wins. Players can set the amount of stars to race to before the game begins. When it does begin, the two players can gather power-ups, stars, and coins in a race to obtain the preset amount. By attacking one another (by jumping on each other or through a power-up), players can steal each other's stars. The multiplayer mode is only wireless multiplayer with two DS cartridges, it does not support DS Download Play or Nintendo Wi-Fi. Much like Super Mario 64 DS, New Super Mario Bros. contains a variety of minigames (eighteen for a single player and ten for multiple players). There are several minigames: Action, Puzzle, Table, and Variety are the categories.
Level wise, if a player knows all of the secret exits in the game and can get the proper suit before each one, it is possible to do a playthrough of the game where you only play levels from worlds 1,5 and 8. You find the canon in world 1 after the 2nd level. That canon leads to the fifth world, and you can skip ahead in world 5 to the ghost house where the exit to the canon is which leads to world 8. So in a good playthrough the player only needs to play through one world in its entirety (world 8 due to the fact that it is not a branching path).
In addition to the main game, the game also includes several minigames. Most such game are carried over from Mario 64 DS.
- Snowball Slalom
- Lakitu Launch
- Danger, Bob-Omb! Danger!
- Balloon Racing
- Which Wiggler?
- Hide and Boo Seek
- Puzzle Panel
- Memory Match
- Picture Poker
- Mario's Slides
- Sort or 'Splode
- Bounce and Trounce
- Bob-Omb Squad
- Trampoline Time