Peach knows how to deliver fun, even with the lack of difficulty
+ emotions are well-implemented into the gameplay
+ cool upgrades can be bought with coins
+ you can save any time
+ very nice looking graphics
+ lots of stuff to collect
+ really fun
- (for guys) a little too 'cute'
- WAY too easy
Mario has had his fair share of 2-D platformers in his day, most (if not all) of which have been highly praised and well liked. Now Nintendo has dared to do something different: Peach has to save Mario in this very unique DS 2-D game that somehow manages to be incredibly fun and worthwhile.
WHAT? Mario's been captured? Apparently. "Peach, don't go save him!" Toadsworth pleads. "OK," Peach says… only to set out for Vibe Island a few minutes later, where Mario and Co. are being held (against their will) by Bowser. So that's how our adventure starts. And then Peach goes around Vibe Island and eventually saves Mario and everybody. Hooray!
The game progresses in the very linear fashion that most 2-D platformers do: you beat a level, go to the next one, and repeat. Of course you can backtrack and replay any given level in the game you've already beaten, which is good because there are a few things to collect that you may have missed the first time.
These things include Toads (3 in each level); puzzle pieces, and occasionally music tracks. This puts a pretty big number on just how much stuff there is to find in the game and makes it last a lot longer than if you just played through to the last level. You can also buy upgrades (extra health, new abilities, etc.) at the shop with the coins you collect in the level, which also adds a lot to the game.
The gameplay is pretty unique and very enjoyable. It plays differently from Mario games, especially in that you can press B to hit an enemy with your umbrella and use emotions to progress in the level and solve puzzles. Tapping one of the hearts on the touch screen activates these emotions. You can be angry (engulfs Peach in flames), sad (makes Peach cry like a fountain), kind of happy (makes Peach recover health), or happier (makes Peach able to fly). These are implemented into the gameplay well and come into play enough to keep you into them but aren't overused to the point where you get tired of them.
Wait, what's all this talk about hearts and umbrellas? One of the things I didn't like about the game (as a guy) was just how 'cute' it was. I mean I should have seen it coming of course as it is that kind of game, but the sheer fun of it shouldn't keep guys from ignoring it for its looks.
The main downside to the game is just how easy it is. Any slightly experienced gamer should have no difficulties getting through the entire game, maybe one or two failed attempts to beat a level or boss but other than that it's easy rolling all the way through. I can almost guarantee you won't get stuck in any given area for more than ten seconds. It's not a particularly short game; it's just really easy.
Super Princess Peach's graphics are very nicely done. They are very smooth and the colors are vibrant, and the frame rate is very smooth as well. The style is entirely 2-D, no 3-D character models or anything here, but the visuals are done just about as well as they possibly could have been. The sound is also good with nice music and relevant sound effects (after playing a game like Sonic Chronicles, the word 'relevant' actually seems like it could actually apply to sound effects as that game had really strange sounds).
Overall, Super Princess Peach is just a really fun game. Sure it's really easy and some guys won't like all the cuteness, but that still doesn't hurt just how enjoyable it is. Add that to all the stuff to collect and some very nice graphics and you have a hugely worthwhile game that will thoroughly entertain you and make you realize that Peach CAN be the star of a game, and a great one at that!
FINAL SCORE: 8.1/10