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dbarry_22's Video Game Reviews (218)

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Dead Cells 4.5/5
Mario vs. Donkey Kong 4/5
Bloodstained: Ritual of... 4.5/5
Bloodstained: Ritual of... 4.5/5
Red Dead Redemption 2 4.5/5
Blaster Master Zero II 3.5/5
The Legend of Zelda: Li... 5/5
The Legend of Zelda: Li... 5/5
Golf Story 4/5
Tetris 99 3.5/5
Red Dead Redemption 4/5
Dragon Quest XI: Echoes... 4.5/5
Mega Man 11 4/5
Octopath Traveler 4.5/5
The Legend of Zelda: Sp... 3.5/5
Bloodstained: Curse of ... 4/5
Everybody's Golf 3.5/5
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe 4.5/5
Super Mario Galaxy 2 4.5/5
Castlevania: Portrait o... 4/5
Final Fantasy X / X-2 H... 4.5/5
Final Fantasy X / X-2 H... 4.5/5
Kirby's Dream Course 3.5/5
SteamWorld Dig 4/5
Super Mario Odyssey 5/5

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Mario vs. Donkey Kong   Game Boy Advance 

Mario, DK, and Puzzles Packed into a Platformer    4/5 stars

Mario vs. Donkey Kong is a great handheld game for on the go and provides a ton of levels and puzzles to enjoy which provides many hours of entertainment.

Mario vs. Donkey Kong is a sequel to the Donkey Kong game that was released on the Game Boy in 1994. Mario completes stages by obtaining a key and reaching the locked door. Then, at the end of each world he takes on Donkey Kong. This game is an action 2D platformer but it also is almost equally a puzzle game. You must move objects, climb ladders, avoid or kill enemies among other things to get through each level. It contains typical 16 bit style graphics and music that would find on other Mario games in the GBA and SNES era which look and sound good.

Mario has a surprisingly large amount of abilities in this game. Fortunately you don't have to experiment to figure out what they all are. This game does a good job of introducing you to these abilities before a level begins. It often reminds you of such abilities in later levels in case you've forgotten and haven't used them in a while. This includes a wide variety of jumps and headstands. These abilities in combination of picking up objects, climbing ladders and ropes provides a ton of options for puzzles and this game does a good job of mixing things up. None of these levels are too difficult but you will have to think about the correct path if you want to get all the presents and reach the target score for each stage.

The game begins by showing you 6 worlds each with 8 stages to complete. The first 6 stages of each world follow a similar pattern. There are two rooms to solve, the first one takes a key to grab and getting it to the door. The second part of the stage requires you to get to a Mario toy to pick up. If you're wondering why Mario is picking up all of these toys the story of the game. When you start the game for the first time, you discover that Donkey Kong has stolen a bunch of mini Mario toys and you have taken up the task of retrieving them. Not exactly a stellar story line, but this is a Mario puzzle game, you should be glad they just didn't use the same old story line of rescuing the kidnapped Princess. The second to last stage of each world has you using these toys to reach the end of the level. For every mini Mario you save in that stage it provides you an extra hit you can take against Donkey Kong in the boss level.

Losing lives is common in this game. Getting hit by an enemy, falling too far or into a pit, basically one mistake and you lose a life and you start over. Fortunately, stages for the most part don't take very long so you don't lose progress. Also, there are extra lives placed in levels and if you manage to get all the presents in a stage you get a little bonus mini game to try and get more extra lives. So to sum up, you will lose a lot of lives playing this game but getting extra lives is also quite easy so it evens out as you go.

Once you get the first 6 worlds and 48 stages you face off against Donkey Kong for one final fight, or least you'd think so. Once you beat that "final" Donkey Kong boss, plus worlds are opened up and there are even more stages to complete. 6 more worlds with 7 stages each open up. In these stages you must guide the mini Mario toys like you did in the seventh stage in the original worlds. These are more complicated stages and increase the difficulty of the game but are still not impossible to beat for the average gamer.

So, you beat the first six worlds and then the six plus worlds. You think you're done? Nope! There are then 12 expert stages you can take on if you've managed to three star all previous levels. These can be quite challenging and can be a headache because the platforming aspect is upped a notch and this game's play control is not nearly the same as your typical Super Mario Bros. game. It's quite satisfying if you beat them though.

All in all this is a great puzzle platformer game that is designed to be played in short spurts which is perfect for the GBA. With as total of 104 stages you can tackle it also provides many hours of entertainment. Unfortunately this game is not exactly easy to access. If you want to play this game you'll have to find a GBA cartridge second hand or you if you still have a WiiU hooked up you can purchase a Virtual Console version. It's worth though, this is one of the better original GBA titles in the library.

4/5

 

 


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