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Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam is the latest addition to the beloved franchise of Mario games, and it takes a daring approach by merging two iconic RPG sub-genres - the classic Mario & Luigi series and the whimsical Paper Mario series.
Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam is the latest addition to the beloved franchise of Mario games, and it takes a daring approach by merging two iconic RPG sub-genres - the classic Mario & Luigi series and the whimsical Paper Mario series. This unique crossover adventure places Mario, Luigi, and their paper counterparts up against the formidable duo of Bowser and Paper Bowser, who have joined forces to lay siege to the Mushroom Kingdom. While the concept of this crossover holds immense potential, Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, unfortunately, fails to fully exploit it, leaving fans with mixed feelings. In this article, we'll delve into the game's strengths and weaknesses and its place within the Mario gaming universe.
The Crossover Concept
Crossover games have always intrigued gamers, and Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam certainly had an appealing premise. Merging the two distinct art styles of the Mario & Luigi series and the paper-thin world of Paper Mario was a bold move. The potential for creative gameplay mechanics and an engaging storyline was immense. However, it's regrettable that the game did not fully commit to the crossover concept. Elements from the Paper Mario series, such as the Sticker Star system, feel like mere afterthoughts rather than integral parts of the gameplay experience.
Strengths of Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam
Despite its shortcomings, Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam does offer some redeeming qualities that make it worth exploring. The game boasts sharp, witty writing that has been a hallmark of the series. The dialogue is humorous and charming, bringing the beloved characters to life in a delightful manner. The standout soundtrack is yet another high point, with catchy tunes that accompany players on their journey through the Mushroom Kingdom. The three-person battle system also adds a fresh dimension to the gameplay, offering more strategic options for players to enjoy.
One of the standout features of Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam is the papercraft sequences. These giant mecha-like battles provide some of the most entertaining moments in the entire franchise. Players must engage in creative and action-packed battles using papercraft versions of their favorite characters, offering a refreshing break from the traditional RPG battles. These sequences showcase the potential that could have been further explored in the game.
While there are certainly enjoyable aspects of Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, it is not without its flaws. The game's plot, for instance, is disappointingly thin. The story lacks the depth and complexity that fans have come to expect from Mario RPGs. This is a missed opportunity, as a crossover of this magnitude could have delivered an epic and unforgettable narrative. Moreover, the Paper Toad missions, which players encounter throughout the game, quickly become repetitive, detracting from the overall experience.
In the grand scope of the Mario & Luigi series, Paper Jam can be considered one of the weaker entries. However, it's important to note that this doesn't make it a bad game by any means. The franchise has a strong history of delivering engaging and entertaining titles, and while Paper Jam might not reach the heights of its predecessors, it still provides an enjoyable gaming experience.