Paper Mario Nintendo 64
Paper Mario Image

Universal acclaim - based on 15 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 153 Ratings

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  • Summary: Mario pals around in an all-new action adventure! Mario's back in his first adventure since Super Mario 64, and this time, Bowser's bent on preventing a storybook ending. When Princess Peach is kidnapped, Mario plots to rescue the seven Star Spirits and rid the Mushroom Kingdom of Koopa's cruel cohorts. As he travels from the tropical jungles of Lavalava Island to the frosty heights of Shiver Mountain, he'll meet up with seven all-new companions... and he'll need help from each one or there'll be no happily ever after. Collapse
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 15
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 15
  3. Negative: 0 out of 15
  1. 100
    Deceptively deep, this is the new blueprint for action RPGs and one of the last must-haves for the N64.
  2. If you're severely allergic to overly cute-and-cuddly games, take some Dramamine before heading off on Mario's adventure.
  3. No matter what your tastes are, after just an hour in Mario's new world, we can guarantee that you?ll not want to move from your chair. Ever.
  4. What it does have is a great story, fun puzzles, and epic battles. Any RPG fan would be absolutely nuts to pass on Paper Mario.
  5. With a standout graphical look to it, and the great traditional RPG style, Paper Mario is certainly one of the best RPG games out there.
  6. Not only is Paper Mario a superb RPG, but it's also another quality N64 game that simply shouldn't be missed.
  7. 80
    Despite having a unique look, the visuals certainly aren't the highlight of Paper Mario. It's the fun adventure, mixing intuitive controls and straightforward gameplay that make this a great addition to the N64 library.

See all 15 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 63 out of 66
  2. Negative: 2 out of 66
  1. DanG.
    May 3, 2004
    Worth buying. If you loved Super Mario RPG or any RPG's period, then this is for you! You'll be hooked instantly.
  2. Oct 21, 2012
    I wasn't a fan of Super Mario RPG. The story was boring, the characters were bland/cliché, and I couldn't get into the gameplay. Regardless, I dived into the second Mario RPG with an open mind and, I gotta tell you, I can't find a flaw with this game. The gameplay is very immersive and perfectly suited for a console, the characters are lively and entertaining, the level design is very colorful, and the story, while at its core is the same as any Mario platformer, takes its sweet time getting there with all of the aforementioned criteria. I recommend you ignore the idiot haters who can't provide any points and get this game. It's $10 on Virtual Console right now. Expand
  3. Nov 28, 2012
    Where to begin...This game is my favorite game of all time. To begin, let's start with the presentation, graphics and audio. The graphics are very good for n64. The contrast of the 2D characters with the 3D background still holds up today.
    The music is almost flawless. The title screen music gives the player a sense of fun urgency to begin the adventure, the battle themes are classic, and the remaining themes are all conducted perfectly, fitting their respective environments.
    The story appears to be typical of a mario game as bowser steals peach and mario must rescue her. However, Paper Mario's story shines in its details. The npcs of the game are given a great amount of characterization, which this creates a sense of connectivity within the game that is not seen in many other mario games. The story is revealed in storybook fashion, with each world being called a chapter instead. Each chapter is completely different from the previous, keeping the game fresh by introducing new environments, objectives, puzzles, characters, and gameplay. After each chapter, you get to see what peach is up to. This is the worst part of the game, as you have to control kidnapped peach in an attempt to find out information to get relayed to mario. However, this is an interesting concept that would get expanded on in the next 2 paper mario games.
    Onto the actual gameplay elements: As you progress in the game, you pick up several party members. These party members are needed for puzzles and assist you in battle. The battles are turn based, yet are interactive, as you can perform action commands to do more damage or block attacks, much like in mario rpg. As you progress, you get more attacks, upgrades, badges, and items that add an amazing amount of depth and strategy to the game. You can level up if you get enough battle experience. As a kid I didn't know any better but to always increase my heart points (health) rather than allocating it between flower points and badge points. The bosses all bring something new to the table, and you must figure out a strategy to beat each one. Other gameplay elements include solving well thought out puzzles that progressively get more rewarding and challenging, collecting star pieces to get new badges, and exploring the vast maze of the toad town tunnels. Yeah, so in summary, the battle system is pretty amazing and deep and tops off an almost flawless game.
  4. ShawnL
    Dec 8, 2008
    A really awesome RPG game that has an awesome story and overall a really special experience.
  5. BonbonAliano
    Aug 6, 2005
    I still play this game, you know?! Until now! It's just amazing!
  6. Sep 19, 2012
    Amazing game. This is my favorite game of all time, and for good reason, the only thing bad about it is that it wasn't longer. This game is a great combination of RPG and platforming, the badges and upgrade systems really allow you to tweak your character just right. Expand
  7. Aug 12, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I grew up with Super Mario RPG on this SNES, and had wanted to play Paper Mario back when it was still Super Mario RPG 2 in development. So when I bought a Wii, this was the first game I downloaded. Did I enjoy the game? Yes and no.

    Starting with the good points. - There is a LOT to see and do in the game, and since most of the backtracking can be avoided it doesn't get old quickly, which I can really appreciate.
    - The character and enemy design is fairly decent. There's not a great deal of variety in either, but their graphics still look crisp for being 11 years old (though the 3D parts still look dated)
    - There's a lot of customizing to be done with badges, which does present a bit of thought provoking when you have to choose what will be good in the upcoming battles.
    - Humor is everywhere in the game. Most of it was too cheesy for me, but there were some I really enjoyed, like Whacka the mole.
    - The end credits were perfect, doing another march as in Super Mario RPG. Couldn't have done them better.

    Andddd the bad.
    - The story. For an RPG, they really didn't try too hard to make a decent storyline, just the same "Bowser kidnaps Peach" plot that they've reused dozens of times since 1985. - Though there are a lot of badge options, the low maximum for badge number really limits the usefulness. After equipping the 3 "Attack/Defense Plus" badges, you're down to only 12 to play with. I found the most effective build was to boost your normal attacking/defending skills, which really only gave you room for 1 special attack.
    - Whoever did the work on names really needed a second opinion. All of the toad names were mind numbingly terrible puns, like Tayse T. the cook, Russ T. the librarian, and Dain T. Gah.
    - The battle system needed a lot of polish. It still uses the same basic system from Super Mario RPG but was simplified at just about every turn. No armor and 2 weapons to choose from in the entire game made shops mostly invalidated. The enemy queue system meant that you were mostly stuck attacking whoever was closest first, unless you invested heavily in mostly useless badges. The experience system was frustrating at best, seeing as level-ups quickly made most battles pointless, as no experience would be awarded.
    - Mario's secondary characters were mostly useless. Goombario, Watt and Bombette would last you the entire game. The others were generally unimpressive in battle and really only served for non-combat abilities.
    - Peach's scenes were the worst by far. She couldn't take any real actions (no jumping or attacking) and it quickly became repetitive, as she could even take a "secret" passageway into Bowser's room with him IN THERE, and still get to try it again next time. Baffling. The cake making was miserable.
    - The arguing with Square got a lot of the more nostalgic points removed from the game (at least for me), with Star Hill becoming Shooting Star Point, and even "Time Hits" became "Action Commands". I would have loved to see Mallow in the game, but that's life.
    - No real mini-games to speak of. Unless you want to count the letter delivering. Which I don't.

    In the end, Paper Mario was a serviceable RPG. Too simplistic to really be called amazing, but it was decent. And it's hard to fault the game too much, because it's a non Squaresoft, non-Pokemon RPG. At least they tried. But I doubt I'd play it a second time through.

See all 66 User Reviews

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