| Tuesday May 24th 2016

Brutal Mario: violent, reference-heavy Mario mod

Play This Thing reviews Brutal Mario, a Tarantino-esque Super Mario World hack that sounds like an incredible hoot to play…

This is obviously a labor of love, as the developer knows her stuff. This game is highly allusive and drops constant references to other works like its Gaiman’s Sandman. Super Mario World is its core, but set pieces, backgrounds, and enemies from assorted titles and other Mario games all make appearances. Brutal MarioThese additions are far from being a cut-and-paste hodgepodge though, as they’re carefully woven together to create an enthralling experience. The nod to Tarantino and Shinichiro Watanabe is duly earned. Instead of being a pure homage, though, the game throws constant curveballs at you. I played one level where the On/Off switch actually changed the enemies in the level, and another one that was fully destructible via Mario’s fireballs. These subversive quirks are made all the more apparent because they’re within the Super Mario World engine, something that is so well-known and played.The boss battles are what this hack is best known for, and they’re reason enough for a download. Bosses are typically the one shortcoming in the Mario franchise, but not here. There are dozens of encounters and they’re all throwbacks to various 16-bit games. Oh, and they are a lot of fun too. There is the occasional level that drags a bit, but other than that Super Nintendo fans shouldn’t pass this up.

Brutal Mario

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