|Posted by Kelsy on February 2, 2020 at 10:45 PM|
Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 - 100% Completed, Reviewed by Kelsy "SuperGirlKels" Medeiros
Console: Nintendo Switch
In case you weren't born in the 90's, let me break it down to you. Once upon a time Mario was king of gaming, and still is. No one in the gaming industry seemed to have been able to stand a chance against Nintendo and their red plumber hero; Mario....until a certain company would come along and give one of the greatest wars in history of media: SEGA and Sonic the Hedgehog, who was created to take down Mario, and take the industry under their hands. SEGA won, for a few years... but those few years were the most iconic years in gaming history. When SEGA left the industry as a hardware company, and focused on software... we started to see Sonic appear on all consoles such as Sony, Microsoft, and even Nintendo. The question came up for a decade... when are we going to see Mario and Sonic in the same game duking it out? In 2007, the world was taken by storm when Nintendo and SEGA were teaming up to put their mascots in battle one last time... but the surprise came from how.. and where.. which was the Olympics? What seemed like such a odd strategy, only made sense as release came. The Olympics was a huge honour, and the biggest sporting event in history. To be able to represent the series with their mascots is truly amazing. This also kept the "family friend fun" party game that both Mario and Sonic are known for when it came to their 3rd party series for family fun. When the game launched, it became a franchise selling millions of copies and inspired many sequels. As time went on though... the hype... died. The games were getting lazy in both gameplay, and content. Controls weren't responsive, online was weak, and players showed that they were just finished with the series and lost hope in it. After the London Olympics about 4 years ago, SEGA finally took a step back from the series and everyone thought it was finally done after a yearly/2 year release. But... surprise! In 2019, Nintendo and SEGA announced the series was back to celebrate the Olympics in Tokyo 2020, in a whole new way! With a story mode, new content, retro mode and more.... the game seemed to be down a new and gold road. But does the game hold up to the big expectations?
For the first time in the series, Mario and Sonic introduce us to an in dept story mode with a hub world.... and when I say hub world, it's MASSIVE. The story is 15 chapters big that takes about 6-9 hours to complete. There's content, character development between Eggman and Bowser, while 2 seperate worlds to explore in between Tokyo, and the newly advertised Retro world which takes place in 1964 Tokyo that gives an entire new look, and gameplay (or should I say old..?) in style to the classic 90's style Mario and Sonic, which wel get to later!
Mario and Sonic were warming up, and preparing for the olympics that were set to begin! But while they were busy, they didn't notice that Bowser and Eggman were teaming up and had a huge plan to trap Mario and Sonic while they would win the Olympics! With Bowser being a bit impatient with Eggman's technology.. a mistake occurs that not only traps Mario and Sonic, but also traps Eggman and Bowser into a 16-bit video game! Get this though, the trap is set in Tokyo ... in 1964.... and the only way out? To collect all gold medals! Meanwhile back in the modern world, Luigi and Tails notice Sonic and Mario missing, and go on their own adventure to try to figure out what happened to them, and how to get them back!
The story is incredibly detailed. There's conflict, climax, and missions from 2 sides of the story which really does a good job at connecting the story together. Even if the story isn't with cutscenes, but done with "moving 3D modeled" pictures and text, it really does a good job at making you imagine what's happening. The story is a MUST play if you own this game. As for the hub world, I can't stop talking about it because of just how amazing it is! Imagine all of Tokyo and the area of the Olympics, and imagine exploring that seeing cultural landmarks, and being to even explore Tokyo and how it was in 1964 but in retro style! There's trivia to collect, which are facts about the Olympics and the characters from the game hidden all around the hub world. Because of how sneeky and wide the hub world is, it can be quite hard to find in such detail! Keep your eye open in this mass world in which you explore at the Olympics!
Music / Sound Effects
There's not really anything special with the music in particular. The soundtrack is based and reused from previous Mario and Sonic games but edited a bit to "fit in" for 2020. The Olympic tends to have this sound whenever we watch from home or at their olympic stadium, which is used as music here in Mario and Sonic. If you don't know what I mean, check out the menu from the 2020 Mario and Sonic theme. But the sound effects are really well done, being able to finally hear feet running, the sound of the ocean as you surf upon it, the 100000000X times to hear "perfect" when trying to get 5 star in skateboarding, and all voices in the characters are not overused, or annoying at all which comes off as rare in the Sonic series. Some characters specifically such as Knuckles have new voice actors this time and they suit the characters a LOT better than they used to. It's great that SEGA put all their efforts to . making this game not only feel good, but sound really great too
The music that is cool as well as with the sound effects are what is used in the Retro version of the game. It purposely creates a rusty, hard to hear vibe like sounds in games used to sound like in the 80s-90s. The way you would hear characters run would sound like pops, and the announcer would sound so disoriented. As for the music, it's literally taken a page out of the original Super Mario Bros where it creates something epic, catchy yet like it's coming from an NES. It's really awesome to feel like you're back in the classics.
This is something I really wanted to touch base on because I have never been so impressed with graphics in this series until now. In 2007, we were introduced to the series and as releases have gone on, the series has become lazy and rusty by reusing all models and touching them up to match that current year. After the 4 year long break and returning to 2020's olympics, all characters, backgrounds, textures and more have been completely redone. Models of each character are so full of life and expression on their face which is something we haven't seen in general in the Sonic series for a very long time since 2008's Sonic Unleashed. Victory poses are different, new characters are given great personality and everyone is dressed differently in different ocasions. Karate, you see everyone dressed with a black belt robe, where as equestrian everyone is dressed as they actually do in the olympics with their shirt, rusted pants, and cowboy boots. It's hilarious to see Eggman topless as he swims or surfs, and Sonic's new shoes are kicking! It's also a great touch to see that everyone apart of the Mario series wears red, while everyone apart of the Sonic series wears blue. It kind of creates a sense of diversity and competition between the two series. The lighting, shadows and backgrounds are full of texture and detailed. I'm really happy with the graphics, in fact because of the graphics is the reason I decided to get this game ad give the series another go. A game that plays good, also has to look good!
Mario and Sonic 2020 offers more than 30 events this time around while some may be brought back from the originals and others, being bran new such as skateboarding, surfing, and of course, the retro events. Dream events have been replaced with the retro events and honestly, I'm okay with that. The retro events offer the same vibes as the dream events but in 16 bit action. They also all represent and take some form in the original Mario bros. series and Sonic the hedgehog series. There are though, still 3 events that were added as dream events that include Dream Karate, Dream Shooting, and Dream Racing (which is the best event in the entire series) as you race down an entire Mario Kart/Sonic Riders crossover on boards while collecting and using items against 7 other racers. Of course, mastering these events are key to earning Gold Medals (1st place) in all events and difficulty. Controls are super responsive in compared to the wii and Wii u versions of the titles and are very accurate to motion control. There even some events I had to use motion control instead of buttons to get a better response time and THAT'S crazy to think that in this world, motion control can be now easier than direct button pressing. Motion Controls in this game actually make you feel like you're really apart of the olympics quite literally, by giving you a work out! There were some hard mode events and achievements that I was trying to unlock and literally couldn't do it with buttons and after trying and trying again with motion control, I noticed I was covered in sweat and even had to take a break to give my arms and hands a break. I literally got a workout! I think what I appreciate so much about this game is how different every event is from each other, how every event is available in multiplayer, and how (almost) every event in super fun. I think I can only think of 3 events that weren't cutting it for me, and felt like a hastle to play which included boxing, volleyball, and javelin throw. All of those events had either control issues, inconsistency or the CPU would read inputs and purposely cause you to lose. But as for all the other events, everything was super fun, and even when I was stuck on 1 achievement that literally took 4 hours to achieve in skateboarding... I was never bored. I was super entertained with this game from beginning to end and it came to the point that while other games released, I had them on hold because I just wanted to finish this one! It was that fun of an experience for me.
The replay value was where I was most impressed with Mario and Sonic 2020. Not only was there a 15 chapter story mode to complete, and to collect all trivia... but I also had to focus on collecting all gold medals in both Normal, Hard, and Very Hard modes which felt impossible at times. The game was challenging, in so many events and so many ways... I was impressed, and I accepted this challenge graecfully (unless it was boxing, javelin throw or volleyball... screw those mini games). Once I was done that, I still had to complete the mini games that were done from the story mode as challenges were inspired by classic Mario bros. and Sonic series. I then had to complete all 80 challenges... 80. These challenges were not as easy as you may think. Some unlocked on their own as you progressed, but the hard challenges (gold) were extremely difficult to get that involved beating world records, time limits, and insanely almost impossible reaction. This game kept me on my toes, and some events took hours to complete their challenge. Let's just say... it kept me up at nights for sometime.
One thing though, that I was fairely disappointed in was the Online. There wasn't any lag issues with anyone that I played with, even the worldwide lobbies... but the events were lacking. Not all events were available online as for one, including all of the retro events which was a huge missed opportunity. But you can only play up to 4 players in only SOME events. I was planning on creating Mario and Sonic tournaments by having 8-12 players go head to head in all events representing their team, clan, and countries... unfortionately once I saw the outcome of the online, and how rankings were done and how limited the events were... I knew this wasn't going to be an active online community, and the competitive scene immediately became non-existant. It really was a miss for them, as the world of gaming develops, more and more people are purchasing games for the online so that hours and hours can be accomplished with friends around the world. Now that I'm completely done with this game, it's hard.. because now I know I'm never going to play it again... when the online could have been there for me. This game had tons of hype up until right after release.. now? I don't know one person that owns it, or one person that still plays it. It's really sad.
Road to 100%
- Complete Story Mode
- Find all Trivia in the hube world of Story Mode (both retro, and modern)
- Complete Post Story
- Collect Gold Medals (1st) in all events , in ALL 3 difficulties: Normal, Hard Mode, and Very Hard
- Complete all Mini Games
- Complete all 68 Event Achievements
- Complete all 12 Other Achievements for a total of 80 achievements
Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games 2020 Tokyo, is probably the best party game out there right now besides Mario Kart for Switch. It offers outstanding family multiplayer play and countless events to keep the family laughing while keeping competitive and strict gamers busy with the hardest of challenges. The controls work amazingly either by button, or motion control which creates a diverse sense of gameplay. The story mode is a must play for everyone which involves both Mario and Sonic's worlds colliding and giving you an amazing sense of replay value before, and after the game. Though, some trivia to collect were glitched out and required some major research to finding out how to reset, and collect what's missing for completionists and the online brings down the value of the game, forcing you to put it away once finished.. collecting dust until your next family or friend gatherings. Over all, Mario and Sonic 2020 is a MUST have for gamers, and families everywhere on Switch to see the full power of the motion control on the console, and for the upmost replay value, and challenge.
+ Story Mode
+ Replay Value
+ Retro Events
- Online Mode
- Trivia Glitches / Spawn problems