Mario and Luigi: Dream Team Review Thread

As the game's coming out in a week and a half in Europe (!!!) and we've got the first review courtesy of Official Nintendo Magazine UK, I thought it was probably time for this thread. It'll be updated as we get more reviews in.

Official Nintendo Magazine UK said:
It's easy for a Dream Team Bros. review to become a list of neat stuff. It's a game that introduces a new idea, mechanic or boss fight every half an hour for around 35 hours- and that's without investing in side content: excavating stat-boosting beans, waking scattered Pi'illos, reassembling CCTV footage (don't ask), an extra tough boss rush mode... It's absolutely rammed and gets better the less you know, so we'll draw a line under it there.
So it is that 3DS's incredible first-party run continues. In the year that has given us the definitive Fire Emblem and Animal Crossing it only makes sense that AlphaDream should step up and deliver the best Mario and Luigi game yet.

+ A near constant drip-feed of barmy invention
+ Smart twist on traditional turn-based brawls
+ One of 3DS's funniest games

A game set in Luigi's wildest dreams turns out to be the game of our wildest dreams. What are the odds of that, eh? This is tirelessly inventive fun.

IGN review: 8

The Verdict

Mario and Luigi Dream Team has great moments, but they’re almost always confined to its psychedelic dream sections, which teem with imagination and invention. Consequently I always found myself enjoying these sections far more than its overworld exploration, turn-based combat, and more traditional RPG elements. It's an uneven experience, but occasionally it grasps greatness, making it a worthy addition to an already distinguished series.

Mario & Luigi: Dream Team is packed with charm and imagination, but its very best ideas are unevenly spread

+Constantly changing
+Standout dream sections
+Full of humour and charm

– Sluggish opening
– Overworld seems bland after dreams
Less successful are the game's visuals which, particularly on Pi'Illo Island, have a Donkey Kong Country-style waxy jaggedness. As a result, this is an uglier game than the previous and handsome DS title, even if the all-new 3D effect is folded lightly but usefully into gameplay during battles. The script, too, fails to live up to previous Mario & Luigi titles for whim and wit. While the usual Nintendo weight and sheen is present in the dialogue, the humour has an unexpected thinness, especially in the first half of the game before antagonist Antasma - a bat-king who shares Bowser's fondness for pointless and rather artless princess kidnapping - forms an alliance with the lizard.

This is an enjoyable but rarely essential entry to the Mario & Luigi suite, then. AlphaDream is to be commended for its willingness to build each new game around a different kernel of an idea, but, perhaps inevitably, some of those ideas will be smaller than others.

Mario & Luigi: Dream Team Bros. continues the streak of grand titles on the Nintendo 3DS and completes the trifecta in the Year of Luigi quite well. The experience is rock solid, except for the slow burn in the first few hours and a sometimes-disappointing 3D effect. For the rest, you will find great enjoyment in the various gameplay elements, abilities and clever ways the game progresses. It is a fun filled adventure through and through, which should keep you occupied for a long time. Best entry in the series yet? Without a doubt. But it also appeals to newcomers, making it an easy recommendation for anyone.



35 hours and counting
Beautiful visuals and soundtrack
Cleverly written game
Fun gameplay elements
Plenty of variety


3D could have been better
Slow burn in first hours

In the hands of Mario & Luigi enthusiasts and those up for an epic but light-hearted quest, this is an indispensable must-have for the 3DS. In a universe apart from any other series starring the famous brothers, this once again shows the merits of a studio investing itself whole-heartedly not just in one game, but a whole franchise. It can be a glorious contradiction at times; simple but complex, accessible but lengthy, varied but familiar. The enthusiasm and unrelenting creativity behind Dream Team means that it flirts with going too far, truly being an adventure for those willing to stick it out over the long haul, which perhaps dents its ability to appeal to all 3DS owners.
Yet such is the obvious talent and commitment in the project, and its unique style in the current games market, that it's an adventure worth embarking upon.
Some other reviews I found while us Americans are still waiting for Dream Team:

Gamespot gave it an 8/10, saying it was a polished, if very familiar Mario and Luigi experience

Gamesradar had a similar grade, 4/5 stars, and similar impressions, praising the game's quality production values and refined mechanics, but found the experience very familiar, and surprisingly linear.

CVG handed out an 8/10 as well, singing the praises of the creativity on display in such a charming, witty fashion, and the active battle system that keeps the player invested in even the most minor of scuffles, and really liked what 3D added to the game, mentioning how red shells are easier to kick back when you can see the depth of the screen. They weren't so crazy about the Dream world puzzles, finding them very simplistic, and while there's lot of things to collect and gear up with, the stat changes aren't as robust as they'd liked.

Edge 7/10 review went up online, and I have no idea what review that other guy read; they don't even mention Bowser complaints until the end. They take issue with the 2+ hour onslaught of tutorials that treat you like you never played a video game before, the 3D overworld is a bit ugly(a little antialiasing would got a long way here), and noting the spritework doesn't look as good the DS games. They don't think it's as funny either, stating how boring the Pi'illos characters dialog is, and how the new badguy Antasma doesn't hold a candle to Fawful. Despite all that, they felt the game delivers what M&L always does: an irreverent take of the Mushroom Kingdom, and an absorbing, addictive, active battle system. They also praise how you can cancel out of 3D mode for special attacks with the R button, a nice thought by AlphaDream.
I loved Bowser's Inside Story but for whatever reason I just haven't finished it yet. I'm pretty sure I'm near the end of the game though. Really interested in this game but damn I have so many 3DS games to play already that it will be really rough to pay full price for this. It will have to wait until the fall or later.

But I'm super excited to hear reviews. Even if it's another month until North America gets the game.


Nintendo's Pro Bono PR Firm
Damned, I just got 2 3DS games and didn't expect this one that soon. I think I'll pass (unless reviews prove too tempting).
I reaaaaaallly want this but I bought Animal Crossing 2 weeks ago, and I'm going on a vacation. So, I have to wait until the price goes down or I get enough money for it.
The best Mario & Luigi game yet, really? If it's better than SS and BiS it's about to one of the best games on the system.

I hope that once we start to really see first-party games on the Wii U that they match the standard of quality that Nintendo has set with their 3DS titles.
Nintendo's theory(on "new IP")in action? It's more about a new experience than it is about new characters. Justified? I think so!
I'm currently working through Bowser's Inside Story which is an absolute joy. But my one complaint with that game is that my beloved Timed Hits system is gradually evolving into turning every fight into a full blown minigame, and that was my one big concern with this game, which appears to be packed with even bigger longer more elaborate special moves and sequences. This review sounds to be beaming with praise, but I'd like to hear one that addresses if the game is perhaps too cluttered and unfocused.
This year is reminding me why the Nintendo portables were my most played consoles in my early teens. So many great games every year. Thank You Based Iwata.


you speak so well
The best Mario and Luigi game yet? If true, it will easily be one of my favorite games of the year, SSS and BiS are two of my favorite Nintendo games of the past decade.
Good to hear, easily a day one purchase. Sadly I still haven't had time to play Bowser's Inside Story, it sits here and mocks me.
After Bowser's Inside Story, I absolutely can't wait for this one. Quite amazing how they were able to get my confidence back so quickly and strongly after the lacklustre Partners in Time. I'll just assume that PiT was rushed out the door and that they never have to do that again.
In Europe there's an embargo that lifts on the 12th, so we won't see a lot of them before that date I believe...
Good to know that the first score is so positive!
I have been in the dark about this game. Haven't seen anything apart from what Iwata showed on the Nintendo Directs and... Oh my! The score is amazing! Really good music right there!

Why is Nintendo releasing so many good games lately? My wallet can't cope with this. Makes me a sad panda.
hnnng i am going to have to make a choice of buying this or project x zone. I loved the demo of that one + all know all the characters. The only Mario and luigi game i disliked was PiT. But loved bowsers inside story. so hard to choose :(
hnnng i am going to have to make a choice of buying this or project x zone. I loved the demo of that one + all know all the characters. The only Mario and luigi game i disliked was PiT. But loved bowsers inside story. so hard to choose :(
Preordered both this and PXZ from amazon, theyll be arriving in the same shipment! Very excited
I just got ACNL, MH3U and will be borrowing LM2 and FE:A from friends soon... but I still crave this game. Dammit Nintendo, stop releasing so many good titles.
I'm going through this atm, it's a joy to play and it kinda feels like a Super Mario RPG sequel (minus the inventive character and location designs).

Yoko Shimomura's score greatly helps to establish the atmosphere of the game.

Only minor complaint - game starts slow.
I'm so up for this. I wish I'd had time to finish Bowser's Inside Story before this comes out, but it's not like it's a direct continuation that's going to be impossible to follow.

Gamepro Germany.

+amusing battlesystem
+good interaction between both screens

-negligible story
-slow gameplay (many tutorials)

Gamepro Germany.

+amusing battlesystem
+good interaction between both screens

-negligible story
-slow gameplay (many tutorials)
wow at the last negative. I have bought all the Mario and Luigi games and never experienced it as "slow". the story does take time to start and there are some tutorials but that is mostly only in the first hour. after that it takes off like a rocket.
There's a review from InsideGamer listed on MetaCritic, but the link refers to a 404 page.

The newest in the Mario & Luigi series is once again an especially fun RPG. It's filled with dry humor and the standard gameplay is originally supplemented with a 2D world that can be influenced by messing with Luigi's face. A great addition to the franchise.