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Why is Super Mario the only game with perfect controls consistently?

RCU005

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Nov 9, 2016
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I'm playing Crash Bandicoot N-Sane Trilogy and I must say I don't like it. This has nothing to do with the controls, but I feel the game concept is very outdated. I know I'd loved it back when it came out on PS1, but I never played it then because I was a Nintendo-only owner (due to money restrictions).

With that said, the game controls badly. There are countless platformers ever since the NES, but it seems like the only franchise that have really nailed the controls, the feel and the accuracy is Mario. Specially with the change to 3D, Nintendo pretty much made Mario control perfectly from their first try doing a 3D game. I love Banjo Kazooie more than Mario, but I won't the deny that the game didn't control very good.

Why is it that until this day, there are many games that don't have movement and precision as good as Mario? It seems as if Nintendo had a patent on making platformers control perfectly, because very few people do it. There are some games that do it very good, but they rely more on cancelling animations, so it doesn't provoke the same feeling of being very precise, or other games that are slow or floaty.

LittleBigPlanet, for example, I loathe that game! I loved every aspect of it, but the moment you start playing with that floaty jumps and movement, is infuriating. I really hope that the new Sackboy Adventure game got rid of that.

What games do you think control as good as a Mario game?
What games do you think they are the worst when it comes to control/movement/precision?
 

mcjmetroid

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N Sane trilogy controls quite well on PC for what it's worth.

I made a thread similar to this a little while back. It's not exaclty the same:

I'll report the same thing I did back then. I go into a little more on 2D but agreed that Mario is the king of 3D platformer controls.

My 2D choices are:
Celeste:
Feels amazing. I could do without the 8bit graphics but still it feels great to play and very satisfying when you hit a complicated jump.

Ori and the will of the wisps:
Cheating a bit here as it's not a platformer but still it controls like no other, extremely fun to zip around the map once you've powered up fully.

Sonic Rush adventure ( on the DS):
The original 2D sonic games I prefer overall and mania just missed out here but I cannot deny how much fun it is to boost around a colourful map using the Rush mechanics.
It's one of those games I lose myself to.

Super Mario world GBA:
I could be misremembering here. I love the original SNES one as well and it's better in almost every way BUT the feel is a little tighter in the Advance 2 version in my ooinion.
I can not stand the movement in the NEW super mario games.

Donkey Kong Country 2:
This game when you pick Diddy Kong feels amazing. It's so fast and fun. Again I love Tropical Freeze and also enjoy the platforming but the edge goes to the 2nd game.

3D choices:

Super Mario Sunshine:
I think all 3D mario games are quality here but the edge to me goes to Sunshine. Although not my favourite 3D game I think this game controls like a dream. Mario has so many moves and animations it's staggering. Years later I think figure out new moves like the rope spin and jump. Playing this with a GameCube controller is a must though.

Crash Bandicoot NSane Trilogy(Only the 60fps pc version)
I was very hard on this game when it was released. I loved the originals but found the NSane trilogy for the PS4 to have wonkier controls than the original and I found a lot of people felt the same.

I'm not sure whether it clicked with me better the second time or whether the 60fps mode made all the difference but it plays soooo much better on the PC. Get that version if you can.

Now this game isn't perfect. The jetski Coco missions from crash 3 are worse than the original but for the general platforming. This is one of the best I've played for a linear platforming game.
 

Jeeves

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Nintendo makes it a priority to make the games fun to play even with no objective. They really emphasize the moment-to-moment joy of simply maneuvering your character on the screen before anything else. This is especially at the core of Super Mario's DNA, as it's usually those games's job to introduce the console to new audiences, and to teach them new control methods such as d-pad and later the analogue stick.

Nintendo takes the fundamentals of gaming very seriously.
 

BPX

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If You Say So Reaction GIF by Identity
 

Zeroing

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Gaming History time folks! The jump to 3D posed a problem, how to control a character in that space? Devs came with different solutions,
Tomb raider used “tank controls”
Crash used fix camera
Nintendo used what would become the most used choice for a 3D environment

About littebig planet! I also disliked the floaty controls but I always assumed they were like that because sackboy was make of wool, not having too much weigh
Am I weird?
 

RCU005

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Nov 9, 2016
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Super Mario Sunshine disagrees with your statement. Controls are absolute trash.

There are several Mario games without perfect controls.

That's why I added "consistently". I remembered about Super Mario Sunshine! I don't get how Nintendo went from a masterpiece that was SM64 to SMS.

Try MGSV #Bliss

Oh yeah! MGSV has near perfect controls and it's a joy to play! It's not a platformer, but these kind of games should be taken as standard for others. There's no reason to make something differently when the absolute greatness already exists.

Developers should copy those games when it comes to controls.
 
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I think Ubisoft did a great job with Rayman Origins and Legends. I know what you mean though OP, some games have a deliberate delay and animation priority over control priority. You just have to adjust to how they want you to play rather than fighting with it because you want it to play like another game. For example, many people who grew up after the 360 era have trouble playing Resident Evil 4 and constantly fight with how the game wants you to play. Thus, they claim the game is terrible as a result, which we both know isn't correct because it's about to be ported to yet another system in a few months, and only GOAT-level games do that.
 
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godhandiscen

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Some of the people at Nintendo have been building character controls for far longer than I’ve been alive. It only makes sense.
 
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Hinedorf

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Is it possible what you're referring to related to Mario's controls is that they remained mostly unchanged since the 64 bit generation, in that I will agree.

The key factor in anything you're describing is really about how many different actions Mario does...he jumps, he super jumps, he stomps.......been the same forever Odyssey added the hat gimmick which IMO sucked, the more Mario gets away from 64 bit controls/platforming the worse Mario becomes

I think it's more nostalgia combined with simplified control scheme than really great controls in general
 
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Krappadizzle

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Because when it comes to 3D platformers Nintendo is unmatched. They essentially created the genre and have refined and iterated over the last 30 years. Hell, people were upset with 3D Worlds 8-way only control run with the platforming until people realized that the level design was specifically made to work with that control scheme. Odyssey has complete 360-degree running and it works perfectly for the way the levels were designed. Nintendo isn't afraid to to hold their games back until things are in a great shape whereas many other developers face enormous pressure from their publishers to release ahead of or on time even if things aren't in a great shape.

When it comes to 2D side-scrolling platformers, there's a lot of great indie-level developers that really have a great grasp on momentum and control(Celeste, Super Meat Boy, Mark of the Ninja, Ori, Rayman Legends etc.). Though again, Nintendo and Donkey Kong: Tropical Freeze still sit pretty much at the top as Nintendo has been doing side-scrollers for the entirety of their video-game life and just have a great idea on how it should feel.

Is it possible what you're referring to related to Mario's controls is that they remained mostly unchanged since the 64 bit generation, in that I will agree.

The key factor in anything you're describing is really about how many different actions Mario does...he jumps, he super jumps, he stomps.......been the same forever Odyssey added the hat gimmick which IMO sucked, the more Mario gets away from 64 bit controls/platforming the worse Mario becomes

I think it's more nostalgia combined with simplified control scheme than really great controls in general

I think it's fair to not like Odyssey but one can't argue that it doesn't control well. Watching how some people are easily able to get to crazy locations because of Cappy and the ease of control(but tough to master) is very impressive. I've still yet to beat Odyssey and I def. don't control Mario as well as some of the videos I've seen, but I'll give credit where it's due. I don't want to put in the time or effort to learn all the nuance of Odyssey, but I've not had any issues beating any levels with the most basic understanding of the controls.
 
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kiphalfton

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I didn't think Mario odyssey had good controls.

That's because they feel the need to shoehorn in stupid waggle controls. It's retarded. Kind of like when sony did the "balance the dualshock controller to cross a wooden log" nonsense.

Can't even pull off some moves in SMO without using motion controls.
 
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SF Kosmo

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I wouldn't say consistently. Mario Galaxy definitely has some control quirks like when the camera swings and he starts running in circles or the dumb motion shit.

64 was far from perfect too, but it was just way better than other 3D games at the time.
 
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Krappadizzle

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I wouldn't say consistently. Mario Galaxy definitely has some control quirks like when the camera swings and he starts running in circles or the dumb motion shit.

64 was far from perfect too, but it was just way better than other 3D games at the time.
I'd say across 20+ releases if you can only point point to a few examples of niggling issues, one being the first attempt and the second being some annoying motion-shit, that it's pretty consistent.
 

Jeeves

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Even if you guys don't like some of the additions made by certain games, they still always nail the fundamental stuff like acceleration and momentum, jump height, floatiness, etc.
 

SF Kosmo

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I'd say across 20+ releases if you can only point point to a few examples of niggling issues, one being the first attempt and the second being some annoying motion-shit, that it's pretty consistent.
Plenty of series are pretty consistent though. That's not the same as always perfect.
 

Ballthyrm

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Floaty != air control

People complain about floatiness when what they really mean is that they don't like air control.
Celeste, Rayman, Ori, Towerfall, Super Meat Boy all have very fluid air control.

To me Mario and Donkey kong are platformer with a lot more inertia and thus are way less forgiving.
Kong really feel like a brick if you go back and forth with something like Rayman Legend for example.
 
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UsualNoise

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I think it's fair to not like Odyssey but one can't argue that it doesn't control well. Watching how some people are easily able to get to crazy locations because of Cappy and the ease of control(but tough to master) is very impressive. I've still yet to beat Odyssey and I def. don't control Mario as well as some of the videos I've seen, but I'll give credit where it's due. I don't want to put in the time or effort to learn all the nuance of Odyssey, but I've not had any issues beating any levels with the most basic understanding of the controls.
Totally agree with this. I spent a lot of time getting 100% in Balloon World and boy, you "git gud" at SMO controls by the end of that process. I was pulling off long jumps w/ dives that I never even needed playing the game proper. But then if you replay the game AFTER that? Things go so much faster with a fully mastered Mario Odyssey move-set. The controls are amazing, easily my favorite of any Mario game.

I'd say similar things for Sunshine in that you really have to spend time to get to a point where they become second-nature. However, I prefer Odyssey over Sunshine (by a lot) since the actual character control is way more tight.
 
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McCheese

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Mario games are built around the controls, it's one of the few snippets Miyamoto has ever really divulged about his process. They find what controller movements are fun, like literally start off by focusing on hand movement and gestures without even thinking about the game, then build the character moveset around those gestures, then build the levels around the moveset.

It's almost the opposite of the traditional approach of making levels and movesets in tandem, which is why you end up with moves that are only useful in a handful of levels in non-mario platformers.
 
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Reality Czar

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Specially with the change to 3D, Nintendo pretty much made Mario control perfectly from their first try doing a 3D game
IIRC they spent half the dev time just getting main controls right. Control and play is the #1 priority for Nintendo.
 

Belmonte

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Mario is the king of gaming for me and the gold standard for platforming action but c'mon man. Many games have excellent control also.

Come On Reaction GIF by GIPHY News
 

Marvel14

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I'm playing Crash Bandicoot N-Sane Trilogy and I must say I don't like it. This has nothing to do with the controls, but I feel the game concept is very outdated. I know I'd loved it back when it came out on PS1, but I never played it then because I was a Nintendo-only owner (due to money restrictions).

With that said, the game controls badly. There are countless platformers ever since the NES, but it seems like the only franchise that have really nailed the controls, the feel and the accuracy is Mario. Specially with the change to 3D, Nintendo pretty much made Mario control perfectly from their first try doing a 3D game. I love Banjo Kazooie more than Mario, but I won't the deny that the game didn't control very good.

Why is it that until this day, there are many games that don't have movement and precision as good as Mario? It seems as if Nintendo had a patent on making platformers control perfectly, because very few people do it. There are some games that do it very good, but they rely more on cancelling animations, so it doesn't provoke the same feeling of being very precise, or other games that are slow or floaty.

LittleBigPlanet, for example, I loathe that game! I loved every aspect of it, but the moment you start playing with that floaty jumps and movement, is infuriating. I really hope that the new Sackboy Adventure game got rid of that.

What games do you think control as good as a Mario game?
What games do you think they are the worst when it comes to control/movement/precision?
Super Mario Sunshine says "hello! Nintendo is human after all"
 

mhirano

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I'm loving Super Mario 3d World on the Switch but oh boy, the game controls are far from perfect...
In my opinion, controls are floaty, physics is weird (jumping on the big ants) and the 3d positioning when jumping is hard to track.
 

Punished Miku

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I was disappointed with the way Mario controlled in every title since Mario 64 nailed it perfectly. The others just felt like a downgrade (haven't played Odyssey yet).
They purposely tried to make it more accessible. Odyssey was a return to form.
 

fart town usa

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I'm loving Super Mario 3d World on the Switch but oh boy, the game controls are far from perfect...
In my opinion, controls are floaty, physics is weird (jumping on the big ants) and the 3d positioning when jumping is hard to track.
Interesting to hear that because they changed them from the WiiU version. Sped up character movement and made it full 360. WiiU is limited to 8 directions but it actually plays and feels fantastic. It feels like full 360 but super easy to run exactly straight, movements are super precise. Your comment makes me really interested in playing the Switch version.
 

Jeeves

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Interesting to hear that because they changed them from the WiiU version. Sped up character movement and made it full 360. WiiU is limited to 8 directions but it actually plays and feels fantastic. It feels like full 360 but super easy to run exactly straight, movements are super precise. Your comment makes me really interested in playing the Switch version.
I believe the full 360 rotation only applies to Bowser's Fury and not the 3D World remake proper.
 
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