Last week saw the 26th anniversary of Super Mario World hitting European shelves. In addition to being the highest selling Super Nintendo game ever, it is also the my all time favourite Mario game (followed very closely by Super Mario Sunshine, stay tuned for that one!).
To belatedly celebrate this anniversary, here’s a look at my five favourite levels from the game;
Yoshi’s Island 2
Here we have the first real level that many players first try out on the game.
There’s nothing particularly fancy about this one, but it is a great way to introduce players to Yoshi properly, in addition to the fruit/enemy eating mechanic and those annoying new american football-esque enemies that charge towards you.
Donut Ghost House
The first ghost house that you encounter in the game isn’t too challenging, nor is it even the most rewarding when it comes to secrets, but it serves as a memorable first look at the spookiness that will pop up again later in the game.
The ghost house levels will always hold a special place in my gaming memories, as the level design, shy (until your back is turned) enemies and the incredible swelling music from Koji Kondo all contribute to the best parts of the game.
Another early level in the game, this is the first castle that Mario encounters during the game, and is home to the first boss, Iggy Koopa.
It blew my mind as a teen when I realised that these Koopa characters were named after famous musicians, and I absolutely love the introduction of the cage climbing early on in the level. Throw a pretty easy-to-defeat boss into the mix and you’re onto a winner.
Vanilla Dome 3
Levels that depend on moving platforms are an underrated feature in the Super Mario game series. Several levels throughout Super Mario Bros 3 absolutely nailed these bits, so it goes without saying that the next part would feature some of them too.
Part 3 of the Vanilla Dome section features not only a moving platform, but a new danger lurking beneath the surface of the lava you’re trying to avoid. As a kid, I used to hate this level, as I could never get my timing right for jumping, and always missed the platform. I grew to appreciate it once I realised how simple it was though, which is why it makes my top 5 list.
Valley of Bowser 2
This is probably the most stressful level in the game for me, but I love the challenge it presents, which is why it rounds off my top 5 list. Having to maneuver through the caverns while an ever-present threat of being crushed is lurking around still reminds me of dying many times (as well as using severely strong language for a small kid many times).
What are your favourite levels in the classic Super Mario World?
Leave a comment below or shoot a tweet my way!