This month, Nintendo of America confirmed via Twitter that Super Mario Maker 2 will be making its way to the Switch in June. With a release date confirmed and only a few months to wait, we’re taking a look at what features we’d like to see in the latest entry to the series in no particular order.
Online and Local Multiplayer
Online and local multiplayer is by far the most requested feature for Super Mario Maker 2, which isn’t surprising, as many players want to explore creations with their friends as they would in the New Super Mario Bros series.
The addition of multiplayer is generally a welcome thing in Mario games and seems likely if we look Nintendo’s promotional art from the announcement trailer – which pictures Mario and Luigi building together, while Toad and friends navigate the world.
The Switch has become a somewhat unexpected home for local multiplayer games, and having a friend or family member (or three) join the game would make Mario Maker’s typically hilarious and difficult levels even more chaotic and fun.
Overworlds in 2D Mario games link the levels within worlds, and the same could be implemented in levels made in Super Mario Maker 2. Overworlds could allow creators to make a much bigger project through the linking of smaller levels, almost like playlists but more Mario-ish.
The addition of overworlds would allow for more story driven creations – although it may be unlikely that Nintendo will add RPG elements such as text boxes due to the difficulty that would come with filtering bad language, following the amount of inappropriate Super Smash Bros. Ultimate stages.
Overworlds aren’t usually something that comes to mind immediately, but the player tends to spend a fair amount of time with them in traditional 2D Mario platformers, so they are definitely a key element of sorts.
Themed Online Building Contests
Creative sandbox games such as Dreams often have building contests of some kind. PS4 exclusive Dreams hosts community creative ‘Jams’ where players submit there creations which relate to a particular theme. Examples of these include Tropical Islands and Chinese New Year.
These themed contests could be implemented in Super Mario Maker 2, showing the different ways players can interpret an idea.
Nintendo already holds timed contests in other games such as Splatoon 2, which has semi-regular Splatfests that usually take place over the course of a weekend. In Splatfests, players select a team based on a topical question, with the chance to win valuable super sea snails based on picking the most popular voted team and the winning team.
Competitions such as these help keep games relevant, as well as help players gather inspiration for what to build next. Something similar would be a good fit for SMM2.
More Playable Characters
The latest 2D Mario game New Super Mario Bros U Deluxe added a new playable character, Toadette, who can later transform into Peachette using the Super Crown power-up.
We’d like Super Mario Maker 2 to follow suit and integrate beloved characters such as Luigi, Peach, and Toad into SMM2.
Even if multiplayer is a no-show, this would still be a welcome element for single player play.
Having Luigi jump higher, Toad run faster, and Peach float using her dress or parasol could put a twist on how levels are played or made, with some being designed for a particular character or with advantages and disadvantages to each.
Better Vertical Building
Improved vertical building has been long requested, with titles like Super Mario Bros. 2 being known for memorable vertical levels and with players craving some differentiation in the level types.
Screen scrolling is the main limitation players had previously when trying to build vertical levels, as well as the restricted level height and lack of assets which encouraged vertical building.
For example, if the game had more items/objects that bounced the player upwards or more flying enemies – more of these might be on their way – then players would be more encouraged to build this way.
From the announcement trailer, it appears when placing enemies in a level different variants can be selected, such as Koopa Paratroopa, etc. These flying enemies would be suited to levels which take place in the sky or such, and may also indicate these vertical levels making a debut.
Following the addition of slopes and a short section of the trailer seemingly showcasing a vertical level/section of, the addition of better vertical building looks promising.
Different Level Objectives
As shown in the trailer screenshot above, it appears judging by one section of the HUD that there are now different level objectives rather than just reaching the goal. This screenshot shows some kind of coin counter, with ‘4/50’ shown at the top left of the screen.
This likely means the player is trying to obtain a certain amount of coins to finish the level, or perhaps we’re reading into this too much and they are just collecting coins as in traditional platformers.
Confirmed or not, this is something at the top of our wish list, as it would switch levels up from just being linear start to finish runs, providing another twist on how players make and play levels.
If you played a fair amount of the original Super Mario Maker, you’ll remember the abundance of the auto-play music levels and how wonderfully creative they were. Players would spend hours creating perfect note-by-note recreations of gaming music and the like, with music levels making up a sizable amount of the most popular levels.
YouTube channel Frybread’s Great Fairy Fountain song recreation is pictured above, and lots of similar levels were a popular trend in SMM. Bigger levels are a likely new addition which already would help creators making big music projects, but we’d like to see more done to help players create these musical effects.
Filters and Level Search
Speaking of the abundance of auto-play levels, it was at times difficult to find what you were looking for if it wasn’t already apparent in the level title.
Even then, if you were in the mood to try a difficult level and kept coming across auto-play levels it wasn’t really ideal.
Searching for levels on Super Mario Maker was by no means bad, but it could definitely be improved with a range of filters, categories, tags, etc. Nintendo could follow similar creative games with their many filters, tags, and categories, allowing players to hone in on what they are in the mood to play and avoid any filler.
Super Mario Run, originally an iOS exclusive mobile game, explored an area that has been overlooked by Nintendo for a long time – online Mario racing. Racing against the ghosts of online players was the central aspect of Super Mario Run and was really enjoyable and something that could be emulated in SMM2.
Applying this idea to user-made levels, with players able to view ghosts of their friends or randomly matched online players would open up a whole new area of gameplay and challenge.
Although it would be even better if you could race friends or other players in real-time, this may not go so smoothly due to the precision required in some of the more difficult user-made levels and the fluctuating reports of lag and online issues in other popular games such as Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
Collaborative Level Editing
Picture this: you and your buddies creating Mario-esque levels collaboratively in real time via Nintendo Online. If you’re anything like me, your friends are the type of people who would sabotage each other, so maybe this is a living nightmare for you.
However, maybe you’re someone with creative friends who have previously enjoyed building together via similar games and think SMM2 could be a great fit.
Collaborative level editing could easily become an experience many players pour hours into, bouncing ideas off another player and making the level editing experience feel a bit less lonely.
Super Mario Maker 2 already looks very promising based on its trailer and the success of its predecessor alone, but we believe these features would make the game much more exciting.