Super Mario Galaxy 2 super review

  • More of Mario's particular brand of magic
  • Tons of neat new tricks, power-ups and techniques
  • Some great references to previous Mario games
  • Dealing with the general imperfections of a 3D camera
  • Some really frustrating levels late in the game
  • Can't Bowser do something new?

An abundance of ideas

So yes, it’s more than a little similar to first game, at least on the surface. But spend only a few minutes with Galaxy 2 (which is hard, given how addicting it can be), and you’ll see enough new ideas and concepts to easily lay to rest any concerns that it’s too stylistically similar. Perhaps the developers felt they needed to prove their critics wrong by overloading the game with so many new things (but never so many that it overwhelms the player).


Let’s start with the power-ups. We’ve detailed them pretty heavily already, but here’s a refresher: New power-ups like Cloud, Drill and Rock Mario all add incredibly inventive new approaches to standard level setups, whether it’s in making new cloud platforms to climb higher, or knocking down enemies as you barrel at them inside a giant rock. All are taken full advantage of throughout the many levels they appear in, along with all the previous power-ups that return, but are often used in new ways (such as Fire Mario’s assaults on snow sculptures of Bowser). But the new powers get much more time devoted to them, and deservedly so.

Yoshi is also well utilized, which we really appreciated after his half-hearted appearance in NSMBW. He’s integral to enjoying the numerous galaxies he appears in, and his role has expanded with the introduction of power-ups, such as Light and Blimp Yoshi. And just as Mario’s abilities get used in expansive and varied ways that still feel natural, the same can be said for Yoshi, as he finally returns to deserved prominence in a core Mario title.

Above: And Luigi is playable basically from the start

But those are just the most obvious examples. Seemingly every level has some new trick to it, with only a few old, familiar dynamics returning, like balancing on top of a sphere containing a star. These ideas are normally just exclusive to just one or two levels, like Mario hurling himself from bar to bar like a gymnast, rolling giant snowballs or gliding with a bird that looks fairly similar to the Pokemon Ho-oh. Same goes for the boss fights, which (outside of the first one) are totally new and are all fun. We don’t want to go into too much detail, as Nintendo and others have already given away too much about what makes this title special, but even without the immediate surprise of seeing some new aspect of SMG2, you’ll still be shocked by how well so many new ideas can work.

Why can’t all Wii games look and sound this good?

Seriously, this game looks amazing. Just like Galaxy 1, much of this game looks great even when compared to the average 360 title, only they’ve improved the graphics even more. Sure, if you were actively and exhaustively searching for some flaw you could point at and whine, “this texture doesn’t look next-gen,” then fine, you win. But Galaxy 2 so fully understands how to get the most out of aging technology that nearly all graphical flaws are smoothed over or covered up, leaving you with Wii’s best-looking title to date.

The soundtrack also ramps up from the previous game’s excellence. Not only is the music all orchestral, giving a real epic and grandiose feel to new and returning tracks alike, but when it remixes classic melodies from Super Mario 64 or Sunshine, they’re given new impact and gravitas. Like all game soundtracks should, this further enhanced a superb experience, even for a reviewer who normally doesn’t notice background music all that much.

More Info

Release date: May 23 2010 - Wii (US)
Jun 11 2010 - Wii (UK)
Available Platforms: Wii
Genre: Action
Published by: Nintendo
Developed by: Nintendo
Franchise: Mario
ESRB Rating:
Everyone: Mild Cartoon Violence
PEGI Rating:


  • EricGirasole - November 20, 2010 9:41 a.m.

    This is personally MY favourite game ever. The graphics ARE next Gen and they ARE Beautiful . The game has nothing to complain about except some minor Camera and View issues. Having Yoshi in the game made it feel special becuase Yoshi hasnt stood out for a long while now. The later level's are much harder and frustrating , you guys are completely right there ( Pyramid-Esque level boss battle Dare Devil run Dont even bother) But it's not that hard either and this time round the Prankster comets have a MUCH MUCH more role to play like beating the level with the giant enemies on a timer run was Great fun . But ... Bowser really hasnt changed ... the Bowser Jr Boss battles were inventive enough ..but Bowser is the same old bowser.... I felt one good moment with the Final Battle and that was when I fired the Last comet into him Straight in the face . But this game is perfect.... the flying level's cpuld have been better but heck.. better than Screaming at a Fish isnt'it? All in All I think I can say... the game was The best the Wii has to got I Enjoyed it very much but .. Story was a bit short but I'd rather Jump on Goomba's heads without having to worry "Oh I gotta beat this level and kill Bowser) It's more relaxing the second time round and believe me I doubt anyone has found all the secrets.
  • Octoboy - July 26, 2010 5:11 p.m.

    So, ... SMG 2 gets a 10, but Red Dead only gets a 9? There's something seriously wrong about that.
  • fartinapot - July 23, 2010 8:05 p.m.

    This game is great because even when the challenge seems impossible to beat, you always find a way to win it. in fact, right now i have 105 stars, and the game isn't getting any easier. I have beaten SOOOO many levels that were difficult and fustrating. In a way, this game is mostly fustrating instead of fun, but boy, is it addicting! :P
  • redalert3 - July 19, 2010 6:54 p.m.

    it looks great, but the bad news is that i can only get this on my birthday, which is right after summer ends. this still looks great, and i can't wait to get it. the level designs look better and it looks more challenging that SMG1, and those star bunnies idea in SMG 1 got annoying. Hope no more bunnies in this one. this loks like something to get my wii ready for, now i've just gotta find batteries and other stuff for this game... See you soon SMG2... (P.S, they better make a SMG 3)
  • GreenEyedGamer - June 24, 2010 11:50 p.m.

    I finished the game 100% in 33h 'cause I just couldn't stop playing it! I still play the game 'cause it is AWESOME!!!
  • fartinapot - June 17, 2010 5:21 p.m.

    I just got this game a few days ago. It is super fun. One or two levels so far were fustrating, but they are still possible to beat. I just finished world two.
  • Kikyabut2 - June 15, 2010 11:59 p.m.

    Lol. I read the review after I bought the game. I still have to give you guys credit for accuracy. I love reading u guyses reviews.
  • guiarherodrummer1998 - June 9, 2010 8:51 p.m.

    WAHOO!!! Best game ever and its finally here. Thank you Nintendo!
  • TheElephantManchurianCandidate - May 25, 2010 12:40 p.m.

    Nicely written review! A few more weeks for us here in the UK can't wait
  • Elementskater - May 25, 2010 5:34 a.m.

    Wow McSpermie you are pretty lame. If RDD is so good, than why aren't you just playing that "all summer" rather than looking on a Wii game's review, if you never plan on picking it up anyways because its a Wii game. If you dont like it, stay out of the article. I mean yeah, every Mario game is basically the same, but yet they sell MILLIONS of copies because they are still fun. And i'm sure RDD will sell millions of copies too, it's not like that people buying this game will mean Rockstar will just die out. How about diversify your outlook on video games, because nobody wants to hear your opinion about if "Wii Sucks" or whatever.
  • GR_HenryGilbert - May 24, 2010 9:52 p.m.

    @bhup666 You have to reeeeeeeally suck for the Rosalina guide to show up. Though several stars took more than a few tries for me, I only failed at one enough time (about 12) for her to show. She will get you to a star, but it will be a bronze one, reminding you that you took the easy way out. Also I don't believe she helps on prankster comet stars. I did one purple coin collection I swear 20 times and she never showed, so I bet she shows on normal ones, not challenge ones. And no, she doesn't get the comet coin for you.
  • fartinapot - May 24, 2010 9:05 p.m.

    This game looks awesome! I want to get it so bad!
  • CAPST3R - May 24, 2010 8:48 p.m.

    Not got a Wii, not buying one. It's missing HD graphics, and has motion control. If I wanted to get up off my keester to game, I wouldn't be gaming. Even the Sixaxis is too much. It's as ridiculous as 3D tech; What's the point? I don't want the picture to be out of the screen, I want to be in the picture, which I think they'll find works better. They'd better come up with VR tech, because until then, I ain't moving.
  • Churze - September 21, 2013 7:05 p.m.

    "It's missing HD graphics" No HD graphics allow for larger and longer games. HD costs a LOT to make. I would rather play a 100 hour game in SD rather than a 20 hour game in HD. Also, SMG2 has better art direction than almost every game of the generation, rivaled only by Bioshock and Xenoblade. Also, people who don't own wii don't understand motion controls. For 90% of the Wii games I own I never need to stand up. The motion controls are never exhausting and not used nearly as frequently as everyone acts like. Instead motion controls are used to make games more satisfying and feel more real. Despite HD graphics, I never feel like I'm "in the zone" quite like I do while playing. And HD is just as much of a gimmick as 3d and motion controls. It is not necessary to play any games on the system (only a few Wii games take full advantage of the controller). I highly recommend you pick up Wii, it is the single most underrated console of all time. I know a lot of people say there are not any good games on the system because 60% of it's games is shovel ware, but the same thing can be said about PS3 and Xbox. There are very few truly high quality games on each system, totaling only about 50 for each system (not including downloadable titles. People tend to not search for any good wii games, opting instead to pick up shovel ware sport/party games. If you are worried about a lack of games, I would recommend TONS of games, but if you bought the console for about $70 pick up these some of these games with it -Xenoblade Chronicals (best JRPG of the generation) -SMG 1+2 (best 3d platformers of all time) -Mario Kart Wii (best kart racer of all time) -MadWorld -Red Steel 2 -The Legend of Zelda:Skyward Sword -Metroid Prime Trilogy -Donkey Kong Country Returns -The Little King's Story These are just to name a few.
  • shawksta - October 28, 2013 10:55 p.m.

    Dude Your replying to a 3 year old comment
  • Bhup666 - May 24, 2010 6:48 p.m.

    Question to anyone: Just wondering about the Rosalina guide help-thingy.. when it takes over and you get a bronze star and it counts as if you completed the level.. does it mean you can do that to all the galaxys and actually play through all the game without getting one single gold star? My question is actually if Rosalina only guides you to the star or to the Comet medals as well? Does she show you how to get that? And does she do the comet medal galaxys also? Is it possible to get 240 bronze stars? Thanks for your answers, I live in Norway so were not tgetting this game until 11th June!
  • reaperman22 - May 24, 2010 11:47 a.m.

    wait, wait, slow down a second. Bowser kidnaps the princess!!! :O i never would of expected that to happen, that there is some groundbreaking story telling
  • BIOSback - May 24, 2010 12:08 a.m.

    Ahh I'm glad I stil have my Wii.
  • Cyberninja - May 23, 2010 5:36 p.m.

    just played the first one today to get ready for this when i get it soon

Showing 1-20 of 60 comments

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