Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle fuses the Super Mario and Raving Rabbids franchises into an adorable and unique package. However, while this title combines the two series, it's wholly unique and will feel unfamiliar to fans of previous games. The tips below will help you get acclimated to the deep tactical gameplay you'll find just beneath the colorful surface of Ubisoft's first foray into the Mario universe.
1. It's a tactical RPG
Most fans know Mario for his iconic platformers and Rabbids from the series of party games. Although the Rabbids have had one (quickly forgotten) tactical RPG before, for the most part, the tactical RPG genre is new ground for both franchises.
It would be easy, given both series' past, to make the mistake of thinking Kingdom Battle's gameplay is entirely different. However, instead of jumping around or playing mini-games, you'll be taking command of a squad of characters from the Super Mario universe (and their Rabbid imitators). The battles in the game are comprised of turn-based segments in which you get to move and perform actions with your team, then the enemy goes, and so on until you complete the objective or are defeated.
Like most tactical RPGs, Mario + Rabbids can be difficult sometimes, and might not be as child-friendly as other games in each franchise. However, it's perfect for someone who wants a basic but still challenging tactical RPG, or for someone who intends to try the genre for the first time.
2. Look everywhere
Exploration is crucial in Kingdom Battle if you want to make sure your party has the best equipment possible. Instead of finding new towns with new weapons to purchase, all the arms in the game are bought from one centralized store. However, before you can buy that shiny new Blaster, you have to locate it in the field first.
There are two types of gameplay in Mario + Rabbids: the field and battle. The field is where you are when you're walking from battle to battle. When moving in this type of area, you can find strings of coins, treasure chests, warp pipes, switches to unlock secret paths, and more. The majority of treasure chests and exploring, in general, is going to be done here.
In battle, you're encouraged to explore as well. Though it can be tempting to wind up a fight as quickly as possible, and you're often rewarded with coins for doing so, it's always best to take a look at the entire battle area to see if there are places on it that may activate a hidden chest, or offer some bonus. You can always go back and recheck a location on the primary field without much trouble, but if you need to recheck a battlefield, you'll have to go through the entire battle all over again.
3. Cover is the most important aspect of battle
The first and most important detail of Mario + Rabbids' battle system you'll need to learn is cover. At its core, fighting usually comes down to jockeying with the enemy for the best position from which your characters can lay down fire without being hit by return fire. This game does not reward bum rushing the enemy, and if you try to push forward without cover continually, you'll find yourself in a world of hurt.
The primary two types of cover are destructible and indestructible. For the most part, the cover you find in each battle is destructible and can take only a few shots from the enemy before it crumbles. However, mixed in at a much lower ration are metal blocks and the like which can take an infinite amount of damage without collapsing. Of course, it's always preferable to move your character behind the later whenever possible, but the limited range of your weaponry usually means that even indestructible cover is just a reprieve until you have to continue moving forward.
A full block of cover gives you a zero percent chance to be hit in the direction you're facing when behind it. That means that no matter what your enemy's shot is going to miss and damage the covering object instead. There are also half blocks of cover that give a 50-50 chance of whether the cover or the intended target will be hit. Taking advantage of this system is essential if you want to be the victor in Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle.
4. The slide and team jump combo system
In a tactical RPG, the more mobile your characters are, the better you can place them to cause maximum damage to the enemy. In Kingdom Battle, there's a combo movement system that allows you to double or triple your character's move radius on every turn.
If an enemy is within your movement range, you can perform a slide tackle to cause some extra damage. Additionally, after executing a tackle, you then get an additional move. This is an excellent way to slide past an enemy's cover, hit them, and then move behind them to hit them with your main attack from where they're unprotected.
Team jumps work similarly to slides but utilize your teammates to propel you. To perform a team jump, you move a character onto a space occupied by another of your team members. You can then get a bonus move, which also can help you jump over impassable terrain to otherwise inaccessible areas.
To really get moving, you can combine the slide and team jump for three moves per turn. To do this, you must first slide into an enemy, then move to a teammate, who can then team jump you. This doesn't work the other way though. A combo can't be performed if you team jump first, then try to slide.
5. Skills are a great equalizer
After you complete World 1-3, you'll get access to your first skills. In Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle you're usually outnumbered, and sometimes even attacking from cover won't keep you from being overrun. However, once you get skills, you have access to some tricks your enemies don't.
Each character has a different skillset, and it's up to you to use them in tandem to best effect. Mario's Hero Sight, for example, will target any foes that move within his range during the enemy's turn. You'll also get skills later on that will allow you to heal in-battle, which is a major boon since there's no way to do it otherwise.
6. The most powerful weapon isn't always the best
In Kingdom Battle, each character typically has several weapons available on each tier. Logic would dictate that you should just go with whichever one does the most damage, but that's not always the case. Each weapon has multiple stats, of which hit damage is just a small part.
Some weapons may do more damage to cover or have a higher range, but have a lower attack. If you're in an area that has a ton of a particular type of enemy, a lower base attack weapon may end up doing more damage because it has a bonus modifier for that enemy type.
You'll also want to keep your eye out for weapons that cause status effects. If you have a Blaster that causes Honey Damage, you have the chance to inflict the Honey status which holds an enemy in place for one turn. Burning damage has the possibility to make the enemy frantically run around trying to put the fire out, and taking them out of cover where your team has a better chance to hit them.
Experiment with the different weapon types and find the combination that fits your playstyle the most.
7. Level hazards can be your best friend or worst enemy
Early on in the game, you're introduced to level hazards. These take the form of boxes with one of several symbols on them. These hazards don't move and can be used by either you or the enemy to cause massive damage.
Since hazards are typically found amongst regular cover, you can work them into your strategy to defeat your enemy. Often there's no other choice but to take cover in an area with a hazard, and that's when you get your chance to strike. If an enemy is adjacent to a hazard, you can move your character where the hazard is between your team member and the enemy. All it takes then is a pot shot their way, and the hazard will be activated.
Some hazards can set enemies on fire. Others can send them flying across the level with a powerful push. They can make a battle an easy victory for you, but keep in mind that the enemy can and will use them for the same nefarious purpose.
Did these Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle tips help you? Let us know in the comments below.