After a long wait, a killer app is finally out for the ill-fated Nintendo Wii U. If you were looking for a reason to dust off your console and play something not only fun and brilliant, but also incredibly pretty, then Super Mario 3D World is the game for you.

This is a Mario game after all, and following the huge success of New Super Mario Bros. U, fans of the plumber were left wanting more, something more akin to Super Mario Galaxy or even the 64 version. Super Mario 3D Land on the 3DS, the money maker for Nintendo and statistically the best selling console ever, was also highly successful, so adding the suffix ‘World’ to it for the Wii U could have only made it better. And by Josh, this is by far Mario’s most outstanding performance since Galaxy 2, and that isn’t a small feat at all.

The plot follows our heroes as they come across a strange clear pipe where a curious green fairy-like creature called a Sprixie pops out from. Suddenly, Bowser appears and captures the fairy before escaping through the pipe. Thus, Mario and friends enter the pipe to pursue Bowser, and find themselves in the strange new Sprixie Kingdom as they search for the Sprixie . This time there is no rescuing the princess, no more ”Sorry Mario, but our princess is in another castle” — the game is a race to save all pixies and stop Bowser’s evil plot.

As usual, the game is colorful and pleasing to look at, and this time around, the it can be played on the TV and the Wii pad. Mario and friends never looked this good with pastel graphics and so much attention to detail has been thrown into the game making it is so easy to get lost in the lovely world of this Mario game. Small dust clouds and particles, grass and wind, small leaves flying around…This game is a true work of art and a great reminder of how good Nintendo can be with first party games.

Sound is equally impressive with the in-house band taking care of the tunes that are simply fantastic. The usual effects of Mario games are included and all they do is bring back fond memories of childhood; this game is a veritable soul food for nostalgia. This is Mario, the same Mario we grew up with, but updated for the new age. How far has this series reached while remaining true to it’s origin.

Super Mario 3D World plays in the classic 3D style Mario that we all got used to. It’s a free moving game with a world map and stages that vary with each different world, each with their own set of challenges and styles. The game can, and is best played as, co-op but single play is also fun and enjoyable. Controls are great as per Mario standards with the same signature moves available. Powerups are aplenty with old faves like the fire flower, raccoon and mushrooms available with some new and very impressive first time power ups, most interesting of them being the bell powerup that adorns you in a Cat suit. This suit grants more agility and new attack moves, and is by far the best suit ever featured in a Mario game. Other amazing powerups are the cherry powerup that grants you clones who follow you around, and the great Boomerang suit. Up to two powerups can be carried for use when need be.

Gold coins are still the main attraction, but this time you also have Green stars to collect in each level in order to unlock other worlds, and you will need to find each and every single star in order to reach the true ending. As usual, the game is filled with secrets and easter eggs, and with 2013 being the year of Luigi, expect some heavy references and some insane tasks in order to unlock some great secrets. This is a game that you play for a few minutes a day but will last you ages.

Levels and worlds are varied and some interesting elements are introduced via the Miiverse and the Wii-Pad which offers some nice bonus inputs. Each character is unique and has different strengths and weaknesses, and there is even a fifth hidden character so the game isn’t short on pleasant surprises.

What more can be said? this is Mario in it’s most epic form, a testimony that Nintendo does what it does best despite all the negativity surrounding it and proof that the Wii U can survive only with first party software. With Mario now available, a karting game just around the corner, and promises of a Metroid game and a new Zelda game, the future of the Wii U never looked any brighter.

Super Mario 3D World is exclusive to the Wii U