Today marks the one year anniversary of Super Mario Odyssey, so I thought it would be fun to rank all of the 3D Super Mario games!
Please understand that this list is my opinion and it may cause a little controversy.
I will do my best to justify why I have placed each game where it is in the ranking.
I'm only going to rank the main series Super Mario games so there will be no party, sports, or racing games here.
Finally, this is all just for fun!
I'm just letting myself write my thoughts as they come, so expect incoherent sentences and random cuts.
With all that out of the way, let's get ranking!
#8 Super Mario Galaxy 2
Starting off the list in last place is Super Mario Galaxy 2.
As the sequel to the Galaxy series, there was a lot to live up to.
My biggest complaint with this game was the world hub/map.
The 3D Mario series up until this point always had interesting hubs to explore and wander around in.
But SMG2 threw that out the window in favor of the New Super Mario Bros. style world map.
It is worth mentioning that SMG2 did bring some really cool new power ups and enemies into the series, including one of my personal favorite outfits for Mario in the form of Cloud Mario.
#7 Super Mario 64
The controversy starts off strong with SM64 in seventh place!
I understand that SM64 was incredible because it was the first game where you could explore the Mushroom Kingdom in 3D.
However, that doesn't justify this game being held up so highly in my mind.
The camera is clunky and due to the polygonal graphics art style, there are often times where you'll bonk on something or just straight up get hit by an enemy for seemingly no reason at all.
Yes SM64 was a masterpiece at the time, but the Super Mario series gets better.
#6 Super Mario Sunshine
The GameCube era was such an interesting time for the Mario Bros and Nintendo alike.
A lot of creative ideas were being implemented into the pillars of Nintendo.
Legend of Zelda got a cel-shaded art style and flooded the world of Hyrule, Metroid went first person and gave the world platform shooters, Donkey Kong started banging on the bongos, and Mario learned about water guns!
Sunshine features tight controls, excellent platforming with the F.L.U.D.D., and most importantly, introduces my favorite character in all of the Mario universe, Bowser Jr.!
I just adore Sunshine.
#5 Super Mario 64 DS
Super Mario 64 is in the top five?
SM64 had a remake on the DS, and they fixed a lot of things and added some great new features.
First, the game doesn't just feature Mario.
You can now play as Luigi, Yoshi, and even Wario.
The camera was much better to handle, and I personally really enjoyed using the DS's bottom touch screen for movement.
Getting three new characters to play as, all with their own unique play styles, allowed for great new ways to complete each level.
SM64DS is the better game in my opinion.
That's just how it is.
#4 Super Mario 3D World
Multiplayer 3D Mario.
Do I need to say more?
I cannot begin to explain the fun I had when playing this game with friends, yelling and screaming at each other as we made our way through the levels.
Racing to the finish.
Throwing each other off the edge.
Sometimes working together to get coins and beat bosses.
Fighting over the crown.
This game just felt good to play.
#3 Super Mario 3D Land
Honestly...It's hard for me to not justify putting Super Mario 3D Land in the #1 spot.
It may have been the time that it was released, as it came out during a period when the 3DS didn't have much to play.
But 3D Land meant so much to me.
I did not put it down until I was done 100%.
That's both the Mario and The Luigi mode.
I don't know what it is, but I just love 3D Land so much.
#2 Super Mario Galaxy
With one of the greatest tag lines in gaming, "You get to Bee Mario.", this game absolutely deserves the #2 spot on this list.
Not just because of the tagline though.
Galaxy is just a downright blast to play.
The physics engine is really fun to play around in and the music is easily the best soundtrack in Mario.
Rosalina is my second favorite Mario character so that's always a plus, and after beating the game with all 120 stars, you unlock the ability to play through the whole game again as Luigi!
Also, fun little fact, if you preordered the game at GameStop, you could receive a call from Charles Martinet, the voice of Mario, reminding you to be sure to pick up your copy!
#1 Super Mario Odyssey
Well this was no surprise, was it?
Of course Super Mario Odyssey is the #1 game on this list!
Not only does it have the best movement mechanics thanks to Cappy, but it also has the best and most coherent story.
With 880 unique moons to collect, the content here is practically endless.
Each kingdom feels unique and has different and interesting ways to traverse the land.
You can dress Mario up in different outfits and, using the photo mode, take really creative and interesting pictures.
The added Luigi Balloon World DLC brings multiplayer-ish gameplay into the fold via searching for and hiding balloons.
Odyssey also holds a really special place in my heart as it was the first Super Mario game I decided that I wanted to speed run!
So there you have it! All of the 3D Super Mario games ranked.
I would love to hear how you would rank these games so please feel free to leave a comment!
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