Nintendo Enthused: Just call me Tanook-Rini!

Last Thursday was a fun day for me. Not only did I have Reading Band, but I got a called that FedEx had a delivery for me! I love surprise packages. However, waiting all day and evening until I got home–which was around 10-ish, I think–was not easy.

I got giddy, and giggly, when I opened this up. I’ve been overly excited about the new Mario family titles coming to the 3DS. In fact, there were so many that I liked and wanted, that I just sort of lost track of them. (Plus, with my previous unemployment, games weren’t in the budget at all.) So receiving this amazing Super Mario 3D Land package unleashed some sort of bouncy school girl in me.

Now, in case you didn’t know, Brand About Town is simply the best and always send the most awesomest gifts. This one was no exception. Included with my new 3DS game was the mirror shown above, a Mario hat and mustache, and… my very own Tanooki suit hood! (If you follow #NintendoEnthused on twitter, I’m sure you’ve seen a whole horde of us suiting up.)

I’m in love with it. So much that I took it to work with me on Friday. (Which it came in very handy because it’s pretty chilly up there.) I think I’ve worn this, around the house, at least once a day so far. Also, I’ve been playing the game every day since I got it…

… and I’m now in the middle of the last world (World 8). I don’t think I’ve ever gone through a game this quickly. And I’ve been finding all three of the star coins in most levels now. I’m even going back to get ones I’ve missed. I truly hope that there are bonus levels past World 8, because I’m at W8-6 right now, and I’m not ready for it to be over.

I was talking with TOPolk on twitter, and we both agree that Nintendo got it right with this game. It’s not insultingly easy, but it’s not so much of a challenge people just give up. Now, there are nice little boosts Nintendo’s put in there if you are having trouble. Die 5 times in a level? Nintendo gives you a shiny, sparkly, white Invincible Tanooki suit. I’ve definitely used this more than once to get through something that was just getting to be frustrating. However, this suit won’t keep you from just walking/falling off the edge of the world. (Something I’m also familiar with.) Die 10 times? You get a P-Wing Power Up (something you might remember from Super Mario Bros 3–not sure if it’s made an appearance anywhere else). It takes you to the end of the level. I’ve never used it, and it’s only been offered to me once. Sort of reminds me of the Super Donkey Kong on Donkey Kong Country Returns… At least with the Invincible Tanooki suit, you’re still playing the game rather than watching the AI go through it.

This game is amazing. I highly recommend picking it up. Especially if you’re a longtime Mario fan. (I’m also happy Mario Kart 7 is coming out for the 3DS soon.) There’s lots of nice hidden surprises, and this has been one game where I’m actually eagerly trying to find them all rather than just trying to get through everything. And when you add in extra bonuses for StreetPasses, well, the fun never stops. Even if the Princess is never in the f*cking castle.

Fun Fact: The Tanooki suit is based off of a raccoon-dog, commonly known as Tanuki. And well, a lot of people think of the Tanooki suit as a raccoon or fox suit–but it’s not. Tanuki are a different family from the raccoon–though there’s been a lot of debate about how they should be categorized taxonomically… and well, yeah, not foxes. Those would be Kitsune.

Important Facts: The game, hat and Tanooki hood (a Red Wolf hood from Spirit Hoods–completely faux fur, btw) were all a gift from Nintendo and Brand About Town. I did not receive them in return for writing this, nor any type of payment. The opinions here are all my own.