It was only an hour’s demonstration, just for the eyes, but that’s fine. Mario Golf: Super Rush It looks like it’s going to be fun to play later in June, when Camelot Software Planning’s next mashup of Mushroom Kingdom and country club sports hits Nintendo Switch.
Furthermore, the game’s shot production systems look like they’ll provide an intuitive, easy-to-learn experience, whether you’re 18 holes alone or measuring an angle after Bowser Jr. drops a smoke bomb on the putting green. A Speed Golf mode that mixes sport with Mario Kart style is the game̵
I’m mainly charmed by the thin, vertical information bar to the right (or left) of your character, and the way it bends to give the player an idea of how a golf ball resting on a slope will change their shot. Aesthetically, it may be better suited for the arcade style of golf as Super Rush aims to deliver, but I have to wonder why simulation golf titles have not tried something like this already.
Arcade and sim golf titles, even the best, have gone from giving players too much information (making shot selection routines easy to tedious) to too little feedback, leaving them feeling disconnected and unable to understand why the ball landed there it did. In neither case has anyone really told the player what to do with side-hill lies. Most point to the fact that, yes, the ball is at the top or bottom to a degree of whatever degree, but it is a guess from there for the user when aiming the shot. I always have to remind myself to turn my golfer several degrees into the ground, to account for the fact that the ball is going to curve in the opposite direction.
Mario Golf: Super Rush it just bends the noodle part with information to the left or right, seriously or slightly, to give the player an instant, easy-to-understand impression of what that ball will do when it is hit. And if it’s useful in a round where you have unlimited time to do your thing while everyone waits politely, it’s even more useful when speed is important and a pet-guarded Waluigi is discotheque to the hole in front of your foursome.
Again, my impressions are just eyes – an important warning that the best golf video games recreate that feeling of feel Golfers have when evaluating and performing their shots. I do not know how Mario Golf: Super Rush will perform in that department, yet. But this instant, complete mental picture of your shot suggests to me that Camelot seriously thought about how their game would support playing zany golf variants, instead of just speeding up the standard game or whipping a blue shell into it.
Most of what I saw in Mario Golf: Super Rush seems to accommodate Speed Golf’s split second decision, and therefore it looks like this title’s signature mode. In it, players try to complete the hole faster than their rivals, with 30 seconds per stroke added to the actual time they spent going from tee to cup. It’s a single player opportunity to take on an AI square, but it looks like this playlist is best with human friends, especially the trick who is not over coughing during the swing back.
Each of the 16 golfers on Mario Golf: Super Rushs list has two unique abilities that are best distributed in a multiplayer round with Speed Golf. It’s Special Dash, a theme speed boost to get them ahead of a race against the ball. And it’s Special Shot, basically a super-buff for their distance and accuracy, with a big time nerf for other people’s shots nearby. Mario’s Special Shot lands with a kind of splash damage that can hit the opponent’s balls off the green; Paulines wants to clear them out of the way. Luigi freezes the ground where it lands.
Of course, these special abilities are limited by a meter that needs to be filled (Special Shot) or the character’s endurance, which must be filled up by picking up items on the way to the goal. Endurance is one of five attributes that distinguish each character and give them a specific style: Power, Endurance, Speed, Control and Spin. They also support Golf Adventure mode, similar to Story Mode of Camelot’s Mario Tennis Aces three years ago, but with more role-playing qualities and the player’s Mii as a star.
Golf Adventure is also a stretched story where the player learns the sport’s mysterious secrets while counteracting the supernatural opponents who guard them. This manifests itself as a golf game, such as the shortcut tutorial I saw where the user learns how a lob wedge works by diverting the charged attacks to a huge black knight standing over the green. Golf Adventure, in addition to being an onboard experience, also levels the Mii character and prepares them to play online against the rest of the list.
For those parts of the game that are not pressured by Luigi skating to the green or Bowser cross-checking you to a Chain Chomp, Mario Golf: Super Rush has a hole-searching toolkit to give players a complete sense of what they are getting into. The scanner points to distance to the hole, changes in height and surface (and their impact on the distance of the shot) and more. Most golf titles give players an overhead-type view that, while useful for shot planning, can make it easy and unchallenging. The scan view looks like a winner to me, because it helps you plan a shot with a good idea of how it will travel, without resorting to godly omniscience.
Mario Golf: Super Rush launches for Nintendo Switch on June 25th.