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Mitchell Galaxy 2 (Japanese; ミッチェルガレイ2, Hepburn; Mitcherugarei 2) is a platforming video game developed by AQ Interactive, published by THQ and distributed by Nickelodeon Interactive Games for the Wii, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. It was first announced at E3 2009 and is the sequel to Mitchell Galaxy. It was released in North America on May 23, 2010; in Japan on May 27, 2010; in Europe on June 11, 2010; and in Australia on July 1, 2010. It is the ninth original 3D platformer in the Mitchell series, after Mitchell Van Morgan 64, Mitchell Van Morgan Legends, Mitchell Elemental Series, and Mitchell Galaxy.

The story follows Mitchell as he pursues the revengeful outer space villain, Gordo, into outer space, where he has imprisoned Planet Eggs from the solar system and taken control of the universe using Planet Eggs. Mitchell must travel across various galaxies to recover the Planet Eggs in order to travel to the center of the universe and save the world. The game was originally planned as an updated version of Mitchell Galaxy with some modifications and a projected development time of a year; this version would have been called Mitchell Galaxy More. It was later decided that the game was to be developed as a fleshed-out sequel when the development staff continued to build upon the game with dozens of new ideas, and so development time expanded to two and a half years. Among the additions are dynamic environments, new power-ups, and, most notably, the ability to ride Yoshi.

Upon its release, Mitchell Galaxy 2 was met with as much widespread critical acclaim as its predecessor, and is regarded by many to be one of the greatest video games of all time, as well as one of the highest rated video games on the aggregation sites Metacritic and GameRankings. It is one of the best-selling games on the Wii with 6.72 million copies sold worldwide. In 2015, it became the first disc-based Wii game to get a re-release on the Wii U eShop.

Gameplay

The gameplay of Mitchell Galaxy 2 is similar to Mitchell Galaxy, with a focus on platforming based on and around 3D planets (referred to collectively as galaxies) with varying themes, sizes, landscapes, and climates. The player controls Mario (or later in the game, his brother Luigi,[1][2] though using him is optional), who has special abilities such as the "Spin" attack, long jump, wall jumps, and a variety of somersaults. As in the original, the objective of the game is to travel to the various galaxies and collect Power Stars, which are awarded by completing levels and accomplishing tasks and are used to gain access to later levels. The game retains some gameplay mechanics introduced in the original, such as the blue Star Pointer that allows the player to pick up Star Bits and shoot them at enemies, levels that restrict movement to a 2D plane, balance ball levels, and gravity-reversing background arrows.[3]

Setting and level design

Mitchell Galaxy 2 provides the player access to the game's galaxies through means of a map system similar to that in previous Mitchell games such as Super Mitchell and New Mitchell Van Morgan.[4] This is navigated via a mobile planet called Starship Mario (named as such because it is shaped exactly like Mario's head)[3] that serves as a hub world, which can be visited anytime and is expanded when new abilities or levels are unlocked.[5] The game contains forty-nine galaxies allotted among seven different regions in the universe (called "worlds"), the general difficulty progressively increasing in each world. The first six worlds end with a boss level in which the object is to conquer Bowser or Bowser Jr.(the former being in even-numbered worlds, and the latter being in odd-numbered worlds), which then allows the player to access the next world. When the player collects all 120 Power Stars, 120 Green Star levels are unlocked. These levels, containing Green Stars that are hidden or are placed in hard-to-reach areas, require intense exploration and precision and may cause instant death if the player fails. Acquiring all 120 Green Stars awards the player with the final, forty-ninth galaxy with two new challenges that are considered exceptionally difficult.[6] Super Mario Galaxy 2 contains 242 unique Power Stars to collect overall.[7]

Most of the levels in Super Mario Galaxy 2 offer a unique task based around its theme, and many focus on dynamic environments that change or alternate between various states. For example, some environments change to the beat of the background music, such as sudden shifts in the direction of gravity or the appearance or disappearance of platforms; and others feature a special switch that temporarily slows down time. Prankster Comets, which were featured in the original game and cause variation and tougher challenges in levels, no longer appear randomly in visited galaxies but instead require the collection of a Comet Medal in that galaxy in order for it to appear.[8] In addition, Prankster Comets have become more general and offer any number of variations: while Super Mario Galaxy offered only five mutually exclusive variations, the Prankster Comets in Super Mario Galaxy 2 range to any number of challenges that often mix or overlap. These include: destroying all the enemies, collecting 100 Purple Coins, and completing the level within a time limit, with Mario's maximum health reduced to one unit, or while avoiding Cosmic Clones (doppelgängers of Mario that pursue and imitate all the player's actions). As a result, both the dynamic environments and the Prankster Comets often create challenges with puzzle elements, requiring precision and strategy in order to overcome them.[9]

Power-ups

File:Smg2cloudmario.jpg

Cloud Mario is one of the new power-ups in the game. Mario is using the power-up, creating temporary platforms in midair to get to out-of-reach places.

All the original transformations in Super Mario Galaxy return except for Ice Mario and Flying Mario, along with some new power-ups and items. These include the Spin Drill, which allows the player to burrow through some planets and emerge out the other side;[3] Rock Mario, which allows the player to smash through obstacles, such as boulders and enemies;[5] and Cloud Mario, which allows the player to create temporary platforms in midair.[10]

Mario is able to ride the dinosaur Yoshi, who is available in certain levels. When riding Yoshi, the player's blue Star Pointer is replaced by a red dot, which allows the player to point at various objects and manipulate them with Yoshi's tongue.[11] Yoshi can also use his tongue to swing across gaps, pull levers, and swallow enemies (with the option to spit them back out as projectiles). In addition, Yoshi allows the player to double jump.[3] There are also three different power-up fruits available for Yoshi to eat that grant him temporary abilities. These are the Dash Pepper, the Blimp Fruit and the Bulb Berry. The Dash Pepper allows Yoshi to run quickly, giving him the ability to run up walls and run on water; the Blimp Fruit allows Yoshi to float into the air; and the Bulb Berry allows Yoshi to reveal secret pathways.[12] If the player takes damage while riding Yoshi, the player will fall off and Yoshi will run away until the player gets back on him. If the player does not get back on, Yoshi will retreat into his egg.

Guides and multiplayer

Because of the game's increased difficulty over the original, Super Mario Galaxy 2 offers some features that assist inexperienced or frustrated players. The most notable is the Cosmic Guide, similar to New Super Mario Bros. Wii's "Super Guide" feature, who takes the form of Rosalina. The Cosmic Guide appears if the player has failed during a particular level a certain number of times, and allows the player to give computer control over Mario in order to complete the level if necessary. The drawback is that the player is awarded a Bronze Star, requiring the player to complete the level without using the Cosmic Guide in order to earn a Golden Power Star.[13] There are also monitors called "Hint TVs" that will demonstrate how to perform a specific move or optimal ways of using a power-up.[14]

Multiplayer gameplay has also been expanded upon over the original. In Super Mario Galaxy, another player could use a second Wii Remote to control a second Star Pointer and assist Mario by grabbing onto enemies or collecting and shooting Star Bits. In Super Mario Galaxy 2, the second player now controls an orange Luma who retains all the original abilities, but can also physically attack enemies and collect items, power-ups and 1-ups, making the player's involvement more useful.[13]

Character Gameplay

Because of the game's increased difficulty over the original, Mitchell Galaxy 2 offers some features that assist inexperienced or frustrated players. The most notable is the Cosmic Guide, similar to New Super Mario Bros. Wii's "Super Guide" feature, who takes the form of Rosalina.

  • Mitchell Van Morgan;

Mitchell Van Morgan-Mitchell has balanced running speed. Mitchell's eye technique The Snake Eyes can use instant memory and replicate any opponent's movement and attacks with perfect accuracy by vision. Mitchell can create two decoys of himself to outsmart his opponents. He can run at super-fast speeds with a supersonic energy trailing behind him with an alarm going off as he is dashing, This extra speed allows him to sprint across water and climb up walls with incredibly steep slopes. Mitchell can use the MVM Plover-styled spin attack move as seen in the game.

  • Gavin O'Neal Davis;

Gavin O'Neal Davis-Gavin has balanced brains. Gavin's eye technique Ursine vision can allow him to see peoples doubts and acquires ursine-like chakra strength. Gavin can use of his jetpack to quickly avoid obstacles but can temporarily hover in midair. Gavin's lightsaber sword attacks can allow him to deflect certain projectiles with his lightsaber. Gavin can also throw his trademark wrenches at his enemies. Gavin can swim underwater. Gavin can use the Gaviegan-styled spin attack move as seen in the game.

  • Martin J. Moody;

Martin J. Moody-Martin can temporarily glide through the air for a short period of time, but does not run as fast. Martin's eye technique The Moody Vision can detect and see through anything within its range of sight but in battle, users of the technique like Martin can see the flow of chakra within an opponent's body. Martin can use the powerhouse-styled spin attack move as seen in the game.

  • David Jessie Drake;

David Jessie Drake-David runs the fastest, but cannot jump as high and falls faster. David's eye technique Wolf Vision can detect and see through anything within its range of sight but in battle, users of the technique like Martin can see the flow of chakra within an opponent's body. David can rival Mitchell's speed using his hover skates. David can use the wolf-like spin attack move as seen in the game.

  • Nicholas Dunn;

Nicholas Dunn-Nicholas jumps higher and falls slower. He also has balanced jump height.

  • Carolyn Ashley Taylor;

Carolyn Ashley Taylor-Carolyn has running speed and brains. Carolyn's eye technique Sense of Power Stones can sense the presence of nearby power stone, gem, or jewel. Carolyn has professional archery skills along with her trademark bow & arrow. She can also fire light arrows from her Bow & Arrow to allow Carolyn to be able to see passages that usually remain invisible and intangible. Carolyn can use the fortune-styled spin attack with clovers coming out of her hands move as seen in the game.

  • Jennifer Hooker;

Jennifer Hooker-Jennifer can temporarily glide through the air for a short period of time by spinning her hammer, but does not run as fast. Jennifer's eye technique Sense of Marriage can sense the romantic feelings of others and eventually Gavin. Jennifer has a deep infatuation for Gavin many ways. Jennifer can use the Hammer spin attack move as seen in the game.

  • Dusty;

Dusty Riddle-Dusty has telekinetic and a handful of shadowboxing combat skills. Dusty's eye technique Evil Eyes can see his enemies with a malice look. Dusty can make shadow clones of himself. Dusty can use the black flame-styled spin attack move as seen in the game.

  • Ebony;

Ebony Nichole Lewis-Ebony can allow herself to fight using kicks, her kickboxing skills are very effective as her signature and she can jump really high. Ebony's eye technique The Eyes of a treasure hunter can use instant memory on professional treasure hunting, greed and ego. She can use her wily tricks on enemies to get pass them unnoticed. Ebony can use the flower spin attack move with flowers coming out of her hands as seen in the game.

  • Valerie;

Valerie Ann Gupton-Valerie can swim at high speeds, leap out of the water and strike with her tai chi skills. Mitchell's eye technique The Snake Eyes can use instant memory and replicate any opponent's movement and attacks with perfect accuracy by vision. The effect of Valerie's ability to walk and skate on water and lava by freezing it, including vertical jets of water, and can wall-jump off of waterfalls. The person controlling Valerie is required to shake to activate the skating power, but ice is always being generated. While you are skating if you jump, your jump is longer than normal and you spin in the air. It wears off after a set period of time. Valerie can use the water spin attack move as seen in the game.

  • Scottie Salmon;
  • Sarah;
  • Amber;

Amber-Amber has psychokinetic and a handful of northern shaolin combat skills. Amber's eye technique The Eyes of a weirdo can allow her use instant ghost-seeking and a very weird talent by vision. She can run at super-fast speeds with fire trailing behind her with an alarm going off as she is dashing, This extra speed allows him to sprint across water and climb up walls with incredibly steep slopes. Amber can use a fire spin attack move as seen in the game.

  • Marquessa;

each of the characters possesses unique abilities and controls differently: Mario has balanced running speed and jump height, Luigi jumps higher and falls slower, but has lower traction; Peach can jump and float through the air for a short period of time, but does not run as fast, Toad runs the fastest, but cannot jump as high and falls faster; and Rosalina can use the spin attack move as seen in the Super Mario Galaxy titles, but has the slowest running speed.

Story

Princess Paulina invites Mitchell to share some cake at the Star Festival, a time when Star Bits rain down from the skies over the Raleighopolis. On his way, Mitchell and his buddies finds a Luma, who immediately befriends them and grants Mitchell and his buddies the ability to spin. Shortly thereafter, Mitchell's new nemesis Gordo, and his Gordo Army appears and attacks Raleighopolis. Stealing the "Planet Egg", Gordo escapes into outer space to recreate his empire at the center of the universe. Without the Planet Eggs, all the trees and plants on each planet will wither and die. Mitchell learns that Mitchell and his friends decide that Gordo and his schemes must be stopped, and they venture into space to retrieve the Planet Eggs. After launching into outer space, Mitchell is given control of Starship Mitchell, a large starship, made by a crafty Luma mechanic called Lubba and Mitchell's best buddy Gavin, powered by Stars, and piloted by other Lumas; his mission is to fly across the universe in pursuit of Gordo and the Planet Eggs and to help Lubba find the lost Lumas that were part of Gordo's plot. Along the way Mitchell and his buddies meets new Lumas and joins up with his companion Yoshi, the Toad Brigade from the original Super Mario Galaxy, and Nicholas' girlfriend Devin.

After many run-ins with Marquessa, and the pursuing Gordo Army, Marquessa is given control of Starship Marquessa, a large starship based on Marquessa Land, made by Marquessa and Marquessa's wife Genola powered by their similar nature. Marquessa's role as the main villain is taken over by the Gordo Army and their leader, Gordo. At one point, he joins the Gordo Army, but is later caught stealing their technology by Gordo's insectoid army. Once he is rescued, he joins with Mitchell and his friends as allies for the rest of the series in order to defeat Gordo.

Upon collecting enough Planet Eggs, fighting Bowser twice and blowing up Bowser Jr.'s machine sending him flying into space along the way, Mitchell reaches Gordo's main fortification, draining energy from what appears to be a comet. Mitchell infiltrates the castle and defeats Bowser, retrieving the last Planet Egg. Rosalina and her Comet Observatory from the first Mitchell Galaxy appear before Mitchell and the others. Rosalina thanks Mitchell and his allies for watching over the Luma that he had found, and the Luma returns to the Comet Observatory, taking Mitchell's hat with him. Mitchell and his friends return to Raleighopolis and celebrate their victory. The game ends with Starship Mario sitting above Princess Peach's Castle, with Marquessa resumed to his evil ways again and starts to build the Marquessa Empire, albeit more in a light-hearted manner and finally the Comet Observatory streaking across the sky.

Galaxies and Missions

World 1
Sky Station Galaxy Yoshi Star Galaxy
Peewee Piranha's Temper Tantrum Storming the Sky Fleet Saddle Up with Yoshi Spiny Control
Peewee Piranha's Speed Run Green Star 1 Spiny Rainbow Romp Green Star 1
Green Star 2 Green Star 3 Green Star 2 Green Star 3
Spin-Dig Galaxy Fluffy Bluff Galaxy
Digga-Leg's Planet Silver Stars Down Deep Search for the Toad Brigade Captain The Chimp's Stomp Challenge
Digga-Leg's Daredevil Run Green Star 1 Every Planet Has Its Price Green Star 1
Green Star 2 Green Star 3 Green Star 2 Green Star 3
Flip-Swap Galaxy* Rightside Down Galaxy
Think Before You Shake Purple Coin Flip 'n' Sprint Breaking the Laws of Gravity The Great Crate Incinerator
Green Star 1 Green Star 2 Green Star 1 Green Star 2
Bowser Jr.'s Fiery Flotilla
Gobblegut's Aching Belly Fiery Flotilla Speed Run Green Star 1 Green Star 2
World 2
Puzzle Plank Galaxy Hightail Falls Galaxy
The Puzzling Picture Block Purple Coin Shadow Vault Hot-Stepping Dash Pepper Hightail Falls Speed Run
Bugaboom's Back Green Star 1 Silver Stars in Hightail Falls Green Star 1
Green Star 2 Green Star 3 Green Star 2 Green Star 3
Boulder Bowl Galaxy Cosmic Cove Galaxy
Rock and Rollodillo Rolling Crabber Romp Twin Falls Hideaway Exploring the Cosmic Cavern
C'mere, Goomba Green Star 1 Catch That Star Bunny Green Star 1
Green Star 2 Green Star 3 Green Star 2 Green Star 3
Wild Glide Galaxy Honeybloom Galaxy*
Fluzzard's First Flight Jungle Fluzzard Race Bumble Beginnings The Secret Wall Jump
Green Star 1 Green Star 2 Green Star 1 Green Star 2
Bowser's Lava Lair
Bowser's Big Lava Power Party Lava Lair Speed Run Green Star 1 Green Star 2
World 3
Tall Trunk Galaxy Cloudy Court Galaxy
The Flotacious Blimp Fruit Tall Trunk's Big Slide Head in the Clouds The Shadow Lining
Tall Trunk's Purple Coin Slide Green Star 1 Silver Stars in the Purple Pond Green Star 1
Green Star 2 Green Star 3 Green Star 2 Green Star 3
Haunty Halls Galaxy Freezy Flake Galaxy
A Glimmer of Bulb Berry Sneaking Down the Creepy Corridor Bowser on Ice Sorbetti's Chilly Reception
Spooky Cosmic Clone Chase Green Star 1 The Chimp's Skating Challenge Green Star 1
Green Star 2 Green Star 3 Green Star 2 Green Star 3
Rolling Masterpiece Galaxy Beat Block Galaxy*
Silver Chomp Grudge Match Masterpiece Speed Run Step to the Beep Silver Stars in Double Time
Green Star 1 Green Star 2 Green Star 1 Green Star 2
Bowser Jr.'s Fearsome Fleet
Bowser Jr.'s Mighty Megahammer Megahammer's Daredevil Bash Green Star 1 Green Star 2
World 4
Supermassive Galaxy Flipsville Galaxy
Huge Trouble with Big Wigglers Big Wigglers Speed Run Flip-Flopping in Flipsville Flipsville's New Digs
In Full Bloom Green Star 1 Purple Coin Spin Speed Run Green Star 1
Green Star 2 Green Star 3 Green Star 2 Green Star 3
Starshine Beach Galaxy Chompworks Galaxy
Surf, Sand, and Silver Stars Climbing the Cloudy Tower Where the Chomps Are Made of Gold Spring into the Chompworks
Purple Coin Speed Dash Green Star 1 Cosmic Clones in the Chompworks Green Star 1
Green Star 2 Green Star 3 Green Star 2 Green Star 3
Sweet Mystery Galaxy* Honeyhop Galaxy
Bulb Berry's Mysterious Glow Bulb Berry's Purple Coin Glow The Sweetest Silver Stars The Chimp's Score Challenge
Green Star 1 Green Star 2 Green Star 1 Green Star 2
Bowser's Gravity Gauntlet
Breaking into Bowser's Castle Gravity Star Speed Run Green Star 1 Green Star 2
World 5
Space Storm Galaxy Slipsand Galaxy
Follow Me, Bob-omb To the Top of Topman's Tower Squizzard's Sandy Sinkhole Sailing the Sandy Seas
C'mere, Topman Green Star 1 Squizzard's Daredevil Run Green Star 1
Green Star 2 Green Star 3 Green Star 2 Green Star 3
Shiverburn Galaxy Boo Moon Galaxy
Prince Pikante's Peppery Mood Octo-Army Icy Rainbow Romp Silver Stars Pop-Up Haunting the Howling Tower
The Chimp's Ultimate Skating Challenge Green Star 1 The Star in the Sinking Swamp Green Star 1
Green Star 2 Green Star 3 Green Star 2 Green Star 3
Upside Dizzy Galaxy Fleet Glide Galaxy*
A Walk on the Weird Side Burning Upside Dizzy Fluzzard's Wild Battlefield Glide Fastest Feathers in the Galaxy
Green Star 1 Green Star 2 Green Star 1 Green Star 2
Bowser Jr.'s Boom Bunker
Bowser Jr.'s Boomsday Machine Boomsday Machine Daredevil Run Green Star 1 Green Star 2
World 6
Melty Monster Galaxy Clockwork Ruins Galaxy
The Magnificent Magma Sea A Stroll Down Rolling Lane Time for Adventure The Adventure of the Purple Coins
The Chimp's Bowling Challenge Green Star 1 The Ledge Hammer Trap Green Star 1
Green Star 2 Green Star 3 Green Star 2 Green Star 3
Throwback Galaxy Battle Belt Galaxy
Return of the Whomp King Silver Stars in the Whomp Fortress Mini-Planet Mega-Run Mini-Planet Daredevil Run
Whomp Silver Star Speed Run Green Star 1 Snacktime for Gobblegut Green Star 1
Green Star 2 Green Star 3 Green Star 2 Green Star 3
Flash Black Galaxy* Slimy Spring Galaxy
Jumping Around in the Dark Dark Octo-Army Romp The Deep Shell Well The Chimp's Coin Challenge
Green Star 1 Green Star 2 Green Star 1 Green Star 2
Bowser's Galaxy Generator
Bowser's Fortified Fortress Bowser's Big Bad Speed Run Green Star 1 Green Star 2
World S
Mario Squared Galaxy Rolling Coaster Galaxy
Make Mario a Star Luigi's Purple Coin Chaos The Rainbow Road Roll Purple Coins on the Rainbow Road
Green Star 1 Green Star 2 Green Star 1 Green Star 2
Twisty Trials Galaxy Stone Cyclone Galaxy
Spinning and Spinning and Spinning Turning Turning Double Time Silver Stars on the Cyclone Tox Box Speed Run
Green Star 1 Green Star 2 Green Star 1 Green Star 2
Boss Blitz Galaxy Flip-Out Galaxy*
Throwback Throwdown Throwback Throwdown Speed Run Wicked Wall Jumps Cosmic Clone Wall Jumpers
Green Star 1 Green Star 2 Green Star 1 Green Star 2
Grandmaster Galaxy
The Ultimate Test The Perfect Run

(*) = Unlocked by feeding a Hungry Luma.

Development

After Nintendo finished making the first Super Mario Galaxy, Shigeru Miyamoto approached the development team and suggested that a follow-up be produced. The game was originally planned to just do variations on the original game's planets and call the game "Super Mario Galaxy More,"[15] (it was dubbed "Super Mario Galaxy 1.5" during early development), with a projected development time of approximately a year. The first elements that were implemented were anything that was scrapped from the original game, either to ensure game balance or simply because of time constraints, such as Yoshi and the concept of a planet shaped like Mario's head. Over time, more and more new elements and ideas were brought into the game, and it was decided that the game would be a fleshed-out sequel rather than a slightly modified follow-up. Thus, development took two and a half years. Takeshi Hayakawa, the lead programmer for Super Mario Galaxy 2, created a development tool that allowed different staff members, including visual and sound designers, to easily design and create stages without waiting for programmers, many of which were incorporated into the final game.[15]

In order to help distinguish Super Mario Galaxy 2 from its predecessor, the staff originally wanted the whole game to revolve around the concept of "switching," in which the game's environments would dramatically change under certain conditions. This concept ended up being particularly difficult to implement full-scale, so was relegated to only certain levels.[16] Another idea that came up early on were cameo inclusions by other Nintendo characters (specifically Donkey Kong and Pikmin). The idea however was nixed by Miyamoto who stated that Pikmin characters wouldn't work within the Mario universe, and that there was no reason for other such cameos.[17] Game tutorials were confined to an optional system called the "Tip Network" in order to benefit players already familiar with the original game.[18] Miyamoto compared Super Mario Galaxy 2 to The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, in that both games use the same engines as their predecessors, yet build upon their foundations.[19]

The game was revealed at the Electronic Entertainment Expo 2009 on June 2. In Miyamoto's private conference, it was stated that the game was very far along in development, but its release was held back to mid-2010 because of New Super Mario Bros. Wii's release in late 2009. Miyamoto also stated that the game has 95–99% new features, with the rest being previous features introduced in Super Mario Galaxy.[20] With regard to the original game, Nintendo of America President and CEO Reggie Fils-Aime stated in an interview that the sequel would be more challenging,[21] and Miyamoto said in a Wired interview that the game would have less focus on plot.[22] Miyamoto initially hinted that the game might utilize the "Super Guide" feature, introduced in New Super Mario Bros. Wii, into the game,[23] and this was confirmed by Nintendo's Senior Manager of Product Managing, Bill Trinen, who claimed that the feature was implemented differently compared to what New Super Mario Bros. Wii offered. The feature is called Cosmic Guide, where the Cosmic Spirit (Rosalina) takes control of Mario.[24]

The game made its playable debut at the Nintendo Media Summit 2010 on February 24, 2010, when a second trailer for the game was released, and its North American release date on May 23, 2010 was finally announced.[25][26] The Japanese, European and Australian versions of the game came packaged with an instructional DVD manual, explaining the basic controls, as well as showing advanced play.[27] The voice actors from Super Mario Galaxy reprise their roles for its sequel including additional voices by Dex Manley who played Lubba.

Music

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Released Unknown
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See also: Music in Super Mario Galaxy

As with the original Super Mario Galaxy, Super Mario Galaxy 2 features a musical score written for and performed by a symphony orchestra (known as the Mario Galaxy Orchestra in the credits).[28] Early in the development process, when the concept of "Super Mario Galaxy 1.5" was being considered, there were no plans to use different music from the first Super Mario Galaxy. However, as the game evolved, the sound team, headed by Mahito Yokota, realized they needed new music that fit with the new gameplay mechanics that were being added. Although they were hesitant to use a symphony orchestra again because of recording difficulties, general producer Shigeru Miyamoto gave permission immediately – according to Yokota, Miyamoto felt that players would be expecting an orchestral soundtrack. Miyamoto also apparently suggested that players would want to hear arrangements from Super Mario Galaxy, which is why the soundtrack is a mixture of brand new pieces and arrangements of themes from the original Galaxy as well as many past installments in the Mario series, such as Super Mario World and Super Mario 64.[29] Ryo Nagamatsu, who worked previously on Mario Kart Wii, Wii Sports Resort, and New Super Mario Bros. Wii, contributed nine pieces to the soundtrack.[30]

Koji Kondo recruited sixty musicians for the orchestra, ten more than the number of musicians used for the original game's score, with an additional ten musicians providing a big band style of music with trumpets, trombones, saxophones and drums for a grand total of seventy players. The orchestral performances were conducted by Taizo Takemoto, renowned for his work with the Super Smash Bros. Concert in 2002, while Kondo served as a supervisor, while also contributing five pieces to the soundtrack.[31] The soundtrack was available as a 2-disc set to Japanese Club Nintendo members.[32]

Reception and legacy

Reviews

Template:Video game reviews

Super Mario Galaxy 2 received critical acclaim from major video game critics with numerous reviews praising the game for its creativity and technical improvements over the original. It has an average critic score of 97% at GameRankings and 97/100 at Metacritic, making it one of the highest rated games on the sites.[33][34]

Tom McShea from GameSpot called it a "new standard for platformers," giving it a perfect 10.0, making it the seventh game in the site's history to earn that score.[35] Other perfect scores came from Edge, stating "this isn't a game that redefines the genre: this is one that rolls it up and locks it away,"[36] and IGN's Craig Harris, who felt that the game "perfectly captures that classic videogame charm, the reason why most of us got into gaming from the start."[37] IGN later placed Super Mario Galaxy 2 4th on their "Top Modern Games" list.[38] IGN also listed Super Mario Galaxy 2 as the greatest Wii game of all time.[39] The Escapist editor Susan Arendt echoed this view by stating it "doesn't tinker with the established formula very much, but we didn't really want it to,"[40] while GameTrailers commented that "there's something tremendous for just about everyone and games that we can truly recommend to almost everyone are rare."[3] Ryan Scott at GameSpy regards it a much better game than the first Super Mario Galaxy, stating "for a series that's explored every conceivable angle of its genre, the Mario games keep coming up with ways to challenge our notions of what a platformer can and should do."[41]

Giant Bomb's Ryan Davis particularly praised the improved level designs, commenting that the designers were "bolder" and "more willing to take some weird risks with the planetoids and abstract platforming that set the tone in the original Galaxy,"[42] while Chris Kohler from Wired commented that the level concepts alone "could be made into full games on their own."[43] Additionally 1UP.com's Justin Haywald noted the expanded soundtrack as "sweeping."[44] GamesRadar praised the graphics, saying that despite the Wii's technical limitations, Galaxy 2 "understands how to get the most out of aging technology that nearly all graphical flaws are smoothed over or covered up, leaving you with Wii's best-looking title to date."[33] X-Play editor Andrew Pfister awarded Super Mario Galaxy 2 a 5/5, calling it "the culmination of 20 years of Mario gaming into one fantastically-designed and creative platformer."[45]

Despite this praise, some critics raised complaints over increased difficulty and the game's similarity to the original Super Mario Galaxy. Chris Scullion from Official Nintendo Magazine called it the "new best game on Wii," but said it lacked the original's impact (though they admitted the extreme difficulty of this, due to the quality of the original).[46] Game Informer editor Matt Helgeson was concerned with some of the challenges being potentially "frustrating,"[47] particularly towards the end of the game;[48] similarly, Ben PerLee from GamePro remarked that the "increased difficulty and high proficiency requirement may turn new fans off."[49] However, Worthplaying editor Chris DeAngelus praised the game's difficulty, stating "perhaps most positively of all, there are very few sequences where death will feel like a result of bad design instead of player error, which helps keep the frustration down."[50]

Sales

In Japan, Super Mario Galaxy 2 sold 143,000 copies on its first day of release and 340,000 copies in its first week,[51] about 90,000 more than the first Super Mario Galaxy sold in the same amount of time.[52] In North America, the game sold 650,000 copies during the month of May 2010.[53] In the United Kingdom, Super Mario Galaxy 2 was the third best-selling game among multiplatform releases and the best-selling single platform release for the week ending June 26, 2010.[54] As of July 16, 2010, the game has sold 1 million copies within the USA.[55] As of April 2011, Super Mario Galaxy 2 has sold 6.36 million copies worldwide.[56]

Awards

Super Mario Galaxy 2 received Game of the Year 2010 awards from Nintendo Power, GamesMaster,[57] Official Nintendo Magazine,[57] Edge,[57] GamesTM,[58] Destructoid and Metacritic.[59] It was named best "Wii Game of the Year" by IGN,[60] GameTrailers,[61] GameSpot,[62] 1UP.com,[63] and many other media outlets. As of December 2010, IGN awarded Super Mario Galaxy 2 the number 1 Wii game, overtaking its predecessor.[64] In 2012, Official Nintendo Magazine had named Super Mario Galaxy 2 the 'Greatest Nintendo Game Ever Made' ranking at #1.

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Mitchell Van Morgan
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