Platform: Game Boy
Developed by Nintendo
Published by Nintendo
Players: Single player
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Super Mario Land 2: The side scrolling 2D sequel to its predecessor Super Mario Land for Gameboy. This title is compatible with all existing Gameboy systems and offers three progress-save slots where the original version of its predecessor had no save feature.
It conforms to its Mario-platforming predecessors a lot more than the original Super Mario Land did, it removed the vehicle levels, swapped out the Super Ball for the Fire Flower and allowed players the ability to go backwards in levels if they so desired making it a great deal more flexible than the original.
SML2 also offered a marked graphical improvement and larger character sprites, it was also the first Mario platformer to have two difficulty levels, EASY or NORMAL. A player could pick a difficulty level using the select button to change Mario's size. The game also featured an overworld map, where the original did not.
Click for full size version, this overworld map is from the English version of the game.
The controls are pretty standard for a Mario platformer with A being to jump (or on water levels, swim when you press it repeatedly), holding B to run and the D pad to control the direction you go.
As a sidescrolling Mario title, the basic concept behind the game was to run, jump, and swim across levels while collecting coins and powerups, and destroying any enemies that got in your way. In this incarnation of Mario in Super Mario Land 2, the coins are used to play games at certain levels and not to get your more lives. Instead, Mario collects hearts to get lives.
You will see many different enemies returning from the older games, like Koopas, but you will also encounter a lot of new ones. There are some hidden short cuts and some warp pipes that will send you spiralling throughout the kingdom, along with some new features. One of the most interesting features is found after vanquishing 100 enemies, at which point Mario will be imbued with star power, allowing him to finish enemies with invincibility. After knocking off five enemies, you will gain a life.
This game is noteworthy because you can go back and replay certain areas of the level before moving on to the door at the end of the map. This allows you to collect more coins and kill more enemies before you progress. It also helps in the ongoing search to find secret areas for powerups and warps. Also, if you ring the bell above the door and have enough coins, you will be taken to a mini game area.
Many of the old powerups come back such as the mushroom, fire flower, and the starman power. However, the game also introduces the carrot, which transforms Mario into a rabbit that can jump higher and faster, or use his ears to slow his descent. With these new powers, Wario and his misfit friends have no chance against Mario.
In order to reach new levels, you can guide Mario through an overland map while in pursuit of the 6 Golden Coins. There you can find shortcuts that let you go between map areas more quickly. This means that you do not have to play the worlds in a certain order, except in a few areas. After you have beaten a level, you can return to the map by pressing start and then select if you do not want to beat it again.
There are 32 levels in this game, and six zones. Each zone has a boss who is in possession of one of the 6 Golden Coins. Each zone and level is based off of a certain theme such as a space or a pumpkin. However, if you lose all of your lives, the bosses reclaim their coins from Mario and he must go through the entire process of collecting them again. Or loading a save file, but that would be taking the easy way out.
Once the 6 Golden Coins are collected by Mario, he can use them to reclaim his castle from the nefarious Wario. At this point he lives happily ever after for the next week until Bowser comes back into the picture.
If you do not have any power-ups on and you are hit by an enemy or fall into lava, then Mario will die. If he gets pinned by an auto scroll level or runs out of time, he will die as well. If you collect hearts, then you will gain even more lives, replacing the green mushroom. Once all of your lives are depleted, then you will lose all 6 Golden Coins that you have collected.
Once you collect 100 coins, you will have the ability to engage in a game that can garner you even more lives. You can officially hold 999 coins before they are maximized. There is also no score in this game; instead, Mario in Super Mario Land 2 is able to track the amount of enemies you kill, giving you a starman after you have killed 100.
The super mushroom will give Mario the ability to take a hit without losing a life. He will simply return to him normal state. He can perform a spin to break the different blocks when he is in his larger form.
The Fire Flower power comes with the usual ability to shoot fire when you press B. They can kill enemies or be used to harm some kinds of walls. He does not change colors in this version, he simply adds a feather to his cap.
The rabbit ears offer an interesting ability to hover in the air when you press A repeatedly. This can help you get across certain obstacles in the levels.
Starman abilities make you invincible, and every fifth enemy you kill while in this form will grant you an extra life.
The games official story, quoted from the games instruction booklet
While I was away crusading against the mystery alien Tatanga in Sarasa Land, an evil creep took over my castle and put the people of Mario Land under his control with a magic spell. This intruder goes by the name of Wario. He has been jealous of my popularity ever since we were boys, and has tried to steal my castle many times. It seems he has succeeded this time.
Wario has scattered the 6 Golden Coins from my castle all over Mario Land. These Golden Coins are guarded by those under Wario's spell. Without these coins, we can't get into the castle to deal with Wario.We must collect the 6 coins, attack Wario in the castle, and save everybody!
IT'S TIME TO SET OUT ON OUR MISSION!!
The 6 Golden are the coins needed to open the gate of Mario's castle
Super Mario Land 2: Six Golden coins is now available on the Nintendo eShop and this is its official description
Temper-tantrum tyrant seizes Mario Land!
In his greatest Game Boy™ adventure, Mario™ faces off against his evil rival Wario™, who has captured Mario Land and turned it into his private playground.
To toss Wario off his ill-gotten throne, Mario must search new worlds for the six golden coins that unlock the gate to Mario’s castle. A mob of monsters, old and new, seek to stop him. Along the way, through six zones, Mario can nab Power Mushrooms, Super Stars and Fire Flowers for extra power. And if he eats the Magic Carrot, he’ll turn into a high-flying hare!
This game is only playable in 2D.
A North American TV Commercial for Super Mario Land 2
A Japanese TV Commercial for Super Mario Land 2
Mario Kirby Masterpiece Video (as it roughly translates from its Japanese name) - This Japanese educational video stars both Mario and Kirby. The video was produced by HAL Laboratory on home video back in 1995. There are both Mario and Kirby stories in the video, the Mario adventure features scenes relating to Super Mario Land 2 as well as Super Mario Kart.
This game was one of the best received of the entire year, and is a constant favorite Mario on the Gameboy. It was roundly praises for its music, graphics, and all of the improvements that were made of the predecessor’s graphics. Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins was seen as a very popular choice to be re-released on modern handheld consoles. It was released for the 3DS in 2011 to great acclaim.
This game won four awards during the Nintendo Power Awards in 1992 including best play controls, best Gameboy title, best theme and fun and best graphics and sound. Some serious bragging rights for the production team there.
If you die on a level you have already completed, you can press the start and then select button on the Gameboy to exit the level without losing any lives. Be warned: you may feel guilty about it later.
The game is broken into 7 parts, six differently themed zones with different enemies where you have to go to seek out each of the Six Golden Coins needed to unlock the final part - The first zone is Tree Zone, which is followed by Space Zone, Macro Zone, Pumpkin Zone, Mario Zone and Turtle Zone respectively, before ultimately storming Mario's Castle and taking on Wario.