Mario’s latest adventure, Super Mario Odyssey, recently released to universal critical acclaim and is being hailed as one of the best games in the franchise. But one of the famous plumber’s other memorable journeys beyond the Mushroom Kingdom celebrates its 10th anniversary this month – do you know what game it is?
Super Mario Galaxy arrived on the Wii in November of 2007 and featured the red-capped Nintendo mascot traveling to the far reaches of space in order to rescue Princess Peach once again. The plot begins with Bowser lifting Peach’s whole castle out of the ground with help from a flying saucer and escaping into outer space. Mario is able to give chase after meeting the sorceress Rosalina, who gives him the power to travel throughout the galaxy.
The game is a three-dimensional platformer similar to earlier titles in the Super Mario franchise, though it adds a few twists thanks to the space-focused setting. When Mario travels to new planets, he experiences a different kind of gravity on each one, and he often can jump between them. Mario’s goal is to collect Power Stars, which help to power Rosalina’s Comet Observatory – the hub where Mario is able to travel to new areas from.
Super Mario Galaxy took a lot of inspiration from the tech demo from Nintendo Space World 2000, Super Mario 128; the demo was created by Nintendo simply to show off the GameCube’s processing abilities. Director Yoshiaki Koizumi likes the idea of spherical platforms and that eventually became the basis for much of the gameplay for Galaxy; the game entered development in 2004. Upon release, the game saw widespread critical acclaim, especially with regards to the visuals – it’s currently the sixth-highest rated game on Metacritic, sitting at a 97 out of a possible 100.
In 2010, a direct sequel, Super Mario Galaxy 2, arrived, and received a similar level of praise that the first Galaxy did. These two games remain standouts for the franchise, and while Odyssey continues to take it to new heights, it’s clear that Galaxy reset the standard for greatness in this legendary series.