Entertainment

Games: Mario Day 2024 delivered a slew of upcoming ‘new’ titles starring Nintendo’s beloved plumber

A Happy Mario Day graphic
Mario Day Last week saw a celebration of Nintendo's beloved plumber (Neil)

WITH the Buckfast on ice in anticipation of St Patrick’s weekend, gamers were celebrating another behatted reptile-botherer exactly one week beforehand.

Just as May 4 has become Star Wars Day, Mario’s worldwide national day of celebration passed last Sunday, on March 10 (or Mar10 - geddit?).

Created by pun-clever fans, Nintendo finally endorsed the date as National Mario Day in 2016, using the event to promote their moustachioed fungi-gobbler.

Super Mario RPG has been given a modern make-over
Super Mario RPG

The big announcements this year included official release dates for upcoming Switch games Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door and Luigi’s Mansion 2 HD.

Paper Mario, which lands on May 23, is a remake of the 20-year-old Gamecube game, promising more turn-based RPG shenanigans that really let the franchise get weird.

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Luigi's Mansion 2 HD artwork
Luigi's Mansion 2 HD .

Luigi’s Mansion HD, a spruced-up do-over for the underrated 2013 3DS gem, screams onto Switch on June 27 when, armed with only his trusty flashlight and vacuum cleaner, Mario’s sibling plays ghostbuster, cleansing Evershade Valley’s haunted manors in a sumptuous spookfest that’s soul-sucking in the best way.

But if you like your Mario a little more retro, Nintendo dutifully dumped three stone-cold Game Boy classics on the Switch store this week - Dr Mario, Mario Golf, and Mario Tennis.

Mario Game Boy classics
Mario Game Boy classics .

Dr Mario was the best of the 90s Tetris rip-offs, replacing blocks with pills for an overdose of pharmaceutical puzzling, while Mario Tennis offers fault-free fun across nine cartoon courts.

The highlight, however, is Mario Golf - a sports RPG where a stable of Nintendo icons whack 8-bit balls down virtual fairways. Despite being a quarter of a century old, it’s still the best portable putter out there.

A Lego MarioKart meme
Lego Super Mario Kart .

Nintendo also revealed a new Lego Super Mario Kart set will be ready to race in 2025 – and insiders believe this latest collaboration with the Danish block-merchants will tie into a brand-new Mario Kart launch title for the Switch 2.

With last year’s Super Mario Bros Movie breaking box office records (it’s the third highest grossing animated film of all time, just behind The Lion King and Frozen II), a sequel was inevitable, and Shigeru Miyamoto used Nintendo Day to reveal the follow-up will land in cinemas on April 3 2026.

“We start animation soon, and rest assured, we’ll be obsessing over every detail to get it just right”, gushed the Mario creator.

“This time, we’re thinking about broadening Mario’s world further, and it’ll have a bright and fun story.”

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