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Preview of Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem

by: David Sanchez ; edited by: Michael Hartman ; updated: 5/25/2012 • Leave a comment

Mini-Mario returns for another romp on the Nintendo DS. Donkey Kong has kidnapped Pauline once again, and it is up to Mario and his band of Mini-Mario toys to stop him and save the retro damsel.

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    Minis Return - Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem Preview

    Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem  

    Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem is the fourth installment in Nintendo’s Mario vs. Donkey Kong puzzle series. The game features slightly altered gameplay, a higher difficulty level than previous entries, and more of the Mini-Mario antics players have come to know and love. The game is set to launch in a few days, so let’s take a look at some of the features and the story.

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    Donkey Kong Is Causing Trouble Again

    Let it go, DK! Pauline doesn't want you!  

    It seems Donkey Kong can never catch a break. Still obsessing over Pauline, the charming monkey decides to attend the grand opening of the new Super Mini-Mario World theme park. Because the first 100 entrants receive a complimentary mini-Pauline toy, DK quickly pushes aside a number of Toads to get through the line. Sadly, after getting to the front, Mario informs DK that he is the 101st person in line. In a fit of rage, the tie-wearing ape kidnaps Pauline and runs off with her. Mario gives chase on a train, and the game begins.

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    Help the Mini-Marios

    Bridges must be placed in strategic spots to take out enemies.  

    Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem features eight worlds, and you must help the Mini-Marios progress through each of these and ultimately take on DK in boss fights at the end of each world. The Mini-Marios walk on their own, and just like in the last game, you can’t stop them or slide the stylus in a specific direction to get them to walk that way. Instead, you wait for them to hit a wall or the edge of the screen to turn around.

    There are bridges, springs, ladders, and tunnels located throughout levels, and once the Mini-Marios make it to these features, they climb, jump, and travel through them to higher or lower ground. Aside from helping the charming Mini-Marios get to the goal, you also encounter Mini-Toads that must reach their own goal safely as well.

    The difficulty level this time around has been amped up quite a bit. You really have to be quick with the stylus, as making mistakes and taking too long to create bridges or move springs around can cause your Mini-Marios to separate or even worse, perish. Previous Mario vs. Donkey Kong games have had a decent challenge, but Mini-Land Mayhem seems to be the toughest game thus far, which is certainly a good thing.

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    Level Editor and Online Features

    Like the previous two entries, this latest installment of Mario vs. Donkey Kong comes with a level editor. Here you can create your very own stages to share with friends online. Additionally, Nintendo is working on some free downloadable levels, so the game should live on long after you’ve beaten all of the included stages.

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    Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem Preview - Minis March Yet Again

    Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem for the Nintendo DS is set to hit store shelves on November 14. If you’ve played previous games in the series (and even if you haven’t), you should definitely watch out for this title.

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