After recently popping up all over the place - thanks to a few odd cameos and numerous sporty spin-offs - the Mario gang has invaded yet another franchise; Konami’s Dance Dance Revolution series.
Even if you're not on intimate terms with Konami's DDR games, you're almost certainly aware of them. You use a 'dance' mat instead of a controller: a large, pressure-sensitive D-pad that rests on the floor to dance on as prompted by the screen. It’s so, so simple; playing Mario Mix makes you jig about like a goofball, a universal body language that needs no translation. And, if you’re hoping to tackle the harder settings of Mario Mix, be warned: the effort of it will turn your insides into human milkshake.
It being a Mario game, however, you shouldn’t expect a bog-standard rhythm action experience. In addition to the Nintendo-centric soundtrack, you will even find yourself stomping on a Goomba’s head or two using your own foot. How’s that for interactivity?
Typical DDR games feature wide selections of real-world pop tunes, a range of difficulty settings and little else, but Mario Mix has a full story and over a dozen mini-games to unlock and enjoy. The story itself is a bit weak, but it does mean that the background and set-up for each stage is different, and a treat for those who can’t get enough of Nintendo’s special little fat guy.
However, if you’ve had enough of the plump plumber, you’d best avoid Mario Mix like a barrel full of snakes, grenades and lawyers. But that doesn’t change the fact that it feels like a more complete DDR package than most dance-mat titles, and one that’ll get the backsides of the Nintendo faithful shaking with joy.