Mailbox: The Future Of 3D Mario, Indie Sequels, Deadlines – Nintendo Life Letters

Welcome to the Nintendo Life Mailbox!

October is here, and that means Mario is back with all its glory. We’re excited to hear from you in this month’s letters page feature. So, if you have any game-related thoughts or questions, now is the perfect time to share them. We’ll even choose a Star Letter and reward the writer with a month’s subscription to our ad-free Supporter scheme. Don’t forget to check out the submission guidelines at the bottom of this page. Let’s dive into this month’s mail!

“Moons and Missions” – A New Direction for 3D Mario?

Greetings everyone, NarwhalKing here with my thoughts on the future of 3D Mario inspired by Bowser’s Fury. While I do appreciate the game, I personally believe that the concept of having numerous moons and missions in different locations deviates from what made Odyssey perfect. Instead, I would love to see Nintendo expand on the brilliance of Odyssey. Maybe a potential sequel to Bowser’s Fury could change my mind, but for now, I hope they focus on building upon the foundations of Odyssey. What are your thoughts on this?

– NarwhalKing

Our editor, Ed, shares his perspective:

We’ve touched on this topic before, and I agree with you, NarwhalKing. Simply making the playground bigger without a purpose wouldn’t be exciting. I would rather see Nintendo develop an Odyssey 2, Galaxy 3, or even a fusion of the two. It’s worth mentioning that Zelda successfully transitioned into an open-world format with Breath of the Wild, but Mario would require a lot more than just making Bowser’s Fury fifty times larger. While Bowser’s Fury was enjoyable, its brevity and side-story nature were its virtues. Enjoy your one-month subscription to Supporter!

– Ed

The Success of Indie Games and the Lack of Sequels

Hey Nintendo Life, you guys are awesome! I’ve been wondering, why do successful indie games rarely get sequels? We’ve seen amazing games like Untitled Goose Game, Braid, Fez, Celeste, and Night In The Woods, but they never got proper sequels. It’s surprising how these indie studios don’t capitalize on their certified audience and game engine to create new franchises. What are your thoughts on this?

– Twilite9

Here’s Ed’s take on the matter:

Actually, many hit indie games do receive sequels, like Spelunky 2, Rogue Legacy 2, Axiom Verge 2, Risk of Rain 2, Hades 2, and perhaps Fez 2 in the future. For those that don’t, there could be various reasons. Some small development teams who achieve great success may want to pursue new ideas after investing years into a single project. Additionally, if there is no inspiration or no financial incentive for a sequel, developers may choose not to pursue it. Not every game needs to become a franchise. Thanks for your support!

– Ed

Mario Hockey – A Fan’s Dream?

Hey NL Staff, anyone remember Wayne Gretzky 3D Hockey on the N64? It was an OG party staple during my youth hockey trips. I think an arcade-style Mario hockey game would be fantastic. Strikers comes close, but it’s not the same. Any other Mario hockey fans out there?

– Natendo 64

Ed, the non-hockey fan, responds:

I may not be familiar with hockey, but I am a fan of the N64. The console had some excellent sports games considering its library size. Could Wayne Gretzky’s 3D Hockey be a gateway to the sport? If any Switch hockey games come to mind, feel free to suggest them in the comments!

– Ed

The Challenges of Reviewing Games and Meeting Deadlines

For our reviewers, do you ever feel overwhelmed by deadlines? Is it necessary to finish every game you review?

– larrythumbs

Here’s Ed’s insight:

Ideally, we strive to finish every game we review. However, the definition of “finishing” can vary. Linear story-based games are more straightforward in terms of completion. But what about games like Civilization, Animal Crossing, or Vampire Survivors? Everyone has their own definition. Deadlines can be challenging, especially with hot review codes arriving just before release. On the Switch, developers often submit Day One patches up until the last moment. It’s important to prioritize the well-being of the writer and ensure the review’s quality. While hitting the embargo is optimal, it’s not worth burning out over. Reviews don’t generate as much traffic as people assume. Thank you for your question!

– Ed

A Splatoon-Themed Q&A

Hello, Nintendo Life Staff! I have a few questions, all related to Splatoon. It’s my favorite game of all time! (1) What Catalog level are you at? (2) What are your thoughts on Side Order? (3) What is your most wanted new or returning feature for Splatoon 3? Thank you!

– CaleBoi25

Our resident Splatoon expert, Jim, takes the stage:

Thanks for the Splatoon-themed questions, CaleBoi25! Here are my answers:

  1. Due to recent game releases, I haven’t played Splatoon 3 since Drizzle Season began. So, I’d say my Catalog level is a disappointing 1.
  2. I’m excited about Side Order—the Splatoon roguelike and its promise of more story mode content. However, we still have to wait until 2024.
  3. As for my most wanted new or returning feature in Splatoon 4, there are many ideas floating around the NL office. Personally, I’d love to see more single-player content.

– Jim

Reflecting on Game Reviews and Avoiding Overaggressive Criticism

For anyone who has reviewed games on this site, do you ever look back and think you were too harsh on a game? Maybe it didn’t deserve such an overaggressive takedown. Share your thoughts!

– Anonymous

Our team couldn’t pinpoint any specific instances, but Ed provides his take:

While our team doesn’t recall any examples, we understand that opinions can evolve over time. It’s not necessary to like a game you were critical of, but it’s important to reflect on the tone and approach taken in reviews. There’s always room for constructive criticism. Thanks for your question!

– Ed