Nintendo Switch owners can now experience Super Mario Sunshine as intended thanks to a newly released update to Nintendo’s Super Mario 3D All-Stars.
Nintendo has released the first major patch for Super Mario 3D All-Stars, which adds GameCube controller support for Super Mario Sunshine. One of the best-selling games of 2020, Nintendo’s Super Mario 3D All-Stars is a followup of sorts to the SNES era compilation of the first four Mario games. This collection brings together Super Mario 64, Super Mario Sunshine, and Super Mario Galaxy to one release on Switch. The game was well-received by fans, although some complained that the upgrades were minimal compared to fellow retro games like Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy and Final Fantasy 7 Remake.
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However, one major problem in terms of perseveration of each game’s original experience was the lack of GameCube controller support for Super Mario Sunshine. Much like some games releasing right now on PlayStation 5, games on Nintendo’s GameCube had the option to take advantage of analog triggers, and many first-party games took advantage of that. Sunshine was one such game, controlling the output of Mario’s sentient water dispersal robot F.L.U.D.D. depending on how much the player pushes in the trigger. No hardware released for the Nintendo Switch has the ability to replicate this functionality, and the game plays slightly differently because of this discrepancy.
This week, Nintendo announced a new update for Super Mario 3D All-Stars that rectified this issue. Owners of the Gamecube Controller Adapter, which was originally released for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, can now use GameCube controllers to play through Super Mario Sunshine as originally intended. The setup will only work in TV mode, meaning that players with a Switch Lite and those taking their Switch on the go have to stick with the compromised control scheme. Nintendo also warned players that it has not implemented GameCube-era button prompts into 3D All-Stars, so players will have to do some mental gymnastics to make it all work smoothly.
The update is not simply for adding GameCube support. Nintendo has also added the ability to invert the camera controls for all three titles in the collection. This was originally an issue because Nintendo normalized the inverted controls in Super Mario 64, the game that basically invented how 3D movement works in video games. Some players have stuck with the inverted camera ever since, making it a required option in almost every game in the past few generations. Changing how such a historic game controls seems bizarre, but now anyone with the game has the option of playing either way.
The goal of any re-release collection like Super Mario 3D All-Stars should be to preserve the games as they were for future generations. The lack of GameCube controller support failed at that goal, so it’s good to see Nintendo rectify the situation. Of course, it won’t matter too much if the company sticks to its announced plan to discontinue the game early in 2021. It’s one of three games that will be locked away in the Nintendo vault on March 31, 2021. That is, unless Nintendo decides to miraculously go back on its announced strategy “due to popular demand.” Only time will tell.
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