Starting life as an offshoot of the SNES titles Mario RPG, the Paper Mario series has now blossomed into a popular franchise in its own right.
Paper Mario: Sticker Star, the fourth title in the series, sees the slender iteration of the gaming icon make his handheld debut.
In the peaceful town of Decalburg, the much-loved Sticker Fest has been interrupted by Bowser who has brought the celebrations to a close by making the Sticker Comet explode.
With royal stickers scattered across the world, it’s up to Mario and his assistant, Kersti the sticker fairy, to find them all and set things right.
“It is very exciting to be releasing Paper Mario: Sticker Star during the peak season. The launch date of December 7th will make Paper Mario the perfect gift for all Mario fans this Christmas,” says Nintendo product manager, Roger Langford.
“The Paper Mario franchise has a great fan following and we will be doing lots of social media on all things Paper Mario. Watch our Nintendo 3DS UK Facebook page over the coming weeks.”
A Paper Caper
Gamers will have to step into the paper-thin shoes of the iconic plumber and negotiate 3D environments and face off in battles that, taking inspiration from the original title, are turn-based with players using stickers to defeat enemies. Just like Pokémon cards, the shinier the sticker, the higher its power.
As well as being put to good use on the battlefield, stickers will also prove handy when tackling the puzzles littered throughout the game.
Collecting coins is also another vital part of the game and Mario can part with a few coins to use the Battle Spinner, a device that allows the mustachioed plumber to utilise three stickers in one turn if the icons are lined up correctly.
With the tongue-in-cheek humour, zany gameplay and adorable visuals of its predecessors, plus the popularity of Mario games on 3DS, Sticker Star is on course to be a successful first attempt at a Paper Mario game on a handheld console.
History of Paper Mario
The first dedicated game in the series came with Paper Mario in 2001 on N64. The Thousand-Year Door followed on the GameCube before Super Paper Mario graced the Wii in 2007.
Pre-launch, there will be online displays on all major gaming sites. A campaign will also target kids websites whilst a gameplay focused TV ad will appear on kids TV channels from the launch week.
Sticker Star will hope to continue a golden run for the plumber on 3DS. Mario 3D Land, Mario Kart 7 and New Super Mario Bros 2 are in the top five best selling titles on the 3DS.