Super Mario Bros. Wonder developers wanted to make players fall in love with the character in ways they hadn’t, so they allowed everyone to pitch in on the game. Every pitch was looked at and considered by the team, and tons of them were brought into the game. All in all, over 2,000 have been pitched as of today. These are people who played the original Mario games, and some like Shigeru Miyamoto, were veterans of the originals.
According to an Ask the Developer interview at Nintendo, this new influx of ideas actually sets Super Mario Bros. Wonder apart. You should check out our countdown closely as you go through some of the examples because even I’m excited to see what these trailblazers have come up with.
One of the ideas (shown above) they released to the public was the start of a new warping system. Essentially, Mario would hit a block to get an item as usual, but he warps to a new world instead of a power-up. This was seen by Shiro Mouri, the programming director, and he didn’t think it would go well. However, it became a jumping-off point, Mouri thought that warping would be a return to something they did, but then another employee took the idea and changed it.
They thought about having the course change around you instead of you going to another course, and then it went to making the pipes themselves move around. This has never been done in another Mario game, and they made a prototype. This was one of many prototypes that would eventually become the concept for Super Mario Bros. Wonder.
The ideas weren’t all basic changes to gameplay, some were pretty out there. One idea thrown out was an eight-heads-tall, life-sized, live-action Mario humming along with the background music as he goes along. When he jumps, he’d say “boing!” which was not used but was played around with long enough to be memorable.
This, with over 2,000 more ideas, were written on separate sticky notes. The team went through them in multiple brainstorming sessions, pushing for more and trying to really make this game much different and wonderful than previous Mario games. The end result may be the most unique Mario game since the original in 1985.