A few tips for getting the most out of Super Mario Odyssey

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Super Mario Odyssey is out today, and if you didn’t know already I liked it quite a lot. It’s a game bursting with surprises and possibilities, and enough pay-off for those that really seek out what it might be hiding around every corner. With the sort of massive freedom its Kingdoms offer though you might feel a little overwhelmed at first. But if you’re diving into Mario’s latest adventure today, here are a few things you should absolutely do.

Without spoilers, of course.

Explore. Everything.

Odyssey does a good job of shuffling you along from one Kingdom to the next, but has the tendency to often be a little over eager about it. Each Kingdom has a central problem to solve, and you’re usually free to move on once you’ve sorted it out. Doing so would be a great disservice to both the land you’re in and your own enjoyment. Consistently taking yourself off the marked path is par for the course in Odyssey, and tends to lead to its best platforming moments.

There’s just so much to find in every nook and cranny, so be sure to follow your distractions as much as possible. Even though you’re chasing Bowser, he’s not really going anywhere with haste.

Push yourself against walls

Mario and Odyssey do a great job of hiding things, but also signposting collectibles like Power Moons and region-specific coins in devious ways. There’s usually an indication that something is left for you to discover, even if the hint serves to throw you off from the solution even more. But some hidden treasure are extremely shrewd. They’ hidden behind areas the camera is designed to make you think as inaccessible, whether they be against solid-looking walls of death-bringing hazards. With the leniency of the checkpoint system, never be afraid to experiment. Even after 40 hours of playing, I was still happening upon new areas by just walking against things I never thought possible.

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Experiment with your captures

Odyssey’s main hook is certainly his ability to occupy the bodies of many creatures in each Kingdom, bestowing him with new abilities to get around everywhere. And while many Power Moons will require you to utilize some new skillset to reach them, the more challenging of these will task you with thinking about your new mechanics in strange ways. So if a ledge or platform looks too far for a Bullet Bill boost or a platform lies a little too high for a frog jump, start experimenting. Chaining together exits out of creatures with some dexterous hat jumps can get you places you never thought possible.

Hunt down those regional coins

Odyssey presents you with two currencies – regular cold coins and Kingdom specific purple ones. Two stores will always be present in each region, and respectively only accept one form of payment. While Power Moons are your central collectible hook, region coins quickly became things I hunted for the most. They lead me to more secret areas (and hence, more Power Moons), but getting all of them in a single area has some big rewards.

The region-specific stores offer new outfits for Mario to wear, and the themed few of these are a delight to add to your collection. New ornaments, decorations and stickers for the Odyssey are also only available to purchase with these purple coins, and seeing your ship transform with your journey is something you really want to experience.

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Always talk to a Sphinx

During your travels you’ll come across several recurring characters, but fewer are as useful (and spiteful) as the roaming family of Sphinxes. Each has their own treasure that they’re guarding, which usually make up a combination of power moons and gold coins. But getting them to reveal everything takes a little patience, as the stone statues quiz you about your surroundings, attire and entire journey thus far.

It’s not as hard as I’m making it sound perhaps, but it is often hilarious to see the Sphinx tremble at your ability to randomly pick correct answers from a list. They’re around almost everywhere (perhaps even in each area) so it’s a good thing to seek them out.

Bonus: There’s always a painting

Each area thus far has a special painting hidden inside, which acts as a teleportation device to lands you may or may not have already visited. What’s special is that they take you right to a Power Moon that you would otherwise never be able to reach, which is important if you’re looking to complete each list in each area. Some of deviously hidden though, so keep an eye out.

These might seem like straightforward hints, but it’s easy to want to quickly mainline through Odyssey to see the credits (after which there’s even more to discover). But take as much time as you can with this incredible journey. It will find ways to reward your curiosity over and over.

Last Updated: October 27, 2017

Alessandro Barbosa

You can all call me Sandy until I figure out how to edit this thing, which is probably never. Sandy not good enough? Call me xXx_J0k3R_360degreeN0Sc0pe_xXx. Also, Geoff’s a bastard.

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