Best Things About Mario & Luigi: Dream TeamI feel like Mario & Luigi: Dream Team is the most underrated game of the Mario & Luigi franchise of five games (+ 2 remakes). This, I've always been a little sad about, as I consider it to be the best of the bunch actually. So I thought I'd make a list of the best things about Mario & Luigi: Dream Team. So with that being said, here is the list.
Partners in Time and Paper Jam are obviously out of the picture when it comes to locations having atmosphere. They're linear and boring and don't add much to your brain. Superstar Saga and Bowser's Inside Story on the other hand have more depth to them which makes them more interesting. Dream Team though is the obvious winner. You can feel as if you're actually in the game, exploring the areas. It's also thanks to the music.
Indeed, the locations are really alive. I think it's because Dream Team has the best presentation in the series yet, with an amazing soundtrack, and unique and great looking environments. It surely is one of the best looking games on the 3DS
I personally prefer Bowser's Inside Story for two main reasons. First, the way the outside of Bowser interacts with the inside of Bowser and vice-versa, is more clever than Starly playing with Luigi's body to make the dream world change. This is not a bad thing for Dream Team, but just give BIS the hedge for me. The second reason however, is probably the most important. Bowser is a better alternate game style than Mario + Dream Luigi for how different it is from Mario and Luigi. That being said, there are good things in favor of Dream Team, like the giant battles which are much better.
Dream Team re-uses a lot of the same gimmicks from its predecessor, such as the 2D sections, giant battles and even certain gameplay mechanics (Like turning the 2D section into a freezing wasteland). I also think each of these gimmicks were improved on in this game. Dreams are better exploration than the body, the gimmicks don't take as much time to activate (speaking of Luiginary Works over say walking in front of a freakin' lamp), and the giant battles were better. Ok, the first two weren't, but the last three were amazing in Dream Team (as long as gyroscope controls work)!
This game single-handedly shows why Luigi is far superior as a character to his brother Mario. While Mario is just the typical Gryffindor gary stu, Luigi is easily scared of stuff, and he must work to overcome his fears in this game, such as during giant battles. The first few times he is deathly afraid of these giant monsters, but by the end, when he reaches Bowser, you can see him so confident. It's one of the most epic moments in this franchise, and it wouldn't have been achieved had it been Mario doing that.
This game is where Luigi is at its best, and this thanks to an amazing character development. This really shows that it was made during the year of Luigi. Darthvadern pretty much said exactly what I think about all of this. I would say though that no, if Mario was doing that, it wouldn't be necessarily worst... but we would need to rework Mario's characterization for that instead of his current Gary Stu state.
Well, the fact the Dream World is better than Bowser's body depends of your point of view. On one hand, there are a lot more things you can do with dreams, since dreams have litterally no limits. On the other hand, precisely because Bowser's body is more limited, the game developpers have to be really clever for making things with that concepts. Because of that, when you play Bowser's Inside Story you are (or at least I am) like "Oh cool! Killing that bug that blocked the fire pipe allows Bowser to breath fire again. While in Dream Team it's more like "Ok. When Luigi cough, there is wind inside the dream world." Because of that I prefer BIS, but if you prefer Dream Team, it's okay.
As I said on #2, this is like exploring Bowser's body in the previous installment, but ten times better! First off, dreams are better than the inside of a corpse..., and secondly, gimmicks don't take as much time to activate like in the previous game. Like, I can't get enough of the mustache tree.
I prefer the soundtrack of Bowser's Inside Story, but it's like saying Cancer is worst than AIDs. The gap of quality between the two is very small. Plus, you have to know that BIS has one of my favorite video game soundtracks ever made, so that means that Dream Team also have one of the best video game soundtracks since it is so close.
Hands down some of the best music in all of Mario. They add up to the liveliness of the locations, and their vibes give off the atmosphere I'm expecting when exploring. Like Somnon Woods is very mysterious and unexplored, so of course we have an adventurous theme. And Pi'illo Castle is a toursisty hotel, so of course the music sounds like we're having fun exploring IT. It's just amazing.
This, of course alongside many other things, gives this game a lot of DEPTH. The only other game I can think of that had its own bonus stuff is Superstar Saga, and possibly Bowser's Inside Story, but Dream Team handles it the best. Like that proposal side quest with a beanish who wanted to propose to his girlfriend but he needed a ring. It didn't need to be in the game at all, but it's cool it exists!
Yeah, the side quests are very cool. I love searching for all the pillows especially.
Bowser's betrayal really shows his character development throughout the Mario & Luigi series and it's so satisfying to see him backstabbing Antasma. In Superstar Saga, he was forced to work together with the bros. but got used and brainwashed by other minions. In Partners in Time, he's just a minor antagonist ho does stand agianst mario at some points, but he's in the end still used as a puppet for the main villain. In Bowser's Inside Story, he's the main character and he must get back his castle from Fawful, so he learns a lot along the way. So it should come as obvious that he has self-awareness in Dream Team, and backstabbed Antasma before he could. He then gives off the most epic final battle in the series.
What I really like about this moment is that I expected Antasma would betray Bowser, but in a twist, it is actually Bowser that betrays him, and you feel bad for Antasma. I still prefer Paper Mario 64, and even Super Mario Odyssey for Bowser as the main antagonist, but he is still a good third in my opinion and it is mostly thanks to that scene.
The longest game of the series, clocking in at around 40 hours at least. While some say the game was padded out too much and could've been cut drastically, most notably the ultibed mission, I'm thankful for the Ultibed's mission. Not only does the mission of constructing the world's most comfortable bed sound awesome, but it ultimately makes the endgame feel more satisfying. Imagine having just completed Driftwood Shore and Peach getting kidnapped, and the Mario Bros. just go right away to Somnom Woods to wake up the Zeekeeper without any ultibed. It wouldn't feel as epic. So, I feel like the length is justified.
I didn't really feel the game was too long outside of the beginning, so that means that this game really knows how to pace the length of its game.
Take Cackletta from Superstar Saga but improve on everything. He wants to take over the world, but he still has a bit of a backstory, a badass design, a slavic-hungarian accent, and is feels actually threatening. Sure he's kind of sidelined in favour of Bowser, but it was awesome while it lasted.
He wasn't amazing, but he was still pretty good, and I love the way he speaks.
While we have no Fawful (duh he died in the third game), we get some other old school Mario & Luigi characters making a return, which is fitting as it's tourism reason on Pi'illo Island. Popple the Shadow Thief from the first M&L game is the finest example, as he plans on stealing some treasure on his vacation and he gets even his own little background sub-plot. There's also Kylie Koopa from the 2nd game who's making family photos and we can help her decrypt photos taken to earn money and beans. Oh, and there are tons of beanish tourists scattered across the island, you know the in-habitants of Beanbean Kingdom in the first game. So yeah.
It's funny how Paper Jam, a game with tons of potential for fanservice, has almost no fanservice, while Dream Team, a game that takes place in an entirely new island, and that therefore could have just introduce brain new characters we didn't know before, not only does that, but also brings back many characters from old games like Broque Monsieur, Kylie Koopa, and even the shadow thief himself, Popple. And they are just as cool as they were before, and knowing how much I love Popple, of course I was happy to see him again.