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Koopalings X

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Koopalings X
Developer(s) TimeStrike
Nintendo EAD
Publisher(s) Nintendo
Director(s) Masataka Takemoto
Athena Hawkins
Platform(s) The V²
Genre(s) Side-scrolling platformer
Puzzle
Release Date(s)
October 23rd, 2018
Media Included The V² optical disc
Max. amount of players 4
Koopalings X is a platforming adventure video game developed by TimeStrike in collaboration with Nintendo for The V² console.  It was released on the thirtieth anniversary of Super Mario Bros. 3 to honor the debut of the Koopalings.  Unlike the traditional Super Mario series, it tears away from being a usual sidescroller and explores the field of adventure, having more emphasis on exploration and combat than usual platforming, but keeps elements such as simplicity and accessibility in mind.  The game's different approach came from fear that it will decrease the value of the game and potentially any sequels that may follow if it stuck with the same formula as the home series.

As mentioned above, Koopalings X explores the adventure field and ditches plain platforming, wanting to give the player different feels of the various characters and to explore the levels in different ways.  Taking inspiration from Nintendo's The Legend of Zelda series, Koopalings X features dungeons and puzzles, and taking some inspiration from Sega's Shadow the Hedgehog, level paths are non-linear and the player can choose whatever levels and whatever exits to get through the game with.  Players can find various treasures to get coins and weapons and power-ups, and even enhancements to scepters.

In even greater difference to the Super Mario franchise, and more similar to the Mario RPG franchises, Koopalings X contains a more in-depth plot.  The plot starts with Bowser being captured by a few elitists while the Koopalings were off plotting to take over Sarasaland.  Following Kamek announcing his capture before he was swiped away too, the Koopalings immediately set off to retrieve Bowser, although find it increasingly tricky as the elitists keep shifting their headquarters from location to location.  Along the way, many things occur to set the Koopalings back from their success.

Reception has been (TBA).

Gameplay

Koopalings X shares a lot of gameplay characteristics with the usual 2D Super Mario sidescrollers.  The player must run through the levels and reach their exits, and conquer every land and its lord.  Level designs attempt to remain as faithful to the original series' as well.  Beyond these similarities, the changes are rather radical in size, the game's levels are much like dungeons and have multiple pathways to explore, and hide many secrets and shortcuts.  The game has a survival-like system, the player runs on typical heart meters instead of the usual power-ups based system and must use a multitude of diferent attacks to combat different foes.

Gameplay of Koopalings X makes greater use of characters' abilities than the mainstream games do, giving all the individual Koopalings and Bowser Jr. different statistics and movepools.  Some Koopalings have more power than others and can enter different passageways, but some Koopalings are more quick and nimble and can climb real high.  Each Koopaling has the same scepter that they use in the games, but the player can select between different effects for the weapons, able to use damaging magic, custom platforms, bombs, and more from the weapons.  Scepters can have effects switched at Clown Car Stations.

Instead of the linear layouts of levels, levels are very dungeon-like, containing several rooms and passages, allowing the player to explore.  The reason for this design is to tempt players to look around for treasures (like new scepter effects, new items, new weapons, and even stat boosts) and different exits to levels.  Worlds have "choose your own adventure" style, players can exit levels in different ways to enter totally different levels.  All levels have general themes explored in the Super Mario series (such as grasslands), but each has a different twist to them to separate them from other levels.  Like with Super Mario 3D World, all levels are named.

Most levels allow use of all Koopalings, but some levels are designed for only a few specific Koopalings and some levels have sections that can only be crossed by certain Koopalings.  To remedy this, Clown Car Stations are set up in the levels for the player to access.  When the player stops by one, they can swap out their current playable character for another one.  Red lines are often found next to Clown Car Stations, and will zap the Koopalings that aren't permitted to cross it.  They also serve as checkpoints, and heal a Koopaling slightly when touched.  If the player loses a life, they return to the previous Clown Car Station.

More TBA

Characters

Playable

Koopalings X hosts nine playable characters, each one with different statistics and abilities.  Said characters are Bowser's seven Koopalings, his true son Bowser Jr., and one of the antagonistic elitists, Velo.

Larry M. KoopaLarry

The youngest of the Koopalings, and among the more sneaky ones, Larry is a mischief-maker and likes to get real hands-on with plans and activities.  While he can be much of a prankster to his siblings, he means no harm to them. However, he has large hatred for Mario thanks to how easily the plumber can stomp him.

Larry can burst through ice and burn up enemies with fire magic from a tennis racket.  His shell breaks all blocks.

Speed
PowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEDarkStarNega
Power
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Jump
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Health
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MortonNSMBUMorton Jr.

Morton is a large Koopaling that wields sheer power in exchange for low mobility.  He's very much a chatterbox and talks constantly, enough to the point of annoyance.  While his chemistry with the other Koopalings isn't high, he cares deeply for them and will get angry if they're attacked.  His strength is enough to snap apart concrete.

Morton can utilize electricity to empower unused machines or paralyze foes using his hammer.

Speed
PowerStarSMEDarkStarNegaDarkStarNegaDarkStarNegaDarkStarNega
Power
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Jump
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Health
PowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEDarkStarNega
129px-WendyNSMBUWendy

The only female Koopaling, Wendy is an elegant and bratty Koopaling that just wants everything that's practically eye candy.  Her childish ways, however, are redeemed by her sharp speed and her battle intelligence, able to form magic rings that can bounce off walls and harm enemies.  Getting her agitated is like angering a bull.

Wendy can skate across water and lava, and can solidify water into ice.  She does not lose traction on ice.

Speed
PowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEDarkStarNega
Power
PowerStarSMEDarkStarNegaDarkStarNegaDarkStarNegaDarkStarNega
Jump
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Health
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Iggy P. KoopaIggy

A maniacal and insane Koopaling that also has an equal mixture of brain and brawn, being a brilliant mechanical designer.  He can behave rather insanely and makes a lot of plots that can potentially risk his own life.  Fortunately, he's easy to keep under control and he knows his boundaries most of the time.  He works well with Lemmy.

Iggy can use darkness to shut down machines or distract enemies using his scepter, and can operate all tools.

Speed
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Jump
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Health
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Roy O. KoopaRoy

The bulkiest and also rudest of the Koopalings, no one would want to mess around with Roy on purpose.  Roy isn't as strong as younger brother Morton, but he hits like a truck and can pummel anyone under his own size.  His own recklessness and his priority of brawns sometimes leads to his own failures, but he works great when paired with someone else.

Roy can use earth powers to empower his jumps.  When he stomps down, he can shake weak structures and shock enemies.

Speed
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Power
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Jump
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Health
PowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSME
Lemmy Koopa en NSMB.ULemmy

Iggy's best friend, Lemmy is a fun-loving trickster who wishes one day to be a member of a circus.  Unlike his siblings, he does not particularly care about fighting Mario and would rather spend time alone practicing up for amusement or pulling pranks with Iggy.  He's said to be awkward to be around.

Using his powers of wind, Lemmy can float momentarily in the air and control his falls the best.  He can also toss bombs.

Speed
PowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEDarkStarNega
Power
PowerStarSMEDarkStarNegaDarkStarNegaDarkStarNegaDarkStarNega
Jump
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Health
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LudwigaaaaaaaaaLudwig

A high ranking member of the Koopa Troop, Ludwig is the group's leader and is the oldest.  He is a very strong magic user and comes up with many deliberate plots dedicated to the destruction of Mario.  He sometimes can act insane or out of touch with the other Koopalings, and usually spends time alone.

Ludwig can use psychic powers to clone himself to take on multiple enemies, and can also flutter jump.

Speed
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Power
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Jump
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Health
PowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEDarkStarNegaDarkStarNega
Bowserjr NSMBowser Jr.

The only real offspring of Bowser, Junior is a bratty and selfish Koopa that only rivals Wendy in the field.  While smarter and harder to defeat, he comes off as superior to all and wants to prove himself to be the best of the Koopalings.  Out of any of them, his rivalry with Mario is the most severe.

Bowser Jr. can utilize his Clown Car to break through blocks and can utilize it as a defense against enemies.

Speed
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Power
PowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEDarkStarNegaDarkStarNega
Jump
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Health
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???
Velo

Velo was one of the elitists responsible for capturing Bowser, but she herself was captured later on by the Koopalings in an effort to determine the whereabouts of the other elitists. Following her capture in World 4, she joins the Koopalings in their quest to save Bowser rather unwillingly. She is rude and quick to make remarks.

Velo can go around really fast, and is the fastest character tied with Iggy. She can snap apart most enemies in her path, too.

Speed
PowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSME
Power
PowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEDarkStarNega
Jump
PowerStarSMEPowerStarSMEDarkStarNegaDarkStarNegaDarkStarNega
Health
PowerStarSMEDarkStarNegaDarkStarNegaDarkStarNegaDarkStarNega

Worlds

Koopalings X hosts eight worlds for the player to blast through, and four bonus worlds.  Each world focuses on a different theme, with multiple levels focusing on different elements of their world's theme.  As the player progresses through the game, the levels become harder and things toughen up, and more hazards and obstacles are featured.  Unlike most Mario-related titles, levels are very non-linear and often have more than one exit.

  1. Koopa Kingdom: A simple lava-themed world with magma chambers, jail-like dungeons, and tower-like buildings.  Some areas look fragile and could collapse at any moment.  The Koopa Kingdom is a rather misleading name for this world, as there are several different "Koopa Kingdoms" for the player to pass through, including some of Bowser's old ones.
  2. Wild West: The second world that isn't too far from the Koopalings' homeland, being based on typical arid deserts and stereotypical cowboy tales.  The Wild West features canyons, small forests, an oasis, and underground water chambers.  This world has much more hostile creatures than the Koopa Kingdom does, as none of the enemies here are affiliated with Bowser's forces.
  3. Rocky River: This wild and winding river is very difficult to navigate, featuring a wide variety of hazards that can slow down the Koopalings.  Rather than going down, however, the Koopalings have to fight against the water's currents, moving upwards when possible.  There aren't many underground sections, and those that exist are commonly submerged.
  4. Murky Mines
  5. Tundra Township
  6. Chaos Carnival
  7. Fissure Forest
  8. Stronghold Siege

Soundtrack

Shiho Fujii and Mahito Yokota, the main composers for New Super Mario Bros. U, returned to compose music for Koopalings X, although combine the Mario-atmosphere music with exploration or dramatic moods to fit the atmosphere of the game. Mollete Apoderade, a composer emerging from a site for Nintendo fangames, became one of the project's primary composers, and created primarily the battle and bonus themes, as well as the game's general SFX. Most of the music tries to take "epic" takes on all of the respective themes, but tries to keep them in line with the Mario series as much as humanly possible.

Trivia

  • This is currently the latest reversion of Athena's first project on Fantendo, named Koopalings Universe.  Before this version, it went under several names, most notably Koopalings Dream.
    • The name "Koopalings X" is actually a reference to what was intended to be a sequel to the original Koopalings Universe, named "Koopalings Z".
  • Despite the presence of set personalities for the Koopalings given in Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam and Paper Mario: Color Splash, the Koopalings mostly take their personalities from the DiC cartoon The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3 and the following cartoon Super Mario World.
  • While the game itself takes many obvious references from its home franchise, Mario himself does not make an appearance outside of cameos.
  • During its cycle of development, Koopalings X was going to be a spin off Super Mario title where you could go through eight worlds to stop Wart's army from taking over the Mushroom Kingdom.  You could play as several characters in that game, including Wario, Rosalina, and even Bowser.  However, the development switched over to being a Koopalings game following mass popularity with them, including their appearances in a Super Smash Bros. title and their presence in a Mario Kart title, and their ever growing presence in non-mainstream products.

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