|Developer(s)||Next Level Games|
|Platform(s)||Nintendo Wii U|
|Single player, multiplayer, online multiplayer|
|Media Included||Nintendo Wii U Disc|
Gameplay and Rules
Like in past games, the game follows the street soccer style of gameplay. Instead of 5 players a team, there are now 7 team members in each team on field at a time. In both previous games (Super Mario Strikers and Mario Strikers Charged) players would normally have 5 members of a team as stated above, 1 captain who leads the team, three sidekicks and one keeper. Whereas now, there are 5 sidekicks on a team, two making up the line of defense with the keeper and the other three in offensive position at the front with the captain, during the game sidekicks can be switched around to suit the player’s game style, along with this note, in some modes players choose 10 characters (1 Captain, 8 sidekicks and 1 keeper) and make three of their sidekicks “Back Ups” these can only be switched with other sidekicks after halftime and once changing the team will stay like this until the end of the match. Each character in the game also has unique attributes. Characters are divided into 5 groups, Balanced, Playmaker, Aggressive, Offensive and Defensive. Each of these groups have advantages and disadvantages allowing players to choose their perfect team. Along with this characters also have abilities and special shots unique to them. Overall, the game keeps the grittiness from Mario Strikers Charged but balances it with Mario world essences.
Team Member Roles
The captain plays an offensive role in matches, at the beginning of a match, the captain will be in the middle front ready for the kick off, Captains are a major part of the team and have abilities and skills that sidekicks and goalies don’t have. They cannot swap places and there is only one in a team
Offensive Line Up
This consists of three chosen sidekicks with play as offensive middle, offensive left and offensive right during a match. Any sidekicks can be chosen as the offensive line up but some play better in offence compared to others.
Defensive Line Up
This part of the team consists of two sidekicks, the left defense and right defense. These characters don’t go too far past the halfway line and stay back to help defend with the keeper. Any sidekick can be chosen for this role, but some play better as defense compared to others.
This consists of one key player, the keeper or goalie. This character must stay in their team’s goal and shouldn’t go too far out of the goal area. This role has different special skills in match because of their role and play style. Instead of special shots or dekes the player has special passes and special saves they can use.
The three extra characters on the sides are known as Back Ups, when the player chooses a character for this role, it means the character will stay on the side until halftime when the captain can swap players into the match, after halftime no players on the sides can come back in so you only get one chance to put these in game. This part of a team consists of three extra sidekicks.
In a match two teams of 7 players will face off in the stadium, the captain at the front for kick off, with 3 sidekicks, offensive left, offensive middle and offensive right. Behind these sidekicks are two other sidekicks, the left defence and right defence. These sidekicks make up the line of defence and are further behind the captain close to the keeper to help defend and protect the goal. After half of the set time is over, the game pauses allowing both teams to change their team by choosing to put back up sidekicks into the game, this occurs once in game, so you only get one chance to put them in the team, but, sidekicks on field can have their positions changed before any kick off by pressing pause, it won’t happen immediately, but will happen when a team scores and the next kick off is started. Once the match is over the winning team will celebrate and the losers will be upset or angry, the results will display with some highlights of the game.
Every character in the game, whether being sidekicks, captains or a keeper, has at least one Special Move, the following moves are types of moves that can be performed during the match. Superstar Strike: Every captain has one of these moves, it has power similar to the power of a Megastrike, but it can only be fired once instead of multiple times. Each captain has their very own unique Superstar Strike. Star Shot: A special shot that only sidekicks and captains have, it is a lot weaker than a Superstar Strike, but can still be devastating for the opposing team, each sidekick and captain has their own unique Star Shot. Super Save: This is a special move that only keepers have, in the match this will not appear often, it is very rare for the keeper to perform the move. The keeper can stop any incoming shots that aren't special with this move. Each save is unique for each character. Superstar Ability: A rare item that gives the captain a great advantage or ability for a short amount of time, each captain has one of these abilities unique to them. Sidekicks and Keepers do not have a ability like this. Special Item: This is a sidekicks version of Superstar Ability, it is given to the team in match and each sidekick has a unique item, some are offensive items and some can be used to benefit the team. Deke: Every sidekick and captain has one of these moves, it can be used to dodge tackles, hit opposing team members out of the way and much more, but, this move can only be performed if the player has the ball with them.
Mostly the game stays similar to the previous installments, however, there are a few new features that appear in Mario Strikers Superstars. One is the fact that the team size has increased from 5 players to 10, 1 Captain, 5 Sidekicks, 1 Keeper and 3 Back Ups. To support this new element the size of the field has increased too, to fit in all team members. The game pushes away some of the more grittier elements from previous games and tries to make the game more Mario themed, especially the stadiums, most of the stadiums are a lot more based on the Mario world rather then the ones featured in other games. Overall there aren't too many big new features, but instead, lots of smaller elements that aren't noticed as much.
In this mode players can choose the rules of the game, the teams and even the stage and face off against a computer or with friends in this mode. Unlike Superstar League the rules are chosen by you, you can choose certain gimmicks for the match, how long you will play for or instead how many goals you need to win. This is very similar to how Domination Mode works in Mario Strikers Charged.
The main mode of the game, here you can create your dream team and face off against Mushroom Kingdom's finest football players in tournaments and become a Striker Superstar. With varying difficulties and many challenges, this game unlocks most of the unlockable content in the the game. Players will start of in easier leagues and make their way up through each league until the final league, the Superstar League, where opponents are set to the highest difficulty level and this makes them very hard to beat. Along the way players will also get rival matches between enemies and challenges like in Striker Challenges.
One of the most popular features in Mario Strikers Superstars, this allows for players who think they've got what it takes to go up against other players with the game. Players can choose casual matches or intense matches depending on what game style they want, each player is paired up with someone the same skill level to make things fair and this introduces a points system similar to how VR works in Mario Kart, the more you win, the higher the points will be, if you lose, your points go down. There are also tournaments you can take part in and other online challenges. The players with the higher points will be shown on the leader board which is changed every week. Every month or so Nintendo hosts a tournament which players can take part in, each player will face a certain number of opponents and the players who win the most matches move on to the next level, this continues until the final two players participate in the final round, the player who wins gets a special star symbol next to their name. Players can only participate once every three months to give other players a chance of winning.
The mission mode from Mario Strikers Charged returns to Mario Strikers Superstars, this time featuring many more missions and challenges allowing for replay-ability. Nintendo also announced they will release free DLC challenges every month from release to keep the game's life cycle running. Not all the challenges are based in matches now, some are to complete a certain skill or shot which acts as a more skilled player Strikers ABCs.
This mode teaches new players and players who've player previous games how to play the new installment, there are a variety of "missions" similar to Striker Challenges which teach the player new skills and moves to help them understand the controls and game a bit more. This does not include DLC missions like Striker Challenges but features quite a lot of challenges anyway.
A new mode in the series, similar to Battle Mode of Mario Kart. Players have HP (hit points) and if they get tackled or for instance slip on a banana peel they will lose some of their HP, when all of a teammates HP is gone they will be eliminated from the match, scoring a goal results in taking a high amount of HP away from a random member of the opponent's team other than the captain. Scoring a goal is risky because of the chance of getting tackled, but tackling gives the other team items. Players can choose to be defensive or offensive depending on which suits them best. Although the game could end straight away if one team's captain is eliminated, which is why players need to be very strategic in this mode.
Each character in the game is unique and not just for aesthetics, all members have advantages in some stats while having disadvantages in others, players can mix and match team members to create a team to their liking. All captains have theme colors which make up their team uniform and other unique attributes such as their own theme. For more information and stats on characters, see here.