Nintendo Reviews Rating:
Age 7+
Posted: April 15th, 2004
By: Webmaster-Josh
Luigi's Mansion was sort of a way for Nintendo to 'hold off' fans for a true Mario game for Nintendo Gamecube. Is this a
truly well made game overall? Stick here and read the full review.
Sound

This game should be based all around the sound because that's what creates a spooky and weird environment. I'd say that
they did a fairly good job. There is no Dolby Surround, but as long as you have Stereo, you should be fine. There is just
one theme to the game. It's basically the theme you hear when you're traveling around the mansion. When you enter a
room, the music may slightly change, but most of the time it stops. This makes the players more tense until a ghost
comes out and scares you. The room may still have some minor sound effects which are still good enough to make the
mood creepy. The way you hear the sound in this game is blended excellently, so the absence of Dolby really isn't much to
fuss over.
There's also a little theme that plays when you're battling bosses, and trying to suck in a ghost. It is kind of annoying to
hear the same song over and over, and weird how there is no sound in some rooms, but I felt this was all done to create
the atmosphere. The small character samples are also good. Most of the speech is just read speech. It would be nice to
have more voice samples, but like Zelda games, I think it's best not to put voices in everyone. That way the player can
imagine their own voice for each character. Even Toad has his own theme and voice style that you can imagine. I felt that
although there could have been more sound, that there's enough here to keep players fairly satisfied.
Control

The control scheme is fairly good, and responsive. What bothers me is that the camera really only shows you one angle. It
seems like a platform game in this sense. Luigi can call out to Mario with A, but Luigi has no other neat tricks like that.
His vacuum is similar to the idea of FLUDD. Both are new and work well, except with the vacuum, you have to suck in
ghosts by tilting the control stick the opposite direction. This is difficult when trying to suck in ghosts with a lot of HP. It
was meant to be difficult, but can become frustrating when they just leave the room and you have to exit and walk back in
to reset the room.
The ghosts have all been placed in spots where the camera usually isn't a problem, and because of this view, the details of
the game shine and it really makes the game so much easier. Many people will easily get bored with the idea of sucking in
ghosts, but it gets fun when they are more than one and when their HP is not too high, but enough that it's challenging.
Each room each has its own puzzle, and sometimes its based more on what you control than what you think of. There's
even different types of things that you can suck in and then shoot back out like fire and water. Your Game Boy Horror
also allows you to see different angles, but for the most part you don't need to use it. Overall, there are flaws, but you can
look past them after a while.
Graphics

This is nice looking for Gamecube, but it could be better. The
details really show, because there's only one camera angle. There's
not much game here, so there aren't too many nice pieces of
artwork. The icons on the bottom of the screen are almost too big,
but they do pretty much show all the information you need to know.
There are also little extra effects, but what there is of those effects
is very good. There are some rooms that sparkle, some that are
dark, even cool lighting effects. The graphics aren't like Resident
Evil good, but for this game, they didn't need to be. I was satisfied
overall with what there is to see, but a bit more effort would have
landed this a 8.5.
Replay

There's four levels, all in one mansion. That's about it! Okay, so there's 50 Boos, and some portrait ghosts, but that's still
just about it. There are rankings for the portrait ghosts, and how you beat the game, but they are both easy to achieve and
little incentive to do so anyway. There is an alternate version of the game, but once again, the entire game is pretty boring
after you beat it once. There's only about 10 hours of play in this game anyway. I can't believe people were buying this for
$50! I believe this game is a wasted effort, simply just to hold off fans until a true Mario game.
I had great expectations, and I'll admit it's nice to see Luigi in his own game for once. It is intense that first time through
and there are several scares and cool aspects, but those more add to the design, which I'll get to in a second. Basically the
reason I mentioned those here is that the first time around these seem like good elements. Playing the game the second
time goes much much quicker, and these once fun elements get boring. Simply put, I think this was a wasted effort in
terms of replay. There just isn't mush here at all!
Design

The design is surprisingly new, but I feel like I've seen this somewhere. A lot feels borrowed from Resident Evil, and I
feel that although this game has its moments, it's not as intense as Resident Evil. It probably wasn't meant to be, though.
The design is unique because the vacuum you have forces you to hold the Control Stick backwards. This creates
challenging scenarios when there's multiple ghosts. It's also fun to find the ghosts because it involves looking for clues in
a room. It all makes sense, and that's the beauty of Shigeru Miyamoto games.
There doesn't seem to be very many special touches from him, except each room is unique and different. It may be boring
at first, but you'll find a lot of small tasks to complete that all add up to make the game finish. The story is that Mario is
trapped within the mansion and Luigi must find him. I've never played "Mario is Missing" for SNES, but I heard that the
story is similar (I heard Mario is Missing was a terrible game though). Mario is missing, and this game also introduces a
new character named Professor E. Gadd. He created the vacuum, and he also was mentioned in Super Mario Sunshine. I
don't think we'll see the last of this new character, and it is nice to see a new face for once.
There's plenty of elements that wrap up this package, and although the rest of the game isn't so good, the design is. It's
original, fun and challenging. Like Pikimn, this game's too short (even shorter than Pikmin), but we can probably expect
some sort of sequel maybe for Nintendo's next console. Let's hope this time, Nintendo makes a true Mario game at the
console's lanuch.
Scores
Sound

8.0
Control

7.6
Graphics

8.1
Replay

5.8
Design

7.7
7.4
Final Words

Luigi's Mansion is bad in most aspects, but when it comes to design, Miyamoto satisfies. I think this game was geared
toward beginner players because it is short, but I have seen younger ones enjoy it because it seems hard to them. For
more experienced gamers, this is only fun the first time around. I wouldn't mind seeing a sequel, but I wouldn't spend $50
on it unless it had more replay. Thank goodness this costs only $20 now!