Super Mario Galaxy

LQ: 9.1

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Brain grade: 8.5
Fun score: 9.6

Game Type: ESRB Rating: Everyone Platform/Console: LWK Recommended Age: 7+ Thinking Skills Used: , Academic Skills Used:

In Super Mario Galaxy, Mario must again save Princess Peach from the evil King of the Koopa Gang, Bowser. This time however, the action is thrown into outer space. Players will need to jump around the galaxy, traversing minature planets as they battle enemies and collect Power Stars, which open up new worlds for Mario to explore. At the end of each world, players help Mario face off against Bowser or one of his minions in a “boss battle.” After winning it, they progress to the next world. Super Mario Galaxy contains mild cartoon violence but no other potentially offensive content, and only a little amount of reading is needed to play the game. Due to these considerations, Super Mario Galaxy is recommended to ages 7 and up.


This Game is Good for Kids Who Need Help With:

Flexibility

Adapting and adjusting to changing conditions and expectations.

The wide variety of strange and inventive worlds that Mario explores will have players manipulating gravity and traversing the environment in a variety of ways. In order to complete each world, players must use an array of strategies, keeping an open mind as they experiment with environmental puzzles and tackle difficult platforming settlements. Different items and tools can also be acquired to aide players in battle. Some items can heal lost life, while others - like Koopa Shells -- can be used offensively to attack a foe. There are a wide variety of power-ups as well, like Fire Flowers and Bee Suits, which transform Mario and grant him a variety of special powers. Players who don't switch up their attack strategy or take advantage of available items and power-ups will have trouble defeating Mario's larger foes.

Focus

Getting started and then maintaining attention and effort to tasks.

In Super Mario Galaxy, players are required to guide Mario through a number of constantly shifting worlds. One planet might be fractured into a number of small asteroids surrounding a central black hole that Mario can fall in to. Another might feature obstacles like electrified moving platforms or tall grass hiding coins and enemies alike. Therefore, players must remain focused as they explore, paying attention to the layout of each given environment and carefully timing their jumps and attacks to win. Also, the pull and direction of gravity in this game is not constant -- Mario will spend many levels walking on walls or ceilings -- so players need to reorient their own spatial perceptions accordingly.

Working Memory

Recalling and retaining information in our minds while working.

In Super Mario Galaxy, Mario has a number of abilities players can activate through different motions on the Wii Remote. Basic actions like jumping are used by pressing the appropriate button, but more complicated moves require players to make use of the Wii's motion controls. For example, to make Mario do a spinning punch, players must shake the Wii Remote from side to side. Furthermore, there are a slew of special moves and tactics made possible by the game's items and power-ups. Since many enemies and obstacles can only be overcome by using specific kinds of special moves, items or power-ups, players must be able to recall the controls and uses of each one.

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