"Super Mario Odyssey" has put smiles on faces for a week now. Since last Friday, gamers all over the world have been singing ‘Odyssey’s’ praises and with good reason. Nintendo Switch owners are utilizing the new Switch update, posting screenshots and clips of the game everywhere! It was seven years ago when the last real 3D "Mario" game was released ("Super Mario 3D World" for Wii U was a mixture of 2D and 3D) and the anticipation for a follow-up reached max level. Seven months after the title reveal broke on the internet, the game was finally here and it managed to meet and exceed the highest expectations.

'Odyssey' outperforms previous installments

"Odyssey" is already outperforming the franchise’s previous installments. In fact, arguably no other "Mario" game has been received as well critically and commercially as fast as this one. After an Accolades Trailer exhibiting perfect review scores from reputable video game critics was released on Nintendo’s YouTube channel on Wednesday night, Nintendo of America took to Twitter early Thursday morning to thank fans for rushing to add "Odyssey" to their game libraries.

Selling over two million copies in three days is a testament to Nintendo’s ability to secure an install base with the Switch through effective marketing.

As the company continues to push boundaries with innovative hardware, their developments in unique game design accentuate, enticing potential customers with experiences not found on the platforms of their competitors. What’s more alluring to a gamer than a brand new 3D "Mario" game that can be played literally anywhere?

The most impressive feat, though, is not how well the Nintendo Switch was marketed or how fast "Super Mario Odyssey" is selling but how unbelievably amazing the actual game is.

The kingdoms are massive and the list of Power Moons waiting to be found is overwhelmingly extensive. However, even the most casual gamer will have trouble putting the Joy-Con down. The game’s tasks are designed to take the player on a journey that encompasses both the magic of worlds well known and the thrill of a new era of 3D platforming.

The fun never stops

From 8-bit sprites to 3D semi-sandbox levels, Nintendo has continuously reinvented the main series "Mario" games without compromising the core aspects. Aesthetically appealing levels are challenging enough to keep simplistic tasks from becoming mundane and most importantly, it's pure unadulterated fun. The newest addition to the indefectible formula is a new character named Cappy, a transforming hat that assists Mario in rescuing Princess Peach from Bowser who also holds his little sister, Tiara, in “captivity.” (Pun aside, how charming is that?)

With Cappy, Mario is able to overcome obstacles in the way of resources needed to transport to Bowser’s location. A handful of the power moons needed to fuel the airship Mario and Cappy are traveling in, known as the “Odyssey,” are obtained through mini-games.

Some of them are reminiscent of classic mini-games in "Mario Party" such as “Hot Rope Jump” and “Slot Car Derby.” There are plenty of Easter eggs from almost every Mario game in the series but it’s the references and callbacks to the main platformers in the franchise encountered while playing that bring the most joy.

‘Mario Odyssey’ is a culmination of all that has made Mario great

Surely, there’s a lot more to discover but here’s at least one sample from every main Mario game noticed during a casual play-through.

  • "Super Mario Bros." - Mini 8-bit levels perfectly replicating sprites of the iconic NES game.
  • "Super Mario Bros. 2" - Mini rocket, Slot machines, & vegetable carrying.
  • "Super Mario Bros. 3" - Mario spreads his arms when his running reaches top speed.
  • "Super Mario World: Moon." - Shards (fragments) that resemble the 3-Up Moon.
  • "Super Mario 64" - Jumping through paintings.
  • "Super Mario Sunshine" - Secret levels in which Mario is stripped of “Cappy” privileges.
  • "Super Mario Galaxy 1 & 2" - Split Joy-Con motion control and purple coins.
  • "NEW Super Mario Bros. Wii & Wii U" - Spinning ground pound.
  • "Super Mario 3D World" - Catsuit sightings.

Mario’s first official outing on the Nintendo Switch features a plethora of heartwarming nostalgia that triggers a sense of comfort, encouraging players to explore every inch of every level multiple times to find even more reasons to grin from ear to ear.

"Super Mario Odyssey" is a breath of fresh air containing hints of the sweetest, most appetizing aromas of the past. It's a perfect blend that serves as a preview of Nintendo’s creative direction moving forward and a reminder of the wonderful memories they’ve helped create in the last 30+ years for dedicated and casual gamers alike. The company that single-handedly saved the video game industry in the 1980’s shines brightly in 2017, delivering yet another true modern masterpiece.