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Review: Luigi’s Mansion 3DS

The game that gave Luigi his most popular starring role has made its way as a remake to the Nintendo 3DS. Luigi’s Mansion for the 3DS was first announced earlier this year where it was met with mixed reviews. On the one hand, we were getting a GameCube remake but it wasn’t on the system most fans were hoping for and it wasn’t the next installment in the series that fans were hoping for as well. This was, of course, short-lived as Luigi’s Mansion 3 was announced last month releasing for the Switch in 2019. So has the first Luigi’s Mansion been given a lovely remake for the 3DS? Let’s find out.

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It is hard to believe but Luigi’s Mansion was actually the launch game for the GameCube back in 2001. The game was very well received and was considered one of the best games for the GameCube. As the title mentions the game is about a mansion. This isn’t any old mansion but a haunted one and one that Luigi has won in a contest. Luigi, wanting to check out this mansion, agrees to meet with Mario there but doesn’t see him when he arrives. Luigi, acting like a scared little man, enters with only a flashlight and ends up bumping into Professor E. Gadd, an odd short scientist, who is battling with a ghost. Eventually, he gives Luigi the Poltergust 3000, a vacuum that sucks up ghosts. After receiving the Poltergeist Luigi goes on a mission to rescue Mario.

The game’s story is engaging as you make your way through the mansion unlocking rooms and defeating ghost bosses. Some of these are portrait ghosts that you have to figure out their weakness in order to defeat them. You can use the Game Boy Horror, a camera like device, that scans the ghosts and gives clues as to how to capture them. Capturing ghosts is one of the most satisfying features of the game. That feeling of sucking up ghosts into the Poltergust is one that never gets old. Unfortunately, the controls are a little bit awkward at times. This is, after all, a 3D game from 2001 when 3D games were still somewhat new.

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When comparing the remake to the original the original just feels a little bit better. While the remake is still a good version of the game the lighting doesn’t feel as dark and sinister as the original. For a game about ghosts and a haunted mansion making it feel as spooky as possible is important, so it is odd that the remake feels less dark. Also for the 3DS version, it feels a little too pixelated in some areas. One of the big differences with the 3DS version is that you can play with a friend who plays as “Gooigi”, a green jelly version of Luigi. It is a nice addition for those that want to play co-op with friends or for those that need help beating certain levels.

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Luigi’s Mansion was a fantastic game when it first came out in 2001 and is still a fantastic game in this remake. If you have already played this game before then it probably isn’t worth picking up but if this is your first time experiencing Luigi’s Mansion then it is a must own.

[A copy of the game was provided to us by the publisher for review purposes.]