I’m always looking for a new phone app game to play because let’s be honest, there are not as many. My routine consisted of: checking Pokemon Go, Reddit, Facebook, Instagram, Toon Blast, and Hearthstone. Daily rotations seemed to be lackluster and change was much needed. A couple of weeks ago, I saw that Nintendo had released Dr. Mario World for Android and IOS phones. I saw the photos and a short clip on Youtube, thinking to myself, “Why not? I’ve got nothing new to play.”
I’m not going to lie; I wasn’t impressed.
The real issue was how long the tutorial lasted. I didn’t even recognize I was in a tutorial until I saw that my lives were infinite at the top right corner. Plus, the gameplay just didn’t stick enough to keep me addicted. So, I went back to my mundane routine. After some time had passed I asked a good friend of mine and a hardcore Nintendo fan how he liked the new Dr. Mario game. He told me that the game was alright but the aesthetics were insulted with Candy Crush mechanics. Well, I liked Candy Crush and got to level 400 and something. I decided then I would give Dr. Mario another shot.
This time I was hooked but not because of Dr. Mario resembling Candy Crush…
After the Tutorial
Now, as I’ve stated before, the Dr. Mario World tutorial was painstakingly long and was tedious to go through. Though, after the tutorial, popping pills had never been more fun. The worlds and level progression are similar to Candy Crush. There was a world map and would show areas ahead by swiping right or left. The levels after completion gave 100 gold and another 10 or 20 from the viruses on the map. I found out that Dr. Mario offered bonus levels to do on the side. Think of how Donkey Kong Country Return would work except harder. I’ve never completed them because they are usually timed and require an excellent amount of skill.
Winning streaks were really the only mechanic left out. Candy Crush has this winning streak bonus that allowed players to get bonus power-ups that appear on the level. Every level passed would add more power-ups. Dr. Mario doesn’t necessarily do that but if stuck on a level for too long, Toad will appear out of thin air and assist. He would add a couple of extra pills to the stash.
Levels Require Skill Rather Than Luck
I’ve overplayed my fair share of Candy Crush. I’d reached level 400 and something on the original and level 676 on Candy Crush Soda. All those levels conquered were more luck than skills (others were paid, sadly). On the other hand, Dr. Mario World never pressured me to buy my way through. For one, hearts are handed out to you by Nintendo almost every day in bundles of five. Second, solving the puzzles required a certain skill and critical thinking. Lastly, every move I had made at any level of Dr. Mario World have planned moves. Candy Crush was based on what power up I could get by combining together. Then if I lost a level, I would be obligated to buy power-ups.
Different Characters Play Different Roles
If there was one turn off from Candy Crush, it was the fact I would be stuck on levels for hours, days, weeks, and even months. The game almost had to force me to go insane enough to buy turns with real money. The company marketing strategy had been on the hunt for my wallet and I would likely succumb to the demands. Dr. Mario was unique. If a level was too tough to pass then switching to other characters would increase the chances of success. I could have bought those characters with real money but since I didn’t really have to spend any in-game currency – due to constantly winning – I saved. I had chosen Bowser, who could wipe two rows with a fire breath. If a coin collecting level appeared, I would play Wendy Koopa who would eliminate up to 10 brick blocks.
Here was something Candy Crush could never do and if they ever did then kudos to them. Dr. Mario World has multiplayer mode but the mode was only available to people who could pass the tutorial. Playing against others was so satisfying. There was a ranking system and after beating each opponent, it would advance me to a higher rank. Another key component work mentioning was how you never run out of lives in competitive matches. On top of that, every 7 games won would grant me a key to a wrapped present full of goodies. These were either gold or if I were lucky enough, another character.
If you have been reading thus far you’ve already seen that I have emphasized on how much Candy Crush has pressured me to buy my way past hard levels. Even tempted me with buying power-ups and using all my gold bars to refill my heart pieces. If I couldn’t phone a friend for some free loving then I was left to wait and when it came to crushing some sweet, diabolical candy. I couldn’t do it.
Dr. Mario World was the opposite love story. Instead of going through five lives in five minutes it was close to an hour. Sometimes I would have too many heart pieces due to Nintendo gifting them to me all the time. I was overloading on hearts but I was okay with it. Nintendo did something not a lot of phone app games have done and that makes a free app game fun and casual.
So let me tally up the points…
Candy Crush: 0 Dr. Mario World: 5
If I was given a choice; go back to Candy Crush or Dr. Mario World, the verdict would ultimately be the Italian Doctor/Plumber. Although the game had defiled almost everything from the original game, I found it too be more enjoyable than it should have. Also, I believe the multiplayer was the only game mechanic closest to the original – so play through that tutorial!
Are you enjoying Dr. Mario World? Which mobile game do you think is better? Let us know in the comments below!
George has a backlog of over 1000 computer games but never has time to play them all. Other hobbies George does with his spare time include puzzles, playing guitar, reading, sing karaoke, and writing short stories. Also, he’s a full-time baker/Pastry Chef.