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Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam Nintendo 3DS Game Review

Reviewed by on Jan 22, 2016
Rating: 4 Star Rating

Whoever says threes a crowd clearly hasnt played Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam. Read Kidzworlds full 3DS game review right here!

Mario has been in some pretty great RPGs over the years and Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam succeeds in continuing the trend. While not always hitting the heights of Mario & Luigi: Dream Team, Paper Jam brings with it some awesome battles, sharp dialog and great visuals. What it lacks though, is a stable of new and interesting characters.

Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam Launch Trailer


The Two Bowsers

The basic set-up and story is a fun one. Luigi accidentally releases the characters from the Paper Mario world into their own and Bowser quickly catches wind of this. Recruiting paper Bowser's army, the two Bowsers are now causing chaos over the Mushroom Kingdom for double the trouble. That is of course, if Mario and Luigi and Paper Mario weren't there to set things right.

Two Bowsers... Uh-Oh!Two Bowsers... Uh-Oh!Courtesy of Nintendo

There are some great dialog exchanges between characters in Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam. One in particular between Bowser and Paper Bowser early in the game had me giggling. Let's just say their first meeting isn't the smoothest. The writing as a whole is pretty sharp and shows the writers have a good grasp on comedic timing. A lack of new and interesting characters hurts the story department slightly though. Without feeling connected to characters or getting to know existing ones much better, the story eventually took a back seat to the great gameplay.

Let's Jam

Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam sells itself as a mash-up of two franchises and it is, but from a gameplay perspective, this is really a Mario & Luigi game at its heart. If you've played Mario & Luigi: Dream Team, you'll feel right at home with Paper Jam's excellent turn-based battle system. Simple for newcomers to get into but deep and challenging enough to hold more experienced players attention (especially in some later battles), Paper Jam's battles are my favorite aspect of the game. Enemies all have varying weaknesses so constantly adjusting strategy is key to success. The battles kept on my toes for over 25 hours.

This isn't going to be an easy fight...This isn't going to be an easy fight...Courtesy of Nintendo

The new Paper Craft boss battles are a blast as well. Here you play as a giant origami Mario and try to knock down an equally large origami enemy. 

Each characters unique traits come into play not only in the battles but the exploration gameplay as well. Mario can smash rocks with his hammer, opening new paths and Paper Mario has the ability to fold into a plane and glide across gaps. Battle Cards can be found which aid our heroic trio in battles with perks such as healing properties. There are a lot of these battle cards to experiment with and most will come in handy.

If there is a complaint against the gameplay it would have to be pointed at some of the side missions. An ongoing quest that has you looking for captured paper Toads becomes more of a chore than anything and hurts the pacing thanks to skill being tossed out the window in favor of trial and error scenarios. 

Paper Mario about to take out some Piranha Plants!Paper Mario about to take out some Piranha Plants!Courtesy of Nintendo

Hey Good Looking

On the visuals side of things Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam is easy pretty on the eyes, but won't blow your mind. Areas are large and spacious, with an explosive amount of color. The 2D paper characters all look fantastic alongside their 3D counterparts and the spectacle of the giant paper craft battles are impressive at times but the world itself could use a little more interactivity.

Mario and Luigi team up with Paper Mario!Mario and Luigi team up with Paper Mario!Courtesy of Nintendo

Final Thoughts

I really enjoyed Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam. It's not without it's faults but fans of the Mario & Luigi series and Paper Mario alike will find a lot to enjoy here. A great battle system, fun sense of humor and a charming blending of worlds makes Paper Jam worthy of your time.

Paper Jam is available now!Paper Jam is available now!Courtesy of Nintendo


  • Great gameplay
  • Battle system
  • Funny writing
  • Good graphics


  • weak side missions
  • lack of interesting new characters

Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam Game Rating: 4

Rated E - Available now on Nintendo 3DS

Have Your Say!

Will you be playing Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam? Let us know in the comments!