Originally posted on the Seafoam Gaming forums June 19th 2015
Thanks to Nintendo of America for the review code.
Title: Dr Mario Miracle Cure
System: 3DS (eShop)
Release date: 6/11/2015
The main game/story
In this surprise installment of the Dr. Mario series, you take control of both Dr. Mario and Dr. Luigi as they set out to bust some viruses! Like always in these games, the story isn’t a focus. With both gameplay styles and the addition of new “Miracle Cure” items that make the game more competitive, this aims to be the most welcoming Dr. Mario game yet!
The art style and menus in this game are incredibly similar to Dr. Luigi on the Wii U, likely because that game only came out a year and a half ago. Still, they look nice on the 3DS and get the job done, though unfortunately there isn’t a 3D effect during gameplay, only in the main menu where you can select the different game modes.
Music and Sound:
Essentially every song is recycled music from past entries, and it doesn’t sound that great in comparison to the older remixes from the earlier entries. Lots of strange instruments from Dr. Luigi are still intact, which makes the soundtrack have a very strange feel to it. While it technically does fit the game in a way, it still doesn’t sound that great. The option to choose the music before starting a level is also completely gone for some reason, instead each song is set to play during specific modes, so if you wanted to hear the “Chill” theme during Classic Dr Mario mode, you can’t do that, since “Fever” is always the background music for that mode.
Despite being at a lower price than Dr. Luigi on the Wii U eShop, (Which was $14.99) there’s surprisingly a lot of content to be found in this game. The new “Miracle Cure Laboratory” mode is a mission mode of sorts, where you go through specific puzzle levels and are required to complete them in the different modes, meaning some levels will be done in Dr. Mario, some in Dr. Luigi, and some VS COM levels thrown in as well. This is a very nice addition as it gives the game some depth besides the standard “high score” aspect from prior games. There’s also a handy tutorial in this mode, which allows you to easily get the hang of how Miracle Cures work, which activate when you fill up a bar on the side of the screen by using chain reactions and clearing capsules.
If the gameplay of the last game is what you would prefer, however then “Custom Clinic” is the mode for you. All three modes from Dr. Luigi are back, but now with Miracle Cures available for you to use if you so please, which will change the single player mode into an endless mode. (except in the Virus Buster mode which is always done in stages) If you don’t want Miracle Cures on, then all three modes will use the stage format from previous games in single player.
If you feel up to the challenge, you can also challenge the CPU in Dr. Mario and Dr. Luigi modes, where the miracle cures hurt your opponent and their difficulty is based off of which capsule speed you selected. Both Download Play for local wireless and online multiplayer options are available as well, making this a great game to play with your friends and people all around the world! However, there were a few problems I had with the online mode, such as the lack of any options to make a room just for friends to join.
The biggest issue I had with online multiplayer, however was that the dreaded balancing issue from Dr. Luigi returned, where you could have a ranking of 5,000 yet still get paired with someone with an 8,000 ranking instead of with someone on your skill level. This is really infuriating as it makes the online unbalanced, so unless you practice and get really good at the game in single player, multiplayer will be an incredibly difficult challenge, when it would have been much easier to have it pair you up with someone at your skill level.
Overall, Dr. Mario Miracle Cure is a pleasant surprise, coming pretty much out of nowhere with lots of improvements to the Dr. Mario formula, thanks to the new Miracle Cure Laboratory, the endless modes encouraging high score sharing to Miiverse, along with the Miracle Cure items themselves adding a whole new layer to the gameplay! Unfortunately the fact that Miracle Cure Laboratory doesn’t last that long and the lackluster online multiplayer hurt this game a bit. Regardless, the fact that the game is at a much cheaper price than Dr. Luigi and offers more content makes this a game that I easily recommend for the low price.
I give Dr. Mario Miracle Cure an 8 out of 10.