The newest sports game from acclaimed Nintendo studio Camelot Games, Mario Rush: Super Golf, does a lot right. Critically, its best feature is also its most basic. Simply teeing up to play eighteen holes of golf in the Mushroom Kingdom is a delight. The game shines in its quiet, slow moments when you’re considering the terrain and the wind before making a crucial shot.
Super Rush isn’t just about the slow stuff, though. The subtitle is a promise as much as a description: Speed golf mode delivers pulse-pounding action to break up the otherwise slow-paced golf gameplay. As the first entry in the Mario Golf series to hit a home console since Toadstool Tour on the GameCube back in 2003, Super Rush has some big shoes to fill.
Super Rush once again shows that in-house Nintendo teams make the aging Switch hardware sing. The graphics on this title are truly impressive. Small details like the texture of clothing and the materials that make up golf clubs look great. The characters are all suitably dressed for a day on the links, too, with their comfortable golf outfits matching their personalities. Special shout-out for dapper boy Waluigi, who looks like he’s doing his best 1930s gangster impression while going for a few rounds on the green.
The sound design is as excellent as you’d expect from an official Mario title, with the arrangement of both classic tracks and new tunes matching the energy of the various game modes. This brings us to the wacky fun of the new game modes.
The newest game mode in the Mario Golf series, and the namesake of the new title, is Speed Golf. In this game mode, you’re not as concerned with the number of strokes you make to sink the ball as you are the time it takes you to finish each hole. Up to four players can be on the green at once, all battling at the same time to make long drives and build up their special move meters.
Speed Golf is a chaotic mess in the best possible way. Players sprint to get to where their ball landed and jockey to use special moves to knock their opponent’s balls out of the way. Each character has unique special moves that can be used to give them a leg up during the melee. The first person to sink their ball wins, and the table can turn at any time.
The main attraction for returning fans is the Adventure Mode, a Mario Golf staple. Players take control of their Mii character and engage in all of the various game modes across a sprawling overworld. Boss battles test your accuracy and timing, while light RPG mechanics help you increase your stats as you play.
In short, this is a great title for any traditional golf lovers or Mario fans. The arcade-like wackiness of Speed Golf is a perfect counterpoint to the slow-paced and thoughtful gameplay of the traditional golf mode. If you’re looking for a great new Switch game, you should give Mario Golf: Super Rush a try.