Move over Mario, there is a new king in town—Luigi’s Mansion 3. As I write this review, Mario Odyssey is celebrating its 2-year anniversary. Why is this important? For many, including myself, Mario Odyssey was the pinnacle of action-adventure games on the Switch. That is until Luigi’s Mansion 3 came around.
Developed by Canada’s own Next Level Games, Luigi’s Mansion 3 was originally planned as a Wii U game. However, after development of Metroid Prime: Federation Force finished, Luigi’s Mansion 3 development was moved to Nintendo Switch. A sequel to Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon on the 3DS, Luigi’s Mansion 3 takes place in a haunted hotel that is full of surprises and wonderful worlds to explore.
Luigi’s Mansion 3 Details
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Developer: Next Level Games
Modes: Single player, multiplayer
ESRB Rating: E (Everyone)
A dream vacation that quickly becomes a nightmare
Luigi’s Mansion 3 begins just as Luigi and friends are on their way to an all expenses paid trip to a luxury hotel resort. When Luigi, Polterpup, Mario, Princess Peach and a group of Toads arrive at the hotel, they are greeted by the hotel owner, Hellen Gravely. After a long bus ride, everyone is tired and retire for the evening to their rooms.
However, Luigi is awoken in the middle of the night by Princess Peach’s scream. As Luigi makes his way out of his room to find out what’s going on, the hotel and Hellen Gravely show their true colours. Mario, Princess Peach, and the group of Toads are no where to be found! We come to find out that King Boo has used the luxury hotel and Hellen Gravely to lure Luigi and friends into his trap.
With his friends imprisoned in portraits, Luigi narrowly escapes King Boo down the laundry shoot. Equipped with the upgraded Poltergust G-OO and the help of Professor E. Gadd, Luigi must explore the hotel and rescue his friends. What I really enjoyed about Luigi’s Mansion 3 is that each of the hotel floors serves as its own world and has a mini-story associated with each that is directly related to the main story of Luigi saving his friends.
An upgraded Poltergust G-OO and a gooey sidekick
While Luigi’s Mansion 3 is about catching ghosts, it’s more than that. This time around Luigi has some new moves to help him catch the baddies. You still use your flashlight to stun the ghosts but now you have the ability to slam the ghosts causing damage to other ghosts around you and also objects in your environment.
Next, Luigi has a Suction Shot, which allows you to shoot toilet plungers on flat surfaces. This rips away doors and covers to reveal money, keys, and level collectibles. Additionally, Luigi last new powerful move is a burst shot from the Poltergust-OO that helps stun enemies and blow open some doors. Though, the best new gameplay feature added in Luigi’s Mansion 3 is without a doubt Gooigi. An all-green doppelganger, Gooigi can walk on spikes, squeeze through grates and help Luigi get to places where he otherwise wouldn’t be able to get to.
As I mentioned earlier, Luigi’s Mansion 3 is more than just trapping ghosts. Exploration plays a big role in the game and secrets are around every corner. Each floor has a set of special gems for you to uncover and collect as well as hidden Boos all over the place. Luigi’s dark light on his flashlight can be used to discover hidden doorways and animate certain pictures in the game to reveal even more secrets.
Luigi and friends have never looked and sounded better
Luigi’s Mansion 3 is one of, if not the best looking and animated games on the Nintendo Switch. Luigi is a scaredy-cat and Next Level Games absolutely nails it with visuals and sound. Luigi’s facial animations, the way he runs away from ghosts, and the chattering of his teeth perfectly convey his fear of ghost. Honestly, I can’t recall another game where a character’s body language was so well conveyed.
Every floor in the hotel has its own theme and acts as its own min-world. These range from a haunted museum, all the way to a hip-hop dance club. The use of colours is absolutely stunning and sets the mood for every floor. While the characters in the game still mostly speak gibberish, Charles Martinet does a fabulous job voicing Luigi. To be honest, I don’t think I’ve heard Luigi talks as much as he does in this game. One of my favourite things Luigi says is to Mario near the beginning of the game as he taps him on the shoulder is, “Hey bro!”.
Then there is the game’s soundtrack. It’s a beautifully orchestrated score, which perfectly conveys what’s happening on the screen. One of my favourite moments in the game is when a treasure chest becomes possessed and the sounds of a demonic choirs begins playing in the background. It sounds like it’s something straight out of Omen, the 1976 supernatural horror film. It sent shivers down my spine and made the hair on the back of my neck stand straight up.
Frenetic multiplayer action
Luigi’s Mansion 3 includes a few multiplayer options, which add to the game’s replayability. The story mode features local Co-op play, where each player uses a Joy Con controller. One person plays as Luigi and the second player plays as Gooigi. It took me a little over 15 hours to complete Luigi’s Mansion 3 and of that, several hours were local Co-op play. Having a second player playing as Gooigi is fun and working together to solve puzzles brought a smile on my face more than one.
The second multiplayer mode is called ScareScraper, where a total of 8 players can play either locally or online. Each player plays as a colour variant of either Luigi or Gooigi and focuses on playing as a team. You must work together to clear the ghosts out from a total of 25 floors.
The third and final multiplayer mode is called ScreamPark and my favourite multiplayer mode. Think of it as a mini Mario Party mode. There are three mini-games: Ghost Hunt, Cannon Barrage, and Coin Float. You play on either Team Luigi or Team Gooigi and must score the most points to win. My favourite mini game was Coin Float. In this mini game you ride on a water floaty in a pool and you use the Poltergust-OO to pull or push your self across the water. Bumping into your opponent will send them flying off course.
Luigi’s Mansion 3 is one of my favourite games this year and is a strong contender for game of the year
Luigi’s Mansion 3 absolutely blew my socks off! It was better than I ever imagined it could be and then some. The production values on this game are some of the best I’ve seen in recent memory. Next Level Games has done an incredible job with conveying Luigi’s body language and his fear of ghosts. Visuals are the best yet on Switch and the level of detail that can be seen on Luigi’s hat and overalls during in-game cutscenes is phenomenal.
Luigi’s new moves are not only powerful but must be used throughout the game in order to be successful. All things considered, my favourite new addition is hands down Gooigi. Luigi’s green gooey doppelganger is essential to solve puzzles and advancing throughout the game.
If I was a betting man, I’d put all my money on Luigi’s Mansion 3 being under a lot of Christmas trees this holiday season. Luigi’s Mansion 3 is a system seller and is a game that you should not miss playing.
+ Enhanced gameplay with new useful moves
+ Gooigi serves as a meaningful sidekick to help you along the way
+ Beautiful visuals, animations and sound
+ Hidden items and collectibles around every corner
+ Level of difficulty is just right, not too hard and not too easy
+ Multiplayer modes are fun to play with friends
– The odd occasion I had a bit of trouble aiming the Poltergust-OO
OVERALL ASSESSMENT OF LUIGI’S MANSION 3
Lasting Appeal/Replayability: 4.5/5