The next 'Super Mario' game looks absolutely stunning

Remember your old pal Super Mario, the mustachioed tradesman who spends more time stomping on mushroom-shaped bad guys than fixing sinks? He’s back!

Well, ok, he’s “back” an awful lot. Nintendo trots out Mario more than Apple uses hyperbole. You’re forgiven if you’ve written off major Mario games as little more than the continuing lifeblood of Nintendo platforms. But you shouldn’t take that approach to “Super Mario Maker,” which arrives on September 11 for Wii U.

It’s essentially a best of the best Mario game.

It collects the original NES “Super Mario Bros.,” “Super Mario Bros. 3,” “Super Mario World,” and “New Super Mario Bros. U,” adds dozens of new, Nintendo-crafted levels, and enables players to make whatever Mario game they want with a toolbox full of Nintendo’s greatest Mario games. You’re not convinced, are you? Here, look at this:

It’s basically a mash-up of Nintendo’s greatest 2D Mario games.

Here’s a look at some of the best creations we’ve seen from “Mario Maker’s” early days.

In 'Super Mario Maker,' you can create your very own Mario levels using a simple editor that works logically with the Wii U's tablet-style gamepad. This is how simple it is to pop out from the game to the editor:

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There's a mess of stuff in the editor that you'll remember from your childhood. It's basically a nostalgia editor.

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Nintendo has thankfully provided an example of the amazing -- and nightmarish -- levels that can be created with 'Super Mario Maker.' Here's a taste:

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Beyond just creating standard Mario levels, 'Super Mario Maker' allows you to remix the standard mechanics of the classic franchise. Want to make a goomba extra large? How about cannons that shoot coins?

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Or perhaps you'd like to put Bowser smack in the middle of a level? Or maybe build a pyramid of goombas guarded by a massive koopa troopa? YOU TOTALLY CAN.

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'Super Mario Maker' incentivizes players to use the level creation tools by making it into a sort of meta-game. The more time you spend creating, the more you'll unlock to create with!

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In this example, a level has been created (in the 'New Super Mario Bros. U' style) that uses musical blocks to play a song as you run through the level. Apparently, where you place the musical blocks (height-wise) impacts the pitch: the higher it is in height, the higher it is in pitch.

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There are six different 'themes' for the levels you create, and all six can be swapped in each of the different Mario games within 'Super Mario Maker.' Here's a look at those themes through the scope of the original 'Super Mario Bros.':

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The various elements within each of the Mario games change on-the-fly as you swap from 'Super Mario Bros.' to 'Super Mario Bros. 3' to 'Super Mario World' and beyond. Here's a look at everyone's favourite Koopa across each of the games within 'Super Mario Maker':

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After you've created a functioning level (read: can be completed), Nintendo says you can easily share it with the world. You can also download other people's levels.

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Here's a look at the online shop in action. It's not clear how large level files are, or how long they will take to download, but we're guessing not very long. Also, being able to download levels means INFINITE MARIO.

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But maybe you'd rather not spend too much time digging into level creation, or exploring for other people's levels. That's understandable! Nintendo's got a solution for you: '100 Mario Challenge.' You get 100 lives to beat a collection of original courses in a row. Basically it's a custom Mario game created on-the-fly.

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There's also a version with just 10 lives for the more 'hardcore' players.

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Not to be forgotten, Nintendo is making use of its massively successful toys-to-life platform, amiibo. After buying one of the many, many amiibo figures, stick it on your Wii U gamepad to add that character into the game. Just like that, Mario becomes Link, Bowser, or any other Nintendo character.

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Seeing your favourite non-Mario Nintendo characters suddenly appear in a Mario game is a perfect mash-up of nostalgia and innovation.

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And yes, of course, Nintendo is releasing a special 8-bit Mario amiibo. Using it adds a special mushroom that makes Mario extra large. It also adds an adorable little mustache to all of Mario's enemies.

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There are already some amazing levels created by people out in the wild, despite the game not coming out on Wii U until September 11. Here's a look at three levels that 'play' themselves -- all you do is push to the right and keep pushing. The rest takes care of itself!

And here's the amazing video where all these GIFs are from. Enjoy it while we collectively wait for the game's launch on September 11.

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