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Does Mario earn XP and level up in Paper Mario: The Origami King?

Paper Mario Origami King
Paper Mario Origami King (Image credit: Nintendo)

Does Mario earn XP and level up in Paper Mario: The Origami King?

Best answer: No. Continuing in the vein of Color Splash and Sticker Star, The Origami King does not allow Mario to earn experience points as he defeats enemies in battle, nor does it include a leveling up system.Enter the fold: Paper Mario: The Origami King (opens in new tab) ($60 at Amazon)

How do we know there is no XP or leveling up?

Some gaming journalists have been able to check out Paper Mario: The Origami King before the game released.

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They've been able to share some information including the fact that Mario doesn't earn experience points when battling enemies and that Mario doesn't level up.

The battle systems in past Paper Mario games

If you played the first games in the Paper Mario series, then you're well aware that those games followed a more traditional RPG formula. The original franchise entries required Mario to grow stronger by defeating enemies and leveling up his various stats. The games were well balanced and didn't allow for players to grind so far as to overpower Mario and his partners.

However, the last two games in the franchise have done away with experience points as the developers have pursued a more action-based combat system. In the case of The Origami King, it appears as though there's also been a push to turn battles into Rubik's cube-esque puzzles as seen with the Battle Ring System. Basically, players slide various sections of the arena around to line up enemies so Mario can make the most effective attacks.

So, what's the point of battling in The Origami King?

Paper Mario Origami King

Paper Mario Origami King (Image credit: Nintendo)

Since you don't earn XP for battling foes, you might be tempted to rush past enemies and avoid them at all costs while rushing through dungeons or various locals in the upcoming Paper Mario game. However, we caution against doing this too much. In the last two Paper Mario games, there were instances where you couldn't progress further in the story unless you defeat certain enemies.

For example, in Color Splash, you must locate several hidden Toads before being able to unlock certain parts of the game. At Fort Cobalt, one of these Toads is disguised as a Blue Snifit. You only realize that it is indeed a Toad if you defeat it in battle, which then allows you to progress in the game. In addition to that, while you might not earn XP from battles in The Origami King, you can acquire coins for defeating enemies. If this game is like some of its predecessors, you're definitely going to need a lot of moolah to purchase different items or unlock certain areas of the map.

Additionally, you must actually defeat King Olly and the Legion of Stationary to beat the game. So it's probably a good idea to get some practice in with the Battle Ring System before getting to these bosses.

Rebecca Spear
Gaming Editor

Gaming aficionado Rebecca Spear is iMore's dedicated gaming editor with a focus on Nintendo Switch and iOS gaming. You’ll never catch her without her Switch or her iPad Air handy. If you’ve got a question about Pokémon, The Legend of Zelda, or just about any other Nintendo series check out her guides to help you out. Rebecca has written thousands of articles in the last six years including hundreds of extensive gaming guides, previews, and reviews for both Switch and Apple Arcade. She also loves checking out new gaming accessories like iPhone controllers and has her ear to the ground when it comes to covering the next big trend.