LEGO Super Mario blurs the lines between video games and LEGO

LEGO Super Mario Red
LEGO Super Mario Red (Image credit: Nintendo)

What you need to know

  • LEGO Super Mario looks to be a first-of-its-kind product that blurs the lines between videogames and boardgames.
  • These interactive LEGO sets can be pieced together to build levels that the electronic Mario figurine can interact with.
  • LEGO Super Mario launches later this year.

Earlier this week, LEGO and Nintendo teased an upcoming partnership that would surprise everyone, and the final unveiling of LEGO Super Mario is absolutely a surprising product. Half boardgame, half videogame, and all LEGO, LEGO Super Mario is exactly what you would expect from any kind of Mario game, but in a package that you probably wouldn't. While you'd be forgiven for thinking this is just a regular set of LEGO with a Super Mario Theme, it'd be remiss to ignore out the most important part of the puzzle: the electronic components inside each piece.

That's because LEGO Super Mario is, essentially, Super Mario Maker in real life. The video below says it represents "several sets" of LEGO Super Mario, which we would surmise are broken up into level designs. Throughout the trailer, you'll hear familiar tunes from the world of Super Mario, including music from Super Mario level 1-1, the underground level 1-2 theme, and, of course, the infamous Bowser battle music. Players are seen jumping on Goomba's heads, collecting coins, and catching big jumps on the flags at the end of the "level".

LEGO Super Mario Kids And Interactions

LEGO Super Mario Kids And Interactions (Image credit: Nintendo)

While details are relatively light, Nintendo says to expect LEGO Super Mario to launch later this year. Players can build their own Super Mario course using LEGO bricks included in LEGO Super Mario sets and use the electronic Mario figurine to interact with these levels. It's probably safe to assume that there's some sort of meta-game that takes place here and that it's not just a straightforward Mario Party-style boardgame or a vanilla LEGO set.

LEGO has been experimenting with several new ways that users can play and interact with its classic set design, including LEGO Hidden Side sets that feature augmented reality interaction via your smartphone, as well as videogames like LEGO Builder's Journey.

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Nicholas Sutrich

Nick started with DOS and NES and uses those fond memories of floppy disks and cartridges to fuel his opinions on modern tech. Whether it's VR, smart home gadgets, or something else that beeps and boops, he's been writing about it since 2011. Reach him on Twitter or Instagram @Gwanatu