The next big Mario game on Switch is ready to unfold before our eyes: that’s right, we’re getting a new Paper Mario game titled The Origami King.
The first game in the Paper Mario series since 2016’s Color Splash on the Wii U is due this summer, following a surprise reveal in May 2020. Here’s what we know about the new Mario RPG.
When is the Paper Mario: The Origami King release date?
Paper Mario is set to release on Switch worldwide on 17 July 2020. You can pre-order it now from Nintendo, Amazon, or Game in the UK, or from Nintendo, Amazon, or Best Buy in the US.
Unsurprisingly, The Origami King will be a Switch exclusive, so you’ll need to own either the Switch or the cheaper Switch Lite console to be able to play it.
Watch the Origami King trailer
The only trailer of the new Paper Mario so far is the announcement trailer that Nintendo dropped in mid-May, but it gives a pretty good idea of what to expect:
What to expect from The Origami King
First up, the good news: Nintendo is touting this as a return to the classic Paper Mario RPG format after the divergence of Sticker Star and Color Splash, which were both a bit more action-heavy.
This time Paper Mario will be up against Olly, the Origami King, who has stolen Princess Peach’s castle. Mario will have to follow five massive streamers flowing out of the castle to unfold the plot, visiting a forest spring, autumn mountain, ninja mansion, underground sewer, and desert oasis along the way.
Nintendo followed up the announcement trailer with a 5-minute video focusing on gameplay, which does a great job of explaining roughly how The Origami King will play:
Mario will be joined by the origami creature Olivia, who can use her paper folding powers to help solve puzzles and give Mario some nifty combat abilities like the ‘1000-Fold Arms’. Other support characters will include an amnesic Bob-omb, a history professor Toad, and even the normally-evil witch Kamek.
Combat is turn-based and uses a new ring combat system, with various rings extending out from Mario at the centre. At the beginning of each fight you’ll have a limited amount of time and moves to reposition enemies by rotating the rings, trying to line enemies up or clump them together, so you can strike as many targets as possible with each attack.
Jump attacks will hit multiple enemies in a line, while the hammer will bash a few clustered together. Other attack options we’ve seen so far include the fire flower, POW block, and Tanuki tail, but you can bet there’ll be more.
Each of the five streamers will be guarded by a member of the Legion of Stationery: fierce bosses particularly well-suited to flattening paper. They include a 12-piece set of coloured pencils, a giant made out of rubber bands, and a roll of tape – fierce foes indeed.
Boss battles look a little different too, with the boss at the centre of the rings, not Mario. Instead of rotating the rings to position enemies you’ll have to turn them to create a path for Mario to follow to reach the boss at the centre, via as many power-ups as possible.
Outside of combat there’ll be loads of mini-games and side quests, including aerial battles, axe throwing, and more. There are the inevitable collectibles too: hidden chests, holes in the paper landscape to fix, and lost Toads folded up into other forms.
Check out our full guide to other upcoming games for more big titles on the way.