Like I talked about in the game’s review, Super Mario Odyssey is simply fun. And, even when players believe they are close to done between the main storyline objectives and plethora of Power Moons to collect, the game is far from it. This is because, once the story’s final objective is completed and the credits roll, the game is showered with even more content that will keep players coming back for hours; many, many hours.
As a general warning, since this is a guide covering post-story content in the game, please be warned that it will probably contain spoilers. So, players that have not finished the main storyline or ones that want to discover all of this content on their own may want to wait a bit before reading the article.
The first section that welcomes players upon their return from the game’s credits is Mushroom Kingdom. For some players, this might not be a surprise since there is a painting earlier in the adventure that transports Mario here and even grants him his first Star. Yes, I said “Star”. Power Moons in the Mushroom Kingdom take the shape of good old Super Mario 64 Stars, INCLUDING the celebratory sound bit.
Princess Peach is nowhere to be found in Mushroom Kingdom and no one has any idea of where she has gone. It just seems she packed a bag and went off. That is okay though; there is plenty to do in Mushroom Kingdom and the first thing players may want to do is walk into the very familiar castle. The inside is pretty much an updated version of the original Mario 64 castle including the circular welcome carpet and music. Up the central stairs sits the throne and next to it is Toadette.
Toadette is Mario Odyssey’s version of trophies or challenges. Unknown to players, the game has been keeping track of a lot of little details and Toadette will grant Mario Power Moons for each challenge that they have completed while also adding the entire list of challenges (and their progress trackers) to the Mushroom Kingdom Power Moon list. Chances are that by the time players talk to her for the first time, she will already a have a nice chunk of Stars for them. Challenges go from completing the individual Kingdom story objectives, to how many coins and Moons Mario has collected, to how many times the mustachioed hero has jumped or thrown Cappy. Every detail of the game probably has a challenge attributed to it so keep an eye on that Power Moon list for any that are close to complete.
Disclaimer: Mario has to talk to Toadette for EACH new challenge completed. This can make that initial conversation take a few minutes as she says her few words and Mario does his celebratory jump for every Power Star.
Once back out of the castle, players will find that Mushroom Kingdom has the standard fare of Koopa races, sheep herding, seed planting, Goombette romance and compact platforming challenges. But, it has several unique features and plenty of homages to Super Mario 64.
Yoshi hangs out here. Find the scarecrow near the castle moat and it will make steps to the castle’s roof appear. Up on the roof, Mario will find Yoshi’s egg. Do not be a fool though and try to mount the green dinosaur. This is Mario Odyssey! Throw Cappy at Yoshi and get ready to run around the entire area using your tongue as a wall grappling hook and eating all the red fruit scattered across the kingdom. There is even one platforming challenge area designed around Yoshi. It is a lot of fun and made me wish he was more prominent in other Kingdoms in the game.
Super Mario 64 Attire! Yes, get enough Mushroom Kingdom purple coins and head over to the shop quickly to buy them. With both on, Mario gets to sport his 64 bit look in all its polygonated glory. But wait, there is more! Look around the kingdom for a Toad wearing the 64-bit cap next to a locked door. If Mario is wearing the outfit, Toad will unlock the door. Walk inside for a full-on Mario 64 themed courtyard. I wish they had done a bit more with it but it was still a fun trip down memory lane. Nintendo, give us a re-imagined Bob-omb Battlefield!
Harder versions of all bosses can be found across the Kingdom; mostly within the castle towers. Walk inside them, and many other nooks and crannies within the Kingdom, to find old-school Super Mario 64 rooms with a large painting of their respective boss. Jump through the painting to face a more difficult version of the Kingdom bosses already encountered.
Tough 8-bit Challenge. Jump down a well near one of the edges of the Kingdom to land on a classic 8-bit textured platform and get ready to sweat Bullet Bills. The 8-bit section contained within this area is totally insane! It begins as the equivalent of a scrolling background side scrolling challenge while matrix dodging a plethora of Bullet Bills. Then, it becomes a twisted version of 8-bit Super Mario Galaxy, forcing Mario to jump from planetoid to planetoid while avoiding enemies, keeping up with constantly changing controls (due to running around a circle shape) and maintaining good enough timing to not fall off the 8-bit background. If there is more beyond this, I have no idea since, as of this writing, I still have not beat this segment.
More To Do On Every Kingdom
Ready to take a break from Mushroom Kingdom? That is great because there are plenty of Moons and secrets to discover in all the other Kingdoms; beyond what players might have missed on their first pass.
Moon Blocks.. Through my initial run of the game, I noticed these large solid metal blocks but had no idea what they were for. Go back to each Kingdom post-credits and Cappy will make a remark about them now. Throwing Cappy at the solid metal blocks will activate them, making them light up, spin around and ultimately shoot out into the sky raining new Power Moons across the Kingdom. These are NEW Power Moons previously not on the list for each Kingdom and are marked as such on the Moon List. Their locations are also marked on the map with yellow X’s which highly encouraged me to immediately go after them. The Moon Block will also add a few square shaped warp pipes (with the same blocky metal surface as the Moon Block) that lead to new platforming challenge areas.
Koopa Races in each Kingdom become available at some point within the main storyline. As their name suggests, Mario is pinned against a few Koopa Troopas in a race to a spot on the map, marked by a beam of light. Winning the standard race is not that difficult, granted that players keep an eye out for shortcuts. Upon activating the Moon Block, a harder version of the race becomes available for a second Power Moon reward. This version adds a golden and much more challenging Koopa Troopa to the race. Gold Koopa has additional abilities which will allow him to take shortcuts similar to Mario. Because of this, players will have a much harder time beating him in some of the Kingdoms.
Deep Woods? There is more to the Wooded Kingdom than initially meets the eye. While trying to obtain a Power Moon located on top of the south east wall, I accidentally fell off its outside edge. I casually looked away, preparing myself to try again upon re-spawning. But, when I looked back at the screen, I was surprised to see Mario was very much alive and not back at the last checkpoint flag I had hit. Instead, we were standing in a clearing within a very dark and ominous forest. I was completely flabbergasted. This is an area that even players who thoroughly play the game could potentially miss. As expected, there are several Moons within this area; none of which are particularly challenging, granted players do not get lost since there is no map of the zone and very few landmarks useful for orientation. Oh, and a friendly warning, the T-Rex is not friendly.
Peach and Tiara’s Journey. Like I mentioned above, Peach is nowhere to be found in Mushroom Kingdom when players first arrive after the story is completed. Do not fret though! Peach and Tiara have decided to go on their own journey through the Kingdoms. So, as players revisit each kingdom, keep an eye out for the pair. Finding them and talking with Peach within each Kingdom will grant you a Power Moon. I personally went back to the Cap Kingdom first and saw them there, at which point Peach always mentions where they are planning to go next, which seems to match the order in which Mario traveled through the kingdoms in the first place so I am not sure if she can be found in any order or this “discovery” order.
Dark Side of the Moon
So, aside from fun and a feeling of completion, is there a reason to go back through the Kingdoms to collect both old and new Power Moons? Yes! Upon gathering two hundred and fifty Moons, the Odyssey will now have enough power to travel to the Dark Side of the Moon. Being part of the Moon Kingdom, this new area sports a similar look and lack of gravity as the last story zone in the game. The highlight here is a boss rush of all the Broodal encounters. The challenge? These are harder versions of the fights, there is lower gravity to contend with and there are no checkpoint flags or health pickups throughout the whole sequence.
After all of them are defeated, the area opens up with more Power Moons to collect. Bad news: a lot of these Power Moons involve interpreting those cryptic image hints and going to other Kingdoms to obtain their respective Power Moons.
Darker Side of the Moon
At five hundred Power Moons the Odyssey will reach enough power to travel to the Darker Side of the Moon. Seriously, how far can it be from the already visited Dark Side of the Moon? Either way, once there, Mario is greeted by inhabitants from all nations in a sort of celebration. This includes Pauline and her troupe performing “Jump Up, Super Star!”. After approaching a few of the guests, players will quickly realize there is more to this than meets the eye. All inhabitants warn that there is one more challenge for Mario to overcome and this might very well be the toughest yet.
This is no joke. After a short and initially troublesome frog climb and a warp pipe, Mario is dropped back into a lava covered platforming challenge; the hardest within the game. Not only is it challenging, but it is also very long and provides no checkpoints along the way; players will need to complete it from start to finish in one go without dying. And dying is easy considering one little mistake can make you fall down an abyss or begin a frantic and unavoidable lava cooking session.
It took me, personally, about two weeks of on-and-off attempts to finally complete this area. It was an amazing feeling but it was also a little bit exhausting since I had a hard time allowing myself to do anything else within the game before completing it.
There Is Probably Much More
The size and amount of content within Super Mario Odyssey is easy to miss at first, especially for players that do not stray far off the path laid out by the story objectives. At this point, I have played the game for a good chunk of time and collected a bit over half the Power Moons it has to offer and there are still details my friends mention that I have not yet experienced. This amazes me and also means that there might be more than a few items missing from this list so do not forego your own wondrous exploration. If you happen find something new, throw me a comment!
This might turn out to be one of those titles that I continue to revisit on-and-off for years to come.
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