EDICOLA NEWS: THE REVIEWS nr. 304
album: Super Mario play time (Panini)
stickers: 176 (1-144, M1-M32)
starter pack: album + packets + 2 cards limited
box: 24 packets (5 stickers per packet) 0,90€ each
special pack: 8 packets + 1 card limited 6,90€
blister: 5 packets 4,50€ cad.
The film released in cinemas is a blockbuster, as was the tradition in the good old days, the sticker album also arrives on newsstands. The King of video games has renewed, his universe of characters has multiplied, the charm is always the same. So long live Super Mario.
The album made by Panini has an excellent chance of entering the Top Chart 2023 which we publish at the beginning of December. There are many aspects that make it unique but hopefully repeatable, other superfluous aspects made to spend and for the few who are interested, but which do not affect the possibility of completing the album. This must be the main road, if Panini wants to continue to make a surplus, he is free to do so, but without this having to affect those who love the old, immortal, classic idea of wanting, perhaps even just “trivially”, to complete the album.
We add that fortunately the publisher is betting a lot on the Super Mario product, in 2022 the card collection was released, also one of the best of the year, now the sticker version is out. To each his own album, we are safe from terrifying and expensive mixes. However, here too there are 5 limited cards, perhaps more interesting for those who have collected the previous album.
Easily recoverable set of cards, three are present in the special packs (Luigi, Bowser, Yoshi) recognizable before purchase; two in the starter pack (Mario, Peach), while we write not yet available, we hope it will be available by the end of April. In this way, however, those who want to have the 5 cards can recover them, those who are only interested in the album and its beautiful stickers can simply avoid them.
Variety, this is the basic motif of the album. Many different pages, with many special stickers and a long and inspired introduction to the world of video games, indeed, we could say the video game par excellence, which covers different generations of enthusiasts.
It may seem that page after page a logical thread is not being followed, if you have this feeling it is because Panini makes the choice, in our opinion correct, not to dedicate the album to the storytelling of the film. It would have been a missed opportunity.
It is certainly a suitable product that those who know the video game universe will be pleased to recognize and find again the many characters, Mario’s power-ups, interspersed with references to the film’s adventure. The quality of the matte paper makes you forget the desperation with the productions of the last few years, we are really on the right track.
Since we are talking about a video game, the sticker album cannot be outdone, many opportunities to interact and all the charm of the splash pages, full of shaped stickers, which we had already seen in beloved albums such as Zagor’s. Great result and great fun sticking the stickers.
The cardboard solution of the central part with the 32 stickers numbered M, special both as stickers and for the heroes and villains of the video game that are represented, makes the album even more compact. Not only that, the message cards that can be detached are positioned so that, possibly, the rest of the album cannot be affected.
The attention to detail is certainly an added value, the second part of the album is perhaps less attractive at first glance, but has the advantage of presenting the Super Mario universe, a very classic solution which is not necessarily a defect for a sticker album. The first pages before the central insert, however, are really something else.
Grand finale with other games, tests and even the last coloring page. On the back cover, don’t go and peek first, find the solutions!
We wrote at the beginning of the parallel variants that are ok for those who want to dedicate part of their salary to these “Americanates”, but those who are not interested are not obliged and can easily collect the album. Out of a basic set of 176 stickers to complete the album, we even find 192 parallels, a blunder but in reality if you don’t get carried away in the madness of finding them all, it can be a nice and fun extra that also makes your album unique, having maybe an attached sticker that isn’t the same as that of your classmate or nerdy friend.
We never pretend or have the arrogance to think that our reviews and comments can even be food for thought for publishers, but we appreciate when good choices are made. In this case with multiple meanings: the quality of the collection, the limited number of total stickers, the same variety of stickers offered, the non-invasive extras for those who just want to collect an album. So many things in one album, which becomes not the exception but the rule!