New Super Luigi U is a Platform Game in the Super Mario Bros. series, originally released as Downloadable Content for New Super Mario Bros. U. It's one of the three "The Year of Luigi" games, the others being Mario & Luigi: Dream Team and Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon (five if you count Dr. Luigi, a version of Dr. Mario with a new game mode called "Operation L"; and Luigi Bros, a minigame playable in Super Mario 3D World).
As the title suggests, Luigi stars in this installment, which contains much harder courses than the original game. The two Toads also feature, and replacing Mario is Nabbit, who can't use powerups but is not harmed by enemies. Every course has a 100-second timer, and physics are slightly tweaked from New Super Mario Bros U: jumps are slightly higher and floatier, but friction when running or walking is slightly lower.
The game released in late June 2013 for all territories, and a version released on a disc (housed in a snazzy green case, as seen on the right) was released in late July for Europe and in late August in North America. November then saw a new Wii U bundle that came with NSMBU and NSLU together on a single disc.
On January 2019, an Updated Re-release of both games called New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe was released for Nintendo Switch. The main change to New Super Luigi U is that two players cannot play as both Toads at once, as one of them has been replaced with Toadette.
New Super Luigi U provides examples of the following tropes:
- A Day in the Limelight:
- For Luigi. This is made very apparent by the box art, which is based on the one for New Super Mario Bros. U, but has "Bros." crossed out in green paint (in addition to its overall green coloration).
- Nabbit is given a much greater role than in the main game, being promoted to playable.
- Artifact Title: Subverted; "Bros." is omitted from the title, and the game's logo has it crossed out in green paint.
- Ascended Extra:
- Nabbit, going from a recurring nuisance on the world map to a playable character.
- In NSMBU, the Penguin Suit and Propeller Mushroom only appeared in Toad Houses in the special world. In this game, they appear throughout the game and can be gotten from Enemy Courses and Toad (both from Toad Houses and the double-digit flagpole bonus) at nearly any point.
- Badass Normal: Nabbit can't use items, and only gain extra lives from them as if they were 1-Ups. Doesn't stop him from being Nigh-Invulnerable and able to take on Bowser and his crew.
- Checkpoint Starvation: Unlike its source game, there are no checkpoints. Since the levels are much shorter than in the original, you're unlikely to need them anyway.
- Continuity Nod:
- Downloadable Content: The game itself initially released as DLC for New Super Mario Bros. U. However, it can also be purchased standalone with its own case, and later releases bundled both of these games together.
- Easter Egg:
- An image of Luigi is hidden somewhere in every course. Sometimes it's an 8-bit Luigi hidden just out of sight by some movable obstacle or enemy, sometimes it's something more clever, such as his head replacing the skull insignia on one Banzai Bill Blaster or the Bowser head on the bow of one of the Airship stages.
- Using the Nabbit trick in the final course allows you to play as a Mii.
- Expansion Pack: An Expansion Pack to New Super Mario Bros. U, obviously. Though this only counts for the DLC, as you can buy it independently on a disc that doesn't require New Super Mario Bros. U at all.
- Funny Terrain Cross Section: Some of the hidden Luigis are in walls, such as this fossilized one◊.
- Game Mod: About as close as official content is going to get. The world map and music is the same, each level uses the mechanics that were in place in the original level but with a totally new design, the levels tend to be short, but the length varies, they tend to be hard, but the difficulty varies, the bosses are the same but sometimes their arenas are changed... this isn't a bad thing though, as the new levels are well-designed and find new ways to implement existing features.
- The Ghost: Mario. The only references he gets here is his cap inexplicably taking his place in the opening cutscene, the Miiverse letter recipient being changed from Bowser to Mario, and the "M" blocks that show up in every course after beating the game, which changes the physics to that of Mario when you hit them (i.e. lower jump, better traction). This effectively marks this game as the only Year of Luigi game in which Mario doesn't actually appear (he's the other main character in Mario & Luigi: Dream Team, and shows up towards the end of Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon as a Distressed Dude).
- Hard Levels, Easy Bosses: Even more noticeable than in other Mario games, especially compared to New Super Mario Bros. U since they have the same boss fights. While this game is significantly more difficult overall, Luigi's high jumps, combined with their brief vertical stall at the peak, make it extremely easy to time it so you hit bosses immediately after they come out of invincibility.
- Le Parkour: This advertisement for the game.
- Mission-Pack Sequel: The game is essentially a shorter, harder version of New Super Mario Bros. U. Despite being labelled as downloadable content, which typically requires the base game to be played, New Super Luigi U was released as a standalone title in stores at a reduced price.
- Mythology Gag: The disc version is the only Wii U game (until Mario Kart 8) that doesn't have a blue case, instead sticking out from other games on a shelf because of its green case◊ — much like how New Super Mario Bros. Wii stood out because it was the only Wii game that had a red case.
- Nigh-Invulnerable: Nabbit, who can't be harmed by enemies, but is killed by any instant death traps. However, he can be stunned by touching particularly powerful enemies.
- Nintendo Hard: New Super Luigi U is one of the hardest Nintendo games since the SNES era, although it's not quite as unforgiving as Nintendo's games of yore, partly due to the ability to go back to previous courses and grind for lives and powerups.
- No Fair Cheating: Averted. In single-player mode, holding ZL (GamePad/Pro Controller) or B (Wii Remote) when entering courses will let you play as Nabbit, who is immune to all enemy attacks. You can make actual progress with him and the game will not fault you for it. The only real penalty is that the inability to use powerups may prevent you from collecting some Star Coins with him. However, in the Deluxe version (as with the main New Super Mario Bros. U game), beating a course with Nabbit won't count it as cleared for 100% completion purposes.
- Promoted to Playable:
- Nabbit, who can't be harmed by enemies but is unable to use powerups.
- Although your Miis are playable in NSMBU's challenges, they can't be used in that game's main mode. Not so in this game, as they can be played in the final course, Flying Squirrel Ovation, by using the same code that lets you play as Nabbit in other courses.
- Rise to the Challenge: Soda Jungle-7, "Wiggler Floodlands", has you bouncing on Wigglers to escape a vertically-headed poison flood.
- Skill Gate Characters: Nabbit is billed as one; he's invincible to most enemies and obstacles, but he also can't take certain Star Coins due to not being able to use powerups.
- Timed Mission: Each course starts off with only 100 seconds on the clock, significantly less than in the base game. This turns most courses into a mad dash for the goal. In castles, towers, and airships, getting to the door/pipe that leads to the boss will give the players some extra time for the battle.
- Video Game Cruelty Potential: Nabbit can't use powerups, but he can still grab them, preventing other players from getting them. In addition, should Nabbit reach the goal flag, all powerups taken from the other player(s) will grant Nabbit extra lives.