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I honestly think Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time is the best Mario & Luigi game, and this coming from someone who fondly grew up and loved Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga.
What beats SS is the story. The story is very dark for a Mario game and darker than the other games where we have an actual hostile alien invasion in the peaceful world of Mario and the Mushroom Kingdom. A force greater than Bowser that wants to conquer Mario's world and kill whoever gets in the way. They murdered Toads and destroyed many innocent lives mercilessly. Even worse, this is when Mario and friends are just toddlers! Mario, Luigi, and their past selves team up to fight off the alien invasion, and this means that the aliens will kill anybody, even innocent children!
The Shroob Queen's menacing final form, the desolate background with dark and thundery skies, you're on a small floating platform with nowhere to run, Peach is passed out and no longer able to help you out, and when Mario and Luigi pass out, the final hope of the world is Baby Mario and Baby Luigi fighting against a giant tentacle monster alien! All of this combined with this chilling and ominous final battle music by Yoko Shimomura makes for one of the best final battles in a Mario game or RPG I have ever played!
I love playing this battle over and over and I always get chills when I get to this part because I desperately have to keep the adults alive because I get massive chills and super nervous when I have to use little innocent babies to fight and they can very well DIE. Plus, when one of the babies die and the other baby picks him up and carries him, my heart breaks so much...Mario and Luigi never give up on each other, not even as babies.
Superstar Saga and Partners in Time are the two most memorable games in the Mario & Luigi series and you don't want to miss these two for your first time playing.
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