Going For Gold In Mario & Sonic At The Rio 2016 Olympic Games

The Latest in the Mario & Sonic At The Olympic Games franchise pits characters from both the Mario & Sonic universes against each other to compete for Gold Medals in Rio, Brazil. With 14 different events to choose from and various different modes including Tournament, Single Match and the Heroes Showdown. Each mode can be played cooperatively or singular and each single event is based on the events showcased at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games including Football, Boxing, Beach VolleyBall, Gymnatics, and for the first time ever, Rugby Sevens.



There is no story per se except that you are competing in the Olympic games to bring home the gold medal. You have a wide array of Mario & Sonic characters to play with and you can also use your own Mii. In some modes, you can only use your own Mii to compete. You can unlock outfits at the expense of gold rings and coins in the game which can boost or lower stats depending on the sport you are wearing them for.


Gameplay consists mainly of coordinating button pressing which is kind of a let down as what made the first Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games so popular was its use of motion controls which is not present in the later installments in the franchise and it is a bit of a shame as the boxing event would have been more like Wii Sports and less like Mario Party mixed with Punch-Out! The whole button tapping procedure works well enough on the 3DS but if I wanted to button mash rather than swinging controllers around, I would have bought the 3DS


If there is one thing that continues to improve in Mario & Sonic At The Olympic Series, it is most definitely the graphics and Rio 2016 is no different. The graphics are just stunning and a lot of detail has gone into not just the characters and foreground but the background and backdrop really do have incredible detail from the characters in the audience, flag cards and the movement of the clouds in the sky.


The audio is really catchy and is fun to listen to. The sound effects are great too and as always, a lot of them are reformed sound effects from their original respective franchises. Sound is always important, especially in videogames and the audio of this game really does immerse you into the Olympic games and does bring a touch of Rio into your home.

Well, in keeping with our other reviews which are normally penned by Jack Longman, It is time for the Pros & Cons:


  • The Game is fun to play alone and more so with others. In fact it is better to play multiplayer as it maintains the enjoyment and competitiveness a lot better than single player.
  • The events themselves are very varied and offer a lot of different ways to play and techniques which can give you an edge over the competition.
  • The Heroes Showdown is a “New” mode much like Legends Showdown in the previous installment but you get to choose which characters you want to play as and get to choose whether to play as Team Mario or Team Sonic.
  • Amiibo support, Amiibo have a role in this game as well, just as soon as you have accumulated enough medals that is, and can bring you Gold rings or coins to spend at the Kiosk. The Mario & Sonic amiibo will allow you to compete in a number of events which can reward you with a costume of the character in question upon completion.


  • It only has 11 events and 3 dream events which are just elaborate versions of Football, Rugby & Beach Volleyball. Variety does feel a little small after playing for a few hours and can get a little repetitive.
  • Most game modes are restricted from you until you have earned enough medals to unlock them. Amiibo can only be used after having more than 20 or so medals which means you can’t put them to good use until after sinking a good few hours racking up medals.
  • Button controls for a sports game. The first Mario & Sonic Olympics game had it right with the use of motion controls. It does feel like a little bit of a cop-out when it comes down to just tapping A or to execute most actions in a game. This is where I feel that the Wii U has faltered before the 3DS as the 3DS doesn’t have access to Motion Controls and the Wii U has failed to implement them.
  • Some characters are restricted to certain events. For example, Rosalina can only compete in Rhythm Gymnastics and as much as I love seeing her twirling her batons in her Leotard, it is a shame she can’t compete in the swimming or Beach Volleyball.

Closing Thoughts And Final Score

Mario & Sonic At The 2016 Rio Olympic Games had a lot of potential to save a declining franchise but it was not meant to be. I enjoy the game very much and play it a lot with my girlfriend but the drive to be the best in single player just isn’t there and so I am giving this a score that I think is probably more than this game deserves but it does deserve more credit than it gets from most review critics..

Therefor, I shall give this game an modest score of…


If you would like to see some gameplay of the game, be sure to check out our Heroes Showdown video on our YouTube Channel