Oh man, I busted my own chops repeatedly and I finally got a sweet score in the new downloadable Coin Challenge Pack A for New Super Mario Bros. 2! And now to see how this score stacks up against the rest of the world by logging onto the online leaderboards that they said I can compete on! It's not a great score, only like 16,000 but... oh who cares I am so excited!!! So, how do I get to these leaderboards. Looks like I can't do it in the game, huh. Well first I have to go to Nintendo's website I suppose. Oh, maybe I gotta click the Mario part to go to the New Super Mario Bros 2 website. Where are they? Because I am clairvoyant, I will click this tiny little Coin Rush box. Not yet. Gotta scroll all the way down to the bottom of the page. It is showing the first DLC pack, but apparently you can click the icon for the second pack. And hey, it's the leaderboards, awesome! Wait.

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Hey look, it is the top five scores. But there are no other scores. Where is my score? Whose scores are these? I have no idea because there are no names or any sort of other indicators. What place did I get? Who knows! Who am I competing against? 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. The top score is the maximum amount of coins possible in a Coin Rush mode run, 30,000. How long until all five are 30,000? How long until "these" "leaderboards" are even more completely fuckin' worthless than they are now? I give it a few more Daily Updates tops. What a joke.

Sadly, this almost unbelievable bout of incomprehensible idiocy is only one of the absurd litany of problems that plague the barely-implemented New Super Mario Bros. 2 DLC and its semi-functional Coin Rush mode.

Let's say, alright, I am a forgiving man, I am somehow already over these five-percent-baked public idiot leaderboards of big stupid. That's cool I can at least see how I did against my friends, right? OH SHIT NO Nintendo does not like it when I compare scores with my friends, how silly of me to forget. Anyway, the best kind of improvement is personal improvement! I will just compare this score to the other scores I have personally gotten on the pack ohhhhhhhhhhhhh wait there is no high score list for these packs. Or any packs in Coin Rush mode, actually. Or any indication whatsoever that I have ever finished the damned packs at all! "Well Fuck"™

At least I can play them again to collect the three big coins in each level, there has to be some kind of record of that, right? No. Oh, but I beat the target score listed on the pack, there has to be some kind of record of that, right? No. At least I can go back and play the last level of that really hard pack just to practice on it, right? NO

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Goddammit Nintendo my BRAINS!!!!

The biggest goddamned problem with the NSMB2 downloadable packs is that their implementation is almost wholly broken. It's a real shame because the levels themselves are great! But why is it that they must exist entirely separate from all the features of the game itself, sectioned away like a leprous old rot-man, in a tiny vacuum? I get that they're the StreetPass packs, that is all fine and good. They are designed to be played three-at-a-time, for competition, for personal challenge! You don't need to extol the virtues of the Coin Rush mode, I love it and play it all the time and it has propelled the stupid game into my top three via Activity Log.

But I mainly play it because I get StreetPass tags, because I have "numbers" to go up against, even if they're the numbers of faceless strangers. If I didn't get many StreetPass tags very often, like "the majority of players in the United States," I might feel a little less motivation with no scores to go up against. You see, when nobody challenges me via StreetPass in these new DLC packs—and nobody has yet—I don't have much of an occasion to play them. And I want to play them, I do! Cause I just bought them. But what motivation do I have, what reason is there for me to play them more than a couple times, other than adding to my already-massive coin total?

"Maybe I can compete against other high scorahahahah"

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Any possible argument you could leverage in favor of Nintendo's implementation here would have to do with the fact that the levels are meant to be run three-at-a-time, for score, in one shot. But that is just a total bunch of shit because the system is absolutely not designed around such play whatsoever.

Here's a totally reasonable couple of ideas on how to fix up this shitshow that nobody will ever read or listen to: there should be another world tacked onto the main game map itself, like they have the Mushroom and Flower and Star worlds now. Make it the damned Coin World! I do not care. But this world should hold the DLC levels, so you can collect their three big coins and have it count, so you can play them as part of the game. Let me actually play the levels I buy, you know? Maybe that is too much to ask.

Here's another one, how about a high score list for your own Coin Rush performances? This is so fucking required for this kind of game that it honestly sorta blows my mind that there isn't one. What on earth?! There have been games that barely even have things to track that still have local high score lists. Arcade games have literally had high score lists almost universally since 1978. Can you imagine any score attack game ever not actually having a way to keep track of your scores? Don't gotta imagine too hard—here it is it's called New Super Mario Bros. 2.

While I am at it, why is there even a hard limit of 30,000 coins per run at all? I ask in all honesty and seriousness, as a level-headed piece of shit that really likes Nintendo games, in what way does adding a coin limit to Coin Rush mode at all enhance the enjoyment or fun or lessen the frustration for any game player? Games have done away with easily attainable score caps since the day they had enough goddamned memory to hold that extra integer. What on earth is the point of playing a game mode designed around score that has a score cap so low that with a modicum of skill and a dash of sneakery you can go well over it and have all those extra coins just shaved off the top? The 30,000 coin limit is so obviously stupid that you can't even beat someone who tags you with a 30,000 coin record in StreetPass, even if you also get 30,000 against them. Trust me, I checked.

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For as much as Nintendo has gone on and on about how they are totally committed to "doing DLC the right way" and listening to fan feedback, and how they have insisted that they are working on the DLC levels after having already shipped the game, and how they no seriously really guys are not already on the cartridge, I can't help but be cautiously skeptical. The nine levels together, all three packs, are a download that is seven blocks in size. That is slightly less than one megabyte. I suppose it is possible that all we're getting in the download is level coordinates and a few pack icons. But are they really listening to fan feedback? This is not what we had in mind when we asked for online leaderboards, guys. And what the heck is the point of a GOLD RUSH pack that literally showers you with coins when the limit is still 30,000? The ultra-difficult Nerve-Wrack pack is great, but overcoming that challenge and finishing it isn't worth a shit when there's no way to even show you ever did it.

Nintendo, I bought the three DLC packs on the first day, despite suffering numerous existential quandaries prior to forking over my cash. I played through them a few times, working to beat the target scores. And then I beat one, and nothing happened, and there was no record of me ever having done so, and if I play the thing again, I will not be going up against anyone else's scores, or my friends' scores, or any of my scores. I will be going up against nothing, for nothing, with no record of ever having done so, no matter how well or or how poorly I perform. Where the hell is the fun in that?

Here is my "fan feedback," delivered most earnestly: I am having such a hard time figuring out where the fun is that it makes me kinda sad that I might not even buy the next round of DLC for what is nearly my most-played game of the 3DS era. If there was any game ever that I was totally the ideal kind of guy to buy the DLC for, who has hungrily consumed all the available content, who wants to keep on playing this game as long as I can, it is me! I want to buy it, I want to set scores. I want to, real bad!

But what good is doing the same thing over and over if I'm only doing it to feel like I'm getting what I paid for, instead of because it's fun?