SSX On Tour Character Spotlight: Mario, Luigi, and Peach

We get a look at Mario and company's guest appearance in SSX On Tour

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EA's upcoming SSX On Tour is the latest entry in its popular snowboarding series that started in 2000. Since its debut, the series has evolved to become a critical and commercial hit that's left fans excited with each installment. What we've seen of On Tour to date has shown the game to be another ambitious entry in the series that plays with the franchise's winning formula. As the game's fall release approaches, rumors have swirled about exclusive content for the GameCube, namely in the form of Mario and company as playable characters, which we confirmed yesterday on our live show. Today we'll run through the basics of the Nintendo crew's presence in the game.

The three characters will be immediately accessible from the start of the game and can be used in multiplayer. The only catch is that whereas you'll have the option to choose a snowboard or skis for other characters in the game, the trio will come preset. Mario and Luigi will be snowboarders, while Peach will be a skier. The trio has been balanced to keep it in line with the rest of the competition, and its members don't handle too differently from the other characters, despite their different appearances. What sets each apart from the rest of the crew is unique special moves that have been tailored to reflect each character's personality.

Of course, if you have three Nintendo characters you'll obviously want someplace special to run them through. Thankfully, the SSX team anticipated that need and offers players a revamped village course that's been tricked out with new artwork, such as mushrooms, coins, and Nintendo signage, to help sell the whole experience.

Up in the air! It's a bird...it's a plane...it's-a Mario!

Though this all had the potential to go horribly wrong, Mario and company actually fit fine in SSX On Tour. The work done on the gameplay to ensure they all fit within the feel of the game is turning out well. As far as the visuals go, yes, the gang looks a little goofy, but its members have been smoothed out to keep from looking too cartoony. As has been the case with the trio's appearance in NBA Street, you can expect to hear authentic voice acting and Nintendo sound effects. SSX On Tour is slated to ship this fall on the GameCube.

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