Luigi's Mansion 3 review: A contender for the best Nintendo Switch game ever

Luigi's Mansion 3 on Nintendo Switch

Luigi's Mansion 3 on Nintendo Switch (Image: NINTENDO)

Luigi's Mansion has had a bit of a tough life. After debuting on the Nintendo Gamecube back in 2002, it was quickly overshadowed by the release of Super Mario Sunshine. Its sequel, Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon, would make its debut to mixed reviews more than ten years later on Nintendo 3DS.

Fortunately, despite concerns about the future of the franchise, Luigi’s Mansion returns with a third instalment for Nintendo Switch - and on Halloween no less.

Proving that good things come to those who wait, Luigi's Mansion 3 is a spine-tinglingly good time. Of course, Nintendo were never going to let one of their main cast-members' first Switch games arrive without some fervour, but Luigi's Mansion 3 really does deliver on everything it sets out to.

The game begins when poor Luigi arrives at a hotel - "The Last Resort" - alongside Mario, Peach, and three Toads. After a quick check-in and a short nap, Luigi awakens to find the hotel is haunted, and all of his friends have been captured and placed in paintings (again).

Luckily, Professor E. Gadd is around to help him get all his friends back, whilst working on thwarting the evil forces who have a vendetta against Mario, Luigi and the rest of the crew.

The set up doesn't take too long, and deftly exercises the mantra practiced by the game itself: Luigi's Mansion 3 gives players all the tools they require to play the game early on, and leaves them to it - much like Super Mario Odyssey.

Through Nintendo's excellent design the game opens up even further on each floor of the hotel, forcing players to figure out exactly how they can use their already established skills in new and unexpected ways.

Each hotel floor has a boss on it, who is usually holding an elevator button. Once this button has been won, the player can then progress to the next floor.

This is the standard progression for the game - and while at first it feels like it may consist of simple hotel rooms over hours of ghost-hunting, these floors quickly escalate in intelligent ways.

Some of the first few floors show off a shopping mall, or auditorium - but it soon becomes outrageous, forcing players into a haunted castle within the hotel itself. It's truly entertaining, and increasingly staggering how well-designed each floor is.

The movie set floor in particular is a highlight of the game, and should be savoured as players work out the intricate puzzle embedded within it.

Truly, the only downfall of Luigi's Mansion 3's gameplay is that, although there are many floors for players to explore, each of them feels cut off just as they graduate to excellency.

Many of the floors have a gimmick for players to get their heads around before presenting its final boss, but it feels as if once the boss has been captured all momentum halts, leaving players to stumble off to the next floor's challenge.

This issue is counteracted a little, however, with the inclusion of the six gems on each floor.

Luigi's Mansion 3 on Nintendo Switch

Luigi's Mansion 3 on Nintendo Switch (Image: NINTENDO)

Luigi's Mansion 3 on Nintendo Switch

Luigi's Mansion 3 on Nintendo Switch (Image: NINTENDO)

The age-old tradition of every Mario game has reared its head once again, as these six gems are to be tracked down in every single floor - for nothing more than bragging rights, really.

Some of Luigi's Mansion 3's biggest challenges lie in finding these gems, as they are hidden deep beneath the weeds of each floor.

These collectibles also show off just how detailed the game is. Every nook and cranny has something to discover, and every aspect of the scenery can-and-should be interacted with; whether it's the Poltergust G-00 (Luigi's new vacuum cleaner); his Strobulb (his weirdly-powerful flashlight); or indeed the new inclusion to the game: Gooigi.

Gooigi, other than being entirely horrifying, is Luigi's goo-clone. Early in the game players are given the ability to summon Gooigi at will, and can switch between playing as either Luigi or Gooigi at any point.

Gooigi has exactly the same abilities as Luigi - just with less health and one huge weakness: Water - and allows players to get to locations previously deemed impossible.

The inclusion of this goo creature allows players to jump through pipes, walk through bars, and scout dangerous areas without harming Luigi.

It is astonishing how incredibly well-used Gooigi is in almost every single puzzle of the game.

And, because there are no consequences to summoning Gooigi and killing him off in an instant, endless fun will be had by players going through rigorous trial-and-error sessions to figure out how to progress in the hotel.

Luigi's Mansion 3 on Nintendo Switch

Luigi's Mansion 3 on Nintendo Switch (Image: NINTENDO)

Once players have a firm grasp on how Gooigi works, the game truly becomes memorable, giving them reason to think outside the box in order to progress through the hotel's floors.

An added bonus to the inclusion of Gooigi is the ability for a second player to take control of him - giving players an easy-route to play with a friend.

And they may certainly need the help, as the game's difficult stumped me more than a few times. As each floor displays unique challenges, some players will certainly latch on to some more than others. Luckily, Professor E. Gadd offers hints and tips through his new communication device: The Virtual Boo.

Following Luigi's trend of always being a little behind in technology, he has since ditched the Game Boy Horror and Dual Scream for a tongue-in-cheek version of Nintendo's infamous Virtual Boy.

This, mostly, acts as a pause screen and hub for players, allowing them to warp back to Gadd's lab and purchase hints and items.

Unfortunately, however, this shop doesn't feel as well fleshed out as Super Mario Odyssey's does.

It offers extra lives (Gold Bones) and hints for finding gems and certain ghosts - but that is pretty much it.

However, Luigi's Mansion 3 certainly doesn't suffer because of it, and players will most-likely ignore it for the duration of the game.

Luigi's Mansion 3 is a masterclass in game design, style, and fun.

With his creepy look, horrifying voice and transformative gameplay, Gooigi is undoubtedly the star of the show, and it will be hard to imagine another Luigi's Mansion game without him.

Newcomers to Luigi's Mansion will be ecstatic with their purchase, and will find countless hours of utter bliss tracking down each hidden gem, and every hidden ghost.

Fans of the franchise: Your Christmas has come early. Luigi's Mansion 3 is the best in the series yet, and perhaps even one of the best first-party games Nintendo has ever produced.

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