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Review

Luigi’s Mansion 2 HD Review

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When I put my hand up to preview and ultimately review this one, I was sure I could just burst through the game because I had reviewed it only a mere ten years ago. Now, either my memory is entirely shot, or perhaps the game didn’t stick with me as much as I thought it did.

I reviewed the Nintendo 3DS version of Luigi’s Mansion 2 quite highly. I recall it as one of my favourite 3DS games and a game my now wife and I played together. But playing it back now, aside from a few set pieces, I don’t remember it at all. I’m stuck right between the two most likely groups of people to buy this: those who have never played it before and are wondering how it compares to Luigi’s Mansion 3, and those who have played it and are wondering why it’s full price.

Screenshot captured in docked mode

Luigi’s Mansion 2 throws Luigi back into ghostbusting action at the behest of Professor E. Gadd. The professor is locked away in his bunker as the Dark Moon has shattered into pieces, causing all the ghosts to become evil and angry. Luigi is set to clear out a series of mansions, restore the Dark Moon, and figure out who’s behind it all. Luigi’s Mansion 2 plays out across a series of missions, with Luigi returning to the bunker at the end of each for a score and ranking. The game’s portable roots are evident here compared to the other games in the series.

Screenshot captured in docked mode

E. Gadd’s Poltergust 5000 returns, and Luigi will use it throughout the game not only to suck up ghosts, but also to pick up things, set fire to objects, and use it in reverse to move things around. It’s a pretty versatile little vacuum. The Poltergust is fitted with a torch as well, which helps look around and stuns ghosts before vacuuming them up. Unlike the Nintendo 3DS, the Switch has two analogue sticks, moving with the second stick, which is a significant improvement over the original game. You no longer need have just a slide pad and can quickly slam the stick in the opposite direction of the ghost to capture it. There’s also the Dark Light torch, which reveals hidden objects and doors. If you can’t figure out what to do next, it’s probably hidden.

Screenshot captured in docked mode

Additionally, there are gyro controls for moving the nozzle up and down to assist with your ghostbusting. Along the way the Poltergust 5000 can be upgraded to improve its suction ability, and there’s also an upgrade for the Dark Light. It’s basically the only thing in the game currency is used for, so just collect a lot of it: the upgrades help out a lot, but aside from some tense battles toward the end of the game, it’s not overly difficult.

Each of the game’s missions varies in length‚ÄĒthey’re neither too long nor too short‚ÄĒbut if you run out of health, you’ll have to start from scratch and lose all the money you spent all that time collecting. There is a golden bone hidden in each level that gives you a second chance, as the delightful Polterpup will come and wake you up with a slobbering lick.

Screenshot captured in docked mode

E. Gadd will eventually pull you out of the level, but not before calling you on the Nintendo DS-esque “Dual Scream” about five thousand times of the course of the game to let you know what’s going on or to advance the story. I love the ringtone this thing has, but I was over E. Gadd’s interjections by the end.

The game will take you about 15 hours to complete the story, but there’s plenty of additional content, including gems to find, ghosts to log in the vault, and a hidden Boo to discover in each stage. If you’re aiming to collect everything, expect to double that time.

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The game’s multiplayer is a great addition to the overall package. I will preface this by saying I was unable to play any of it on the Switch before launch, but I do have hours of experience with it on the 3DS‚ÄĒand it hasn’t changed. Scarescraper (or The Thrill Tower, as it was known in Australia on the 3DS version) returns with three different modes to play through. Hunter is probably the best of the bunch, as you and up to three other friends search for ghosts floor by floor to clear stages as fast as possible. In Rush mode, the exit is hidden, and by defeating ghosts and finding items, you’ll extend your searching time. Polterpup mode hides the ghost-doggie around the stage, and you have to hunt him out with the Dark-Light. These modes are playable both locally and online.

Publisher provided screenshot

Pretty much everything about Luigi’s Mansion 2 on the Switch is the same as the 3DS version, and that’s great‚ÄĒit‚Äôs a fantastic game. The one area where a lot of work has been put in is the graphics. It’s far from a complete overhaul, but every texture has been touched up, every main character model swapped out for a higher-geometry one (likely from Luigi’s Mansion 3), and the game world has been tweaked and enhanced throughout.

The texture work reminded me of the look of Twilight Princess HD on the Wii U. Before the credits even rolled, I knew I was onto something. This port of Luigi’s Mansion 2 was developed by the Australian studio Tantalus (and supports), which previously worked not only Twilight Princess HD but also Skyward Sword HD.¬†

It looks like how you think you remember it, but not exactly how it really was. Luigi’s Mansion 3 remains a much more visually stunning game, but there’s a simplicity to this one that, while more basic, I can appreciate.

Publisher provided screenshot

Speaking of atmosphere, the game’s music remains superb. The spooky soundtrack enhances the creepiness of exploring the mansions. There are also many little jingles and quips from all the game elements that I had forgotten how great they were‚ÄĒI was humming the main theme for weeks. Additionally, there’s praise to be heaped on Charles Martinet again; while it’s the same performance, it’s still excellent. The combination of great animation and Charles’s acting sells Luigi’s scaredy-cat behaviour so effectively.

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Screenshot captured in docked mode

There are several types of people who might want to play this game: those whose only experience with Luigi’s Mansion is the terrific third title, those who have only played the first (or perhaps both), and those who have never played a Luigi’s Mansion game (or there’s me, who can’t remember a damn thing about it). Depending on where you fit, there might not be a lot of value in revisiting this game so soon. Being the same price as Luigi’s Mansion 3 invites comparison; Nintendo probably should have made it cheaper to avoid confusing people new to the series.


Luigi’s Mansion 2 HD is the same great game it was on the Nintendo 3DS, now with a fresh lick of paint and improved controls thanks to the dual analog sticks. Whether it’s worth picking up again after 10 years is up to you. However, for everyone else‚ÄĒwhether you’re a Luigi’s Mansion newbie or a seasoned Luigi’s Mansion 3 player‚ÄĒthis game is well worth a look. Just remember to bring a torch.

Rating: 4.5/5

The Good

+ Luigi's animations and reactions sell the atmosphere
+ Polished up graphics
+ Meaty story, lots to collect and multiplayer included

The Bad

- At the same price, it makes it hard to pick over Luigi's Mansion 3
- E. Gadd interrupts you way too much
- Checkpointing, or the lack thereof, can be frustrating

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Luigi's Mansion 2 HD is the same great game it was on the Nintendo 3DS, now with a fresh lick of paint and improved controls thanks to the dual analog sticks. Whether it's worth picking up again after 10 years is up to you. However, for everyone else‚ÄĒwhether you're a Luigi's Mansion newbie or a Luigi's Mansion 3 player‚ÄĒthis game is well worth a look; just remember to bring a torch.

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About The Author
Daniel Vuckovic
The Owner and Creator of this fair website. I also do news, reviews, programming, art and social media here. It is named after me after all. Please understand.

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