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The Real Reason Super Mario Galaxy 2 Isn't Included In Super Mario 3D All-Stars

Nintendo is celebrating the 35th anniversary of Super Mario Bros. in 2020 and fans have expected big news about the company's sprightly little plumber mascot for some time. Sure enough, Nintendo hosted a Super Mario Bros. 35th Anniversary Direct presentation Sept. 3, 2020, during which it unveiled the release of Super Mario 3D All-Stars on Sept. 18, among other exciting news. The title will include three classic games: 1996's Super Mario 64, 2002's Super Mario Sunshine, and 2007's Super Mario Galaxy.

Many gamers will be glad to see these favorites make a comeback during the current generation — especially with higher resolutions and optimization for the Switch — however, there is one seemingly glaring omission. While neither Super Mario 64 or Super Mario Sunshine received a direct sequel, Super Mario Galaxy 2, the 2010 follow up to Super Mario Galaxy, is missing from the 3D All-Stars lineup. Why would Nintendo omit this title, especially when many fans believes it's at least as good as the original? While you won't find a cut and dry answer, there's plenty of room for speculation.

Super Mario Galaxy 2 could come to Switch separately with more content

In addition to unveiling Super Mario 3D All-Stars, Nintendo announced the upcoming Switch release of Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury on Feb. 12, 2021. Super Mario 3D World originally dropped in 2013 for the Wii U, making it a bit newer than Super Mario Galaxy 2, and the Switch port will come with an entirely new section called Bowser's Fury.

Nintendo has shared plans to include more features for the port than it offered for the original Super Mario 3D World, but has yet to provide any specifics. Given that, there's still hope that Super Mario Galaxy 2 will get a similar treatment. Rather than coming to the Switch as part of a collection, Super Mario Galaxy 2 could re-launch as an individual title with additional content. Based on the glowing reviews and continued adoration from fans, the move doesn't seem out of the question.

Super Mario Galaxy 2 may feature in a different collection

Nintendo may have plans for a Super Mario 3D All-Stars 2-style release. After all, the Mario franchise is full of games that could benefit from the remaster treatment, and Nintendo wouldn't have to look far for titles that would work for a Switch-optimized collection of classics. It could include Super Paper Mario, for example, or even throw in one of the titles made for the DS and 3DS handheld systems, such as Super Mario 3D Land. Maybe the next All-Stars collection could focus on follow-ups, or a travel theme. Super Mario Odyssey, for example, is ripe for a sequel.

One odd thing about the announcement of Super Mario 3D All-Stars is that it's being touted as a limited-time release, and will only be available until the end of March 2021. Perhaps Nintendo has something up its sleeve there, too. Could it plan to replace the title with more limited-release collections in the coming months? It's hard to say what the company is thinking, but that doesn't mean fans aren't going to try.

Super Mario Galaxy 2's exclusion might be part of a clever marketing plan

It's hard to imagine that Nintendo forgot about Super Mario Galaxy 2, even considering its complete absence from the 35th anniversary presentation. It seems likely that the company's leadership knew not mentioning Super Mario Galaxy 2 would cause a huge amount of commentary. Given that, Nintendo may have another plan for the release of Super Mario Galaxy 2 gamers aren't privy to yet.

Nintendo could be staggering its high profile launches so not everything comes out at once, meaning fans may simply have to wait a bit longer. If the rumors are true about the Switch Pro or other models of the Switch being readied for production, Super Mario Galaxy 2 could be part of a larger plan to make those systems more appealing when they come to market.

Nintendo has a history of announcing games sometimes just weeks ahead of schedule, as was the case with Paper Mario: The Origami King. It's very possible the company is not quite done putting its 2020 lineup out there yet. Nintendo might still announce more content coming to the Switch — especially in light of the fact that its competitors, Sony and Microsoft, are releasing new consoles during the holiday season. Don't count a Super Mario Galaxy 2 port out just yet!