We’re getting a Luigi’s Mansion remaster on the Nintendo Switch but it's the wrong one. Instead of porting the Gamecube original to Switch, we’re getting its 3DS sequel Dark Moon instead, for some reason.
After the reveal of Super Mario RPG Remake and the shoddy-looking Detective Pikachu Returns, Nintendo also revealed a Princess Peach game that also received a good fan reaction. Right after, a remaster of Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon was announced resulting in nothing but crickets.
Out of the three Luigi’s Mansion games, it’s fair to say that Dark Moon is the weakest and seeing it get a Switch remaster is weird. Compared to the first and third game, Dark Moon is much smaller scale with bite-sized missions that take place in smaller areas. Those smaller areas can barely be explored, as finishing missions annoyingly brings Luigi back to the hub area.
Despite these gripes, we wouldn’t call Dark Moon a “bad” game but it’s clearly an early 3DS title. It’s short missions made sense since they were on a handheld and the various areas do add some variety. Dark Moon also introduced fans to Polterpup, Luigi’s undead doggy sidekick, and we all love him. Since the Switch is technically a handheld, we can somewhat understand why the second game is getting a second chance.
However, the original Luigi’s Mansion is just a much better game. Setting the whole game in one mansion gave it a creepy atmosphere that still feels surreal taking place in a Mario game. Exploration was more interesting as well, due to Luigi not forcibly returning to a hub area after.
Case in point: Luigi's Mansion 3. The third entry went back to the first game's formula instead of Dark Moon's. Sure, it kept the sillier-looking ghosts but it takes place in one singular area that just happens to have a lot of variety and encourages looking around.
Yes, we know that the first game got a 3DS remaster, which makes it more criminal that it’s not coming to Switch. That version could have easily been ported to Switch instead of Dark Moon. Now, unless you have a physical or digital copy, the only way you’re playing Luigi’s Mansion on 3DS is through “other” means.
Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon remastered and the Princess Peach game are coming to Switch next year. If a remaster of Dark Moon came out after a remaster of the first game, we’d be much kinder to it. As it stands, this was the a wrong and baffling announcement in an otherwise solid Nintendo Direct.