Hello, and welcome to my mini-walkthrough for New Super Mario Bros. U! I say "mini" because this walkthrough doesn't cover the whole game. In fact, it only covers four of the nine worlds! This is because this walkthrough is for how to beat the game's "story mode" in the least possible time using secret exits. Spoilers ahead!
Let's get started! You'll need:
1 Wii U game system
1 Wii U disc for New Super Mario Bros U
At least 1 Wii remote controller (the Gamepad included with the game system also works)
Assuming your house has electricity, that's all you need!
Step 1: Begin Your Game
When you first begin playing New Super Mario Bros. U, you will need to start a save file. If there is an open save file, select it and begin your game. Now, watch as the happy tea party that Mario & Co. are having with Princess Peach turns into a kidnapping by Bowser. Oh no, time to save the princess...again.
Step 2: Secret Exit Time!
Okay, now that the princess has been captured, it's time to start your speed-running journey. The first thing to do is complete level 1-1. This is, admittedly, pretty darn easy. Most first levels are. Once you've completed that level, continue to level 1-2. This is the location of our first secret exit. In fact, most Mario games have a secret exit in level 2 of the first world. It's become a tradition. The secret exit is near the end of the level. When you come to a red ring, go forward until the big pink crystal you're standing on tilts to the right. Then, go to the upper end of the crystal and jump to the right. If you jumped correctly, you should now be standing on top of the ceiling. Continue until you come to a blue crystal. Jump off of it onto the gray bricks above. Then, keep going to the right. When you reach the Star Coin, you can grab it or not; it doesn't matter. Then, go into the pipe, continue to the right, hit the flagpole, and finish the level! Congrats, you've unlocked a secret level!
Step 3: Into the Jungle
The next thing to do, of course, is play the level you just unlocked! This is an underwater level, so if you haven't played a Super Mario game before, watch out! You can't defeat underwater enemies by jumping on them. Once you've completed the level, continue to world 5. Now, complete Jungle of the Giants (yes, it's filled to the brim with giant enemies), your choice of Bridge Over Poisoned Waters (which has a secret exit that doesn't shave off as much time as a later one) or Bramball Woods (not much to say about this one), and Snake Block Tower. You should now be at the next secret exit location:...
Step 4: Which-Way Labyrinth (Secret Exit #2)
Here you are, about to go into the haunted house in the middle of the jungle. Watch for ghosts! Here's how to find the secret exit: when you arrive in the main room with all the doors, take the door on the left and make your way to the "elevator". When you get to the top, don't take the door there but stay on the moving floor. Stay to the left or you'll get squished. Go through the door in the secret area and go down. After two sets of floors there will be a Star Coin in a secret area to the right. You can grab it (OCD satisfied) or you can just decide not to and then vigorously reinforce the point to whoever might be making fun of you in the room that no, you didn't miss it, you just didn't want to grab it. At the bottom of the "elevator shaft", you'll find a door. Enter, go right, jump onto the flagpole, and unlock "5-A: Flight of the Parabeetles", which the biggest PAIN-IN-THE-NECK level that you have encountered so far in this game. (Just wait until you get to Superstar Road.)
Step 5: Head in the Clouds
Okay, once you've somehow beaten Flight of the Parabeetles, you'll come to World Seven, or Merengue Clouds. Apparently every area of the Mushroom Kingdom is named after food. You've got Acorn Plains (food for squirrels), Layer-Cake Desert, Sparkling Waters, Frosted Glacier, Soda Jungle, Rock-Candy Mines, Merengue Clouds... Yum! Anyway, let's get back on topic. Start by completing 7-1: The Land of Flying Blocks. Then, go on to either Seesaw Shrooms or Switchback Hill; take your pick. After that, go on to Slide Lift Tower, which will unlock the location of our next secret exit:...
Step 6: Spinning Spirit House (Secret Exit #3)
Yet again, you've come to a haunted house, and this time, it's...floating...on clouds...or something. Okay. Why not? Enter the house. Continue through the house until you've cleared the top floor (that is, gone through both top doors and completed the areas behind them). Once you're back in the main area, go to middle floor and grab the trampoline. Go to the far left of the middle floor and use the trampoline to bounce over the wall. Ooh, a secret door! Enter. Go through the secret areas to find a P Switch. Hit it and follow the blue coins to find a Star Coin! Yay! Now go through the door to the secret exit. This will lead you straight to the castle! To get from here to the next secret exit there's a simple procedure: 1. Make your way through the castle. 2. Beat Ludwig van Koopa and deprive the world of Bowser-glorifying music. 3. Board the airship. 4. Beat Bowser Jr. (hint: run up his arm and jump on him!). You have now unlocked...
Step 7: Meteor Moat (Secret Exit #4)
Welcome to Peach's Castle! Really homey place, what with the lava and fireballs and zombie-koopa-things (they're called Dry Bones) everywhere. Make your way through the level until you come to a P Switch. Hit it and RUN! Ahead, several coins will become block platforms. Jump from one to another until you reach a pipe hanging in the air. (It helps to have a flying squirrel power-up here.) Enter the pipe. Go to the right till you reach the flagpole. Jump on the flagpole. You are now almost finished!
Step 8: Beating Bowser
The secret exit in Meteor Moat leads you to Firefall Cliffs--the last level before you reach the castle. As you jump through the level, between dodging fireballs feel free to think about how much this place reminds you of what you think hell is probably like. It's definitely hot enough for any part of it, excluding Dante's 9th circle which is more like Frosted Glacier, only colder. Once you complete the level, it's time for a Red Hot Elevator Ride! This is a hard level. Your elevator will stop moving up if anything other than you is on it, and there's lava rising underneath you. Once you've survived a red-hot elevator ride, you've unlocked The Final Battle. Time to kick some Bowser butt! Before you reach Bowser, there's a whole level to get through with Bowser Jr. trying to crush you with his clown car. Nice kid. Anyway, the way to beat Bowser is pretty obvious if you've played other Mario games--just wait for him to jump in the air, then run under him and jump over to the axe. Then, something unexpected happens. To defeat the unexpected thing, jump on Bowser Jr. and steal his flying clown car thing. You should be able to figure out the rest from the on-screen instructions. Congratulations, you have now saved the princess and completed the game! Now to go back and complete all the levels...and get all the Star Coins to unlock eight levels, some of which are ridiculously hard... and complete those ridiculously hard levels and get the Star Coins in those... and complete the level that getting all those Star Coins unlocks... and getting all the Star Coins in that... and then you will finally have the game 100% complete. Good for you! If you did all that, your OCD should be satisfied so maybe you should get off the Wii U for a couple hours and find out what your mom is yelling at you about.