Wow. Talk about a game that completely blew away my expectations.
For this being a 40 hour game the fact that it managed to make me enjoy my time with it as much as it did, is an accomplishment and should not be understated. Games of that length WISH they could be as engaging as this game was. Like I said, invest everything into the POW + Stache stat and just learn to play good, because if you do that, you wont ever have to focus on gear catered to defense and you'll be killing foes before they get the chance to attack ya. The best rank upgrades to get are Counterer (does 150% more damage when countering enemies) Casual Bros (reduces the amount of bp used for a bros attack), and Quick Level (self explanatory) And then the gear upgrades so that you have 5 gear slots by the end. The game is not hard, the game does not drag, it is purely the matter of if you know what does what. If you fight literally everything you encounter you will be just fine. Not once did I ever have to grind in these games. Unless I wanted to. The common misconception is that battles are slow, but they're not, they're only like that if you allow them to be. Speaking of. I really loved this battle system, it brought back a thing from Superstar where every bro got a new attack/move whereas in Inside Story and Partners in Time they shared the same move pool. The dreamy bros attacks are also very fun to use, and alot of these are just bangers in terms of the variety they put in. The world exploration is probably the best its been since Superstar Saga imo. There's just a lot of beans and goodies to find throughout the world. Exploration never became a chore imo.
That being said, this game wasn't perfect, that final boss is just annoying. They really can't ever top BIS in terms of a game finale. Hell, even Superstar Saga did it better. While this one definitely felt like a finale to a game, the Dreamy Bowser fight really left a sour taste at the end. I'm fine with Final Bosses being able to heal, if its limited, this mother fucker just does it whenever he feels like it and in turn it can make the fight drag on and on. Something that I haven't experienced in this game till now. there were numerous times where framerate would drop and sometimes it did actually hinder how I played. The final boss for example has a move where Mario and Luigi are running towards the camera and have to dodge dreamy bowsers fire, thing is, everytime he does this the whole fucking game lags. I think it might've slipped past game testing cause it makes these already shitty 3D dodging segments even more unbearable. SPEAKING OF. FUCK 3D dodging segments. This has to be this games biggest flaw since I hated every time the camera shifted to a 3D perspective while battling because the depth perception is awful. And these are just everywhere, they're not all bad, but the ones that are end up souring a lot of these great boss fights.
The story is just really predictable... man, I'm sorry but once you figure out how this game works you can tell what'll happen at each area you visit. You know exactly what will happen and what will be awaiting you. The game does like to shake it up at times, but its very far in between as the moment to moment gameplay is easily something that you'll love or hate. I ended up liking it but this is where I can see people get annoyed with how it doesn't do much to shake up the narrative.
Character writing though is still fantastic, only characters that suck is some of the early people you meet and Starlow, but Starlow was already pretty shit anyways so I don't really give a fuck. Dreambert clears in like every way possible, that's my goat. He is easily the best partner in this series. It helps that I also really like his design and personality too.
I didn't expect myself to like Dream Team as much as I did and in some areas it even beats out BIS with the 2D dreamy mechanics and the big luigi battles being improvements to the formula.