That's not true, though; You have to get the star coins in order to progress. You literally can't finish the core eight worlds if you haven't been collecting them. I'm pretty sure world 5's castle is the first time it comes up. There are also a couple of secret exits, one is a warp that brings you from world 1 to world 4(which is hilarious because of the aforementioned necessity for star coins). I liked it enough to 100% it(maybe because i'm insane), but i'm already starting to forget sections of it. The levels started blurring together, with a lack of coherency from stage-to-stage. The ghost houses in particular were especially boring and stupid, IMO the worst stages in the game. Most of the levels in this game were just really easy and abrupt. Assuming you're using every advantage, having the tanooki suit makes the game 3-4 times easier. I beat the finale on my first try as Weegee with the suit because I could literally glide over all of the obstacles. The last two special worlds start picking things up a bit, though, so that was nice while it lasted, I guess. The hardest part about this game is actually the collecting - they'll have you start doing it while racing against the clock or being chased by a monster twice your size. It makes for relatively intense stages late in the game, but there's a good chance you won't even need to do them. I ended up, at the end of the game, having 15-ish more coins than necessary to unlock the very last castle, because of these weird little mini-stages where you get to essentially collect a free star coin, and I never understood the purpose of these stages, but whatever. It essentially meant that I could have ignored the coins for the last world, but my OCD wouldn't let me. Even if you don't decide to get infinite lives on the second stage, they're so plentiful that you'll never run out. Ever. It's pretty much an arbitrary mechanic at this point(but, then, it has been for a while). There was no reason to keep the maneuvers from the old games(back flip, side jump, long jump, etc), since the standard jump and wall jump were all you ever really needed, and the tricks weren't nearly as powerful as they are in older games. Sometimes I would also miss platforms because I couldn't tell exactly where it was, so i'd need the tanooki to adjust where I was in the air or turn on the 3D(and I hate the 3D). Bosses were pretty shitty. They have a total of like three and then give them a slight new gimmick with each return, but it wasn't ever that much harder - there was one where you had to fight two of them at the same time, and then they split the boss room into two elevations, so the one on bottom was literally negligible while you handled the one on top. Despite all of this, it's still adequate fun. Some of the stages do end up being striking and memorable, the platforming works, despite complaints, the music is all fairly catchy, and the last leg of the game does get pretty difficult. The game was never unplayable, and my complaints were never enough to make me stop playing. Whoops, I rambled. tl;dr the game sucks but is still fun, if that makes any sense.