The game isn't without its charms. The writing is always endearing, and in its best moments is incredibly clever and self-aware. The humor takes good advantage of its "paper" setting, with smart visual gags. And as expected, the art style is an absolutely perfect fit for the 3DS, sure to impress anyone still skeptical of the system's gimmick. Regardless, it may be damning with faint praise to credit its personality and visuals, when Mario games usually stand on the strength of their gameplay.
I wish I enjoyed Paper Mario: Sticker Star more. In a lot of ways the game is very likable, but those adorable, charming qualities are mostly superficial. It undermines some of the series' core strengths by making most battles unnecessary and avoidable, and puzzles can be downright maddening in their vagary. As a 3DS showpiece with plenty of personality, Sticker Star is an unquestionable success. As a successor to the rest of the Paper Mario series, it falls flat.
Paper Mario: Sticker Star