According to Japanese rag Famitsu, forthcoming DS platformer New Super Mario Bros. will be the first ever side-scrolling Mario game to come with simultaneous multiplayer action. The revelation came from an interview with Tezuka Takushi, the game's producer, who also revealed that the focus of the multiplayer mode will be on competitive play, as opposed to co-operative elements.

Takushi-san also promised a raft of in-jokes and nods to the previous games, with hidden blocks containing 1UP mushrooms, flagpoles, goombas, piranha plants and cheep cheeps all making an appearance. And if that doesn't tickle your nostalgia bone quite as much as you'd like, the music will feature a number of revamped tunes from the original game, including the Super Mario theme.

It's not all retro though, as alongside the old tracks there'll be a number of new, infuriatingly catchy tunes, as well as a selection of new power-ups, such as mushrooms that can either make Mario huge (big enough to take up the whole screen) or pint-sized.

New Super Mario Bros. is out next year.