Thursday, February 18, 2016

The Mario Post

Yes, a Sonic Blogger discusses Mario. Recently, SA3 Facebook pointed out Mario may be in an even worse state than Sonic, and it's agreed amongst most gamers he's at least starting to slip. Now is the perfect time to chat about poor Mario.

"But sire, isn't Mario doing fine?"

Not anymore. As you can see by this giraffe



Remember the Werehog?

We notice Mario's major releases have had comparative failures strewn in. It is generally agreed that Super Mario Sunshine and Yoshi's Island, the worst sellers, were ruined by an obtrusive gimmick for the entirety of the game. Note the "entirety" part: the gimmicks went on far too long, even when compared to the Werehog of all things. Many have griped about Baby Mario, and others whined about FLUDD. The other major flop shown was about 1 quarter re-hashed, with a few of the good assets of the original dumped.

As we can see on this other graph:

The Kicker....

2D Mario games indeed sell better than 3D ones. This can be blamed on certain consoles selling less than others, but explain the case with SMG and NSMBW. Some fans are indeed put off by the fetch-quest-based nature of 3D Mario, but then there's SM3D. What happened? The 3DS didn't flunk, so...

Maybe people were, dare I say it... BURNT OUT WITH MARIO.


I definitely am. Around the same time, the 2D Mario games had begun to become stale. The last two were very stale indeed. NSMB2 relied on a gimmick to protect from staleness, which failed unless one was Mr. Krabs or Scrooge McDuck. There was also a direct sequel to Super Mario Galaxy. Worse still, there were some really bad sports games, like Mario Tennis Open. MTO did not have Rosalina playable, but there were recolors and generic characters that took a large chunk of the roster.

The sheer number of Mario games in recent years compared to other Nintendo franchises has burnt people out. Not helped by all those shitty franchises Nintendo has made, or the deaths of their more mature franchises, or... whatever happened to Zelda. Not to mention the casualization of Mario and the like. 

This is why Mario Maker is a good thing. It allows players to build whatever Mario experience they want, and even include their own voice. Game Overthinker suggested an expert-level edition with full scripting in the future. Unauthorized ROM hacking and full fangame engines do have it, but they're of dubious legality and are hard to use, hence why official scripting would be better.

And Mario 64, hmph! It's just as flawed as Sonic Adventure, displaying most of the latter's flaws, and exaggerating some to make up for those it lacked. 

Alternate Gameplay

Sonic Adventure's additional characters had multiple styles of play to go with them. Mario 64 had all these random missions rather than just the get to the goal waypoint star or beat the lights out of the boss missions we needed to begin with. Unlike Sonic Adventure, these missions were absolutely necessary, in a way evoking Sonic Ordeal/Lost Cause and onwards. It wasn't till later that fans found a skip.  They were at least tolerable, but looking back, they're bollocks.


The aforementioned skip above, anyone?  There's also a fair share of others.

Terrible Characters

Mario 64 has many terrible characters who rarely or never showed up again. Ukiki,  those stupid rabbits, that cheating penguin, et ecetera. And the recurring cast weren't used well here either. You can only meet Yoshi as a 100% bonus (or via glitch), and you can't even ride the feller. I want to trod about on my dinosaur who eats all that stand in my way to defecate it and make it his weapon, or spit it out as fireball spread-shots and other cool projectiles. Maybe we could get some more things like his hover-jump.

They did rectify this in the DS remake, where you can play as Yoshi on his own, and he has most of those said abilities. Too bad that he still comes off more as the "fat frog making retarded noises" you are subject to in his own games. He's still fun to play, however. And Luigi? Where'd he go? Some said that there was a statue reading "L is real 2041", which really read "Eternal Star", but in reality, he was missing. We did get him in the DS remake, however.

Really, disuse of characters and making terrible characters is a huge problem with Mario. Remember the Honey Queen fiasco? Or Pink Gold Peach? 

What happened to the discovery factor so key to Mario? Before, we were always going somewhere new: the Mushroom Kingdom, Subcon, Sarasaland, the Eight Kingdoms surrounding the Mushroom Kingdom, Dinosaur World, the wonderful magic pictures inside Peach's castle, and fucking SPACE. (Even Sunshine had Delfino Isle, even though the game was shit). This occurred in spin-offs too: each RPG had a new world to explore. 

It is clear Mario suffers from similar symptoms to Sonic: awful stories without immersion, cumbersome gimmicks, horrendous characters, and being too happy-slappy for its own good. The difference is that Mario often succumbed later than Sonic. He might have shaken off some of these as well. The games are only different from Sonic in that they remain solid. ROL was a gas. 

According to Roger Van Der Wiede's Sonic is Dead video, I've positioned Mario at middle-age at the moment. The games have no new environments, instead trying to make old ones, but lacking the charm. There's no sense of adventure anymore. The Sprixie Kingdom seems incredibly lame.  Overall the games blend in many factors, like their story and tone. I can barely tell them apart. And like Sonic, Mario also has some lame fanboys and their pseudo-detractions.

Two words: "3D BOOGEYMAN!"

Considering that Sonic is now officially on its deathbed and only the movie can save it, it will soon be Mario's turn to get dunked on.

You heard me right, soon Mario is going to be bashed.  Mario Sunshine 2.0. Sunshine's defenders won't like it. Maybe they'll get rational and start attacking it and the rehashes of the early 2010s. Mario's gonna fall. Will it be The Mario Cycle or Mario 37+? I hope for both. I hope 3D Mario games are rehashes and 2D become victim to a Mario cycle.

With his fall, will new mascots rise?

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