davidn: (prince)
[personal profile] davidn
I just noticed that I had this near-complete writeup from whenever I played New Super Mario Bros 2 on the 3DS - probably somewhere on the order of five years ago. I'm not sure why I never got around to posting it, but here it is at last.

I hadn't played a Mario game until about the year 2000, and up until then I hadn't realized quite how distinctive their style was - platform games on the PC were usually very exploratory, with free four-directional movement, keys and doors, and I had assumed that that was what all platform games were like. Mario, however, always had a much simpler approach, with the goal generally being to get from left to right - and each level is made distinctive through a creative and unique use of the game elements.

What leaps out at you immediately on starting the game is how much the coins have been brought to the forefront. Platform games have always been about madly gathering collectibles, but they're usually sort of silent about it - they exist, you're guided through the level by following subtle little trails of them, and collecting a hundred might get you an extra life. This one amplifies the concept into some sort of abstract statement on the futility of capitalism - you're encouraged to keep madly gathering as fast as is humanly possible at every turn, with the total coins you've collected in the game always visible on-screen and continually being added to the global coin total through Nintendo's network - a figure that passed an absolutely economy-crashing fifty billion coins some months ago.

The new powerups are all means to this end, being heavily coin-based in one way or another - as well as the normal question mark blocks, there are now golden brick blocks which you'll get your head stuck in when you jump at them, and while wearing the block you get more coins the faster you run. And there's a very rare golden flower that turns you into what I call Midas Mario, in which mode you can fire hugely powerful gold projectiles and absolutely everything gives you coins instead of the comparatively useless score. Even with all these additions, the idea of giving you a 1-up for every hundred coins is still in place - consequently you'll very quickly obtain a preposterous number of lives, and I had a hundred and seventy-three of them by the time I finished the first run of the game. Practically, you have an infinite supply, and they're more like another trophy number rather than a serious countdown to Game Over.

Apart from those, it's another Super Mario game and does everything that you would expect from that - each level has its own miniature theme, but you know you're always going to be in a psychedelic dreamland of mushrooms and pipes, with hidden routes to find and ghost houses where things don't quite work as they seem. In fact, it's quite amazing thinking about the sheer number of iconic and recognizable characters and items that exist in the series, not just from one design team but mostly from one man. And it's full of charming touches, the best of which was when I realized that the enemies danced to the background music if you sit and watch them.

If I had a complaint, it was going to be once again that the Mario games have been recycling exactly the same bosses for the past twenty-five years - that still stands, but to its credit, the final castle suddenly whipped out a last challenge that showed off the 3D capabilities of the device rather satisfyingly. And... made me feel a bit strange, if I'm being honest.

Date: 2017-09-27 02:47 am (UTC)
chalcedony_starlings: Two scribbled waveforms, one off-black and one off-white, overlapping, on a flat darkish purpleish background. (scribble twins)
From: [personal profile] chalcedony_starlings

“a bit strange”. Hmm. Hmmmm.

Date: 2017-09-27 10:56 pm (UTC)
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)
From: [personal profile] xaq_the_aereon
Sadly, ludicrous 1-Ups was not a concept new to the series with this game. As far back as the original SMB, it was easy to earn extra lives by pinning a Koopa Troopa against a block wall and bouncing off of it at just the right distance so that you land right back on it. You could easily gather over 255 extra lives before time ran out...at which point the game would crash.

Oops.

Date: 2017-09-27 11:02 pm (UTC)
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)
From: [personal profile] xaq_the_aereon
My personal favorite was the SNES launch title, Super Mario World. One stage opened with a barrage of green Koopa Troopas and Paratroopas, and halfway in, right by the restart point, you would find a Silver P-Switch. Hitting that temporarily turned enemies into Silver Coins, which if collected would add up a score multiplier that would reach each coin being worth a max of 3 extra lives a piece.

You would clear the stage, go back in, hit the midway marker, grab the Silver P-Switch, take it over to the Troopas, hit it, gather so many extra lives that it would take a minute for the counter to catch up...then pause, hit Select to exit the level, go back in at the midpoint to do it all again. 2 trips would hit the 99-life cap easily.

Date: 2017-09-28 06:09 am (UTC)
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)
From: [personal profile] xaq_the_aereon
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U-_t7V8uH_8

This would be the stage in question.

Date: 2017-09-28 12:13 am (UTC)
kjorteo: Portrait of Celine looking aroused and making bedroom eyes at the camera. (Celine: Aroused)
From: [personal profile] kjorteo
"I played this Nintendo game and now I feel a bit strange" is... welcome to the furry fandom, to be honest. For a company that's so overzealously child-friendly that they shut down Swapnote just because people were using it to draw lewd things, they sure have a way of accidentally inventing new fetishes with every game they put out.

At least this one doesn't have Dry Bo... oh God I am looking at the related videos sidebar and apparently it does.

Date: 2017-09-28 11:37 pm (UTC)
digitaldragoness: (Hmmm)
From: [personal profile] digitaldragoness
I stumbled into the same thing.... Uh. I didn't know skeleton Bowser was a thing until today. Suddenly I feel compelled to give this game a try.

Date: 2017-09-29 12:32 am (UTC)
digitaldragoness: (Default)
From: [personal profile] digitaldragoness
Heheheh. I'm an awful person so I really don't have a reply to this that's even remotely brain-safe so I'm going to crawl back to my goblin cave.

Date: 2017-09-29 03:31 am (UTC)
kjorteo: Fanart of the bootleg Charizard from Datel's Action Replay box art, drawn by Hologram.  The icon is safe for work, but is very obviously a facial crop of what would be a graphically sexual image in its full version. (PARizard: o bby)
From: [personal profile] kjorteo
If that stopped anyone on the internet for even a fraction of a second, that whole Sans thing wouldn't have been a thing.

Date: 2017-09-29 05:54 pm (UTC)
digitaldragoness: (Default)
From: [personal profile] digitaldragoness
*twiddles thumbs and looks away*

Date: 2017-09-29 03:27 am (UTC)
kjorteo: Screenshot from Uninvited, of a closeup portrait of the Mysterious Lady attacking the player. (Mysterious Lady)
From: [personal profile] kjorteo
I was actually going to say that the origin of Dry Bowser in NSMB1 is about the most horrifying thing Nintendo has done since the Crocomire. I fully expected Nintendo to just try to forget that ever happened, and thus turn NSMB1 into a sort of messed up point of trivia in hindsight. "Haha, do you remember that time Mario seared Bowser's flesh off as he struggled and writhed in agony and Mario was all gleefully celebrating and ignoring the whole scene? Hahah they sure do go through some weird experimental ideas sometimes that we're obviously never going to see again now that they've surely come to their senses on that one."

But no, Dry Bowser is a thing now. Huh. They're, like, not even sorry, are they.

Date: 2017-09-29 12:33 am (UTC)
digitaldragoness: (ManaEli whee!)
From: [personal profile] digitaldragoness
I had the biggest crush on the cartoon version of King Koopa for years and I blame him for me being a scalie.

Date: 2017-09-29 03:42 am (UTC)
kjorteo: Scan from an old Super Mario Bros. comic, of King Koopa facing the camera and looking at his wits' end. (Koopa: Fed up)
From: [personal profile] kjorteo
King Koopa was decades ahead of his time. He was like the prototypical Daddy in an era long before the internet was there to show us what that actually meant.

Edit: David I am so sorry we did this to your poor post, you really can't take me anywhere can you
Edited Date: 2017-09-29 03:42 am (UTC)

Date: 2017-09-29 05:55 pm (UTC)
digitaldragoness: (Hmmm)
From: [personal profile] digitaldragoness
I tried to be good, but then I remembered King Koopa *huffs*

Date: 2017-09-29 03:33 am (UTC)
kjorteo: Scan from an old Super Mario Bros. comic,, of King Koopa explaining something to his son with an 8U facial expression. (Koopa: 8U)
From: [personal profile] kjorteo
I have a comic (the very one from which this icon comes, actually) that would suggest Bowser was accidental fetish fuel even as far back as when he was still King Koopa.

Date: 2017-09-29 07:11 am (UTC)
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)
From: [personal profile] xaq_the_aereon
An interesting variation of the Streisand Effect, to be sure.

Date: 2017-09-29 05:35 pm (UTC)
xyzzysqrl: (Message for you!)
From: [personal profile] xyzzysqrl
"Wow, this has sixteen comments now, I wonder what's happening down he--"

oh.

Uhm... as someone who was already on board the Bowser Bus, hello and welcome here's your ticket enjoy the ride.

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