Super Mario 3 Brick by Brick: The Annotated Edition

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Bonglorio
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Super Mario 3 Brick by Brick: The Annotated Edition

Post by Bonglorio » Fri May 12, 2017 9:39 am

So this mock doesn't languish on PA's desiccated corpse, I'm putting everything up on here. This is the mock done of Bob "Gas the Halo fanboys" Chipman's magnum opus and possibly the worst Mario-related book ever written.

Some content might be changed (Including possibly getting someone actually funny to do the chapter Maniak mocked), but for the most part, it's the same mock you know and love of the book you know and do the exact opposite of love.

So sit back, relax, and remember: There's no Gym Badge for Hate.
This book is dedicated to:

Shigeru Miyamoto

For saving my life, more times than he knows.

Hahahahaha Oh Bob you kidder... ohhhhh you're not joking.... oh



Introduction


Why write a book about “Super Mario Bros. 3?”
I’m going to assume somebody is asking that question. I am, and I’m the one writing the damn thing.
We're actually asking "What the hell is wrong with you?" but your assumption is close enough I guess.

A book more generally about Mario, the character, would seem to make more sense. He’s an icon – the icon of the video game industry and of the medium itself. A character as entrenched in the minds of Generations X and beyond as Mickey Mouse and Bugs Bunny. Video games were the rock and roll of my generation, an art form that came into being and grew in tandem with our own lives, embraced by us to the confusion and exasperation of our parents; and though he wasn’t the first icon of the form, Mario was figured at the forefront: our Elvis – or, if you prefer, our Beatles. Which probably makes Pac-Man Chuck Berry in this analogy…
So you're saying Mario is going to die on the shitter after a long downward spiral of drug abuse? That's harsh, Bob.

In any case, if this were to be a book of history or of pop-iconography, surely it would be more comprehensive and sensible to cover the full breadth of Mario’s career. At the time of this writing Mario has appeared in nearly 190 individual games covering almost every conceivable gaming genre, two feature films (one live-action, one animated and released only in Japan), four animated series, multiple comic books and in nearly every form of licensed merchandising imaginable. The story of the character’s eminently humble beginnings, of his iconoclastic creator Shigeru Miyamoto, of his endurance through a changing video-game landscape and sweeping cultural shifts… would these not be more logical things to build a book around?
"Iconoclastic"

Bob I do not think that word means what you think it does. Miyamoto is more The Beach Boys than The Dead Kennedys.
And even if one did wish to focus on only the games, why limit the scope to only one out of that one-hundred and ninety; especially when there are other games in the series of greater historical significance? SMB3 isn’t Mario’s first appearance (that would be Donkey Kong) or the game that made him a household name by reviving the previously-dead home gaming industry (that’s the original “Super Mario Bros”) or the birthplace of (functional) open-world 3D platforming (“Super Mario 64”) or any of the franchise’s myriad other big-impact moments. It’s merely the third game in the Nintendo Entertainment System era of the franchise. Where’s the import? Where’s the story? What’s the big deal?
Spoiler: Bob does not answer any of these questions. Also, he doesn't actually play the game the book is about until page fucking 85. This is going to hurt.


Assuming I was able to gather myself after receiving that withering barrage of queries all at once, I might offer that this book isn’t precisely a book of history (though it will certainly contain its fair share) but rather a book primarily of video-game criticism.
Because a man who films himself playfighting with himself during reviews is qualified to critically assess something.
…which of course only begs more questions.


Why start with “Super Mario Bros. 3,” then? It’s not exactly crying out for attention – it’s one of the best-selling games in the series (and of all time), already enshrined as an accepted, unassailable classic. Do you intend to challenge that status? Reveal the game as “overrated,” perhaps? No? Then, again, why? “New Super Mario Bros. Wii” is more recent. “Super Mario Sunshine” is the most intriguingly-flawed of the series. “Super Mario Bros.” and “Donkey Kong” are more historically significant. “Super Mario Bros. 2” has the more interesting backstory. What, if anything, are you looking to tell us here? Why should we be reading this, when there are so many tomes of self-help, political fire-breathing and twelve-volume epics of glimmering vampire bow-huntresses attending wizard school just a bookshelf (or a swipe across the touchpad, as it were) away?
It's always a good sign when the book you're reading argues against being read.
To be honest, even I didn’t start out with the intent to write a book about “Super Mario Bros. 3.” The format of this project took shape before the subject came into focus for me. You see, at least to my knowledge, at the time of this writing there isn’t another book exactly like this one.
There isn't another book exactly like Mein Kampf either, Bob.
Video game criticism has existed as long as the medium itself, said medium having come into being in the era of Specialty Publications (read: lifestyle magazines) and reached adolescence in the age of the Internet; times where it became the norm that everything was to be reviewed, critiqued, and Consumer Reported-upon. But the form has always had an erratic evolution: the first game reviewers found themselves in the unique position of having to be both art critics (“What feeling or sensation does this game elicit?”) and product-testers (“Does this device work?”)
And now game reviewers have settled into the comfortable role of 'prostitute'
The rapidly expanding technology of the medium and scope of the consumer base created fissures and divisions as different groups of gamers demanded different approaches from critics: Aesthetic critique. Technical details. “Does it have a good story?” “Forget the story, how does it PLAY??” “Give me detailed analysis!” “Give me a numbered score!” The internet age turned game criticism into one of digital journalism’s fastest-growing fields with even more diversity: detailed write-ups and cultural commentary from websites like The Escapist, Polygon, Destructoid, etc. Video reviews, often (but not always) comedic in nature, became the rage with the dawn of high-speed streaming, making unlikely superstars of folks like Ben “Yahtzee” Croshaw of Zero Punctuation and James Rolfe a.k.a. “The Angry Video Game Nerd.”
And for this, video games have never been forgiven.

James’s focus on older and more obscure titles was part of a growing interest in giving serious critical attention in hindsight to classic or “retro” games.
Nothing is more seriously critical than Shitpickle.
Today, sites ranging from professional outlets to amateur free-for-alls like YouTube and Blip are packed to the gills with an ever-growing supply of not only game criticism but walkthroughs, strategies and longform chronicles called “let’s plays.” Name any game that has ever existed, no matter how obscure, and chances are you can find multiple reviews, videos and full-length play-throughs of it.
Eggs of Steel. Your call, Bob
And yet… amid all that, I felt like there was something missing. An empty niche. Maybe not a large niche, but a niche all the same. In my primary career I’m a film critic, so I get to see how criticism differs in the two mediums. And while I won’t let this turn into some missive about what game journalism can learn from film I’m inclined to note that the one type of critical attention gaming appears to be most (though not wholly) deficient of is analysis – in particular deep analysis.
And instead of something that actually was designed to have depth, like Silent Hill or Metal Gear Solid 2; you picked a Mario game. Good going, you intellectual you.

Specifically, in film writing there is such a thing as the “shot-by-shot analysis,” which is exactly what it sounds like: A book (or, more often, academic paper or presentation) that pours over a single film piece-by-piece, scene-by-scene, detail-by-detail.
Except most movies are one or two hours, explicitly have an artistic message, and have decades of film culture and film making as a craft to draw from. This isn't even an apples and oranges thing. It's more apples and sea cucumbers.
The lines, the compositions, the shots, the score and the actors, directors, writers and production history that informed it all. Not just an aesthetic criticism or a history or a production report but a fusion of all three and more – the complete picture of a film.
Why didn’t this exist for video games?
Because video games are a relatively new medium and it hasn't developed the sort of cultural depth and heritage that film and novels have. Also, most gamers are children or manchildren. Spelling and grammar is too hard for them most of the time.
My first thought, upon not finding much that lined up with what I was now looking for (especially not available to consumers outside the industry or academia) was that it may have been tried and found impossible; but that didn’t make any sense. Games are tangible things, at least as much as digitized information can be. Most of them have beginnings and endings or at least a point where nothing else can be done within them. Whole books, called Strategy Guides, had been written with the purpose of guiding one through a game step-by-step; so why not go the extra mile and gives a reader the background or an aesthetic observation about whatever level or boss you’re helping them to conquer?
A lot of strategy guides already do that. Bethesda games have huge ass guides with lots of extra story and lore shit and the Final Fantasy guides are the only way you could possibly understand the storyline half the time.

And, if I couldn’t find such a book… why not write it myself?
Because you are a bloated, self important dullard with nothing new or interesting to say.

The idea began to take shape: Pick a game. Play through it from beginning to end. Catalogue everything you did – even the places where you did something wrong or had to start over. Describe, in detail, not just the function but the form… the why’s and how’s and who’s behind what was happening in the game. For good measure, include what was going on for you during the playing – player-input is key to the experience, after all, so it’s only fair to analyze the background of the player along with the background of the product.
So basically this is going to be a text-only let's play along with the thoughts of a developmentally awkward fat man.

I got high hopes for this book yes sir
Yes. That might work…
But which game?
It would have to be an older game, for one. Not so much out of nostalgia or sentiment, but because an older game would have its stature already secure. Preferably it should be a popular game, one that a lot of people would have played or at least know of – a work that has affected the culture in a big, visible way simply offers more to write about. It should have a certain degree of variety; if for no other reason than to keep me consistently engaged so that boredom doesn’t inappropriately color the analysis (even though I wouldn’t be primarily playing for fun, I’d have to endeavor to maintain the sense of enjoyment that “regular” game-playing is supposed to engender).
Notice how Bob leaves out the notion that it should be a game or series that the analyzer isn't so emotionally invested in that it colors the analysis. Moviebob has a big Nintendo boner and he is going to rub it all up in our faces for eighty pages. This is less like a critical assessment and more of a reallly long blowjob.

Finally… I felt like it should be a game I was already intimately familiar with. A game I could not just approach, but return to in the writing. Aside from (likely) making the project that much less difficult, it would be appropriate to the intended tone. Not just some dry, academic deconstruction but an involved, emotive journey. I should be a game I loved.
And, thus, there could be no other choice.
"I should be a game that I loved" ~ Bob Chipman.

And after that rambling wreck of a preamble, we move onto part 1...
ask me about my hobo clown fetish

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Bonglorio
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Re: Super Mario 3 Brick by Brick: The Annotated Edition

Post by Bonglorio » Fri May 12, 2017 9:43 am

By now, the legend of Mario’s creation is old hat to fans, but those who didn’t grow up marinating in the game-culture stew would likely be surprised at the utilitarian simplicity of his origins.
Moviebob likes to spice up his babbling with stuff he picked up from a thesaurus.

Today we’re used to receiving our cultural icons only after a lengthy process of focus-grouping and demographic charting - particularly video game personalities, who must often bear the weight of cross-cultural expectations (Japanese games frequently see their “androgynous” heroes transformed into hyper-masculine forms to better appeal to Western tastes)
Bob this shit has not happened since NES box art times. Even Squaresoft gave up on de-fagging Nomura's designs.
and navigate the minefields of socio-political symbology. (Just what is the proper length of a skirt between “sexually-empowered” and “pandering male fantasy?”)
Why even bother with skirts? All women in video games should wear sensible, stylish blue jeans. Samus could wear a pair over her zero suit.
Mario, on the other hand, came about the old fashioned way: a character was needed, and one was made in the best form available from the tools available. And rather than a marketing team or a team of demographic-analysts, Mario sprang from the mind of one man, Shigeru Miyamoto. Today, Miyamoto is a living legend, the starry-eyed iconoclast of the video game industry spoken of by other designers less like a contemporary and more like a mysterious sorcerer who deigns to walk among mortals.
Bob you keep using that word.

But, once upon a time, he was just one among hundreds of men and women toiling in the nascent days of the game industry; doubtlessly too hard at work to even consider that their every tiny success and failure might be laying the foundations of an entirely new medium… a new form of art.
This is about as critical and and analytic as North Korea's biography of Kim Il Sung.
Miyamoto’s backstory is a mix of iconic and humble, almost perfect enough to render him as a character in one of his games: A precocious child with a great love of art, music and wilderness exploration who dreamed of growing up to be a manga (Japanese comic-book) artist. Instead, he found himself working for Nintendo, a toy and playing-card company that had moved into the video game business… with decidedly mixed results.
Mixed results means every game they made early on was a flop.
So goes the story, Nintendo’s most recent game (and Miyamoto’s first role as part of a design team) “Radar Scope” had failed to replicate its popularity in Japan when it was exported to U.S. arcades. The head of the company’s newly-established American branch (the nephew of it’s CEO) was stuck with a surplus of unwanted machines, and the decision was made to re-write the game’s program into something new so that the unsold units could be reprogrammed and their cabinets repainted.
Bob is really good at telling us stuff other people talked about in more interesting ways.
The task of conversion fell to Miyamoto – an unconventional decision, given that he was primarily an artist and designer with little experience as a programmer, but one that would prove fateful. He was given very little to go on, just the requirement that all of the programming be built from the existing parts of “Radar Scope” and an early suggestion that Nintendo might be able to secure the license for “Popeye the Sailor.” When that fell through, he had to develop new characters and a scenario. In doing so, he was making history: For the first time, a video-game’s characters and story were being developed before the interface was.
And the story was 'A monkey stole Mario's girlfriend, kick his ass'
The early “Popeye” brainstorming had naturally called to mind the scenario of rescuing Olive Oyl from the villain Bluto, and had fixed in Miyamoto’s mind the idea that players would be enticed to keep playing by the goal of having to rescue the hero’s girlfriend rather than simply trying to rack up more points. Simple and arch though it may have been, this would be the first time that a game had tried to engage players through narrative and emotion rather than strictly through competition.
Yeah everyone just loved that gripping Donkey Kong story. I still have the 500 page novelization.
Bluto was replaced by a gorilla, “Donkey Kong,” which in turn suggested the girl-abducted-by-ape finale of “King Kong,” which in turn suggested the gameplay of scaling a building in pursuit of said ape. But the game still needed a main character.
And avatar for the player.
It needed a Hero.
In keeping with his desire for the game to have characters as well-defined as the hardware would allow, Miyamoto wanted his hero (whom he was still considering calling “Mr. Video”) to stand out within the game – to have recognizable human-like movements and a face – and while video-game graphics of the day placed severe restrictions on such ambitions, a clever artist could find a way. And so, “Mr. Video” got a big Italian-style mustache to give his face and nose definition in profile, and would wear overalls so that his arms would be more visible against his body. They’d call him “Jumpman,” at first; but he soon got a new nickname based on his apparent similarity to one Mario Segale, a colorful real estate mogul who was Nintendo of America’s warehouse manager at the time.
Super Mario 3, you are playing the game... talk about it instead of Donkey Kong we already know this shit.
The finished game, “Donkey Kong,” was a smash hit… and Mario was born.
Miyamoto would revisit the character soon after in two “Kong” sequels and “Mario Bros.,” a two-player co-op game reminiscent of “Joust” that introduced Mario’s brother Luigi and gave them a new backstory as New York City plumbers combating an infestation of crabs, bugs and turtles in a room full of pipes. Nintendo, fueled largely by the success of Miyamoto-developed games, branched out into the home video-game market which had collapsed in the U.S. but was thriving in Japan; and the ability of these “Famicom” games to be longer and more complex led Miyamoto to expand his newly-iconic character in an unprecedented way.
Super Mario 3, talk about it
The title told the tale: “Super Mario Bros.” was “Mario Bros.” blown up to epic proportions. Instead of a single screen, the “hop n’ bop” gameplay would now be spread across an entire world that scrolled from left to right in the inaugural example of a genre that would come to dominate the Golden Age of video games: The side-scrolling platformer.
It's really telling how Bob puts everything in needlessly obtuse, melodramatic phrasing and then turns around and uses phrases like 'hop n' bop'

Mario and Luigi wouldn’t simply be crossing the screen, they’d be passing through a whole world – different skies, different terrains, underworlds… even swimming underwater. And this whole world would need still more characters and stories to populate it.
"Turtle that walks left" is a character?
Mario gained the ability to grow to giant (or “Super”) size via magical Mushrooms a’la “Alice in Wonderland,” eventually leading the fairytale-inspired kingdom of castles and magic beanstalks that was being devised (precisely how the Mario Bros. got there from NYC is the subject of much debate) to be named “The Mushroom Kingdom.”
The hostage-rescue scenario from “Donkey Kong” was revived with a new damsel in distress, Princess Peach (whom Western audiences would know as Princess Toadstool for more than a decade,) and the turtle enemies of “Mario Bros.” were expanded into an entire race of creatures called The Koopas (a reference to “Kappas,” mischievous turtle-like demons of Japanese mythology) ruled over by the wicked Bowser. Mario and Luigi would traverse eight Worlds split into four Levels, each ending with the conquest of an occupied fortress and all but the last teasing the player with a rescued hostage who would inform you that the Princess was “in another castle.”
This is fucking asinine. He could have gone into the early design phase of Super Mario bros, like how Mario was originally supposed to have a gun but instead he just spergs out the minute details while ignoring the stuff that actually would benefit from an analysis, like how the characters evolved from concept to game, design decisions, what was cut out and that stuff.

Bob insists on telling you the most boring shit and not much else.
The success of “Super Mario Bros” was immediate and overwhelming; the kind of electrifying impact that only ever happens once or twice in the lifespan of a medium.

Because mediums are constantly evolving you fucking imbecile. It's a slow progression instead of giant leaps. Video games are different because they're more constrained by hardware while a book has remained the same for centuries.

In its native Japan, the game served as an eye-popping send-off for the original Famicom as Nintendo shifted focus to an upgraded disk-system version of the device; but in the West (especially the U.S.) the game was the trigger for something much bigger: a full-on resurrection.
AND ON THE THIRD DAY THE LORD GIVETH MAN THE SUPER MARIO BROTHERS
While home gaming on machines like the Famicom had been steadily popular in tech-loving Japan, game consoles had been dead in America since 1983 when quality control issues and a weary consumer based had caused the entire industry to collapse in on itself. The entire industry thought Nintendo was insane for trying to launch “The Nintendo Entertainment System” (a U.S. version of the Famicom) there, but the naysayers were caught slack-jawed as the NES became an instant earth-shaking megahit in 1985 - and it was SMB (the game was sold packed-in with early versions of the system)
Here Bob shows that he doesn't understand hindsight bias. It's easy for him to say now that the NES was gonna be a hit, but back then businesses would have been perfectly sensible not to place much faith in it at the outset. It's like saying 'the nay-sayers were caught slackjawed when the Bay of Pigs didn't turn into something major'
that propelled much of that momentum as Nintendo went on to become synonymous with the medium they’d brought back from the dead through most of the 80s and 90s.
In Japan, Mario returned immediately in “Super Mario Bros. 2” - essentially a more difficult, slightly-tweaked remix of the first game - but it was judged both too difficult for neophyte American gamers
Yes Bob, people hated it because it was too hard for dumb Americans and not because it was essentially a rom hack you payed for.
and too visually outdated by the time it would be reaching U.S. shores (it would ultimately be released there a decade later as “The Lost Levels.”) Instead, the decision was made to convert a then-newer Miyamoto game, “Doki-Doki Panic,” into America’s SMB2 by redrawing its four main character-sprites as Mario, Luigi, Toad (the first Mushroom Kingdom citizen like those rescued at the end of SMB1’s first seven Worlds to be given a name of his own) and Princess Peach.
Mario 3 is my favorite mario 3
The American SMB2 divides fans to this day (the radical shift in tone, style and gameplay was explained-away in the “plot” as Mario having a strange dream) but was responsible for many of the series now-standard elements; chief among them recasting Luigi as a slimmer, taller brother rather than a palette-swapped twin of his brother and adding enemy characters like ShyGuys and Bob-Ombs to the Mario canon.
It also, arguably, was responsible for further “proving” that gamers could love a franchise’s character and/or world enough to embrace a complete gameplay overhaul. Subsequent NES sequels like “Zelda II: The Adventure of Link” and “Castlevania II: Simon’s Quest” would make similarly drastic formula changes from their predecessors.
you could cut this entire chapter out of the book and lose nothing.

This book had no editor.
What can’t be argued is that the game’s release coincided with Mario’s ultimate ascent to pop-culture godhood: between the release of this American sequel and “Super Mario Bros. 3” (our main subject), Mario and his cohorts would appear in a deluge of successful TV series, spin-offs and licensed products. His face adorned posters, birthday cakes and Happy Meal toys. Children dressed up as him for Halloween and scrawled the titles of his games on letters to Santa.
He's like Ronald McDonald except nobody got diarrhea because of him.
In 1989, the impending release of SMB3 was considered an event of such incredible magnitude that an entire feature film (“The Wizard”) was produced on the pretext that kids would catch mere moments of gameplay during its climax. The game itself would go on to be, for a long time, the biggest individually-selling game ever. This would be the high point of Mario Mania.
He's phrasing this like it's a drug epidemic.

MAN COME ON SHOW ME THE MARIO 3 I NEEDS MY FIX MAN I'M SHAKING
In 1990 Mario once again led Nintendo into a new age as the ambitious “Super Mario World” (“Super Mario Bros. 4” in Japan) became the flagship title of Nintendo’s 16-bit “Super NES.” And while the game was a major success now remembered as a classic of the genre (and for introducing Yoshi the Dinosaur, one of the series’ most popular characters); this was the beginning of the end for Mr. Miyamoto’s plucky plumber as the unquestioned king of all video game heroes.
I met a Miyamoto from an antique land...
Though it wasn’t fully apparent to all gamers (especially not in the U.S., where the NES ran the floor all-but unchallenged for almost a decade), neither Nintendo nor Mario were ever the only game in town.
... that said two vast and trunkless legs of stone stand in the mushroom kingdom
They had major competition in gaming-saturated Japan, and game-friendly home computers like the Spectrum and Commodore64 went toe to toe with the NES in Europe.
And while the NES dominated North American sales and Mario lorded over gaming’s cultural-image, they had a persistent challenger in the form of rival console-purveyor Sega, whose Master System had eked out a serviceable existence as the “Brand X” NES and whose Genesis beat the SNES to the 16-bit punch by a few years (so did NEC’s short-lived Turbo Grafx 16) and carved out a niche as the system better able to offer more authentic translations of Arcade hits.
...half sunk a shattered visage lies,
whose smile and black mustache and smile of bright whimsy
tell that its sculptor well those passions read
which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things
the hand that toss'd shells and the heart that fed
and on the pedestals these words read:
'It's a me! Mario! Look upon my works ye mighty and despair"
But it lacked a Mario of its own...
In 1991 that changed. “Sonic The Hedgehog,” looking for all the world like an electric-blue, punk-rock cousin to Mickey Mouse, became Sega’s new mascot and the first serious contender for Mario’s crown in the character’s lifetime. Whereas Mario ambled through his colorful worlds, Sonic was all about speed and visceral conquest: One “beat” a Mario level, but one survived a Sonic level.
Bob did you not run any of this word salad by a friend for clarity?

Canny Sega made the contrast between the two characters - Sonic’s “edgy” 90s flippancy versus Mario’s old-fashioned fusion of fairytale whimsy and working-class Americana - into the driving force of an ambitious marketing blitz: Genesis was the “hip” console, Nintendo it’s “uncool” rival.
What fucking kid thought Nintendo was uncool?
In playgrounds, arcades and living rooms all over America young consumers chose up sides (in those days it was UNHEARD OF for an average kid to own more than one console) turning friend against friend as both companies gleefully stoked the fires amid skyrocketing sales...
The Console Wars had begun.
Here's where shit starts getting tragicomedic
When the smoke finally cleared over the great conflict between SNES and Genesis, Nintendo had more or less come out on top in terms of raw sales and corporate stability. Mario, certainly, had a spectacular 90s with “Yoshis Island,” “Mario Kart,” “Super Mario RPG,” a litany of cameos and side-projects and the two “Super Mario Land” titles on Nintendo’s portable Gameboy handheld (the latter of which would introduce the enigmatic evil doppelganger Wario to the series’ mythos). But the “war” had taken its toll in the realm of public perception: Sega hadn’t removed or supplanted their rival, but they’d successfully lodged the image of Nintendo – and Mario – as the face of all things old-fashioned, unhip and “childish” in the industry; though Nintendo hadn’t helped their case by maintaining a puritan policy against extreme violent or sexual content in an era where more explicit titles like “Mortal Kombat” and “Doom” were the talk of the industry.
'AND THE FALSE PROPHETS SEGA AND DOOM DID LEAD MAN ASTRAY'
Within the industry, Nintendo increasingly came to be viewed in much the same way the Walt Disney company had been in the 1980s: A powerful but stodgy and unmoving relic standing in vain against the tides of history, and much of their corporate behavior as the 90s wore on only reinforced that notion. At the 1991 Consumer Electronics Show they made an infamous public spectacle out of unexpectedly breaking a CD-ROM console-making partnership with Sony… one day after Sony had debuted the proposed device at the same show.
And somehow this didn't stop kids from buying the games. It's almost as if kids don't care about this shit
It was here that the bigger value of Mario as an icon was coming into focus: The only conceivable way any game company could afford to conduct itself in such a way was on the strength of its first party software; and with Mario in particular Nintendo was holding the ultimate trump card… but even he wasn’t invincible. In 1993 Miyamoto’s creation finally found a challenge he couldn’t surmount: A live-action “Super Mario Bros.” movie, made by an American film studio, was an unmitigated disaster upon its release; haunted stories of a trouble-plagued production opening to tepid box-office and horrible reviews. At the height of Mario’s popularity, it was an early sign that things were not as comfortable as they appeared…
Oh no the mario movie it's a miracle that Nintendo didn't go bankrupt
In 1996, Mario would be the face of gaming’s next evolution once again: “Super Mario 64” turned free-roaming, three-dimensional gameplay from a dream (or a gimmick) to reality as the flagship game of the Nintendo 64 console. But while the game (and others that would follow) is today remembered as an all-time classic, the waning days of the 20th Century would be lean years for Mario and his makers.
Motherfucker, it's not like Miyamoto was eating beans out of a can.
In 1994, Sony had become the first company to successfully enter the game console race from outside the gaming biz with the Playstation – a powerful machine built from the remnants of their canceled collaboration with Nintendo. It filled a void left by the slow-motion collapse of Sega (who found themselves unable to replicate the Genesis’ success in subsequent consoles) and ultimately overtook Nintendo as the top console producer. With third party developers flocking to Sony, Nintendo was relying on its homegrown creations (and the unexpected mega popularity of the “Pokemon” franchise) and Mario especially.
'MARIO STANDS ALONE AGAINST THE HEATHENS'
In was in this period that Mario the icon began to more fully supplant the attendant rich gameplay experience as the driving force behind sales and notoriety: Despite the universal acclaim for “Super Mario 64,” he wouldn’t headline another full-fledged action-adventure title until “Super Mario Sunshine” for the GameCube (another less than financially successful Nintendo console carried mainly by first-party software) in 2002. The legacy of the “traditional” Super Mario titles did continue, but in the form of re-releases and ports for the various Gameboy iterations. (Though faltering in consoles, Nintendo remained unfailingly dominant in the world of hand-held gaming.) Instead, Mario’s console ubiquity took a new form as the standard-bearer for the emerging, popular “party game” genre – while the N64 (the first home console to come with four controller ports as a standard, also accelerating the “party” genre) and GameCube were gifted with only one “full” Mario game apiece, he was all over the rest of their bigger titles. The “Mario Kart” franchise was a smash hit on both systems, and video board game “Mario Party” was so popular (particularly with “Generation NES” kids now entering college, where the party-game genre fully blossomed) it spawned seven sequels across both consoles.
Mario Party is also responsible for more lost friendships than cuckoldry
But biggest of all were the two “Super Smash Bros.” games (one on each system) wherein players could make Mario and the other Nintendo mainstays fight each other . If nothing else, it seemed that the Mario Bros. would endure… even as the company and the consoles he’d always called home seemed to be slipping away from under him…
This next chapter is called Rebirth. This is where the quasi-religious tone gets more noticeable.And boy more noticeable, I mean hilariously sad.
By 2006, much of the games industry expected Nintendo to have fallen away like Sega and probably to have taken Mario with them. Neither the N64 nor the GameCube had lit up the world like the NES and SNES had; and while they and their mascot remained household names, the Golden Age of gaming they’d been part of was beginning to fade. Onetime rival Sonic the Hedgehog was a shadow of his former self, and once-familiar names like Mega Man and Simon Belmont were being supplanted by the likes of Kratos and Master Chief. The “true” Console War of this new age was between Sony’s Playstation line (about to enter it’s 3rd iteration) and Microsoft’s Xbox, about to launch its new “360” version. Mario, as the face of Nintendo, had become a side-player in the game it used to rule.
That’s what everyone thought, at least.
No Bob, nobody thought that.
When Nintendo and Shigeru Miyamoto (who had, in the intervening years, risen to a role of great prominence within the Nintendo corporate regime) announced that they’d be producing another console after the GameCube built around some new form of interactivity rather than a major power upgrade, not much attention was paid. A “Hail Mary” pass from a onetime giant soon to fall, no need to get too excited… until they saw it.
NINTENDO SHOW'D 'EM DIN'T THEY? YEAH THEY SHOW'D EM OH GOD MIYAMOTO LET ME TOUCH YOU HUGHLAHGLAGHAL
ask me about my hobo clown fetish

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Revolver Giraffe
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Re: Super Mario 3 Brick by Brick: The Annotated Edition

Post by Revolver Giraffe » Fri May 12, 2017 9:03 pm

Thanks for rescuing this one, Bong.

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GorillaGamer
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Re: Super Mario 3 Brick by Brick: The Annotated Edition

Post by GorillaGamer » Sat May 13, 2017 2:40 am

I would take the offer to do the chapter that Maniak did, but then I realized that I'm not the funniest guy around. Perhaps Cody or Max could take it.
Jesus man what is up with you and all of those waifus! Are you secretly the "Ultimate Pimp"?
An old quote from Project PATREON.

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Kerberous
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Re: Super Mario 3 Brick by Brick: The Annotated Edition

Post by Kerberous » Sat May 13, 2017 3:24 am

Bonglorio wrote:
Fri May 12, 2017 9:39 am
Because video games are a relatively new medium and it hasn't developed the sort of cultural depth and heritage that film and novels have. Also, most gamers are children or manchildren. Spelling and grammar is too hard for them most of the time.
I can confirm that the people working on games aren't that different from most gamers.

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Max-Vader
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Re: Super Mario 3 Brick by Brick: The Annotated Edition

Post by Max-Vader » Sat May 13, 2017 12:35 pm

GorillaGamer wrote:
Sat May 13, 2017 2:40 am
I would take the offer to do the chapter that Maniak did, but then I realized that I'm not the funniest guy around. Perhaps Cody or Max could take it.
Sure.

Also, I nearly forgot...
Bonglorio wrote:
Fri May 12, 2017 9:39 am
So sit back, relax, and remember: There's no Gym Badge for Hate.
There is, actually.

Hitler Youth Badge.jpg

KingMan
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Re: Super Mario 3 Brick by Brick: The Annotated Edition

Post by KingMan » Sat Jun 10, 2017 5:49 pm


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