Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Weird None Shigsy Canon Entry: Game 0001

Its funny, you let the Big man turn his back for a second and everyone's favorite vertically challenged plumber ends up in the biggest cavalcade of WTF moments in any Mario game long before Super Mario Sunshine reared its equally confused head. That's not to say Super Mario Land isn't without its charm. It is for all intents and purposes a scaled down Super Mario Bros. All be it if you squinted at Super Mario Bros. through John Lennon's spectacles across a hazy room circa 1967. Bouncing/coin collecting fireballs, No clear antagonist, those weird hopping Japanese vampires, a new love interest and two frickin sweet schmup levels. That's before we make mention of the can can showtunes. The irony is this was the first Mario game I ever got my hands on and was disappointed by Mario games I experienced soon after until I had played enough to realise it was Super Mario Land that was just way out there. Its still a really fun and charming little game, packed with as many little hidden secrets as any of its older brothers, with a clean, paired down visual style to perform well on the limitations of the host hardware. Seasoned Gameboy fans don't need to hear any of this from me, but newcomers beware, Super Mario Land is a bit like going to work on a bag of glue. Sure everyone and everything is there, but you'll be damned if you can't put your finger on why none of it looks or sounds quite right.

Favourite moment: Jabbing the start button repeatedly as your remaining time is converted to points at the end of the level. The closer you get to 000, the faster the pause jingle gets.

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