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Wii

Mario Might Save Christmas? 127

Last week there was a Nintendo media event giving the gaming press preview experiences for the Christmas season's games. 1up has a look at all the titles on offer, but the one that (understandably) got the most attention was Mario Galaxy for the Wii. Wired's Chris Kohler thinks Mario's bee suit might save Christmas, while MTV's Stephen Totilo has comments from an hour hands-on with the game ala Games For Lunch. From Totilo's comments: "Each planetoid presents a challenge -- squash things, collect things -- that rewards players with the creation of a new launch star. I've launched Mario to a sphere that looks like it's made of wood. A star guy of some sort is in a glass jar. I need to kill all the Goombas to free it. I can jump on their heads, but I can also do the spin move, which knocks them dizzy and sends them spinning themselves. If Mario runs into them while they spin, they die."
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Mario Might Save Christmas?

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  • Awesome. (Score:5, Funny)

    by Applekid ( 993327 ) on Tuesday October 16, 2007 @02:24PM (#21000303)
    Is this similar to how The Flintstones, Underdog, The Peanuts, Garfield, and Futurama saved Christmas?

    (alternative jokes rejected for this submission:
      Thank you Mario, but the Christmas is in another castle)
    • I thought KISS saved Christmas [wikipedia.org]
    • Re:Awesome. (Score:4, Funny)

      by Mattintosh ( 758112 ) on Tuesday October 16, 2007 @02:50PM (#21000681)
      Hey, at least Christmas comes once a year.

      Peach has been holding out on Mario for a couple of decades now.
    • by Seumas ( 6865 )
      Underdog.... UNDERDOG...?

      Did you seriously just reference like a 70 year old comic character?!

      Anyway, no mario isn't going to save christmas. How is any game that is only around 6 hours to 20 hours (as almost every $65 game is these days) going to "save christmas".

      It used to be that a videogame offered you far more content than a movie. For $65, I can buy one game that lasts between 6 and 20 hours. Or I can spend $65 and see about ten movies at an average of two hours each. That's at least twice as much ent
      • nope - he just referenced a 2 month old [imdb.com] movie.
        • IIRC*, there was an Underdog cartoon in which he saves Christmas.

          * Please note that the C in this case always corresponds to "correctly" which is a bit of a weasel term since I might have hallucinated the whole thing.
      • by KDR_11k ( 778916 )
        65$? I think you need to check those prices for Wii games again. Also I doubt that the average length of movies is 2 hours now unless you count the commercials.
      • Don't know where you live, but even the independently owned theater where I live charges more than $6.50 for a movie. I think $6.50 is their matinee price. Take into account that I generally don't go to the theater alone, but with my wife, and the price doubles. And no Wii game so far has been more than $50.
    • by ECMIM ( 946033 )
      The ACLU respectfully requests (read: threatens to sue) that you change "Thank you Mario, but the Christmas is in another castle" to "Thank you Mario, but the Seasons Greetings is in another castle."
      • Actually, the ACLU has nothing to do with any War on Christmas.
        http://www.aclu.org/religion/gen/22324res20051207.html [aclu.org]

        I know it was a joke, but spreading that kind of FUD is never right.
        • by ECMIM ( 946033 )
          You might have a point, but any group that would try to tear down the Mt.Soledad cross and strip a tiny little cross out of the LA county seal deserves all the "FUD" they can stomach--and then some.
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by JoshJ ( 1009085 )
            Each state's ACLU does its own thing. The national organization is just a collective lobbying group. The decisions made by the ACLU of California have nothing to do with the ACLU of Vermont.
  • $5 Says... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Baylan295 ( 988743 ) on Tuesday October 16, 2007 @02:28PM (#21000345) Homepage
    $5 says Mario Galaxy loses game of the year to Halo, despite the fact that it will be a game that is talked about for twice as long, in the same way that people still talk about Ocarina of Time, Mario 64, Super Mario 3, Final Fantasy 7, and the other great games of the generations.
    • Re: (Score:1, Flamebait)

      I'll take that, if for no other reason than that Halo is the great game of the new generation. Like it or not (think it's uncreative or not) it is by far the largest game in the world today, far beyond the new Link or Mario. In 5-10 years it's going to be the game being talked about, perhaps alongside Mario Galaxy, but most certainly there.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Volante3192 ( 953645 )
        it is by far the largest game in the world today

        World of Warcraft? Second Life?
        • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

          by Anonymous Coward
          Welcome to the pathetic and delusional world of Xbots.

          None of the Halo games are even in the top twenty all time best sellers. This latest Halo isn't going to outsell the last Halo which had about twice the installed base - the 360 is selling at a slower rate than the last Xbox.

          There is some bizarre idea amongst Xbots that somehow all of them going out at once and buying the latest Halo game is something anyone cares about.

          Xbots of the World: "We all bought Halo at the same time! Take that gaming world!"

          Gam
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by hansamurai ( 907719 )

            None of the Halo games are even in the top twenty all time best sellers.

            If the only games we discussed were the best selling games of all time, our discussions would all be about whether we should evolve our Pikachus into Raichus or whether or not Pokemon FireRed and LeafGreen were worthy remakes of the originals. Seriously, Pokemon dominates your top twenty all time best seller list and it's filled in with Marios, Sims, and GTAs in between.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_best-selling_video_games [wikipedia.org]

            Those are all fine games to talk about, but considering there are many more

      • by LKM ( 227954 )
        Super Mario Bros. or Ocarina of Time aren't still talked about because they were technical masterpieces (although they were, I guess), but because they are some of the best games of all time. Halo 3 isn't.
    • by Sciros ( 986030 )
      Wow you have high hopes for this thing. Do you seriously think it'll be one of the *best games ever made* (the list that includes the games you mentioned as well as things like Starcraft, Baldur's Gate, Goldeneye, DKC, Castlevania SOTN, etc.)? Somehow I doubt it, although I hope it's at least better than Mario Sunshine.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by meringuoid ( 568297 )
        Wow you have high hopes for this thing. Do you seriously think it'll be one of the *best games ever made*

        In 'proper' Mario games, they've missed twice by my count. Super Mario Bros. 2 (which wasn't really a Mario game anyway) and Super Mario Sunshine.

        Super Mario Bros., Super Mario Bros. 3, Super Mario World, Super Mario 64 are absolutely legendary, definitely among the 'best games ever made'. Yoshi's Island and New SMB are both excellent.

        So I'd say that yes, there are very good grounds indeed to think

        • I must be the only one who absolutely loved Super Mario Sunshine...
          • Nope, I loved it too. The controls are heavenly.
          • by KDR_11k ( 778916 )
            I think mthe game mechanics are superior to SM64 but overall the game is less fun, not sure why. I'd guess the level design is not up to par or the linear progression forces you to play through the less interesting levels instead of allowing you to do something else like Mario 64. Getting the requirements to get to Bowser felt like a chore and once I got there and beat Bowser I never touched the game again. It was great fun for the first ~30 stars though.
            • They're suns, not stars (yes, I'm aware the sun is a star), get the story right.

              While I thoroughly enjoyed Super Mario Sunshine, and thought it was a great game, I also found the story line a little bit uncreative. It was almost a complete rip-off of Super Mario 64. No new goals (beat boss, collect red coins, go to top of level through nifty jumping exercise, etc...).
              • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

                by KDR_11k ( 778916 )
                Actually I believe they're called Shine Sprites or something but I just call 'em stars.

                What changed from M64 was that while in M64 the level stayed mostly the same and all stars were always available in SMS only the selected star was spawned, forcing you to go through the stars in order and discouraging random exploration because you wouldn't get anything out of it.
                • I don't think that's really how it worked. In M64, on the first level, the race the turtle star is only available if you had selected that stage. Same with the beat-the-boss stars all over the game. I think the only stars you could get at any time were the 100 coins, the red coins, and a couple other stars. There was only a few others that were always there, but many were impossible without some cannon being activated, which was only activated when your goal was to reach that star.
          • by BTWR ( 540147 )
            I absolutely love it too. But then again, I love Super Mario Bros 2...
      • by ECMIM ( 946033 )
        What is with the hatred for Mario Sunshine?! Why do people not like this gem? Because it's not as good as their memories of Mario 64?
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by SetupWeasel ( 54062 )
          Yes. Nintendo regularly takes a critical hit due to a nostalgia bias. Look at Wind Waker.
        • by grumbel ( 592662 )
          ### Why do people not like this gem?

          Because its not as good as Mario64 and many previous Marios. It has nothing to do with nostalgia, Mario64 simply is the better game (more scenarios, more actual jump'n run, no "clean this, clean that" quests, much better balanced, less frustrating, no load times, no dumped down swimming, etc.). There is lots and lots of what is wrong with Sunshine, its still a good game, but not as great as we were used from previous Marios. That said compared to other non-Mario jump'n ru
        • Mario Sunshine is clearly among the top 5% of all games ever made. However, it's among the bottom 5% of all "proper" Mario games ever made. Not because it's bad, but simply because Mario games are generally astoundingly good.
        • Personally, I couldn't get used to controlling the water by pressing up to move it down, etc. I keep meaning to go back and try again, but so far it's just sitting on my game shelf, barely one level finished. I have enough trouble controlling 3D games, that one was just too much.
          • Because that was one of the few unique features of the game that I thought made it fun. It was like you were a rocket man, and the levels were designed to work with that (big open spaces).
    • Final Fantasy 6
      There, fixed it for you!
      • by drcagn ( 715012 )
        Despite thinking that FF6 is a better game, you have to admit FF7 is what gets talked about more, and that is what this is about.
        • No, FF6 gets talked about more because every time someone mentions FF7, an FF6 fanboy (like myself) has to bring up the fact that the original speaker was a newb that never played FF6. And then we proceed to ramble on about FF6 for the next half-hour. Oh, and there was about a 3-year head start for it, too.
          • Not to mention that people were still finding new things in FF6 to talk about on Usenet up through and even after the release of FF7. Not even all of it was FWAK-like.
    • by Vorpix ( 60341 )
      don't get me wrong, i love halo, but my guess is that Bioshock or Orange Box (or maybe even Mass Effect?) will win most Game of the Year competitions.. but with the number of Wii's out there, I wouldn't be surprised to see Mario challenge Halo's sales numbers.
    • Re:$5 Says... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by nine-times ( 778537 ) <nine.times@gmail.com> on Tuesday October 16, 2007 @02:59PM (#21000797) Homepage

      Well, if the people giving the "Game of the Year" award are the sort of gamers who are most interested in console-based multiplayer FPS games, then Halo will likely win.

      I mean, if you want to talk about it, then let's just say what's going on with that. The current pop-culture of gaming right now is biased towards multiplayer, either FPS or MMORPG, doesn't care about story, art, or single-player gameplay. If that's who's handing out awards, then it's no surprise that Halo is the big game this year.

      That's not to say there aren't better games, more original games, or games which will ultimately prove to be more influential. Personally, I think that if you look back in 10 years, Wii Sports will probably have had a bigger effect on the gaming community than Halo 3. Portal is far more innovative than Halo (even though it's kind of a remake of Narbacular Drop), and the Half Life series continues to provide a better single-player experience than Halo.

      I recently read someone's attempt to compare Bioshock and Halo 3 to decide which was a better game. The review basically said, "Bioshock looks better, has a better story, and generally has a much better single-player experience. but Halo 3 has the best multiplayer ever, and multiplayer is what really matters!"

      So yeah, it's basically a question of who's giving the review or who's giving the award. For some people, Mario Galaxy won't be a very good game unless it's a multiplayer FPS they can play on XBox Live.

      • mean, if you want to talk about it, then let's just say what's going on with that. The current pop-culture of gaming right now is biased towards multiplayer, either FPS or MMORPG, doesn't care about story, art, or single-player gameplay. If that's who's handing out awards, then it's no surprise that Halo is the big game this year.

        Wait, trends in gaming? Hasn't the wii out sold the xbox360 already? Doesn't that mean that Wii sports has outsold ALL xbox360 games?

        "My friends and I only play FPS and MMORPGs and have narrowed our world view to the point that other game genres and trends don't show up in our small minded view of the world", does not mean the world is changing to adhere to your ignorance. If you pay attention you might notice that guitar hero and games of that type are also pretty big right now, or be surprised to f

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by nine-times ( 778537 )

          "My friends and I only play FPS and MMORPGs and have narrowed our world view to the point that other game genres and trends don't show up in our small minded view of the world", does not mean the world is changing to adhere to your ignorance.

          Geeze, calm down, I'm not even talking about me.

          My point wasn't about about actual trends in games, but the pop-culture biases about games. Whenever I see anything related to gaming on TV, it always seems to be about frat-boy types playing Halo. Whenever I read gam

        • Wii sports was not included with the console in Japan, so it has not necessarily outsold all xbox360 games by the virtue of wii sales alone. That's not to say it probably hasn't outsold all xbox360 games though.
      • Portal IS a remake of Narbacular Drop... At least spiritually. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narbacular_drop [wikipedia.org]
        • Yes, it's sort of part remake, part sequel, part unrelated game. That's why I said it's kind of a remake.

          For those who aren't familiar with the history, the short version: Some developers made a little game called "Narbacular Drop" more as a proof-of-concept than a real game. It involved using doorways (same thing as the portals in Portal) that the user could place in order to solve puzzles. When Valve saw the game, they hired the developers of Narbacular Drop to remake the game, but this time set in th

    • Well, I am people, and I only seen those games and be instantly repelled. Halo as well.

      I guess we have to wait till the Halo movie to see who the real winner is. Mario Brothers is already a loser, D&D (representing western RPG, my kind of game) is severly wounded but had a small comeback (second movie was passable), Final Fantasy was okay if part of it was just Aliens with less slime.

      Just because YOU are a nintendo fanboy doesn't mean PEOPLE are. Just as easily I could point out that some of the allti

      • Just because YOU are a nintendo fanboy doesn't mean PEOPLE are. Just as easily I could point out that some of the alltime classics in gaming are ALL pc gamers. Greatest flightsim, greatest adventure (Sierra style), greatest RPG (western style).

        There are a lot of other games that I could've talked about being great - I loved Age of Empires 2: Age of Kings, I loved Deus Ex (I should play that again sometime soon) and I enjoy playing Halo... but when I think Game of the Year, I think of fantastic gameplay that can be replayed over and over, or at least for an extended period of time. Halo 3 is a great game, with fun multiplayer, but I don't see it as being nearly as great in terms of gameplay as Mario Galaxy, Halo is great because of the competitiv

    • Bioshock is far more worthy of Game of the Year than Halo 3. Gripping story, stunning visuals, wonderful gameplay, and the permanent inability to look at the phrase "would you kindly?" in the same way ever again. :) Halo 3 is just Halo 1 and 2 with less of the detrimental stuff from the previous two. (Such as cut-and-paste level design.) It's a fun game, but hardly game-of-the-year material, unless you're only looking at sales.
  • sorry.... (Score:2, Funny)

    by ILuvRamen ( 1026668 )
    Sorry but Christmas is in another castle. Guess Mario's not gonna save it this time lol.
  • Not to troll... (Score:1, Insightful)

    by AsnFkr ( 545033 )
    ....but is it just me, or does this sound like Mario64 and Mario Sunshine's basic theme of collecting stars after tasks, only on planets instead of "rooms" or "areas"? I was hoping for more innovation from Nintendo's main franchise and hope I'm proven wrong. Ah well, I'll download it and try it either way.
    • Just out of curiosity, how many sequels nowadays actually change the main objective of the game?
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by KDR_11k ( 778916 )
        More importantly, how many do that and don't end up as the black sheep of their respective series?
    • Re:Not to troll... (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Sciros ( 986030 ) on Tuesday October 16, 2007 @02:41PM (#21000535) Journal
      The basic premise doesn't really matter. Zelda, FF, Halo, etc. have had the same basic premise throughout the life of each franchise. It's not about coming up with a new premise, but about setting new standards in how that premise is made into something fun. ^_^
      • by AsnFkr ( 545033 )
        Yea, but really...Mario64 was refreshing and new, which made it a lot of fun. On the other hand Mario Sunshine sucked. I played through like 90% of it hoping it would get better as I went along, but really it was just repetitive and annoying-hard....not fun-hard. I just hope Mario Galaxy doesn't have the same curse.
        • by Sciros ( 986030 )
          Yeah I share your thoughts exactly. But with Sunshine I think the problem wasn't lack of innovation, rather it was misguided innovation. That water jet pack would have been an appreciated "change" if it wasn't just plain less fun than playing as regular Mario...

          Oh, and the final boss, ugh soo bad...

          But what made Mario 64 so awesome wasn't just that it was new, but that what it did, it did more competently than anyone since has managed. The next best platformer of that sort was Banjo-Kazooie, and it was no M
      • I was very happy when Final Fantasy finally gave up the "save all teh crystals" plot in FF6 (not that I'm saying it can't be done well, but FF4's "Oh noes! They've got all the crystals! But wait there's more underground! Oh noes, they've got all the crystals...but there's more on teh moon!" was a bit contrived for my liking).

        Mario switched from linear levels, to backtrackable worlds, to multiplayable worlds. I agree with the GP it's about time to switch.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by SeeManRun ( 1040704 )
      If it ain't broke...
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      Oh noes, this game consists of DOING things!
    • Re:Not to troll... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by pembo13 ( 770295 ) on Tuesday October 16, 2007 @02:46PM (#21000631) Homepage

      ....but is it just me, or does this sound like Mario64 and Mario Sunshine's basic theme of collecting stars after tasks, only on planets instead of "rooms" or "areas"?
      You make it sound like they retitled it and were trying to pass it off as a brand new thing. And how exactly are you going to download Mario Galaxy?
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by theNeophile ( 238938 )

      ....but is it just me, or does this sound like Mario64 and Mario Sunshine's basic theme of collecting stars after tasks, only on planets instead of "rooms" or "areas"?
      Explain to me how that's not awesome.
  • UR MR GAY (Score:4, Informative)

    by samwh ( 921444 ) on Tuesday October 16, 2007 @02:45PM (#21000603)
  • "Swarms of South American Killer Bees have been spotted crossing the border into California. Sightings have mostly been confined to rural areas....Eyewitnesses say that the bees are yellow and black and dress much the way Eli Wallach did in the movie, The Magnificent Seven (1960). The bees are also overweight...(radio clicks off)."

    Sounds about right. Mario certainly fits the Killer Bees profile. It was only a matter of time. Hide you pollen, folks. At least he hasn't found a Landshark suit.
  • by Captain Spam ( 66120 ) on Tuesday October 16, 2007 @02:50PM (#21000669) Homepage
    Quick comparisons, Mario and Santa Claus:

    [Overweight] Mario: YES; Santa: YES
    [Dressed in red] Mario: YES; Santa: YES
    [Facial hair] Mario: Moustache; Santa: Beard
    [Hair color] Mario: Brown; Santa: White
    [Headgear] Mario: Cap with 'M'; Santa: Floppy conical hat
    [Frequency] Mario: Annual/Bi-Annual*; Santa: Annual
    [Lineage] Mario: Unknown**; Santa: Elf (Jolly)


    *: Rough estimate of release frequency of new Mario games
    **: Is he human? A mushroom person? What is he, anyway?

    Tough call, but I'm still gonna give this one to Santa Claus. Mario might be able to save Peach, but he's got a bit to go to save Christmas.
  • Super Mario Galaxy Might Save Christmas


    Help me out with the Christmas tie-in, if you could. Are you suggesting that SlashDotters are so young that they are typically waiting for mom and dad to buy them the right game for Christmas? Are you suggesting that SlashDotters' lives are so pitiful that a video game release around Christmas would be the major event in their lives around that time? Or what?
    • Are you suggesting that SlashDotters are so young that they are typically waiting for mom and dad to buy them the right game for Christmas?
      Speaking for myself only, I'm waiting for Santa to hook me up with a copy.
    • by Abreu ( 173023 )
      Some of us are waiting for the christmas bonus paycheck to buy a Wii + Mario + Zelda
  • A star guy of some sort is in a glass jar. I need to kill all the Goombas to free it.
    What did the Goombas ever do to you? For players who prefer cartoonish stealth over cartoonish violence, why can't more games have a no-kill route to victory?
    • Yeah, the Goombas are actually sentient beings who can choose to be nice if they want to, see the Paper Mario series. I find it disgusting that we are forced to kill them! I will boycot Mario games from now on.

      Against Goomba Violence!!! Who's with me?
  • Mario has been around for a couple decades and I'm sure he will be around for decades more. His games have always been fun because thats what he's always been about. I'll never forget the day my dad bought a nes for me and my bro and sis, and we had so much fun! (Duck Hunt was fun too, hehe) He's been a plumber, a stomper, a tail wacker, a Doctor, a brother, a fire thrower, a flier, a mushroom eater, a mud cleaner, and stared in one of the best 3d games ever created. Mario is world famous and I believe
    • I'll never forget the day my dad bought a nes for me and my bro and sis, and we had so much fun! (Duck Hunt was fun too, hehe)

      There's a new version of Duck Hunt out for the Wii, you can see it listed online at any GameStop store.
  • Christmas this year might suck.

    (Depending on how you take this, it can mean: a) if Mario is what's needed to save Christmas, then the standards for a merry Christmas have really sunk; b) Mario might not save Christmas, period; c) I'm sitting here with a high fever about to pass out from fatigue and can't think of anything funny to type)
  • I think Christmas is safe. A very large number of very high quality videogames are due out in the next 2 months.

    This follows the recent release of Halo 3, Orange Box, Warhawk, Heavenly Sword, Bioshock, and several other outstanding next-gen games. And some Wii games too.

  • And Ian thinks he's getting Super Smash Brothers ... boy will he be surprised!
  • I'm Jewish you insensitive clod!!!
    • A little known fact is that Mario's brother, Luigi, was originally named Levitzi. (He was adopted from a Jewish couple.)

      Nintendo will be releasing a game next spring called Luigi Rescues Pe[s]ach. "Let my princess go!" In the game, Luigi eats moshe-rooms and chocolate shekels to give him power, but watch out for the maror! He tosses spinning dreidels at the Koopa Troopas to knock them off their feet.

      Unfortunately, the sequel to this game is going to be a real bummer... 40 years in the desert [themushroomkingdom.net]

We were so poor we couldn't afford a watchdog. If we heard a noise at night, we'd bark ourselves. -- Crazy Jimmy

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