Welcome to a new GamerSushi feature, Gamer Conversations, where Anthony and I attempt to actually have a civil conversation without the GameCop/LameCop or other personas. These are just casual talks about some of our favorite gaming icons, ideas or stories. Best of all, you guys get to join in when it’s all done.
Today’s topic: Mario. He’s everyone’s favorite plumber, and has been a thing of legend amongst gamers for decades now. The most interesting part of this Nintendo mascot is that he means something a little different to everyone.
Anthony: For me, Mario has always been the most iconic video game character ever. I mean, he started off in Donkey Kong and moved on to his own series which kind of changed video games forever. I remember my first time playing Super Mario Bros, the music and the gameplay was just so perfect. It’s one of those games that just thinking about it makes you want to play it.
What was your first experience with Mario?
Eddy: My first experience with Mario was when I was just a few years old. We got the Nintendo for Christmas, and I remember my dad getting ticked off while he tried to find out how to hook the thing up. After that, we played for hours and I could barely even get past the first stage. My dad would play too, and showed me when and how to jump. For me, Mario was a game that my brother, my dad and myself played together, and we’ve never really done that since. I don’t have a ton of memories of my dad doing stuff with us, but the original Super Mario Bros. is one of them.
Since then, Mario has created a stupid amount of memories for me. I remember seeing Mario 3 for the first time in the movie The Wizard, and how we were able to go rent it after school one day. But I think my favorite Mario experience of all was getting to play Mario 64 at home on Christmas Day. I had already played it at the video game store, but getting to see how huge it was at my leisure was just incredible.
What’s your favorite Mario moment?
Anthony: I remember when I saw The Wizard. God, that movie sucked, but it was totally worth it just to see Super Mario 3. I remember wondering how the hell the girl knew about the warp whistle if she had never seen the game before (plot hole!).
I even remember renting Super Mario 2 and wondering why it was so different. Mario 3 was very vivid because I was in a video store and there was another kid with his mom and she was naming games for him and she said, “Mario 3” and my eyes instantly darted around, I saw it,grabbed it, hugged it to my chest and ran for my mom to go check out. I think that lady was pissed, but oh well. Thankfully, I had trained my mom to know how important this was to me so we made it out with the game.
My favorite Mario memory is Super Mario World. I remember getting it for Christmas and playing it and going over to friends house’s and sharing secrets and eventually beating all 96 levels. The music, the backgrounds, the enemies, the AWESOME Koopa Kids! Nothing can ever top that one for me.
What is it about Mario that resonates with you?
Eddy: I really think it was the sense of adventure and other-worldliness. The thought of leaving this grimy planet and jumping into a place like the Mushroom Kingdom, where literally anything seemed possible was fascinating. Almost an Alice-in-Wonderland kind of thing, only there are spiky turtles and fire-breathing lizards.
When I was a kid, I used to draw the airships from Super Mario Bros. 3, and make my own little comic strip of sorts of Mario taking on all the minions of Bowser, including his kids. I would also record the Mario cartoon every Saturday and sit there and watch and re-watch each new adventure. Seriously, I think this was the thing that really grabbed me, and it just so happened to make for some variety in terms of game design too, which is one of the things that I think has made the franchise so long-lasting and successful.
So, now that we’ve had our conversation about the Italian plumber, it’s time for you guys to join in. What are your thoughts about Mario, and what are some of your favorite memories from some of his games? Go!