I don’t really like Super Mario 64. There, I said it. I understand that the game was a big deal for its time, considering it was one of the first 3D platformers ever made. While that is certainly something to be admired, I never really had the best opinion of this game. In fact, I feel Super Mario 64 might be the reason I bore poor Mario a bit of a grudge over the years. So when I gave it another chance recently thanks to Super Mario 3D All-Stars, was I finally ready to forgive Mario? Keep on reading to find out!Continue reading I’m Still Not a Big Fan of Super Mario 64
Join us for our playthrough of Super Mario 64, one of THE classic Nintendo 64 titles and the original 3D Mario game! It’s time for us to explore the many rooms of Princess Peach’s Castle and defeat Bowser once again!
I just recorded the awful poison river Shine Sprite (the one in Delfino Plaza with the lily pad and 8 red coins) in Super Mario Sunshine for what I predict to be episode 10 of our YouTube playthrough. It took me an hour and a half to record what shall probably be edited down to roughly 5 minutes. I’m super relieved to be done with that nightmare, but seriously, what was Nintendo thinking! And why did I commit to a 100% playthrough?
Mario, Princess Peach, and the Toads were hoping for a relaxing vacation to the tropical Isle Delfino, but they soon discover that a Mario imposter is running amok and covering the once beautiful island in graffiti! With the help of FLUDD, Mario must clean up the island, recover the missing Shine Sprites, and save the kidnapped Princess Peach once again!
I just finished Luigi’s Mansion 3, and boy, what an amazing experience it was! As much as I enjoyed the original game, this game completely blows that one out of the water. If you liked the first game, then you don’t even need to read my review. Just go out and buy it! …But, if you’re so inclined to hear my thoughts, a spoiler-free review awaits you below…. Continue reading Luigi’s Mansion 3: So Good, It’s Scary!
My relationship with the Mario franchise has been a rocky one. Early games like Super Mario Bros 1-3, Super Mario World, and Super Mario 64 turned out to be some of the most troublesome games I’ve yet to own, with the latter two taking literally YEARS to beat, while the original trio has yet to be conquered and likely never will be. I have also found myself to be rather indifferent to the New Super Mario Bros games on the Wii and Wii U. I have a feeling my lukewarm attitude towards these games stemmed from the fact that I had been hurt by the famous mustachioed plumber just a few times too many. Continue reading Mario, I Forgive You
Today’s newest gaming topic is yet another one that requires me to post a picture, so I shall. Right now, I am playing two games. Mainly, I’ve been working on Final Fantasy XII on the PS2, though I’m not currently able to take any screenshots of PS2 games. The other game is one I’ve been playing quite sporadically, Super Mario Galaxy for the Wii.
The latter game is one I’ve been recording for our United We Game Youtube channel, and not only is it clearly on a recordable console (I’ve actually been playing it on the Wii U, which is HD-compatible, a requirement of my capture card), but I already have some screenshots available that I’m using for thumbnails. And since I don’t want this post to be too terribly short, I’ll post a couple screenshots rather than just one. Prepare for a sneak peek at some future videos, exclusively for you guys. I hope you feel very special.
Continue reading Day 15: A Screenshot of a Game You’re Playing Right Now
I’ve been hard at work on my third cosplay, and the next thing I completed was Rosalina’s star-shaped earrings. This was a rather difficult shape to make, so I first began practicing with paper. I found that I could cut out a four-pointed star, with some carefully-placed folds, for each side of each earring. I then ended up cutting out this shape four times out of foam, two for each earring. I quickly found, however, that the foam didn’t fold very well. It was just too thick, and if I folded it, it would merely flatten out again after a few seconds. Nay, that simply wouldn’t do, as I needed a 3D shape, not a goofy flat one. Nay, indeed! Continue reading Rosalina Cosplay: The Earrings
I had a super weird dream the night of 12/16/14. I remember myself and a friend (not a friend I actually knew, but one just from the dream) at this hotel. It seemed more like an apartment building, really, but I think it was a hotel because we were on vacation in this weird city. His room was several floors above mine, and I remember we had to travel back and forth between the two rooms a lot, and it took a while, and I was able to kind of make it speed up in the dream because it was boring.
We then decided to go to this mall. We thought it would be a lot of fun to walk around it, and so we headed down to the lobby of the hotel. I kind of sped up that part, too, and I also needed to return something to my room that I was holding, so I kind of had it teleport to my room through sheer willpower so I didn’t have to go all the way back up. On the way through the lobby, we had to walk down this hallway, and lining one wall were those weird machines where you try to pick up the stuffed animals with the claw that never grabs on, and the toys were pretty creepy in there. We then walked outside where it was kind of an empty field of dirt and a street, and we started walking to the mall. Continue reading The Duck Visits a Haunted Mall
Today’s topic for the 100 theme blog challenge is number 12, insanity. This sounds pretty easy. Insanity. I know just what that is. It’s when someone is…well, insane. Crazy. Bonkers. A nutter. But, the more I think about this topic, the more I think about how not-easy writing about it really is. It’s a single word, but there is so much that can be written on it, can’t it? And I’m certainly no expert on mental disorders, so I had to think of a different way to write about such a topic. And then I got it, in the form of a question. Why is insanity so appealing?
Don’t look at me like that. It is, in a way. I mean, they have an entire archetype commonly seen in stories that is related to insanity. The mad scientist. No, not angry scientists, though many of them do seem to have some bone to pick with society. Crazy scientists. Why was this stereotype even invented if insanity wasn’t in some way appealing or intriguing? And insanity, as you’d expect, whether they be mad scientist or not, is most often portrayed in villains. Because you really don’t see that many crazy good guys, do you? No, it’s the villains that think up all kinds of bizarre plots for such goals as world domination or other methods of obtaining unstoppable power (the terrible movie “The Blood Waters of Doctor Z” featured a mad scientist that turned himself into a fish in his plot for world domination; I have no idea how he thought that would work, however), while the poor good guy always has no choice but to go and stop it. Our hero very rarely is crazy. Maybe brave or foolhardy, but it is most often the villain who is deeply disturbed, which is all the more explanation for their wild plots.
And so, to kind of expand on that, when it comes to villains, what kinds does this Duck usually like the most? That’s right, you guessed it. The insane ones. In many stories, I typically like the villain the most. Or, at the very least, I often find them to be the most interesting, and I wonder why they do what they do. But, the villains that always interest me the most are the crazy ones. The weird, eccentric ones. Because, frankly, villains that got it together (bad grammar on purpose) are boring. It’s the crazy ones that are obviously in need of some therapy that always capture my attention most of all, and that is what I’m here to discuss, with as few tirades as I can manage.
Let’s take Bowser, for example. A lot of people know about him, no? He’s the main villain of the “Mario” series and an experienced princess-napper. And I don’t think anyone would consider him insane. Nope, he’s a huge jerk, but he’s not crazy. He doesn’t like his rival, Mario, which is understandable, as the ‘stached plumber constantly puts a stop to Bowser’s plans. He also seems to have a thing for Peach, especially in “Paper Mario”, but hey, you can’t really blame him. And you don’t need to be a villain to understand his desire to rule the Mushroom Kingdom. I mean, who doesn’t want to rule the world or a kingdom of ‘shrooms? Antagonist or protagonist, world domination is pretty appealing. And so, while Bowser is quite the creep, I don’t find him to be that interesting. His plans are uninspired, but I don’t get the crazy vibe from him. And that just won’t do. You’re too sane for my tastes, Bowser.
And then I come to the villains that are nuttier than those bags of peanuts that you get on airplanes. These disturbed villains can be many things. They are usually interesting. They are most often rather…unique individuals. And they typically range between comical or downright disturbing. I may like a villain in a more lighthearted series because I think they are hilarious in a way that only someone nuts can be. On the other end of the spectrum, some crazy villains are scary because of their insanity, and that’s why I find them to be particularly…villainous. Because they manage to truly frighten me, while at the same time making me curious about them all the more.
Let’s take two examples of some of my favorite villains. These two are insane by every definition of the word, and they are Dr. Nefarious of the “Ratchet and Clank” series and Lord Ghirahim of “The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword”. Now, this post is in no way intended to just talk about how great I think these villains are, even though I certainly do. It’s intended to explain my point on insanity. And explain it, I shall.
Dr. Nefarious is insane in a way that is on the lighter end of the insanity spectrum. This robotic villain is not someone to take lightly, as his plots have involved trying to turn all organic life into robots and trying to turn back time in order to undo all the times in the past that the good guys have prevailed over evil, which he is more than capable of doing because he’s also a genius (we got a mad scientist here, folks). And no one can disagree with me that this guy is crazy, from his bizarre plans to his maniacal ranting and screaming. And I will never fully understand why he hates organic life when he used to be one himself (and don’t ask me how that happened because I’m still not sure). All I do know is that Nefarious is a nut and seriously needs to be put into an insane asylum. But, his bizarre behavior is what makes me like him so much, as he is quite an entertaining character in an already rather hilarious group of games. Few can deny that his cut scenes are some of the best scenes in the series. And if Nefarious wasn’t insane, he wouldn’t be nearly as great.
And then I come to Lord Ghirahim, another character that is positively crazy. This guy is just weird. I don’t know. Nefarious, I kind of get. A little. But, this guy is, well, a lunatic. Ghirahim is rather flamboyant and, like pretty much all villains, quite enamored with himself. He can be pretty darn feminine and is known by all to make some pretty strange comments that can make you laugh (probably one of his most memorable lines is, “This news has just filled my heart with rainbows.”), but that doesn’t make him any less scary. That’s right, this guy is frightening. Rainbow-filled heart or not, Ghirahim is a terrifying dude in the way he can start off all calm and composed one moment and then threaten to do all kinds of unspeakable things to Link the next. And seeing as he starts off so much more powerful than our hero at the beginning of the game, this makes his threats all the more frightening because he is more than capable of carrying them out.
Ghirahim is evil and sadistic, and even though he can say some pretty corny things, he is not as laughable as you may think. He will stop at nothing to achieve his goals, and you know what, he actually does. Oftentimes heroes stop the villains, but unfortunately, Ghirahim manages to be a bit more competent than Link even is. You may be able to laugh at Ghirahim’s strange dialogue and his goofy victory dance, but it’s his insanity, the same thing that makes him behave this way, that makes him so much scarier than he would have been without it. I have to give Nintendo credit for managing to create a villain that can say goofy things, and yet we still can take him seriously. Not everyone can do that, and that’s why Ghirahim is another one of my favorite villains, as he is by far one of the most complex characters I have ever known.
So I was right, after all, wasn’t I? Insanity is indeed appealing. At least, it can make certain characters more interesting or entertaining, because it often makes them either funny, frightening, or a combination of the two. When I try to look for any correlation between the characters I like and those that I don’t, often times it is the weirdos I find the most intriguing. And most of the time, it’s the villains that are the nutty ones, and that may be one reason why the villains are usually my favorite characters in a story. Insanity is interesting. Insanity can make certain characters stand out from all the rest. The mad scientist archetype is proof enough of that, with such examples as Dr. Eggman, Dr. Nefarious, and Professor Hojo, not to mention the most famous of all, Dr. Frankenstein. If insanity wasn’t intriguing, then who knows if these characters would even exist.
Not an Insane Duck