(Note: I actually wrote this a few months ago, but now I’ve started up Super Mario Galaxy 2, thought I should post this before jotting my first impressions.)
Often hailed as one of the greatest games of all times, I’ve hardly played it and when I do, end up really disliking it. Now, I’ll say this first, Super Mario Galaxy was the first Mario platformer I’ve owned (I’ve played a few before, spending the most time on Super Mario Land 1 and 2 on a friends Game Boy). I didn’t plan on buying it and then because of all the hype and good things I read, plus the inventiveness of the planetoids and great graphics, I bought the game on release day. It has become one of my favourite games and I love listening to the music. So, when I recently recieved an N64, I thought I’d try out Mario 64 again.
Now, I initially remember playing this in a shop around the time of the N64 launch. I didn’t like it. I ran about, jumped and fell down many slopes. It wasn’t fun at all. I’ve seen other people play it (I mostly remember people sliding down a rainbow) and have played little bits since then. Most recently I watched a friend play some of his favourite bits on an emulator a few years ago. My main thoughts then was how lonely and absent the game looked. It didn’t look joyous but rather devoid of life and creepy.
So, a month ago, I started up Super Mario 64. The famed opening, which I have seen a bunch of times, annoyed me, as did the instructions and the camera guy (and the whole camera controls actually). I ran and jumped about in the gardens. I did not have fun – which is odd as I loved just running and jumping about in the hub world in Super Mario Galaxy). Mario himself looked a bit too squat. I started a level. Recognised it immediately. Got annoyed running up the hill the first time. Got used to it after the 5th go. Tried and failed over 10 times to slide down a thing to get a coin/star/whatever. Frustration. Died at the boss on top of the hill. Ran up again. Tried again. After a few attempts, eventually managed to pick him up. Eventually managed to throw him off the mountain. But he didn’t die. After many more tries and frustration, I put the controller down.
After this I decided to not play the game and instead hold out till the winter to play Super Mario Galaxy 2.