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Topic: Giving the Mario Characters more....character.

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Guitardude7

1. Posted:

It has been a rule since the dawn of time. Mario games shouldn't have/don't need a big story to be fun. And that's true. Mario games do not and never need story to be fun, immersive games. But in the modern age, the whole "faceless hero" schtick is a huge limitation on expanding the universe. I understand that Nintendo likes to keep Mario character flat so that they can put him in different roles such as an adventurer, a kart racer and a Doctor and story would only add unnecessary complication to the series but I just wish Nintendo would do something to make him seem more..... alive. Or relatable. And this goes for all the Mario universe characters. While Luigi, Bowser and Wario do have their own distinct personalities, they're only fully shown in a handful of games and never fully utilized to where the general public can distinctly recognize them.

My point is here that while the general system of no story, more gameplay works best, it can only go so far. Nintendo doesn't need to go all Final Fantasy on us and create a whole complicated plot but what they should do is give more character to these characters. Have them show emotion and give them both good traits and flaws.

Take Mario Power Tennis blooper reels for example. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWnJ-5hES2Q

Little story, focuses solely on gameplay, and the personalities aren't even that complex. But it humanizes them, and gives them a much rounder and more relatable personality. It's little touches like these that go a long way to helping a character grow. For once I would love it if Nintendo just allowed Charles Martinet to record lines other than "Whoo hoo!" and "Yippee!" and give him lines like some of the unused ones from Super Mario Sunshine.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xa5OMqIKObI

Nintendo should still maintain the mentality to keep it simple but they should throw in little things like this to give Mario and co more character. And some people may say that it's a marketing thing, that by keeping the Mario universe undeveloped it allows for easy and accessible gampelay but when it's little subtle touches like this, I don't see how it would hurt the marketing. If anything, I can only see it IMPROVING the Mario series marketing.

In the world today we have games such as The Last of Us and Xenoblade which give us complex characters and deep story archs. Gamers today have grown to accept deep storys are interesting and it only immerses them even more in the Universe of the game. So why limit the Mario series plot to always being a "Save the Princess" plot. Why can't it be "Save the Princess but also have fun quirky moments along the way" plot? Why isnt Nintendo doing what was done with Mario Power Tennis? Why can't we have quirky one liners from the ones in Super Mario Sunshine? Like I said, it doesn't need to be complex. It just needs to be simple touches that are charming and by doing things like this, they can very well expand the characters personalities but also keep gameplay at the forefront and maintain the simple plot.

But what do you guys think? Do you agree? Disagree? Let me know!

Guitardude7

3DS Friend Code: 4983-5439-2641 | Nintendo Network ID: Guitardude7

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Dave24

2. Posted:

So explain why would you need deep story and character in a platformer, where the only thing that matters is... well, platforming.

You know that he is good, humble, brave and willing to help, that's all you need to know.

Also, Mario is not limited to saving Peach - he saves kids, stars, worlds... unless you are talking platformers only, in a genre that it doesn't really matter that much.

Mario is recognizable with some characterictics and that's all is needed - unless you are trying to say that, for example, Gordon Freeman is sucking hard time. It doesn't matter when the game itself is good

Dave24

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Guitardude7

3. Posted:

@Dave24 What I'm saying is that they should stop limiting Mario to "woo hoos" and "yippies" and instead give him and rest of his co quirky moments like in Power Tennis or Sunshine. And I'm not ripping on modern Mario games, Super Mario 3D World is one of the best Mario games that I have ever played. But Mario as a character us stagnant and uninteresting. There is no personality, no charm or any emotion in him. All I'm saying is that Nintendo should stop limiting him and give him just a little bit more life.

Guitardude7

3DS Friend Code: 4983-5439-2641 | Nintendo Network ID: Guitardude7

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CaviarMeths

4. Posted:

I don't think Mario is the type of character that would benefit from having a more complex personality and characterization. He's a mascot. He doesn't need a backstory or emotional flaws. His simple personality "quirks" that he already has do enough to maintain his popularity and appeal as Nintendo's mascot and the star of platforming games.

His personality is more or less like the video game version of Buster Keaton or Charlie Chaplin. Simple, amusing, and instantly recognizable for his antics.

I think Nintendo should leave character development to characters who star in story-based games.

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Oragami

5. Posted:

I think if a Mario game got a story structure similar to Banjo-Kazooie, that would be great. Like when you meet a new character, you have conversations, or whatever.

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Reala

6. Posted:

I'm all for giving Mario a break, while the games with him in it might be for the most part consistently highly rated, I'm just plain sick of the sight of him right now without putting more words in his mouth and generally making him more visible.

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Dave24

7. Posted:

Guitardude7 wrote:

@Dave24 What I'm saying is that they should stop limiting Mario to "woo hoos" and "yippies" and instead give him and rest of his co quirky moments like in Power Tennis or Sunshine. And I'm not ripping on modern Mario games, Super Mario 3D World is one of the best Mario games that I have ever played. But Mario as a character us stagnant and uninteresting. There is no personality, no charm or any emotion in him. All I'm saying is that Nintendo should stop limiting him and give him just a little bit more life.

So it's official, Gordon Freeman suck... and pretty much most RPG characters, because it doesn't have one unless you play it. Or do you have something against it too?

What would be brought to the table IF they did that? That's right... nothing, because it is completely unnecessary.

Dave24

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Guitardude7

8. Posted:

@CaviarMeths Ok You're totally missing what I'm saying. I'm not saying he needs a back story, I'm saying they should give him little quirks that make him more 3 dimensional. Take for instance in Mario Power Tennis where he stomps on Luigis foot out of jealousy. That shows a flaw. How about when he says "Hello Door?" in the unused Mario Sunshine clip? That shows goofyness. Curiosity. He doesn't need back story, he needs life.

Guitardude7

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Guitardude7

9. Posted:

@Dave24 I've never played Half Life which is why i didn't comment on that. And You're putting words in my mouth. I'm not saying they suck, they have nothing to do with this conversation. Even so. Gordon Freeman has been in what? Two games? Mario has been in over a hundred. His lifeless personality is wearing thin. And you can't tell me it wont add anything, you're being close minded by saying that. Are you honestly telling me that the bloopers from Power Tennis don't add to the character? That they don't make the game more enjoyable and memorable? I don't even think you watched the videos I linked.

Guitardude7

3DS Friend Code: 4983-5439-2641 | Nintendo Network ID: Guitardude7

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BABBLE

10. Posted:

I disagree but it's because i'm so used to the way Mario already is. I do have an illusionary idea for a Mario MMO actually that would build on the Nintendo Universe and could possibly help with the players' connection with the characters. A very large selection of characters from Mario games or the entirety of Nintendo characters should be involved while supplying a massive sandbox of Nintendo themed areas for players to connect to. Emotes galore! if thats your thing. Just wondering if the Wii U could handle this. Either way, i believe a game like this would solve any of those issues you mentioned and become my new spouse for awhile lol.

BABBLE

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Guitardude7

11. Posted:

@DragonEaterMe That could be something cool if its executed right. But what do you mean by "used to the way Mario is?" what games are your frame of reference? Because if you look at Mario Sunshine compared to Mario 3D World, he has A LOT more personality in that game and yet it fits right in with the Mario universe and aligns with the simple plot rule.

Guitardude7

3DS Friend Code: 4983-5439-2641 | Nintendo Network ID: Guitardude7

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BABBLE

12. Posted:

Guitardude7 wrote:

@DragonEaterMe That could be something cool if its executed right. But what do you mean by "used to the way Mario is?" what games are your frame of reference? Because if you look at Mario Sunshine compared to Mario 3D World, he has A LOT more personality in that game and yet it fits right in with the Mario universe and aligns with the simple plot rule.

I mean that mario doesn't truly evolve in really big ways of communication and I expect it that way. From super mario bros. 1 to super mario u he's only gained a few extra things to say, and i'm fine with that. Also the plot NEVER changes: beat Bowser=save princess. I don't know about you but I hope that never changes. As for the sports games and other side quests, it is good he says different things because he's in a totally different situation. But to me, Mario at the least never becomes redundant and i'm happy with it.

BABBLE

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OdnetninAges

13. Posted:

I agree completely. The only personality other than Luigi, Bowser, and Wario's that I see are only in spin-offs and the various RPG games. I wish they would put some of that personality into the main series.

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Garios

14. Posted:

I'm afraid I have to disagree. I think the main Mario series should stick to what it does best: platforming. We do get little glimpses of the characters' personality via facial expressions and the like, and for me, that's enough. For more fleshed out characters, there's the Mario RPG series which have been doing an outstanding job of injecting humor and personality into the Mario universe. I absolutely adore those games and feel as though the joy from seeing these characters interact is enhanced specifically because we normally don't see that in a typical Mario game.

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Guitardude7

15. Posted:

@Garlos Now if I may ask, why do you think Nintendo can't make a Mario game that's both an outstanding platformer and have charming moments? How would this hinder the games in anyway?

@DragonEaterMe Now why wouldn't you want a different villain? The Mario series has a lot of bad guys at their disposal. Why would it be so bad if say Wario took the reigns? Or Wart? Why must it always be Bowser?

Guitardude7

3DS Friend Code: 4983-5439-2641 | Nintendo Network ID: Guitardude7

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BABBLE

16. Posted:

Guitardude7 wrote:

@Garlos Now if I may ask, why do you think Nintendo can't make a Mario game that's both an outstanding platformer and have charming moments? How would this hinder the games in anyway?

@DragonEaterMe Now why wouldn't you want a different villain? The Mario series has a lot of bad guys at their disposal. Why would it be so bad if say Wario took the reigns? Or Wart? Why must it always be Bowser?

obviously, heh, the villains you mentioned aren't very good vilains because they are rarely seen in the main mario games. but maybe if they branched off with a super mario 2 (doki doki panic) sequel, perhaps it would be worth a play. Wario..... i don't know. How about making him his own game or as a sidekick with mario?

BABBLE

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Garios

17. Posted:

It wouldn't, I suppose, so long as they keep it minimal. Mario has always been about accessibility and gameplay, so the plot ever getting too complex seems unlikely, but I can see there being some small moments when their personality shines through. I'm curious how you'd like to see it though. A lot of little cutscenes in between levels? Do you have another game with those types of moments in mind?

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Philip_J_Reed

18. Posted:

The more a character does, the less the player is left to imagine him doing. The more a character says, the less the player is left to imagine him saying. The more time a character spends acting out on screen and reading from a script, the less time a player spends imagining these things.

Mario's made it this far because he continues to stir the imagination, to trigger a sense of adventure and inventiveness. Interrupting the rhythm of the core gameplay for the sake of unnecessary dialogue isn't something that I feel would benefit the formula. (How many times has Sonic the Hedgehog had to learn that lesson?) That's best saved for genres that are expected to have dialogue and involved characterization. RPGs, for instance...which is where you'll find Mario doing all the things you wish he did in platformers.

Nintendo's not stubbornly refusing to give Mario personality. I think he has a very rich and immediately identifiable personality, if you ask me. They've just developed him over time in passive ways, which is something I prefer enormously to being expected to care about cut scenes and dialogue sequences when all I really want to do is enjoy a game.

...sorry. I'm working on something right now so this exact topic has been on my mind. ;)

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RawkHawk013

19. Posted:

I certainly wouldnt mind seeing more charm/character to Mario. As a whole I would prefer that Nintendo would develop new stories/main enemies for the Mario universe (We have seen Bowser far too often as the main villain). Bring in Wario, or Wart, or Waluigi, or a whole new major boss type enemy. This is a big reason why my favorite series is the Paper Mario series (1st and 2nd being the best ones). They include a very interesting storyline in these as well as having awesome bosses.

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DestinyMan

20. Posted:

I understand what you mean, and I wouldn't object to Mario getting more personality. He does seem a little plain compared to his own brother, but that doesn't mean that he's a boring character at all. He's still one of, if not the most popular video game characters in the world. His simple charm in his platforming ways has captivated people enough. After all, gameplay practically created Mario. The 8-bit limitations of NES shaped him into how see him today, with a mustache added to form a face and a cap to replace hair due to the console's limitations. In that sense, he's a nostalgic, classic kind of character, not needing to say a bunch of words to define himself but the platforming adventures he takes. Dialogue is not the only way he can grow as a character; Mario also makes plenty of funny facial expressions and can communicate non-verbally quite well.

No, the biggest thing I feel the Mario platforming games need to do besides retire the New Super Mario Bros. series is have a new villain and enemies, just like Donkey Kong Country Returns and Tropical Freeze. That would be immensely refreshing, but I'm afraid people would think the Mario series would have an identity crisis if they did that. Thing is, Mario's been fighting Bowser much, much longer than DK has fought K. Rool, so the Mario series is the series is that is in the most need of being shaken up.

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