News Article

Nintendo: There's No Such Thing As Too Much Mario

Posted by Damien McFerran

Company will never risk killing "the golden goose that lays the golden egg"

How much is too much? That's not a question Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime thinks we should worry about, at least not in relation to the company's iconic mascot Mario.

In an interview with GI.biz, Reggie was asked if the constant flood of Mario games could potentially harm the popularity of the series. He responded:

I would say categorically, no. And that's because our developers, starting with Mr. Miyamoto and going through the entire EAD development organisation, they understand the power of our franchises. They understand that the only reason these franchises have the power that they do is that they have to make sure that each subsequent edition is unique, different and offers something new.

They know that if they don't do that, we'll kill the golden goose that lays the golden egg. So it's something they are highly cognisant of, and even the executives on the business side, we hold that IP very dearly to make sure that every edition in the series is foundationally sound.

[via eurogamer.net, gamesindustry.biz]

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User Comments (77)

19Robb92

#1

19Robb92 said:

I agree, I love me some Mario.

I only buy the 2D and 3D instalments anyway. The Sports-, Party- etc. games aren't my thing.

Hokori

#3

Hokori said:

I agree, just because Mario's in the title doesn't mean it's Mario, look at Mario party, kart, sports

FonistofCruxis

#4

FonistofCruxis said:

I disagree, especially with ho lacking in creativity the series is. SM3DL just doesn't compare to any of the other 4 3D Mario platformers and they're being far less creative with the 2D Mario paltformers then they used to be. Maybe if they took a break from making Mario games, they would be able to make more memorable and original games.

jackleapp81

#7

jackleapp81 said:

As long as the Mario games maintain a decent level of quality, then I'm fine with Nintendo making them.

Geonjaha

#8

Geonjaha said:

Um..Reggie - while there can never be too many Mario games, there can indeed be too many similar ones. There are now 4 NSMB games. Never in the history of Mario has there ever been such an amount of games pretty much identical to each other. The only ones that come close are the Galaxy Games and the Original + Lost Levels - and they both stopped at 2.

FluttershyGuy

#9

FluttershyGuy said:

I have no problem with 2 NSMB games in a short span. It's making up for the N64/GameCube era, from where I stand. My problem with more Mario beyond these is that there are so many franchises that are currently being ignored. It's time to give them another chance.

Ryno

#10

Ryno said:

FluttershyGuy said "My problem with more Mario beyond these is that there are so many franchises that are currently being ignored. It's time to give them another chance."

Totally agree.

WaveWarlock

#11

WaveWarlock said:

"They understand that the only reason these franchises have the power that they do is that they have to make sure that each subsequent edition is unique, different and offers something new"

lmao. well isn't that just a steaming pile of Donkey Kong poop in regards to the NSMB series that is. At least NSMB U is looking to actually spice things up a bit, but even then it's still not in league with being completely different as the older 2D mario's.

oh and STARTROPICS 3 anyone? Mikey' needs to make a comback with his tropic slaying yo yo! B-)

LittleIrves

#13

LittleIrves said:

@FluttershyGuy "I have no problem with 2 NSMB games in a short span. It's making up for the N64/GameCube era, from where I stand."
Exactly. To anyone complaining about all the 2D Marios we're getting recently, consider that SMB 1-3 + World came out between 1986-1991. Yes, each was more unique than the NSMB games. But still, that's four 2D Mario games in five years, an even more frequent pace than the four we'll be getting from 2006 - 2012, a six year span.
But MORE importantly, consider that between 1991 and 2006, we had a single 2D Mario (SML2: 6GC for Game Boy) and that barely counts! So what would you rather have? Fifteen years of zero 2d Mario games.... or an abundance of polished, somewhat samey, but super-tight and brilliant platforming? I ain't complaining. <end rant>

Mk_II

#15

Mk_II said:

oh please... i have absolutely no problem with Nintendo re-inventing the same brilliant game over & over again for each generation. And judging by the world-wide sales for NSMB2 et al. the rest of the planet seems to agree with me.

Moshugan

#16

Moshugan said:

I think I read from NintendoLife that they are planning to make only one ''New SMB.'' title per platform? So we shouldn't worry about Mario platformer overload.

DreamyViridi

#18

DreamyViridi said:

Agreed! You can't have too much Mario, YOU JUST CAN'T!!
..though, like FluttershyGuy, I also understand that other franchises should get some attention.

Doma

#19

Doma said:

They understand that the only reason these franchises have the power that they do is that they have to make sure that each subsequent edition is unique, different and offers something new.

Ha ha, if this were actually true nobody would ever have an issue with the quantity. NSMB series has shown us how devoid of creativity Nintendo can be.

KAHN

#20

KAHN said:

Untitled
yupp. i've pretty much stopped getting mario games(the RPG games and the early mario games are the only good mario games). they've pretty much turned into a franchise nintendo thrives on in order to get sales. why? because everybody knows who mario is. all the new mario games arent as fun as the old ones. the new games are all just a piece of the same game. they all look and feel the same. the old games were all unique in their own special way.plinkett voice now everything sucks.

jarreboum

#21

jarreboum said:

You can have too much Mario. Doing too many games means faster dev time, smaller teams, lower overall quality. I don't want to Mario what happened to Sonic.

Ernest_The_Crab

#22

Ernest_The_Crab said:

Hm...from what I can tell Miyamoto hasn't really been involved in any of the Mario games after Super Mario Galaxy 2 (not producer nor director) + the original New Super Mario Bros.

Other than the DS version of New Super Mario Bros. each of the other "New" games + 3D Land seem to have taken place during a time when sales were declining or sales weren't "good enough" in regards to Nintendo's projections.

One could conclude that these games were produced quickly to promote sales. I seriously doubt it's going to happen again especially when Miyamoto has said himself he wants it kept to 1 2D Mario per platform.

A 3D Mario probably won't be out for another couple years (and I have a sneaking suspicion Miyamoto will be in charge of the Wii U one) and 2D Mario even longer so no I don't think there'll be too much Mario.

ajcismo

#23

ajcismo said:

I've been pretty tough on Reggie in the past, questioning a lot of his decisions and PR. However, to slam on anything Mario in his position would be career suicide. He sounds very genuine in saying how important the #1 guy in the company (and gaming) is, even giving a little humor along the way. He knows Mario is what pays his salary, and with the way The Bros. games sell, why would he want to change that?
If they keep pumping out quality, then we'll keep buying that quality.

rayword45

#24

rayword45 said:

At least these games are unique. It's not like Angry Birds where practically every installment makes a minor change and then Rovio says "NEW GAME! BUY OUR PLUSHIES! WORSHIP US AS YOUR NEW GOD!"

However, the recent whoring of New Super Mario Bros. is not pleasant at all. The new features aren't that intriguing.

SML3D, contrastly, didn't have much unique going for it, but hey, it was a HUGE game on a portable device, with similar amounts of content to full retail Mario games (even with the more linear levels and lack of originality).

NintyMan

#25

NintyMan said:

I agree with where he's getting at. As LittleIrves mentioned, the recent rate of Mario platformers coming out is not like the original Mario wave of the mid 80s to early 90s. After SMW, there hadn't been a 2D platformer for a whopping 15 years until NSMB. As long as the quality is still intact, I'd rather have a good stream of games than barely an entry in a blue moon.

But I also agree with FlutterShyGuy about other series games. Maybe when times are tougher for Nintendo, they rely on Mario for a period of time until they are on sound footing again and then they experiment with another franchise?

Hyperstar96

#26

Hyperstar96 said:

It baffles me how people could possibly be complaining about NSMB being milked. It's been ONE GAME EVERY THREE YEARS. And each one has been on A DIFFERENT CONSOLE.

Popyman

#27

Popyman said:

If he means a Mario platformer alongside an RPG, sports game, or some other side game with unique game mechanics then, yes, I would agree. But these constant "New" Mario games need to die in a fire. Ubisoft of all people showed up Mario with Rayman Origins and now Legends, they need to give the platformers a rest or actually do something new with them.

GazPlant

#28

GazPlant said:

It might not be killing the franchise, but it's certainly killing the NSMB titles

Chris720

#30

Chris720 said:

The NSMB series is definitely getting very old, very quickly. Also we have two NSMB games in the same year... what the hell for?

Indeed, Mario sells systems and it's a great franchise, but they keep dishing them out too quickly. The 3DS has been out for over a year and it already has two Mario games and nothing from the other series, except for N64 ports...

SuperMinusWorld

#31

SuperMinusWorld said:

Agreed; Mario just can't be killed, espeicially with this fan right here. The spin-offs (party games, sports games, Olympics) I don't care about at all and don't count them as Mario games. I only worry about the platformers, especially the 3D titles. They manage to do something/look/feel/sound new with each iteration. I would, however, worry about the New series getting a bit drained. We need some actual newness from that series. The one for Wii U seems to be trying to do some new things, but they're mostly just evolutions of what has come before (ex: Baby Yoshis have special powers each, like the original Yoshis in World did).

But anyway, Mario will never get old.

Mickey

#32

Mickey said:

Now this is just me and i haven't bought EVERY SINGLE new Mario Game they've released since 2010 but I'll start caring when the games start sucking

V8_Ninja

#35

V8_Ninja said:

Considering that the New Super Mario Bros. games are still solid games, I'm willing to let Reggie take the stage for this one. And since the mantra seems to be 1 NSMB game per console, there will most likely be a long time where a new NSMB title will be absent. However, I do agree with FlutterShyGuy that these titles are taking away development time from more interesting, fan-favorite titles that have been missing from the past few years.

EvansLegends

#36

EvansLegends said:

Where they're going with the Mario franchise makes sense to me. It's about timing and accessibility; they want to create a simple, basic Mario game or two to coincide with the releases of the 3DS XL and Wii U so their systems will attract the most attention and sell. They're not gonna keep releasing 2D Mario games annually.

However, I would like to see the "new" palette go away; it seems like it's constraining the series. Accessibility is great and all, but we need to see something that's genuinely, new.

*Come to think of it, Mario isn't as big as he was many years ago, so maybe by sticking to the basic Mario formula, Nintendo wants to 'remind' us (the masses) of Mario, so to speak.

DonnyKD

#38

DonnyKD said:

@FonistofCruxis: "Maybe because the 3 NES titles were more unique than the NSMB games are."

They're only "unique" because they came out in a time where video games BARELY started. They don't have originality because of choice, they have originality because of technology and the fact that almost NOTHING has been done at the time.

I don't know what's stupider.

The constant nostalgiaing or the fact that people pretend NSMBU don't exist. And no, Mario's development has nothing to do with the OTHERS.

They never said "Oh, we'll get to work on Star Fox after we finish Galaxy 2!" Anyone who thinks that has no idea how development works.

DonnyKD

#39

DonnyKD said:

Oh, yeah, and to the kids who think SMB1-3 has an excuse of being even more used than the NSMB series (because its teh originals right?!?!?!?), yeah, 1) Lost Levels and SMB2 USA just proved you wrong The former isn't original at all and the latter isn't even a Mario game. So, in reality, between 1985 to 1988, only ONE Mario game was original. 2) There were MORE 2D Marios in between SMB1 and SMB3.

arrmixer

#40

arrmixer said:

well I'm old school I grew up with the first super mario bros, love super maro 2 and wish another installment of that series will come out... but I actually love this 2d series because I absolutely love playing 2d platformers (so does my wife)..
so I'm not worried.. to me the 3d marios are where the fresh ideas come in ala galaxy... though I hear complaints about the 3ds version...
I hope Retro is coming out with another DKCR for the wii u ... :)

arrmixer

#41

arrmixer said:

once pikmin is done I'm pretty sure Mr. Miyamoto will make another 3D Mario series in a few years...

hydeks

#42

hydeks said:

I love every mario game (2D and 3D) so I agree with him. Might have my doubts right now about Wii U, but I can admit I really want want New Super Mario Bros U, and I love playing New Super Mario Bros 2 right now.

Malic

#44

Malic said:

@arrmixer I would love to see retro's take on zelda mabe a new take on the original or zelda 3 new style though if that makes any sense what so ever :/

Katernity

#46

Katernity said:

@BudDudSlash "New Super Mario Bros 2 contradicts this entirely."

exactly. i played it from beginning to end and i certainly don't see how it in any way fits "unique, different and offers something new."

DrDaisy

#47

DrDaisy said:

Of course you can have too much Mario ... and his horrible voice, especially when he gets in the way of other characters. I think it's time Daisy had her own game.

Chrono_Cross

#48

Chrono_Cross said:

Call of Duty comes out every year = Sin.

Mario comes out multiple times every year = Godsend.

Go blind nostalgia!

imagiNATIVE_AK

#50

imagiNATIVE_AK said:

Mario has such a wide variety of fans, therefore Mario should have a wide variety of games, and it does! but the new super mario bros formula is getting overused, but you already knew that.

tigermask

#51

tigermask said:

Mario is such a dull and two-dimensional character. Every Super Mario game has the same objective of saving the princess. This was cliché before the first Mario games came out. Now in 2012, it's just uninspired and a bit sexist.
Give me Wario any day! I love that greedy little bugger.

Luffymcduck

#52

Luffymcduck said:

Yes there is such thing as too much Mario if you´re using the same ideas all the time. Come up with new level themes and a better soundtrack next time. I´ve had enough of "ba bah" sounds in three (soon four) NSMB games. I was so disappointed that the second world in NSMB U is, A DESERT WORLD FOR THE FOURTH TIME IN A ROW!!! I guess the rest of the worlds are exactly the same as in previous game with slightly different backrounds. Oh and could you change the story a bit or put in Cranky Kong to tell how uninspiring NSMB series is. That would be fun.

If it somehow comes even close to Super Mario World, that´s great. That´s the only 2-D Mario I consider a worthy opponent to my all time favourite series, Donkey Kong Country Trilogy (and Returns is great too). At least Rare came up with new enemies, worlds and stuff in each game, even though the game mechanics were the same (though they worked perfectly).

Now then, the Mario games I´d like to actually see in the near future are a new 3D Mario (like 64 and Sunshine) and Mario & Luigi 4 (with Wario & Waluigi).

WaveWarlock

#53

WaveWarlock said:

Holy mother of Ursela & He-Man!
I've still got to play SM3D Land, Super Mario galaxy 2, NSMB2 and in 2 months NSMB U....I've slacked off to epic proportions in Mario'sVille. Poor little Wavey' :p

Buob

#54

Buob said:

DonnyKD wrote:

@FonistofCruxis: "Maybe because the 3 NES titles were more unique than the NSMB games are."
They're only "unique" because they came out in a time where video games BARELY started. They don't have originality because of choice, they have originality because of technology and the fact that almost NOTHING has been done at the time.
I don't know what's stupider.
The constant nostalgiaing or the fact that people pretend NSMBU don't exist....

...Oh, yeah, and to the kids who think SMB1-3 has an excuse of being even more used than the NSMB series (because its teh originals right?!?!?!?), yeah, 1) Lost Levels and SMB2 USA just proved you wrong The former isn't original at all and the latter isn't even a Mario game. So, in reality, between 1985 to 1988, only ONE Mario game was original. 2) There were MORE 2D Marios in between SMB1 and SMB3.

They had completely new game play elements. In Super Mario Bros. 2 (JPN), Luigi had a different jump than Mario did. You could also play as Luigi as player one. Not only that, but the addition of the death 'shroom, and aesthetic differences (and the difficulty) made it a whole new game.

The US version had even more differences; playing as toad or Peach as well as the brothers, the picking up of vegetables and "riding" enemies was definitely new, as well as the red door potion things (which I NEVER understood). Besides that, again, the aesthetic differences and the health hearts (which you could add to), also made that a new game.

Super Mario Bros. 3 saw an entirely new structure as you have the map you commonly see in the NSMB games, the addition of SEVERAL different power ups, the addition of new enemies, a new way to end the level (with the "lottery" cards), and the option to gain back up power ups (also present in the NSMB series.)

Of course I'm not mentioning other differences I could name, but it's already obvious that the differences between all 4 games is night and day (more so for SMB2 (US) and 3), whereas the NSMB series rehashes the same plot, same aesthetics, same type of play (single player for handhelds, multiplayer for consoles), same type of gimmick to draw you in ("Collect the three power coins hidden in each level to unlock a bonus!").

It's no longer as fun as it used to be, and I'm sick of playing Nintendo's game (no pun intended) with 2D and 3D Mario. I will play Paper Mario, a Zelda, and some of the other franchises I enjoy, but no more Mario for me.

Also.... 2) There were MORE 2D Marios in between SMB1 and SMB3.
MORE 2D Marios in between SMB1 and SMB3.
between SMB1 and SMB3.

Are you stupid? There were technically two of them in between 1 and 3, but how is this relevant? Or are you talking about the Gameboy Marios? In which case....No, that's wrong.

RR529

#55

RR529 said:

I'm surprised at the number of people who say they only play the platformers (or only the platformers & Kart). Don't brush aside the RPG's people! Their easily just as good (if not better in some cases) than the core platformers. It should be a crime to cast them aside like any other generic spin-off.

shinpichu

#56

shinpichu said:

Um, yes actually. Yes there is. Just because we're not at that point yet doesn't mean it's impossible for us to get there.

warvad

#57

warvad said:

3D Land and the NSMB Series are by far the least creative games Nintendo has ever produced. They really need to mix things up, especially with Mario.

SuperMinusWorld

#58

SuperMinusWorld said:

@RR529 When I said I don't count the spin-offs, I wasn't including the RPGs. The RPGs are amazing, haha. Plus, they have platforming action usually mixed in with the RPG elements; I love them.

SuperMinusWorld

#59

SuperMinusWorld said:

@DonnyKD See, this is where you're wrong in respect to the original 2D Mario titles. The New series lacks originality because of choice, and the classic series holds originality because of choice and not technology. The reason being because each is unique visually, sound-wise, and gameplay-wise. Also, each follows its own theme. SMB led the Mario's into the MK to find their wonderland, introducing the timeless tale.

SMB2 (USA [which, by the way, IS technically a Mario game as it started out as a Mario prototype by Miyamoto who felt it was too different and instead stuck Japanese TV characters in it, and then it ended up being a Mario title anyway]) saw Mario and 3 other, different playable characters trapped in a dreamland. SMB3 followed the "All the world is your stage" theme and improved and expanded upon the original formula. And SMW (for good measure) follows the theme "A Land Trapped in Time" and sees the Bros visiting Dinosaur Land. Here, the formula continues to change and grow, a giant world map was created with tons of secrets, and Yoshi was added.

The New games are all pretty much "Everything Old is New again". No huge changes (aside from co op) have been made since the series' conception. NSMBU seems to be doing something different 'for the new series', but not for the main Mario series as a whole (it borrows a large, interconnected overworld and Baby Yoshis from SMW, and the Baby Yoshis' powers come from SMG2).

So, no, people don't see the original games as amazing because of nostalgia (although many people do). They're amazing because of innovation and their high quality. NSMB, while high quality, are only good due to the fact that they're taking directly from past installments of the series and not doing anything actually new. HOWEVER, I do agree with you on/you are right about one thing; development of the Mario games DOES NOT take away from development of other franchises like Star Fox or DKC or F-Zero. Nintendo has dedicated groups that make the Mario and Zelda (and etc) games.

Emaan

#60

Emaan said:

There can be too much Mario in my opinion. Games such as NSMB2, while fun, were unnecessary at the time. With NSMBU coming out at the end of the year, we didn't need a new Mario game arriving just months before it, especially since I feel the game could have been better. They need to spend more time making them, because the quality is going to start to decline, and the fans won't be happy. I love the Super Mario series, they're my favorite games, but I think Nintendo needs to slow down and space them out more after NSMBU is released.

WaveWarlock

#61

WaveWarlock said:

The entire 'New' SMB franchise should die with the U release.
It's time for some change and innovation folks! Miyamoto needs to create a spiritual successor as i've said before to SMB2 and Super Mario Land 1 & 2!

Ernest_The_Crab

#63

Ernest_The_Crab said:

@WaveBoy Referring to my previous post, I'm pretty sure he's busy at the moment, especially since it appears that Pikmin 3 isn't ready for launch day.

In regards to 2D Mario we're most likely not going to see another 2D Mario for a couple of years, probably on their next portable, especially with the Wii U.just releasing this year. I don't really think Miyamoto's going to change his stance either on 2D Marios so there's also that.

We're definitely going to see our next 3D Mario first, which is always good since the amount of innovation and risk from the 3D games generally trumps that of the 2D games (not factoring in sequels like Galaxy 2) when Miyamoto is charge of them (hopefully he is in charge).

EvisceratorX

#64

EvisceratorX said:

Yes, there is Nintendo. I'm not worried though. I think after NSMBWU launches it's gonna be a looooong time till we see another Mario platformer. I hope that's the case anyway...

kyuubikid213

#66

kyuubikid213 said:

@TheSolarKnight Mario isn't the only thing that sells systems... Even though they said they were making only one NSMB title per system, they still have several other franchises they can pull out to sell systems. They could pop out a new Kirby, reimagine Star Fox, finally release a Majora's Mask remake, or even create a new series/game that's got a nice change from the rest of the games (like Xenoblade).

kyuubikid213

#67

kyuubikid213 said:

As for too much Mario, NONSENSE!! Games sell systems. That's a fact. Good games sell more systems. Still a fact. We have great games from the current gen that have been system movers and sales raisers. Call of Duty, while at times a bit dull, is a great game. I know for a fact that when Call of Duty Black Ops came out, the population of my school dropped 50% for a day. There can never be too much of a good thing gaming wise.

scrubbyscum999

#70

scrubbyscum999 said:

Well, after NSMBU Mario should be taking a long break. They said they are only going to release one 2D Mario per system.

StarDust4Ever

#71

StarDust4Ever said:

Am I the only one who's happy to see that New Super Mario Brothers Wii-U (the forth game in the series if you're keeping count) is the first to ditch the SMB3 style cookie-cutter designed level maps in favor of an expansive Super Mario World styled overworld? That was the one thing that excited me the most during the Wii-U preview conference! :D

PS - Hopefully, they get a new soundtrack too. For those of us who have played all 3 NSMB games, the recycled music, despite being a decent game soundtrack, is getting pretty old, kinda like a vinyl record that's gotten worn out from being played too much. And please, Nintendo, give us a level editor for our 2D Mario games.......

themariobloggie

#72

themariobloggie said:

After seeing the Nintendo Land Mario Chase game, I wondered how good the next 3D Mario will look on the Wii U. :D

Dashtag

#73

Dashtag said:

You can have too much Mario but not the way some people may see it. I hope Mario games continue to get made forever, but I'd like some time to refill my wallet. Once every 4 months? No. Once every half to full year? Fine with me.

UnseatingKDawg

#74

UnseatingKDawg said:

Well, seeing all the examples above, I'd say that having 2 "New" Super Mario Bros. titles in one year isn't too bad a thing. Especially since one seems to be heavily based off of Super Mario World, which is one of my all-time favorites. If anything, they just need to improve upon the AI in certain spin-offs (especially Mario Kart). The platformers are doing fine, even if some of them have recently been more referencing than "new".

PixelatedPixie

#76

PixelatedPixie said:

"each subsequent edition is unique, different and offers something new."

He clearly hasn't played the NSMB series.

MegaAdam

#77

MegaAdam said:

4 NSMB games in 6 years, on 4 different platforms, and it's too many? Really?

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