Game: Paper Mario
System: Nintendo 64
Release Date: 1999
Price: $39.99



Let me start off by saying, I am a long-time and rabid fan of the Mario Bros. I attack things out of continuity, call people down on blaring mistakes (that I know of, anyways) and generally do not like/am not a happy person, when things are severely screwy in, and with, the Mario universe.

papermario6.jpg (11649 bytes)That being said, I love Super Smash Bros, and Super Smash Bros. Melee. The games are so close to every characters origins, it's as if they had divine intervention. But when I first heard of the SSB project, I was scared. Hudson Soft?! Making a fighting game featuring some of the most beloved characters of my childhood?! Oh god, NO! And so, I had my doubts about Paper Mario.

The original Super Mario RPG, was, in a word.....okay two words: Sheer Brilliance. It not only finally gave some rhyme and reason as to why things happen in the Mario universe, but it papermario3.jpg (12277 bytes) did it with the Squaresoft touch. As such, Mario RPG was stellar, right down to Mario not speaking, and pantomiming all of his actions.

Paper Mario is the sequel to Mario RPG......however, it is not made by the same company. It is not even in the same leauge of skill. I guess the premise was simple. "We need to make another Mario role-playing game, but we screwed up and lost Squaresoft, what can we do? We'll farm it out to a 3rd party, who has some limited experience with this kind of thing, and see what we come up with."

papermario.jpg (9799 bytes)The 3rd party got it, and said "Well we're not capable of what was done before. So we will need to start over. How about a retro kind of Mario RPG...? We'll use 2D characters, but in a 3D world. But won't that look weird? Hrm. Ok, we'll say that they're made out of paper, and we'll use that cheap effect until it makes the gamers woozy with disgust. Righto boss!"

And I think that's how Paper Mario was made. The whole game looks like something that could be done on a Super Nintendo, quite frankly. The 'paper' effect (Mario doesn't turn, he "flips") makes me seasick. Not to mention, Mario is the only playable character, he gets enemies as his Friends, who help papermario2.jpg (7264 bytes) him out in return. But he can't directly control them. Oh, and the stupidest thing I've ever seen? Making the stars into their own sentient race, complete with an Elder star who has a big white mustache. And then making them SUMMON SPELLS. HELLO?!

The look of the characters is disgusting. It's as if they never heard of Mario before this game, and then all they could get for reference material, was the terrible early '90s cartoons that used to air on NBC (the time period when Captain N went from awesome cartoon, to jerky, chopped animation). And I am particularly pissed off about Princess Peach. She looks like a papermario5.jpg (20091 bytes) hippo, with giant black beans for eyeballs. My heavenly god. And it doesn't even act like Peach, well maybe Alternate Universe Brady Bunch Peach. Peach is, and always will be, a complete babe. And she is a very strong and smart woman, and this game makes her a complete, helpless dolt. As if all of this wasn't bad enough, have I mentioned that Bowser hands Mario his butt? That's right, Bowser kicks Mario's rear end, all the way to China and back, in the first 15 minutes of the game, no less!! And beats Mario so bad, that he puts him in a Coma! Mario is way tougher than that. Hell, has anyone forgotten he picked Bowser up by nothing but his tail, and swung him around in Mario 64? And here he is, getting papermario4.jpg (16420 bytes) slammed like Hulk Hogan, all because Bowser has some magic wand?

MEGAByite loves this game, and as such, I will offer him the chance to write a counter review to my own, so you can see two people's opinions. But mine is, stay far away from this game if you're a die-hard fan. I can only see small kids enjoying this one.