The 'Shroom:Issue 144/Pipe Plaza
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Hey guys! I'm pretty busy this month so I just wanted to say. Please enjoy the sections that my awesome team has gathered for you. Thank you and I hope you all enjoy reading this section.
Section of the Month
Congratulations to Alex95, SuperChao, and LudwigVon for winning Section of the Month! You all have deserved to be placed within SOTM for doing an amazing job. Please keep on voting for all of these wonderful writers that represent Pipe Plaza. Thank you all once again for voting!
Grab a cup of forehead coffee for this interview with Mario jc.
Hello 'Shroom readers! Are you spending a nice month so far? Above all, I hope you took the time to celebrate Mar10 Day! As far as I'm concerned, I enjoy it playing Super Mario Maker. With the sequel, Super Mario Maker 2 coming soon, I took advantage of the time remaining to train a bit before creating some great levels with slopes in the Super Mario 3D World style!
Okay, back to the serious stuff. As the Stats Manager, I'm still here to bring you an all-new Monthly Report. We'll take a look at the Mario Wiki's statistics for March and a comparison with the previous month. Without further ado, let's take a look at it.
Many things have gone up this month, and it's nice to see that the wiki's activity is still strong, although edits per page suffered a small decrease. In addition, there is one less administrator, due to the resignation of KPH2293 (talk). I take the time here to wish him the best of luck for his future.
And that's the end of Issue 144's Monthly Report. Thank you for taking the time to read it, and come again next month. Meanwhile, have a great time!
Hello, 'Shroom readers! You may be wondering why I didn't have one of these little intros and outros last month. The answer to that is... I forgot about them. Whoops. But this time you'll get one, and you'll get an entire interview too! I've chosen current bureaucrat Mario jc, one of only a handful of people in the wiki's entire history to hold that rank. He primarily focuses his time on the wiki, so while we see him somewhat on the forum, he's not the kind of person you might know that much that about. That's why I'm here to fix it, with this interview!
Hello everyone! Welcome to NIWA Spotlight, a focused list that covers one article from each of our partnered wikis that need help. These can range from articles that need more information or created to images that need replacing or uploaded. Notice something on a different wiki you can't fix or aren't sure how to and want to get the word out? Let me know on my talk page or in this forum topic and it will be added to a future issue. For our Mario-related topics, check out the current The 'Shroom Spotlight!
KA467 created the Tidal Rush page on Inkipedia, Fubaka expanded the UFO page on WiKirby, Results May Vary added an image to Dinosaur Horn on Lylat Wiki, and Anthony1996 improved the Boxing Ring image on Smash Wiki! Thank you all!
Poll Committee Discussion
We arrive in that season of transition, the renewal of spring and the winding down of autumn. In such times of change, the natural world moves rapidly deliberately with bursts of activity as life prepares for the seasons to come. Just like the natural world, the Poll Committee has stayed busy with activity. Since few things in nature demonstrate the furious preparation of wildlife more visibly than do birds, it seems fitting that they sent a Pitohui to deliver the news from the Poll Committee. In case my joking is unclear, I’m Hooded Pitohui and I’m here to comment on the polls of the past month.
With Bowser's Inside Story + Bowser Jr.'s Journey having been released for nearly a month now, how do you feel about the game? (Raregold (talk) and Hooded Pitohui (talk), February 3rd, 2019)
Super Mario Maker 2 has been announced, with many new additions to the game. What is your favorite new feature of the sequel? (The Pyro Guy (talk) and Roserade (talk), February 17th, 2019)
Two games in the Mario & Luigi series have already received 3DS remakes. Would you like to see more remakes of Mario & Luigi titles? (Chibiki Daisy (talk) and Hooded Pitohui (talk), February 24th, 2019)
Nintendo is boosting its Online Service appeal with games like Super Mario Maker 2 and Tetris 99. Have these games convinced you to buy/upgrade a subscription? (Hooded Pitohui (talk) and The Pyro Guy (talk), March 3rd, 2019)
Our first poll for this month, and the first of two to examine Mario & Luigi remakes take a look at how people felt about Bowser's Inside Story + Bowser Jr.'s Journey after having had some hands-on time with the game after its launch. Just glancing at the results, it’s striking to see that nearly a quarter of respondents enjoyed the remake and were pleased with how Alphadream revisited the original experience. I was surprised by this result, as I’ve mainly seen complaints about the title. I’ve heard complaints as diverse as the new art direction being uglier than the sprites of the original, the remake feeling slower than the original, the music not holding up to people’s memories, and the game simply not having enough new content or changes to justify the cost. Stepping back and looking at the results from a fuller perspective, I have to notice that a majority of respondents report that they haven’t played the game at all. This meshes well with the game’s reportedly poor sales, matching reports from the Super Mario Wiki’s Twitter. Does this mean that over fifty percent of respondents disliked the remake? Well, not necessarily. It only reveals that they haven’t bought the game, not that they don’t like it. I doubt that’s much consolation to Nintendo or Alphadream, though. Interestingly enough, looking only at the responses of those folks who have played the game and have an opinion on it, the split between those who enjoyed the game unconditionally and picked the first option and those who ranged from enjoying the game with some reservations to actively disliking it is about fifty-fifty. For those who would have preferred some sort of change to the remake, the lack of new content seems to be the biggest issue, with ten percent of respondents expressing a desire for adding new content of some form. Interestingly enough, Bowser Jr’s Journey didn't’ seem to sway people’s opinions much, with only approximately five percent of respondents citing it as a reason they liked or disliked the remake.
Our next poll covers a game that hasn’t yet been released. Though we don’t yet know all of the changes and additions Super Mario Maker 2 will have, we know it has enough new content that we were able to ask about which features fans are most excited for. Despite all of the demands for slopes which have been flying around since the release of the original Super Mario Maker, fans seem to be most looking forward to the Super Mario 3D World style. There’s a number of reasons this might be the case. Perhaps the lack of a 3D World port on the Switch has left people clamoring for Clear Pipes and Super Bells on the go? It could even be the case that people are excited about the new mechanics that might come with a new style. You can Ground Pound and Wall Jump in the New Super Mario Bros. style while being unable to do so in the others, so it’s not inconceivable that this new style might bring its own unique mechanics. Approximately seventeen percent of respondents are excited about the new level themes. Most of the level themes in the original game only brought aesthetic changes, with only the water theme fundamentally changing the gameplay of a level. Here, I find it hard to believe that the new ice theme won’t similarly have an effect on gameplay. What would an ice world be without its characteristic awful traction? I admit, though, that, though it likely will only come with changes in aesthetics rather than changes in gameplay, I’m most excited for the night level theme. Clearly, there’s more than one reason people might look forward to these new themes. The ability to play as multiple characters and slopes, two new elements which promise to shake-up gameplay and the thought process behind designing a level, are highly anticipated, as well. I feel it best to point out custom auto-scrolling, which only twelve respondents were most excited for. I suppose it’s just further evidence that few enjoy the limitations and stress of an auto-scrolling level.
We return to the topic of Mario & Luigi remakes, and we find that, in total, slightly over eighty percent of respondents are open to more Mario & Luigi remakes in some form. Again, I’m surprised by this result. I’ve mainly heard complaints or comments on indifference. Twenty-eight percent of respondents, though, say that they’d like to see a Partner’s in Time remake and then stop with the remakes after that. It makes sense. Alphadream should finish off the original trilogy and move on, and Partners in Time is one of those three titles which is arguably in most need of improvements and updates. I would guess, though, that Alphadream would be wary of remaking a game which was already less popular than Superstar Saga and Bowser’s Inside Story after the remake of the series’s most well-received title failed to sell. Nearly twenty percent of respondents would accept another remake without concern for new original titles so long as the remake moves from the 3DS to the Switch. With the 3DS finally coming to the end of its life and Pokémon, Nintendo’s flagship handheld franchise, having already made the jump to the Switch, it’s not surprising to see people clamoring for Mario & Luigi to come to the hybrid console. Alphadream made one major shift with the jump to the 3DS and the new art style which accompanied it, but moving to a console is a whole separate matter with its own challenges. Only time will tell if they’re up to the task. After that, similar numbers (approximately fifteen percent of respondents for each option) of people expressed approval for the remakes and a desire to see them continue and acceptance of future remakes on the condition that Alphadream releases more original titles. What will Alphadream’s next move be? It’s difficult to say, but, should it turn out to be a remake, it seems folks will be willing to give it chance, especially if it’s a Partners in Time remake.
Recently, Furukawa made mention of Nintendo’s concern that more Nintendo Switch Online users are opting for shorter one month and three-month subscriptions over twelve-month subscriptions. He announced that the company would release titles aimed at making the service more appealing in an effort to increase the number of long-term subscriptions. As part of this effort, Nintendo released Tetris 99 and announced Super Mario Maker 2. We hoped to see if Nintendo’s strategy of focusing on new games to promote Nintendo Switch Online is actually effective. Looking at the approximately thirty-five percent of respondents who are already at the highest subscription status, you might be tempted to call Nintendo’s concerns unfounded altogether. I’m going to take a guess here and say that Nintendo has access to better data than we do here at the Super Mario Wiki, but it’s still interesting to consider if the fact that this is a Nintendo fansite likely frequented by Nintendo fans might have introduced some bias. Still, it seems that Nintendo is having some success in winning consumers over. About twenty-eight percent of respondents reported having upgraded their subscription or having made plans to upgrade their subscriptions in response to these new titles. About thirty-seven percent of respondents, though, have not upgraded their online subscription. Of those respondents who haven’t upgraded their subscription, a little over half simply note that the new offerings don’t interest them but offer no information of what Nintendo could do to interest them. The half of those respondents which does point to specific areas Nintendo could improve don’t settle on anyone clear path forward, with no option really preferred over any other. All said, our look into Nintendo’s strategy for Nintendo Switch Online shows a somewhat mixed response. Plenty of people are upgrading or are interested in upgrading, but it’s not quite a clear victory for Nintendo.
In any case, that’s a wrap on new polls for this month. Be sure to continue voting in our Main Page polls, and check right back here next month to see Geeky’s take on the polls of March and April.
Welcome back to The 'Shroom Recap, that section where we dig into the archives to provide a full overview of one of The 'Shroom's notable writers and one long-running section. This month, we go searching vertically, horizontally, and diagonally for information on Word Search and try to track down Palkia47 by traveling not through space but back through time.
Early History: MegaMarioman9910 and Fun Stuff
Palkia47, better known as Packy, has his start with The 'Shroom in its early days. Originally writing under the name MegaMarioman9910, Packy joined The ‘Shroom as a writer for Fun Stuff, the section of the paper which he would eventually direct once it was formally established as a Sub-Team. Packy’s first section was True or False, a fairly simple game in which he presented ten statements and left readers to rely on their knowledge of Nintendo to determine whether each statement was accurate or a lie. In issue XIII, the section was themed after Mario himself, while issue XIV was all about gaming systems from Nintendo and its competitors. Like many writers at the time, Packy came and went in the early days of The 'Shroom. He disappeared for an issue before returning in issue XVII to write one edition of Trivia. Though it was under the Main Team banner back in those days, Trivia too would later get folded into Fun Stuff. From his three earliest sections, two things are clear about the community's shouting space dragon. First, he joined in a period where he was still known by two names. He's first credited as Palkia47 in issue XIV, but even in issue XVII, he’s referring to himself as MegaMarioman9910. Second, it’s clear from the start that Packy enjoys writing Fun Stuff sections, a trait we’ll return to later in this article.
After a short break from writing, Packy returned four issues later with another Fun Stuff section. Yes, for four consecutive issues, Packy provided hints as he aimed to get readers to Guess That Game. While writing this Fun Stuff section, Packy also took time to share some information on the recently released Captain Rainbow and the recently announced WarioWare D.I.Y. and Mario and Luigi RPG 3 (better known now as Bowser’s Inside Story) as the one-time writer of Upcoming Games in issue XX. After issue XXI, though, Packy disappears for quite some time, a hiatus of over fifty issues, actually.
Packy’s Grand Return: New Sections and New Positions Through Issue 100
After his last appearance in November of 2008, Packy rejoins the Fun Stuff team in August of 2013 as the new writer for Word Search. This would go on to be Packy’s longest running regular section; he would write it on-and-off from issue LXXVII to issue 103. In his first consistent run from issue LXXVII to issue LXXXIII, Packy themed his word searches around Dream Team, handheld Mario titles, Super Mario Bros. 2, Mario & Sonic at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games, Luigi's items, Super Mario 3D World, and the roster in Mario Kart 8. Packy puts all the essential word search elements in his section, with a large field in which to find a list of words vertically, horizontally, or diagonally, but he also goes the extra mile by including four relevant images around the field to add some color and visual appeal. Packy continues with the use of images around the search field until issue 100 even as he begins to write the section less consistently. Between issue LXXXV and issue XCIX, Packy themes his word searches on Super Mario Bros. 3, 2014 Mario titles, Mario Hoops 3-on-3, and the original Super Mario Bros.. It’s worth noting that, with that last one in issue XCIX, Packy begins setting up a series of four word searches themed around the four styles in Super Mario Maker. We’ll return to that in just a moment. Word searches from issue 100 on lack images, but the change can be excused for issue 100, which celebrated the community with a word search for names of users who signed up to be included in Packy’s list. In issue 101, Packy returns to the Super Mario Maker theme with a second word search themed around Super Mario Bros. 3. Promising a Super Mario World word search in November, Packy again interrupts the theme to have a Luigi’s Mansion word search to coincide with the October release of issue 103. Unfortunately, that’s where Packy’s time with Word Search comes to an end, leaving readers waiting on Super Mario World and New Super Mario Bros.
While he stayed busy with Word Search, Packy was also working his way into higher positions in the community during this time. First, he was promoted to Critic Corner Director in issue LXXX. He remained in this position for fourteen issues, dutifully overseeing the Team and writing his Director’s Notes in issue LXXII, issue LXXXII, issue LXXXIV, issue LXXXVI, issue LXXXVII, issue LXXXVIII, issue LXXXIX, issue XC, issue XCI, issue XCII, and issue XCIII. His time as Critic Corner Director would best be described as uneventful… save for one oddity which you might have noticed in the above table or with the two issues missing from that list of his Director's Notes. See, Critic Corner’s Director's Notes weren't found in Critic Corner in issue LXXXII or LXXXV because there was no Critic Corner to put them in. Without any sections to make a page for, Packy had to move his Director's Notes and Section of the Month results to Main Team sections in issue LXXXII and issue LXXXV. At the end of his tenure as Critic Corner Director, Packy announced in issue XCIV that he would be handing his duties off to Crocodile Dippy. Packy wasn't retiring from The 'Shroom Staff, though; rather, he was going to be taking over for newly elected Director SMB as the Fun Stuff Director starting in issue XV.Now in charge of his old stomping grounds, Packy took quickly to leading the Fun Stuff Team. He wrote his Director's Notes in issue XCV, issue XCVI, issue XCVII, issue XCVIII, and issue XCIX in a straightforward manner without much flair. In issue 100, Packy gained a Staff Portrait, allowing us to see him in his full glory with all of his Director’s Notes. He also spent issue 100 hosting a special contest involving his user-themed Word Search mentioned previously. The first three to finish it (The Fresh Prince, Freakworld, and Andymii), received gift cards for their efforts. Packy continues his work in issue 102 and issue 103, but, though he's listed as Fun Stuff Director through issue 106, he no longer carries out his duties as Fun Stuff Director after his last appearance in issue 103. In the interim, SMB and Superchao cover for him until Andymii can take over as Fun Stuff Director in issue 107.
Before discussing what happened with Packy, it's worth noting that he also attained another important position in this period. He was elected Poll Committee Chairperson and gave his address to open his term in issue 100. With Andymii as his Vice-Chairperson, Packy uses the address as a call for members. During his time as the head of the Poll Committee, Packy crafted and debuted the Pipe Plaza staple which is Poll Committee Discussion. Unlike its modern incarnation, which offers a committee member’s commentary on the featured polls, the initial version Packy showed off in issue 103 was strictly the news of the Poll Committee and an uncompensated look at the archived polls.
You may have noticed that Packy's time as both the Fun Stuff Director and Poll Committee Chairperson ends rather abruptly in issue 103. Around that time, Packy found himself unable to effectively carry out the duties of both positions and had to leave them unexpectedly. After a short time, though, Andymii rose to the challenge and succeeded Packy in both positions.
That’s not all that Packy accomplished during this busy period, though. As a member of The 'Shroom Core Staff, he had a hand in the Mario Party: Island Tournament which spanned from issue LXXX to issue LXXXII and was a part of four separate Staff projects in Holiday issue LXXXI. In collaboration with his fellow Staff members, Packy wrote pieces of issue 100’s tribute to Satoru Iwata. He shared his thoughts on Super Smash Bros for 3DS and The Adventures of Bouapha: Spooky Castle in First Impressions, offers a Non-Mario Crossword themed around E3, provides information on Roger the Potted Ghost’s tennis match, and reflects on his 2015 Pokémon Tournament.
The period from issue LXXVII to issue 100 was Packy's golden age with The 'Shroom. He rose to high places and wrote numerous sections. Even though parts of this period ended abruptly, it didn’t mark the end of Packy's time with The 'Shroom. Though he left some positions behind, one section in issue 103 would continue to keep Packy with The ‘Shroom moving forward.
Recent History: Collaborative Cooking and Making Music
In issue 103, Packy worked with Crocodile Dippy and SMB to create a Cooking Guide unlike any other. A lengthy story with appearances from plenty of users, it is truly a section which must be read to be believed. Though Packy left his other positions after issue 103, he returned to work again on these unique collaborative takes on Cooking Guide in issue 105 and issue 111. The last of these actually features a search for Packy prominently, to the point he’s in the banner at the start of the section.
Before moving on to new sections, Packy also contributed some poignant reflections of his experiences with Walkazo to the collection of the community’s memories featured in issue 111.
Packy’s most recent work in The ‘Shroom, though, has been all about music. Making his new home in Palette Swap, Packy gave us an overview of the group Pentatonix in issue 109’s Packy’s Packtastical Musical Adventures. Packy took a break before debuting a different music section, Packy’s Songs of the Months in issue 122. Packy followed up this collection of songs in the next issue, with Banjonator working on that edition of the section as a special guest. Finally, Packy gave us one more edition of the section in issue 125, after which he once again went on an extended hiatus from The ‘Shroom.
Clearly, Packy's time with the 'Shroom since issue 100 hasn’t been quite as busy, but what he has contributed has been just as impactful and rich as any of his work in The 'Shroom. While he's been on hiatus for a while now, perhaps he’ll buck past trends and we won’t have to wait until issue 175 to see him again. If you happen to see Packy and can drown out the screams of They Might Be Giants music, be sure to remind him that he still owes The 'Shroom two Super Mario Maker word searches!
Welcome to the March issue of ‘Shroom Recap, dear readers. This month’s section feature was a hard one to find. So as Pitohui is featuring the work of Palkia47 (talk), I’ll be tackling a section he did for a long time as well, Word Search! Please enjoy this month’s issue and I will see you again in May.
Debut and Early History
Word search got its start in Issue XI through the work of Shroobario (talk). Though they were a one time writer they helped to establish the basic format of the section through a handmade graphic. Shroobario’s take on the section included an example word highlighted in red as well to help the reader get a start on finding the Mario themed words. After the user is finished they are directed to a separate image to check their answers.
Edofenrir (talk)}’s single edition of Word search and the work of Gamefreak75 (talk) up until Issue LXIII is unviewable due to a lack of files and external image hosting. However, what is viewable follows a similar formula to Shroobario’s take in Issue XI. While much more expansive in scope Gamefreak75 holds onto the Mario theme and even includes several pictures related to the subtheme of the word search itself. Though it does not include solutions.
Starting in Special Issue 64 Gamefreak75 includes the last month’s word search as a fully viewable image as opposed to an out of the way text link. This addition continued to be a part of the format for the rest of Gamefreak75’s tenure until Issue LXXVI.
Palkia47 (talk)’s work did not differ much from Gamefreak75’s approach to the section, especially for many of their earlier issues. Though in their work after Issue 100 they did remove images and significantly increased the number of words for readers to find.
Superchao (talk) took a step away from the longtime formula of the section and wrote a Metroid themed issue as opposed to all the Mario themed word searches before it. The graphic was also changed as the word bank was put off to the side of the issue as opposed to below it.
Word Search is a classic case of “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it.” The section used the same formula with virtually no changes for several years with the only notable difference between GameFreak75 and LudwigVon’s takes being the presence of images in the puzzle. Even if something is old, that does not always mean it is necessary to change it. But to any future writers of the section reading this now, don’t listen to this old coot and make the section truly yours.