The 'Shroom:Issue 162/Palette Swap
Fall is here (at least for my area), and so is the September issue of The 'Shroom! Welcome to Palette Swap!
I hope you all are staying safe, wherever you are, whether that's from covid or from the many natural disasters plaguing the world right now.
How is everyone enjoying Super Mario 3D All-Stars? I'm excited to finish Galaxy- I played it when I was younger but I never got very far. Once I finish with Origami King I'll probably switch to Galaxy and then back to Xenoblade. Recently too I've been playing an indie game called No Straight Roads, which is like a Bayonetta-esque game with music elements, and it's really fun! It can get really hard at times, though, but I am determined to finish it. Rock on!!
Our fabulous art sections are featured for you this month! I won't hold you up from reading any further, so read on!
Section of the Month
Our section of the month for august is Magolor04726 (talk)'s World of Plight, which updated with a new chapter featuring Toad and Luigi! For second place, we have a tie between winstein (talk) and his Drawn and Pressed section looking at the history of Arlo and Janis and Yoshi876 (talk) with What's on the Box critiquing the box art of DK: Jungle Climber. Thank you to everyone who voted for their favorite section last month, and please keep it up for this month!
|Palette Swap SECTION OF THE MONTH|
|1st||World of Plight||7||41.18%||Magolor04726|
|2nd||Drawn and Pressed||5||29.41%||winstein|
|2nd||What's on the Box?||5||29.41%||Yoshi876|
What's on the Box?
Hello readers, and welcome back to What's on the Box.
As you may have gotten from reading these sections over the past few years, I am a massive fan of the Mario sports spin-off titles, however, that doesn't mean that I have actually owned or had much interaction with all of them. One such example is the boxart of the game that we're looking at today, Mario Sports Mix, and let's be honest, this is a pretty neat boxart.
I remember when I was younger, a lot of my friends had this game, although I never took the plunge and got it for myself. Unlike a lot of other Mario sports games, this one features more than just the one sport, it features four different ones: basketball, volleyball, hockey and dodgeball. And it does a pretty decent job at featuring all of those sports. That said, whenever I played basketball, there was always just the one ball, so I'm not sure why both Mario and Diddy Kong are in possession of one. Also, slightly weird that Luigi is on the opposing team from Mario.
Meanwhile, both Bowser and Yoshi are playing hockey, although Bowser seems determined to bring us a crossover sport between hockey and basketball as he seeks to take Mario out with that puck. Wonder if hockeyball will take the contact rule from hockey or basketball, because if it's the latter, then I predict there might be a foul soon.
Wario and Waluigi are all playing dodgeball, and again, you might think Wario and Waluigi would be on the same team, but it looks like Wario has just gotten Waluigi out with his throw. And finally Princess Peach is on her own playing volleyball, now I'm no sporting expert, but perhaps you might need an opponent in this game, with the most likely one coming to mind being Princess Daisy. Unless Luigi is meant to be involved in the game of volleyball, and Mario has distracted him with his basketball abilities.
I do find it a little weird that Donkey Kong doesn't appear on the boxart, whereas Diddy Kong does, but it's likely down to the artwork. Donkey's more matches up with volleyball, and while Peach does need a second player, with him down the ground, he'd get covered up by all of the other stars there. I do kind of wish that the one of the Final Fantasy or Dragon Quest characters could've ended up on the boxart, but it also slightly cloaks them in mystery so they're a surprise for a player going in.
Overall, Mario Sports Mix is a pretty strong boxart. It features all of the sports in the gameplay, and shows us the characters playing them in a convincing way, rather than just throwing whatever artwork sticks to it, although I will admit that Yoshi appears to be a bit tacked on. It's a shame we haven't gotten another title like this recently, bar Mario Sports Superstars, as this variety type of game is something I'd be interested in.
World of Plight
No, this entry isn’t written by Kirby (unfortunately). I, Mags, shadowed him for about a week to get this entry. He didn’t seem to mind at all, which was good. I also got into fights for free, which was also good. To honor the missing fighters, Kirby and Meta Knight fought in a best-of-three tourney at the Fountain of Dreams, in the Halberd, and at Green Greens. I even got to meet Whispy Woods and the crew of the Halberd. Kirby annihilated Meta Knight at the Fountain of Dreams; it was awesome.
But after a week of following a sentient wad of gum, nothing really happened, which was not good. Well, no one went missing, so I guess that’s good. No one could figure anything out about the alleyway, and nothing was happening that seemed worthy of investigation. (Of course, Wario keeps ranting about garlic burritos, which no one pays any mind to.) Then something weird happened.
We were eating dinner in the mess hall on Saturday and, after finding seats as far away from K. Rool as possible (Did you know he eats raw meat and bananas for like, every meal?!) and avoiding the scent of the “Wah,” Kirby and I sat down. I stared at my dinner, which consisted of a sandwich, an assortment of berries from Hyrule, and a Super Mushroom (even way out here, my mom hounds me to eat healthy). Kirby got a tray of Chef Toad’s egg special, with a side of everything - literally. I sat down and rested my head on my fist as I watched Kirby inhale his food and tray. He has trays made out of those Yoshi Cookies so he can just swallow the whole thing. As I sighed and started on my sandwich, Kirby got up and walked out, presumably to the bathroom. I glanced around and watched the crowd eat. Mario’s head was now rivaling the ceiling’s height after Bowser Jr. slipped some mushrooms on his pizza, Link was attempting to start a fire on the ground (he prefers to cook his own food), despite Chef Kawasaki’s protests, and Ridley now had smoke billowing out of his mouth as Young Link and Lucas were giggling behind him, Young Link hiding a bomb behind his back. So, an average mealtime then. At least nowadays. Everyone is acting up, attempting to seem as dangerous as possible so they don’t get kidnapped, I guess.
This is where things took an unexpected turn. After about three minutes, Kirby ran back in, wildly waving his... “arms” and making “frantic Kirby noises.” Nearly everyone gathered around him and tried to guess what he was signing.
“Three blind Scaredy Rats!” Piranha Plant offered. (Yes, he can talk.)
“A statue of Meta Knight holding a chocolate lamp?” Chrom said.
“A @#%$?!” No one could figure out who shouted that, but I have a suspicion it was Bowser Jr.
“A greeting?” Palutena asked.
“First word! Batch? Hatch! No? Watch?” Snake inquired.
“A powerful someone who wants to kill us all and rule the universe.” Dark Pit stated.
“Wow,” Pit interjected, “You really are dark.”
“I came from a mirror you broke. I reflect you, so clearly you are thinking the same thing.” Dark Pit said flatly.
Pit tilted his head and put his hand to his chin. “Is that how it works?”
After a while, everyone gave up trying to guess and went back to their food. Kirby, on the other hand, wouldn’t give up. He tugged and tugged on my sleeve, but I couldn’t figure him out, so I ignored him. Until he inhaled me, that is. I... can’t speak of the terror that sliced through my being while inside the extraterrestrial with the most unquenchable hunger in the known universe. I will say, it was the most disturbing thing that had ever happened to me in my entire life. (And I’ve heard Ganondorf singing in the shower in the men’s changing room!) Thankfully, he spat me back out in the main hall outside. Wiping my eyes (and everything else) free of little yellow stars I can only assume were his version of saliva, I looked around for what he was trying to tell me. Again, I couldn’t figure him out. He was running around, peering down halls and in rooms, like he was looking for something. I looked around, but after ten minutes, we found nothing. I sighed and went back inside the mess hall, which was nearly empty, and a quick glance at the table Kirbs and I had been at told me my tray was gone. Maybe I should get a Fire Flower this time… I though, stepping back in line. But as I did, I felt... well, it’s hard to explain. It was almost as if... a giant weight had been lifted off me. Not a physical one, but something... emotional? Spiritual? Mental? Something like that. Even Kirby seemed a brighter hue after coming back in. So weird…
Hey guys! Thanks for reading this month’s portion of World of Plight, and I hoped you had fun laughing
at my terror and misfortune. If you have any leads for me, contact me on the Mario Boards.
Writing from the other side of the screen,
Chef of the Wild
Drawn and Pressed
"If life were a movie, these would be the outtakes". This is how the creator of Speed Bump, Dave Coverly, described his work. This comic strip is a single panel comic strip throughout the week, meaning that even on Sundays it's also single panel, similar to The Far Side. Similar to a good deal of single-panel comic strips, the panels between two days are usually unrelated, giving each new day a new set of characters and a new perspective. Although Speed Bump's format is more easily associated with The Far Side (it is the most well-known single-panel comic strip, after all), they can't be any more unrelated, given their differences in style and humour, in addition to how the author was more inspired by New Yorker cartoons, namely the ones by Bernard Kliban. This comic strip started back in 1994, but it's surprising that I can't find the first comic strip, which is usually something that is precious to comic strip creators. It is quite a shame because I would love to see what the first Speed Bump cartoon was like, given how long it actually lasted.
Among single-panel comic strips, this one has a more unique touch, because while a lot of them seek to use caustic humour as the standard, this comic strip has a friendlier touch which I didn't know at first. The writing never got too biting towards one particular group, as the cartoons are more akin to a light jab in terms of finding humour in the situation rather than portraying any group in a debasing manner (which is what political cartoons usually do). The cartoonist went on record to mention how "cartooning is 80 or 90 percent" thinking of the idea, adding that a good drawing can't save bad writing while good writing can save a bad drawing. This is quite an interesting point put forth by him because it's evident in how some works aren't viewed as good as before even though it looked the same, just because its content has a reduction in quality, which is the case even among comic strips. In this way, the writing is the foundation of a cartoon, and I believe that this is something Speed Bump did well, which is to generally about "putting two things together to make a new thing, and the humor comes from the surprise of that". He seems to retain a humble attitude in his work, where he claimed that he isn't funny despite coming up with a lot of ideas.
The cartoon's niceness is complemented by its art style, which has a more intricate line art compared to many cartoons. For one, the scenery and backgrounds are normally drawn in addition to the characters, and another is how the characters are drawn as adorable and usually not exaggerated. There is a sense of humbleness in its cartooning style: it's not interested in pushing the boundaries on what's acceptable but at the same time it's not terribly inoffensive. The comic strip creator's pleasant art style is a contributing factor as to why he was able to get his work in, as the brother of Creator Syndicate's founder loved one of his art pieces and later on he was immediately accepted on the basis of his postcard being used as a pitch. Since The Far Side was almost ending at that time, Speed Bump was able to more easily fill the gap that that revered cartoon left behind. In other words, luck played a huge part in why Speed Bump was able to exist. In addition to comic strips, the author also did illustrations for a few children's books, retaining a weekly schedule that involves three days of focusing on his comic strip and the rest of the days on other projects.
With a balance between the witty writing and the delightful drawings, it is overall a comic strip that I have immediately loved. Comics like this is the reason I am grateful that there are artists who dedicate their time in creating a cartoon every day for us to enjoy. It's not like I am alone for that matter, since this comic strip won the author a number of awards, including the prestigious Reuben Award back in 2008.
Speed Bump can be read at https://www.gocomics.com/speedbump
Thank you for reading.
|The 'Shroom: Issue 162|
|Staff sections||Staff Notes • The 'Shroom Spotlight • 'Shroomfest|
|Features||Fake News • Fun Stuff • Palette Swap • Pipe Plaza • Critic Corner • Strategy Wing|