The 'Shroom:Issue 163/Palette Swap
Happy Halloween! We've got some beautiful fall foliage where I live, and I love driving home from work and seeing all the gorgeous fall colors.
The second part of the Pokémon Sword and Shield expansion pass is coming out very soon, and I still haven't finished my Armor Dex. I'm excited to see what they're planning for the story for this one. I liked Isle of Armor, but I do agree with some others that said it needed a little more content. We'll have to see what else they might announce for the holiday season, because I don't think it's going to be just Super Mario 3D All-Stars and Hyrule Warriors.
I am super psyched to announce that we have a brand new section this month! Lakituthequick (talk) will be joining our team with his own creation, Site Seeing, where he will dive into Nintendo's officially released websites to look at their content and coding. This is something completely new for us, so I hope you all check it out as it is extremely well put-together and researched. Welcome to the team, LTQ!
Our art sections are spooky and artsy for you this month, so I won't keep you any longer. Please enjoy!
Section of the Month
Our September Section of the Month first place goes to Magolor04726 (talk) with World of Plight, where he featured an entry on Kirby! Close behind in second is Yoshi876 (talk)'s What's on the Box? analyzing the boxart of Mario Sports Mix. In third, we have winstein (talk) and Drawn and Pressed, this time talking about Speed Bump. A big thank you to everyone who voted, and please keep it up for this month, too!
|Palette Swap SECTION OF THE MONTH|
|1st||World of Plight||9||47.37%||Magolor04726|
|2nd||What's on the Box?||8||42.11%||Yoshi876|
|3rd||Drawn and Pressed||2||10.53%||winstein|
What's on the Box?
Hello readers, and welcome back to What's on the Box.
Although I'm saying welcome back, perhaps I should be saying boo instead, seeing as this month is October. And, this might actually be the last time that I actually manage to theme this section around something spooky, as we're now out of Luigi's Mansion games, so come on Nintendo, give us Luigi's Mansion 4, it's been just around a year since we had the third game in the series.
Luigi's Mansion 3 doesn't have a lot going on its boxart, but it's certainly still serviceable. The boxart features Luigi, Gooigi and the main setting, The Last Resort. I'm not too far into the game, but the setting for the boxart does appear to be the basement area of the hotel.
But although the boxart is incredibly bare, the models of Luigi and Gooigi are quite detailed. You can see Gooigi melting away, and perhaps that's because he's been hit by some of the sweat beads that you can see on Luigi's head. You can also see every thread on Luigi's hat, his gums and even the torchlight reflecting in his eyes. I do believe that this torchlight isn't reflected on the game's title, but it would make sense with how lit up some of it appears to be.
Given that it was no secret that King Boo and Hellen Gravely would be the villains of the game, it would've been great to have seen one of them sneaking up behind Luigi, especially King Boo, given how he's the main antagonist of this series and really should be on this boxart. Of even if Polterpup was dancing away somewhere in the background or the captured portraits of Mario, Princess Peach and the Toads. Basically, we needed something that gave just a little bit more character. However, I will concede that the abandoned hotel motif does make it a little creepy… who knows who'll be lurking around that next corner?
World of Plight
(Special thanks to Superchao for helping me understand Captain Falcon's personality and for general awesomeness for signing up to help out in the first place!)
Site: Super Smash Brothers campus at [location removed for security purposes] in room 1990
Entry: by Captain Falcon.
Every day, as I wander the halls of Smash, or as I pilot my ship through Mute City, I hear the cries of children and adults alike, calling to me. Mario, Link, and Samus get cries of admiration and requests for autographs, but me? I hear the people jeer, “FALCON PUNCH!” and “Falcooooon Kick!!” No matter where I go, the taunting is relentless. Some have even changed the spelling of my most powerful move, the mighty Falcon Punch, to Falcon “Pawnch.” How does this spelling even make sense?! And don’t get me started on the comics and “fan art” I’ve seen. And I will personally Falcon Punch the next person who tells me, “There’s no such thing as bad publicity.”
At least I’m better known than Blood Falcon or Black Shadow. Just last week, they came to visit Smash and watch a few fights along with some of the other racers, but they never made it back to Mute City. It’s very odd, and more concerning than any of the fighters going missing. Those two are more powerful than either of the other two who have vanished. There isn’t much to tell besides that... Father Sakurai isn’t as concerned with this as the fighters, but if anything, it’s proven that no one is safe in this place anymore. Smash was once one of the most protective and safe places in the world. But now, not even characters who aren’t competitors are in danger. Sakurai has been thinking of evacuating anyone who doesn’t participate in battles, and there have been rumors of Smash shutting down for the safety of the fighters. If more fighters go missing, it may happen until everything can get sorted out. In the meantime, I may do some investigating of my own... till next time, this is Captain Falcon.
UPDATE: I just found Blood Falcon’s helmet. I went for a walk outside to clear my head, but then I found the helmet stuffed behind a bush. The police investigated, found DNA samples of Blood Falcon and Black Shadow, and there was evidence of a struggle, but no other DNA. I think it unlikely that they fought, but I wouldn’t put it past them. I have no idea where they could have gone, but if I find any evidence, I will alert the authorities.
I was going to wait a bit before writing an entry myself, but this story is something I want to tell from my perspective.
I laid on my bed, staring at the ceiling, contemplating who or what I should dress as for the annual Smash Bros. Halloween party. ‘‘Magolor? No, that would be a little expected… maybe Luigi… but I did that last year…’’ I sat up and looked at various books on my shelf, hoping for a brainwave. Tintin… The Hobbit… a book of Super Mario Odyssey art… I sighed and grabbed my Switch off of my nightstand. Every year, I was plagued with indecision about who to dress as for Halloween.
I clicked on my copy of Smash Bros. Ultimate and got the “Steve joins the fight!” notification. ‘‘Oh yeah… maybe I could… nah, it’s too soon.’’ I opened my spirit list and randomly scrolled through the different representatives until I was almost at the bottom. ‘‘Maybe I shouldn’t even go.’’ I thought. ‘‘I could use the time to write, and I really wanted to devote more time to that…’’ Then I saw it. A smile slowly crept across my face. Inspiration sure hits in funny places.
As I walked from my room down the hall, I heard music playing. ‘‘That’s either Waltz of the Boos or the Library Piano song.’’ I thought as I pushed the doors of the Main Menu Mess Hall. Once inside, I gaped at the elaborate decorations that had been set up. I’m not a very big fan of scary things, but this place blew my socks off. Wispy white tufts were strung on the ceiling (I have a hunch those may not have been mere decorations), mist seeped in from the stage, a piano on stage seemed to be playing itself, and there were even a couple ReDead shuffling around, along with some Dry Bones and Boos. Eeries, Stretches, Evershade Valley ghosts and workers from the Last Resort floated overhead serving drinks and food. I tore my eyes from the decorations and looked at the costumes. Some of them were totally outrageous! A pink Meta Knight and a blue Galacta Knight flew over my head, and a Ninten walked by with a hamburger. I think Sheik and Zelda went as each other (don’t ask), and Mario had a yellow and brown outfit and a hard hat (he seemed to be repairing the sound system). Luigi even showed up in a pink dress and a yellow wig. (It was weird, I saw him in the dress and said hi, but I saw him later in a black and green outfit with a green bandana around his neck. And then I saw him a minute later in the dress again. But I shouldn't be surprised. The dude can teleport.) I was dressed as Galeem, Dharkon, Master and Crazy Hand all in one costume. You wouldn’t believe how many times I was almost attacked.
Everyone has been tense, and no one seems to trust each other, but the whole event really seemed to help everyone relax. I don’t think anyone missed it. I’m pretty sure I saw everyone at some point, even Sakurai was there. There was also a costume contest judged by several Mii Fighters, and you’ll never guess who won! It was
ME! AHAHAHAHAHAHA! It is I, KING BOO! Prankster supreme and tyrant of my people! It is high time I take over this story!
I pulled off the wings and tentacles making up part of my costume before I poked someone’s eye out. I was going to get something to eat, when a crackling came from the front of the room. I looked at the front of the stage and saw Sakurai with a microphone. And… Mario? He was holding… oh no.
“Excuse me, everyone,” Sakurai said. He seemed very flustered. “Has anyone seen Luigi? His costume was found outside.”
At this, an uneasy murmuring rippled through the crowd.
“No one?” His face fell, before he attempted to smile. “N-no worries! I’m sure he’ll show up! Now, please, enjoy the party!”
That was my cue. I ran up to the stage, almost slammed into Bowser’s shell, and jumped up in front of Sakurai.
He turned to face me. “Magolor! Whatever it is, can it wait? I really need to-”
“I just want to know where the costume was found, Sir,” I interjected.
He sighed. “Outside, along the east wall.”
“East wall…” I nodded thanks, then took off. I pulled on my jacket and pulled out my phone flashlight. I flung the door open and walked into the cold night air. It was a chilly night, one where you could see your breath. It was very befitting for Halloween. As I walked on, I didn’t hear the door shut and turned to see Kirby wearing a Meta Knight costume following me.
“Poyo!” (No, he doesn’t actually say this. I don’t know how to type his sounds, so I used “poyo”.)
I sighed. “I don’t think there’s much you can do, Buddy. Some company would be nice, though.”
He walked beside me as I shined the light in front of us. A little light came from some overhead lamps, but several trees shielded us from it, plunging our path into inky blackness.
“This must have been what the World of Darkness looked like, huh?”
Kirby looked at me.
“Ah, here we go…” There was nothing. I looked around and sighed again. “Not much of a hope there would be anything…” I stared at the ground. Wait a minute… I shined the light at the base of a tree. There were two imprints in the grass, about the size of someone’s feet, and there was a large awkward imprint that looked about as big as Luigi’ height.
“Hey, Kirby, look at this.”
I whirled around and saw Kirby pulling something from a bush. It was-
“Good grief! Is that Daisy?!” I ran over and picked her up by the arms and carried her onto the sidewalk. I checked her pulse.
“She’s alive. Yeah, there’s a pulse.”
“I know, if someone kidnapped Luigi, they probably also knocked out Daisy. Can you go for help?”
“Poyo!” He ran off, leaving me and the unconscious princess on the sidewalk.
“… Boy this place gets creepy after dark.” I looked up and down the path, but I didn’t see anything. That is, until I looked a little further down the path. It was the alley. The one Waluigi disappeared down. I decided it was time I investigate a little further. I shined my flashlight around, looking at the walls, the dumpster, the ground, and everything I could see. I even looked inside the dumpster and tried to move it. After looking over everything, I decided to scan the walls one more time. I looked at each and every brick, from the ones that were the exact same color, to the ones that stood out. I tried pushing all of them, but I came out with nothing. Frustrated, I almost punched the wall, and instead slapped it. As I rubbed my wrist, I glared at the wall, and then stopped. The brick I had slapped was coming dislodged. I quickly grabbed it and pried it out of the wall, almost breaking my fingernails as I did so. I pulled it out and peered into the hole. There was nothing out of the ordinary about it. Making a mental note, I replaced the brick and walked out of the alley. That’s when I saw Kirby coming back with Sakurai and most of the Mario crew.
Sakurai was muttering something, and Peach looked ready to cry. I cast one more glance to the alley before picking up Daisy by the shoulders while Mario grabbed her feet and we carried her inside.
If you do not wish to be trapped inside a swirling painting of agonizing doom, BOW TO ME! Or better yet, send Magolor04726 leads for his case on the Super Mario Boards! Either way, you shall suffer an agonizing torture!
Oh yes, welcome Steve, glad you’re here, and blabiddy blah.
Creeping up behind you,
King Boo,The Master King Tyrant of my kind!
Drawn and Pressed
For this month, the comic strip we shall be covering is going to be thematic for Halloween, which is an occasion known for horror traditions. Appropriately, Liō delves into a lot of things that can be considered horrific, but it is played out as comedy so in this way, the comic strip has a lot of dark humour. Debuting on 15th May 2006, this comic strip is almost approaching its fifteenth year. This comic strip is largely visual, meaning it hardly uses words given how very few characters speak. Because of this, the language barrier presented in this comic strip is not as apparent compared to comics that favour a lot of words like Doonesbury. It should be mentioned that it's not totally wordless, which is to say that English is still clearly the language used whenever words do show up.
As a character, Lio is very much different from the other children presented in the comic. He's incredibly creative in his solutions to the problems he faces, he possesses a lot of intelligence to be able to build machines, he is friendly to virtually any monster (and that feeling is reciprocal) and he is righteous in that he will stand up for the weak. Even then, Lio is still a child so he can get in the mood for mischief whenever he wants. The other major character to be present in this cartoon is Lio's father, who is a widower and is never named, and unlike some fathers, he is very open to Lio's giftedness and his daily routine of unusual activity, though he still has his limits, such as putting his foot down on Lio's riskier ventures. A few other notable characters to be present in this cartoon include Ishmael, a giant squid that is pretty much Lio's common companion; Cybil, an intelligent but mischievous cat; Eva Rose, a girl that Lio has a crush on (because of her interests which Lio took notice of) but the feeling is unrequited.
In this cartoon, anything goes in terms of what Lio would go through. There would be a different scenario involving Lio going about his everyday life, which can include school, at home or just hanging out with his colourful cast of friends (that are rarely humans). Most of the time the cartoons are standalone for a day, but at times it has a weekly storyline, such as Lio's encounter with living clay (this storyline lasts for two weeks). There are also times where the comic delves into real-world issues, such as the coronavirus epidemic and light politics that would relate to the (American) election and a few times when the boundaries of this comic are broken such as one instance when the cartoon panel is in the process of being shredded. On occasion, this cartoon would feature characters from outside the cast of characters, in which humour will be derived from how Lio will be involved. As an example, Garfield was lured with lasagna to be trapped into Lio's comic, and in another, Lio set up a boxing match between two versions of Winnie the Pooh. The unpredictability of the scenarios makes one wonders what will happen in the next cartoon.
This cartoon is not the first comic strip by its author, Mark Tatulli. Before he started Liō, he produced two earlier works. His first comic strip was named Bent Halos, which is about two angels who didn't do the role of guardian angels well, but a lack of creator interest meant that it's unlikely anybody would see what it looks like unless somebody did what Quinton did with the old Gnorm Gnat strips and search the archives in old newspapers. His second comic strip is Heart of the City, which is inspired by the author's daughter and is set in Philadelphia, which is where the author lives. Clearly, the author favours Liō that it is still written and drawn by him, as a different cartoonist (also from Philadelphia) took over the art and writing of Heart of the City when the author himself had his plate full on not only his daily cartooning but his biographical graphic novel. Given how the author felt that Heart of the City is a more challenging cartoon to write for due to the heavier script involved compared to Liō's lighter writing, it is little wonder that he is more willing to pass the baton to a qualified successor.
This is quite a nice comic with a wide variety of ideas with the main character to facilitate them. It has a decent contrast between the lightheartedness and the darker subject matter, along with the balance of familiarity of characters and freshness of scenarios, which makes for quite an entertaining read. Besides, it complements a good deal of other cartoons within the paper by combining light dialogue and embracing its strangeness and unpredictability.
Liō can be read at https://www.gocomics.com/lio
Thank you for reading.
Hello dear readers and welcome to Site Seeing, in which I'll go over some of the websites Nintendo releases to inform the public about their games and series! For today's and first edition: The North-American Super Mario website, which as of writing celebrates the 35th anniversary of Super Mario Bros..
The site is divided over several pages, and some pages are themselves divided into several sections.
Upon opening up the Super Mario website's home page, you are first greeted with a big hero slider featuring the Super Mario Bros. 35th logo and a thanks to you, the player, for the many adventures, with a scrolling background featuring the many games that have released over time. On the next sides, the slider showcases Super Mario Bros., Super Mario 64, Super Mario Sunshine, Super Mario Galaxy, and Super Mario Odyssey, before looping back.
Underneath the slider, we find the latest three Mario news releases. As of writing this, all three have Mario Kart news, what are the odds?
Following up in a new section is the Super Mario Bros. 35th Anniversary Direct video, and the section after that is a gallery of recent and upcoming Mario games and sets.
The next three sections have miscellaneous information and links, referring to the history page, news, upcoming Super Mario Maker 2 events, and a quiz, as well as an overview of My Nintendo missions (which also kindly tells me that they aren't available in my region).
The next page is the My Nintendo missions page, which is divided over two tabs. The left tab contains the rewards (and some small-print), the right tab the missions to complete (and the warning that missions aren't available in my region). All rewards and missions have a button to show details in a modal.
The third page is about the history of Mario. At the top it features the medley video which was included in the Direct, and then continues into an interactive gallery of 21 Mario games in a slider. Clicking on each game shows more information about them, such as the release date, a few screenshots, story, and a button to play the main music of the game. There is also the option to download a square image for each of the games with the text "This is my Mario", to share on social media. This also happens to be one of the missions.
At the bottom of the page is another link to the quiz.
The fourth page is the full news overview. Each article can be clicked on to read, and has the most recent three articles at the bottom.
The last page, the quiz, is not linked in the top menu, but I've mentioned it a few times as being linked elsewhere. Here, visitors can choose between an easy or hard quiz of five questions each, each question having four multiple choice options.
Unsurprisingly, as this is Mario we are talking about, the main colour used on this site is red. It is slightly darker tinted and used with balance, so one is not too overwhelmed by it. Page sections alternate between plain red and more colourful gradient and pattern backgrounds. Especially on the home page, this gradient background uses a subtle blue to purple or green to sea blue transition, merged with screenshots from games (behind the Direct), or 2D vector art and logos (elsewhere). On the other pages, you can also find a dotted pattern to break the constant red. You may sometimes hear people saying that gradients are ugly, but when used in subtle ways with matching colours, they can make designs a lot less boring while not getting in your way.
A fairly unique transition is used between sections/blocks, being that the divide is often diagonal, where we mostly see horizontal dividers on websites. Further, most of the divides use an aesthetically pleasing wave or saw pattern as well.
The slider on top of the home page shows the five games marked with their release years on the navigation timeline, and each has art and backgrounds from their game on their respective slides. As each slide appears, the main artwork of Mario animates into view in a direction that the art itself fits. For example, Wing Mario from SM64 flies in from the top, while he jumps from the bottom in the artworks for SMB and SMG. This makes it feel dynamic without being too extra.
News articles and upcoming and recent items are listed through boxes, which feature a dark diagonally striped background, an image, date (for news), title, and description (for products). This striped background pattern is also used in the top menu and miscellaneous information panels.
The history page is also laid out nicely. Below the aforementioned medley video, we have a slider with 21 games. These are shown per three, and have Warp Pipes to their left and right that they come out of when you use the arrow buttons to navigate. The games themselves look more or less like blocks, fitting with the theme.
The background uses diagonal lines, part of it is dark (like the articles on home and news) and part of it is white. At the top and bottom, the logos-and-art pattern is used again, but on a red background.
The quiz page uses a layout you may sometimes see in quiz shows. The question is displayed in large in a screen-like area with coloured background, while the options are below it in a 2×2 grid.
Lastly a small but neat detail is the way the menu looks. When selected, an item will look like a plaque or block, and when hovered it also gets filled with a red background.
When viewed on a small screen (e.g. a phone), things that used to be next to each other now display on top of each other. The menu changes from being a bar on top to a menu button, which expands the menu over the entire screen with Mario peeking at the bottom. On the history page, the Warp Pipes and buttons disappear in favour of touch scrolling, which falls a bit flat on non-touchscreen devices as a scrollbar will appear in the wrong place.
This part may not be of interest to everyone, or may you even understand any of it. But it can be interesting to some people who are curious about some of the technology used to create this site.
The short summary is: This site was built as a single-page application using React, with Gatsby as a static page generator. The site is hosted on Amazon Web Services.
Still with me? Good. Let's first talk about single-page applications, or SPAs for short.
What a SPA does is make sure that you only load a site or application once, and don't need to load new pages afterwards as all the resources are already there. While you may think you are going to a new page when you click the menu options, the page only needs to show different content, without needing to load it. This is why the site appears incredibly fast.
Next is React. React is one of the most popular and used SPA frameworks, if not the most popular. React makes it easy for a web developer to write pages and (reusable) components, and uses an internal state mechanism that updates the page when something changes without the developer having to think about it too much.
There is not much I can say about Amazon Web Services, other than that it is a big and much-used platform for, well, web services. They have tons of options, hosting a site like this is really one of the simplest options as it is just static content.
Other details then: the diagonal and pattern divisions between section blocks? You may initially think about a static image of the pattern, but these are rendered in real time based on the size of your screen to fit perfectly. A canvas is used for that.
I adore this website. It looks nice, it feels nice, it is snappy. It uses modern frameworks, which I get a warm feeling from, as well as other modern techniques that ensure easy development, although that last one may not be of interest to the visitor. And while the "mission not available" message is pretty in-your-face in some places, I appreciate it being present instead of giving an error if you try to do a mission.
That was it for this first edition! I hope you enjoyed this and wasn't too overwhelmed by the tech part, and hope to see you again in two months!
|The 'Shroom: Issue 163|
|Staff sections||Staff Notes • The 'Shroom Spotlight • 'Shroomfest Highlights|
|Features||Fake News • Fun Stuff • Palette Swap • Pipe Plaza • Critic Corner• Strategy Wing|