The 'Shroom:Issue 64

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Issue 64 July 21st, 2012 About

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Super Mario Bros. (talk)

The director's address to you about what's been going on behind-the-scenes. [read more]
Henry Tucayo Clay (talk)

See our lucky winner for the month, as voted by you! [read more]
Crocodile Dippy (talk)

The results of this year's Poll Chairperson Election. [read more]
Marioguy1 (talk)

What game is under the spotlight this month? Come, see, and contribute! [read more]
Crocodile Dippy (talk)

So many changes! But tell us what you think of them. [read more]


Fictional news section. [read more]

A series of games and fun sections for readers to participate in. [read more]
Smasher (talk)

The artistic part of the wiki, box-arts, music, comics and more! [read more]

Find out all wiki-related events, news, and statistics. [read more]
Crocodile Dippy (talk)

Reviews and opinion pieces for games, movies, books, and more. [read more]


A trip into the newspaper's past. [read more]

Each month interviewing one of our users. [read more]
Henry Tucayo Clay (Talk)

Tips, secrets, cheats, and codes for Mario games, new and old. [read more]
Post-Damage Invincibility (Talk)

Comparisons of Nintendo characters from all generations. [read more]
FunkyK38 (Talk)

Strategy information for Super Smash Bros. Brawl. [read more]

Miscellaneous information for the Mario Kart series. [read more]
Toad85 (Talk)

A critical analysis of different events during the 65 year history of video games. [read more]
Marioguy1 (Talk)

A look at some of the forgotten or obscure characters of the Mario games. [read more]

A quirky webcomic for The 'Shroom. [read more]


Core Staff

Want a holiday in Super Mario 64? After this, you won't. [read more]
Mario4Ever (talk)

One of the N64's most iconic games gets a retrospective. [read more]
Snack (talk)

A trip into Snack's gaming past with the Nintendo 64. [read more]
Phoenix (talk)

A special quiz for all manner of general Mario knowledge. [read more]

A special quiz for a variety of non-Mario games released on the Nintendo 64. [read more]
Walkazo (talk)

Walkazo dissects the Koopas to show you how they tick. [read more]
TheGreatBlockyBoo (talk)

Blocky explains the Forum's latest trend. [read more]
Bop1996 (talk)

Is Twilight Princess as good as people say it is? Bop will tell you. [read more]
QuizmoManiac (talk)

A trip into Quizmo's gaming past with the Nintendo 64. [read more]
Mr bones (talk)

Ever wondered what Nintendo's characters really think? [read more]
Super-Yoshi (talk)

In West New York City, born and raised; in Toad Town is where he spent most of his days. [read more]
Mafia: Tricks of the Trade
Marioguy1 (talk)

Marioguy1 tells you all you need to know about the Mafia forum game. [read more]
'Shroom Sixtyfour Sippin' Sensation
Uniju :D (talk)

Where would we be without sippin' time? [read more]

Director's Notes

Thanks to Edofenrir for this amazing artwork!

Hello everybody, welcome to Issue64 of The 'Shroom! There is a lot for me to share this month, so I will go ahead.

The theme for Issue 64 is the Nintendo 64. The staff originally planned on having a Special Issue in July as a Summer Special Issue, and the fact that the numbers ran like that made it an extremely good idea to hold it in July. So when you look at the backgrounds, and some of the sections, keep in mind the theme. Those who wrote sections were not required to follow the Nintendo 64 theme, but it was suggested.

One of the first things you might notice is that our Front Page looks different than from how it normally looks. And this is because we have had a layout makeover. Crocodile Dippy (talk) and Twentytwofiftyseven (talk) worked extensively on making a general design, writing out the code for it, and making it look really nice. Crocodile Dippy also made our calendar look much nicer, and Master Crash (talk) contributed the vertical side banners to the new Front Page. In addition to the Front Page, the About page received a revamp from Crocodile Dippy. These changes are permanent and will remain with The 'Shroom for a while.

Another thing you might notice is that there is a new Sub-team called "Critic Corner" and that several sections have "vanished" from the Main Team sections. Simply put, the new sub-team is designed to hold our review and opinion sections. The Director of this team is none other than Crocodile Dippy, who has also been actively working on making this idea work in time for this issue. His old Affiliates Manager position will be abolished; there is not much that can be done on that front at this moment, and anything that can be done with affiliates can be managed by the entire Core Staff itself. So if you are looking to review something or are interested in voicing your opinions in this publication, Crocodile Dippy is the man to contact now.

The 'Shroom has a new Facebook page. This change is not very new, however, it has gone unannounced and the Front Page was not updated when this happened. However, now it has been, so the new and updated Facebook page for the paper is available now. If you would like to check out the new page, go here and like us!

We also have some pretty neat changes that are for this issue only. The Main Team, staff sections, and special sections received a special background, and all five sub-teams received their own unique special backgrounds as well. Who might the individual that is responsible for this be, you ask? If you thought Edornofer, then you guessed incorrectly! The man behind this is Edofenrir (talk), who was also behind much of the artwork for this issue as well.

Please be sure to check out our Feedback Survey that Tucayo (talk) set up for us! I am certain that we can get a very decent amount of responses this month. Remember that you as the reader can help make decisions for the paper, if you want to take a few minutes to complete that survey.

We also have thirteen Special Sections this month. Please be sure to look through each of them and give them a read! The guest writers put a lot of effort into their sections and produced some very great work and covered some pretty unique topics.

The Poll Committee Chairperson Election has ended, and Crocodile Dippy has won! He will be the new Chairperson of the Poll Selection Committee, and Master Crash will be the new vice-Chairman. Congratulations to both for their victory! I know that they will be able to do the job well and that they will be able to fix up the Committee and the Poll process! Please check out what the Chairperson-elect has to say about his victory here.

Also, thank you for the Super Special Shroom Sixtyfour Sippin' Sensation, Uniju :D (talk)! Where would we be without Sippin' Time?

I would like to close with this: I would like to thank, on behalf of The 'Shroom as well as on my own behalf, everybody that made this Special Issue possible. The Core Staff members, the special guest writers, the regular writers, those who contribute artwork and banners and backgrounds and other nice things that make this issue what it is... Thank you all. Special Issues like this always take time and thoughts to plan out, and everybody involved did superbly at doing their part. I think this could very well be one of the most immaculate 'Shroom issues of all time.

I hope that you enjoy everything that is in this issue, the guest sections and the surprises and all! I hope to see you all next month on August 18th, 2012 when Issue LXV (back to Roman numerals) comes out!

Until next month,

Super Mario Bros. (talk)

Sub-Director's notes

Press START to read!

Activity Announcements


Well, if it isn't my favourite readers, welcome to another Activity Announcements with your Activity Director, Marioguy1. You must be wondering why I am dressed so lavishly today. Well, I, in tandem with the rest of the Core 'Shroom Staff, am pleased to bring you the special issue that you have been waiting for. Special Issue LXIV, or Special Issue 64. In this issue, we take a trip back to the retro age, with the beginning of Paper Mario, 3D Mario and a whole slew of great games. We have a ton of special features for you, including many bonus sections, a Super Mario 64 travel guide written by the Core 'Shroom Staff and the introduction of the new Review Sub-team (not to mention this awesome new funky background). Be sure to give this issue a read, it's really a blast from the past.

Corny puns aside, we also have the new Feedback Survey. The link to that can be found on The 'Shroom main page, as well as probably in SMB's Director Notes up at the top of this page. Please take a moment or two to fill out the survey, you are doing The 'Shroom a great service when you do, and we do take every answer into consideration when deciding the future of the paper.

On another note, the Poll Committee Chairperson Election was a brazen success. Our candidate debate went over well, despite Toad85's unfortunate disappearance, and I would like to congratulate Crocodile Dippy on his victory. I'm sure he will make an excellent director and I hope to see the Committee flourish under him.

Now, I must bow out on the activity front for the month, because this month we have the MarioWiki's seventh anniversary. Wow, that's fun to say. Anyways, be sure to check out the anniversary ceremonies, on August 13th, the Awards Committee has been working for six months on this and I am sure it will be perfect. Be sure to congratulate Tucayo, the 'Shroom Awards Director, he'll be hosting our awards ceremony (very well, I may add).

But don't worry, I haven't forgotten the spotlight. Call me unimaginative, but this month, I think we're going to go with Super Mario 64, the game of honour, as the Spotlight game. So improve those course articles, fill out those articles on the incredibly aptly-named bosses and generally improve coverage on Super Mario 64. Thanks for reading, and be sure to check out the barrel o' fun we have planned for you.

Section of the Month

Section of the Month
Month Issue Section Writer
April 2011 Issue XLIX Fake Ads Gamefreak75 (talk)
May 2011 Issue L Should Have Been MrConcreteDonkey (talk)
July 2011 Issue LII Upcoming Games Paper Yoshi (talk)
August 2011 Issue LIII Should Have Been MrConcreteDonkey (talk)
September 2011 Issue LIV Mario Kart: Wheel Tips Corner Coincollector (talk)
October 2011 Issue LV Should Have Been MrConcreteDonkey (talk)
November 2011 Issue LVI Non-Marioverse Review Crocodile Dippy (talk)
December 2011 Issue LVII Non-Marioverse Review Crocodile Dippy (talk)
January 2012 Issue LVIII A History of Video Games Toad85 (talk)
February 2012 Issue LIX Crocodile Style Reviews Crocodile Dippy (talk)
March 2012 Issue LX Interviews Stooben Rooben (talk)
Shyguy Does a Thing Shyguy27 (talk)
April 2012 Issue LXI A History of Video Games Toad85 (talk)
May 2012 Issue LXII A History of Video Games Toad85 (talk)
June 2012 Issue LXIII Dippy's Matilda Crocodile Dippy (talk)

HI, readers! I'm your 64-bit Statistics Manager, Tucayo, and this month I'll bring you the Section of the Month results. We had a record-breaking amount of 18 votes, and all of them were valid votes, so thanks for that. Still, we'd love to have more input, so please be sure to vote for your favorite section, it takes less than a minute and it helps us acknowledge those writers who deserve it.

Now, without further ado, the Section of the Month for the June 2012 issue is Dippy's Matilda, by (guess who?) Crocodile Dippy (talk), with 33.3% of the votes. Dippy snapped Toad85's SOTM winning streak at two wins, which fell one win short of breaking our record. In his section, Dippy reviewed various companies' performance at the E3, all in his particular style we all love.

Our historian in turn, Toad85 (talk), fell one vote short, finishing with 27.8% of the votes. Debuting interviewer, Koohitsu (Talk), finished third with 22.2% of the votes.

July's Section of the Month

This month we'll be testing a new system, so let me explain it briefly. Aside from your overall Sectiom of the Month award, we'll have SOTM polls in every Sub-Team. This was made by the Core Staff to help smaller sections be recognized as well. So remember, the following link is the overall SOTM (any section), and the ones you'll find after each Sub-Team's section are just for that Sub-Team's articles. Thanks for your time.

The Overall SOTM

Poll Chairperson Election

by Crocodile Dippy (talk)

I have walked into this ring a boy… and emerged a man. Actually between when the Poll Chairperson Election started and today, I turned 18, so that assessment is actually very much true, but basically what I mean is I now sit in a throne above all else with the perfect means to cause mayhem. But I'm boring, so I guess it's just the usual doing things the efficient way for this year… sorry, but you should've elected someone more interesting if you wanted hell on text for these next 12 months.

Anyway, nothing too much to say. I, Crocodile “Remilia Pokemon Bloody Sun” Dippy (Talk) (I hate myself for that), am the new Poll Chairperson for, obviously, the Poll Committee. It's my first time in this position, and also the first time I've ever done anything significant for the committee, so we'll all learn together and hopefully bring this thing back up to standard and then improve it. After all, I've got myself a rich variety of committee members this year, although I only got four applications for the position leaving me to hand-pick the last member… but oh well, at least I know who genuinely cares about this project. The members of my committee – provided they don't make a mess of my beautiful carpet – are:

I can't think of anything else to post here, so uhh… hoping for a great year, I guess! Thanks to all who voted for me. Have a bonza time with this brilliant special issue.

'Shroom Spotlight

by Marioguy1 (talk)

I haven't forgotten the spotlight. Call me unimaginative, but this month, I think we're going to go with Super Mario 64, the game of honour, as the Spotlight game. So improve those course articles, fill out those articles on the incredibly aptly-named bosses and generally improve coverage on Super Mario 64. Thanks for reading, and be sure to check out the barrel o' fun we have planned for you.

Poll Chairperson Election

by Crocodile Dippy (talk)

Isn't this a nice little issue? Except no it's not, that's a completely stupid thing for you to agree with; it's a nice big issue! A big issue with so many additions and changes that it makes everything we've made so far look like utter crap in comparison. In fact, we should just end the newsletter officially now; there cannot be any ways we can top this without the entire core staff strangling themselves under all the stress.

So with all these changes, obviously it means we want to know what you, the readers, think about these changes. Are they fine, could use work, or just plain horrendous that you're willing to start an entire blog dedicated to how much we've ruined everything forever? If it's the last one, you can take it up with me. Have you ever seen a pissed off Australian Pikachu before? You sure as hell should hope you never do! So give us kind words, and all will be well. Or else.

In all seriousness, we have a few categories for you to give input on. They are:

  • General – Just some basic questions about The 'Shroom overall, just to start you off.
  • Special Issue 64 – Give us some input on how you think this special issue turned out.
  • 'Shroom Mafia III – What did you think of our latest 'Shroom forum game?
  • Features – Here's the big one; your thoughts on all the new bollocks we've introduced in this issue.
  • Survey – Just a quick question about this survey itself.

Oh where are my manners! Here's the actual Feedback Survey, for all your voting and comment needs!

This survey will be closed on August 18th, the release date of Issue LXV.

Thanks, and have fun. And don't forget our little deal. My kukri hungers.

Fake News


Welcome to the 64th-not-actually-64th-because-a-certain-sub-director-is-a-complete-spoilsport edition of the Fake News! I'm pretty sure this was meant to have a Mario Kart 64 theme, but nobody did that (you're not a bad person for not doing it, don't worry), so I'll just do that in here.

MCD makes ridiculous noises and pretends he's in a go-kart. I was actually going to write this out in more detail. Consider yourself lucky.

That wasn't a good idea. Anyway, in the staff changes department, McZaky29 (talk) now writes for Fake Sports, so congratulations to him! Additionally MST3K (talk) won't be able to write Ask '3K for a few issues, so, Henry Tucayo Clay (talk) and his Ask Tucayo section have returned until he can write again. I don't have much else to write here, so, without further ado, enjoy the section!

Font NewsFlush.png

Written by: FakeIco MCD.png MrConcreteDonkey (talk)

The icon for Royal Raceway, from Mario Kart 64.
The new raceway.
Construction on a new racetrack outside Princess Peach's Castle has finished. The racetrack, called Royal Raceway (gee, I wonder why it's called that), will hopefully be used in upcoming Kart tournaments, if Mario and his friends ever plan to have another one.

The princess was originally skeptical about the racetrack, saying it would ruin the natural beauty of her castle's gardens.

"I'm skeptical about this racetrack, it will ruin the natural beauty of my castle's gardens!" the Princess shouted to our reporter, over one of the unscalable hills that stopped her from leaving the castle. However, one of these hills was knocked down, and the Princess, being able to leave, was fine with the track. Royal Raceway will have everything the modern Mario Kart track should have: a jump; many tricky turns; a stand for the audience - heck, this is probably the most modern Mario Kart track ever. How can they top this? Two people in one kart? Gliding in the air? A giant cannon? Pfft.

Many racers have expressed interest in racing on this track: Kamek, Donkey Kong and Wario all want to race on this track. Donkey Kong Jr., however, believes the track is evil, and will not go within 62 centimetres of it. The crazed simian said "Ook ook! Ook ook! Oooook!" - that either meant the track was evil, or he wanted pudding.

Construction on the track finished last night, when the giant crown was placed on the audience stand. This was the second giant crown they had to use, as the other one was accidentally shot to a distant planet. So many Pokos lost...wait, I mean Coins. What are Pokos? Anyway, thanks for reading, and I'm sure we all hope to see some great races on this track! as if there's going to be any

Font TravelGuide.png

Written by: FakeIco PG6.png Pyro (talk)

Hey everybody, it's Pyro, and welcome to my only one-of-a-kind Travel Guide. I fell asleep for a week, and I sent in my section late. Why? Because I was staying at the wonderful Sleeping Beauty's Castle Nimbus Land!

To get there, call a taxi service. It services Mushroom Kingdom, Tadpole Pond, Rose Town, Y'oster Isle, Booster Tower, Marrymore, Moleville, Seaside Town, and Bowser's Keep. Yes, I'm serious on the last one. Or take the easier way, which is up a beanstalk. Oh wait, that's the harder way.

One of the many attractions there is artist Garro's studio. He will layer you with gold so you can sell yourself and get rich - no that doesn't make logical sense. His art is still breath-taking, though. It's so breath-taking that I had an asthma attack. Oh dear.

The item shop sells many fluffy wears. The shop was being temporarily run by Prince Fluff when I got there, saying that the owner went to the springs. I bought some nice fuzzy pants. The inn is also quite comfortable, as they offer a Dream Cushion. I dreamt of MCD yelling at me for sending in my section late... oh wait that was reality. Dammit.

The Royal Bus station is your entrance and exit (but mostly exit) from Nimbus Land. The driver charges you fifty cents, which is pretty cheap - oh wait, I'm being told it was actually fifty DOLLARS, not cents. Ooopsies. The hot springs is also around here, situated right above Barrel Volcano. Only royalty can bathe in there, so I had to join Prince Mallow's party to get a taste of that. It was so good. Sadly I didn't steal a Dream Cushion and sleep over the hot springs for the night. That wouldn't work out though.

Last but not least, there's Nimbus Castle! King and Queen Nimbus reside here, among many other statues by Garro including the sensation A Plumber's Lament. It is so great. A sculpture of a fat plumber that saved Nimbus Land.

I touched it.

They kicked me out.


Well, this has been Pyro with Travel Guide. See you next time, where I provide images!

Font SportReport.png

Written by: McZaky29 (talk)

Hello everyone!

In the sports today, the age-old rivalry of Mario and Bowser continued in some hard-hitting hockey in the Mushroom Hockey finals. Mario ended up winning the game in overtime 4-3 to win the series 4-2. This was the first time Bowser had won two games in the finals. The goalie, Hammer Bro, was pulled in the final minute of the overtime period, allowing Mario a clear shot to win the game. This enraged Bowser, causing him to spit fire. The ice slowly melted and the rink was evacuated immediately. No one was harmed. A Noki from Mario’s team suffered from rib fractures due to a vicious body check from Bowser. The Noki was immediately hospitalized afterwards.

And that is all the latest in the sports. Goodbye for now!

Written by yeah let's get this over with I want to eat early today

Last week, the Ballsy Amigos Kickball Association was holding the first qualifying game of probably many more games for the great annual kickball tournament. Many people have been there to see it, but for those who couldn't afford a ticket or didn't want to be sprayed with greasy hot dog bits by the big-bellied messy eater on the seat behind them (in case you were unlucky enough to pick the seat in front of me, heh heh heh), we are going to cover the most important details.

This qualifying game took place in Chocolate Island stadium. Yes, they finally got another stadium, after the last one was eaten a few years ago. This time they wisened up and made it out of dark chocolate, which means it'll be completely safe from hungry fans. I mean, nobody would eat dark chocolate out of their own free will, right? Stuff's nasty!

Sr stadium.png
"The only people who eat dark chocolate are health nuts, and we aren't really known for living healthy, right boys? Hah hah hah! It's normal that your chest hurts when you laugh, right?"

But anyway, enough of food, tasty as it might be. Playing in this exciting match were the Flower Fields Furious Flora, and the Riverside Rowdy Revenants. Both of these teams are relative newcomers who wished to prove themselves.

When asked for some strategy tibits, Flower Fields' coach went on record saying "We already have this victory in the bag. I've been experimenting with different fertilizers and my latest combination has turned our little plants into huge, hulking sport machines! Those smelly undeads can pack their stuff and leave!"

"We are not smelly!", protested Riverside's coach, shortly before being temporarily interrupted by his whole team fleeing into the changing room and taking showers in embarrassment. "We will show those pesky flowers that they are nothing more than stupid weeds!" He then took a bite out of a lettuce leaf and spat it out onto the floor. You could literally see that the air was filled with enthusiasm and competitive spirit. Maybe it was just the thick mist wafting over from the showers, though.

Then the actual game began. Riverside started right away with a brilliant offense. Their progress was greatly aided by the fact that their opponents were all plants and therefore firmly rooted to the ground. They should probably have factored this somewhat major handicap into their strategy.

Anyway, Riverside advanced further, and...

Sr shot1.png
Sr shot2.png
Sr shot3.png

...then Flower Fields revealed their secret weapon in form of their goal keeper. And that was pretty much the gist of the game. With both teams unable to score any points, the game quickly descended into a farce. Most players just started sitting down and playing cards until the time ran out. Others did their own pointless thing.

Sr free.png
"Pass it to me, I'm free!"

The game ended 0-0. It was so boring, I don't even care that I went to get some more hot dogs and missed half of it. Both teams were sent back home in shame.

In conclusion, all there is to say is that this was a huge waste of time and I hope my salary will be enough of a compensation. The hot dogs were good though. Really meaty, but not enough mustard. I would give them a four out of five.

And that's all for this month's sport report. About time it's over. Now where did I put my cheese squigglies?

Font MonthlyInquisition.png

Written by: MI Koo.png Koohitsu

MI 002.png

Welcome back to the Monthly Inquisition, with me, Koohitsu the Paratroopa. It has been one month, and our cleaning personnel has finally managed to clean up all the stains on the floor, left here by the tears from our last guest. So, in order to not repeat the disaster from last time, and to prevent me having to pay for the cleaning out of my own pocket again, I have invited a guest who will most definitely not ruin the floor by crying. However, his steps are currently leaving huge cracks in the floor instead which is even worse, and oh god, they're not going to let me keep my salary this month, I'm sure.

In any case, with me today is a member of royalty. He is very hardheaded, which I suppose is primary because he is a big stone slab with a face! King Thwomp!

MI Twmp.png"Whomp."

MI Koo.png "Right! Whomp!"

MI Twmp.png"..."

MI Koo.png "Mr. Whomp King, welcome to this interview!"

MI Twmp.png"It is good to see that I finally get some appreciation from the media!"

MI Koo.png "Yes, that is indeed fortunate. You know, I had to yell at my boss for 38 hours non-stop to get you accepted into this panel here, but it worked, so that is great!"

MI Twmp.png"You did that just so I could be here? That is so great! I feel so popular all of a sudden!"

MI Koo.png "Well, I kind of had an ulterior motive..."

MI Twmp.png"What!"

MI Koo.png "You see, I'm writing this fanfic right now, and it's called Your Dreamy Stache It Cracks my Heart. It's got you in it, and it is all about how you met King Bob-omb on a rainy October afternoon..."

MI Twmp.png"WHAT!!!"

MI Koo.png "I'm at the part where you are dancing through a corn field together, but I just can't get the dialogue right."


MI Koo.png "So does that mean you won't help me out?"

MI Twmp.png"NO! NO I WON'T! ENOUGH OF THIS NONSENSE! I came here to discuss important issues!"

MI Koo.png "Ok, fine."

MI Twmp.png"I mean, first I catch that little burning rat impersonating me and making commercials for tourists to walk all over my place with their stinking feet, and now this??? Outrageous!"

MI Koo.png "There is no need to yell, calm down please!"

MI Twmp.png"This is so typical! Why do I have to calm down??? Why do we stones always have to be the ones that yield to you water bags? I'm not going to calm down! How about you calm up instead???"

MI Koo.png "I don't think that is how calming works..."

MI Twmp.png"This attitude is exactly what I am talking about! You think you are so superior with your brains, and your knowledge, and your concept of calming. I tell you what! We are your roads! You walk on us! You walk on us to your fancy libraries where you learn stuff, and then you go and brag about it and tell me how things work! But it is US who made this all possible in the first place! And, and, and you're not even thanking us for it! That is terrible! The way we are treated is terrible! And I am certainly glad that I'm finally getting the opportunity to throw that all in your faces!!"

MI Koo.png "Ok, you are understandably enraged over being mistreated, but "throwing [stuff] in [people's] faces" is not a good thing to do in an interview."

MI Twmp.png"It's all true! Don't deny it!"

MI Koo.png "I am not denying it. I am merely trying to keep this interview going. You see, we have to work together here. We have to work together in order to pave the road for a pleasant conversation."

MI Twmp.png"I find that offensive!!"

MI Koo.png "Oh, I apologize. Then you tell me what you want to talk about."

MI Twmp.png"The despicable and tyrannical oppression of the stones by the feet of smelly and ungrateful water-based people!"

MI Koo.png "But we just talked about that."

MI Twmp.png"Maybe I want to talk about it again? Ever occurred to you? You people aren't shying at stepping in our faces repeatedly, so what's the problem with me saying the same exact thing twice!?!"

MI Koo.png "Ok, you know, I kind of find your attitude really uncooperative, and I am not quite sure how to continue conducting this interview if you don't get your act together."

MI Twmp.png"Fine, whatever! Ask your irrelevant, water-based questions."

MI Koo.png "So, what does a stone like you do in his free time?

MI Twmp.png"What, what, what did you just call me?"

MI Koo.png "A... stone...?"

MI Twmp.png"This is unacceptable! I am a Whomp! A WHOMP! You have to respect that!"

MI Koo.png "But you called yourself a stone before."

MI Twmp.png"Yes, that is because I am a Whomp! So I can call myself a stone! You aren't, and when you do it, it's offensive!"

MI Koo.png "You keep calling me a water bag, and insist on pointing out that I'm water-based! How is that any less offensive than me calling you a stone???"

MI Twmp.png"It is terrible, and insensitive, and you is a stupid water bag that will stop!"

MI Koo.png "I will not stop calling you a stone if I feel like it."

MI Twmp.png"I think I'm just going to be insensitive too then! You are a little... stupid... ... ... poo! There, I said it! Poo!"

MI Koo.png "What the...!?! I'm not a poo!!"

MI Twmp.png"Yes, yes you are. You are soft... and... and squishy... and based on water... you're a poo alright!"

MI Koo.png "What do you know about that sort of thing anyway!?! You're just a big stone!"

MI Twmp.png"I know a lot about that, like... it is, uhh.... small! And... uhhhhh... annoying! And, and, and it's exactly what you are!"

MI Koo.png "Well you're a jerk, and I suddenly don't want to continue this interview anymore."

MI Twmp.png"That goes double for me!"

MI Koo.png "Fine!"

MI Twmp.png"Yeah!!"

MI Koo.png "Good!!!"

MI Twmp.png"Yeah!!!!"

MI Koo.png "Then the interview is finished."

MI Twmp.png"Wait!"

MI Koo.png "What is it!?!"

MI Twmp.png"If the interview ends now, I will get bad publicity, and then nobody will think about treating us better."

MI Koo.png "Well, that's your own fault."

MI Twmp.png"I know, I'm sorry, please continue the interview."

MI Koo.png "Ok, fine!"

MI Twmp.png"I just... I just want everyone to know that us rock-based beings have feelings too. Like, like we are your buildings, and when it rains we are there to keep you dry, and all we want is a little respect. Just a little. You can start by not hitting the road with your hammer every five feet, and, and if you're at home and want to put a nail into the wall, please just ask friendly before you do that. And it would be really nice if we got our own mailbox, and having our own separate car would also be greatly appreciat–"

MI Koo.png "Aren't you getting a little ahead of yourself again?"

MI Twmp.png"Oh... right, right! Once the stone is rolling, it's hard to stop it, you know how it is."

MI Koo.png "I guess?"

MI Twmp.png"Anyway, just the first two things then."

MI Koo.png "Ok, and with that our interview comes to an end. We have learned a lot today. Stones are people too! They have personalities! And sometimes they are big, annoying jerks, just like some of us!"

MI Twmp.png"Thank you very much! That is exactly the message I want to be sending."

MI Koo.png "And this is exactly the interview I want to be ending! See you all next month, I have to go revise my fanfic now."

Font CookingGuide.png

Written by: FakeIco ChCh.png Chivi-chivik (talk)

Hi everybody! Here’s your hostess, Chivi-chivik! And this is Cooking Guide, where we teach you how to cook excellent dishes!!
So, let’s go!

They told me that I had to do something Nintendo 64-related, so I went, of course, to Tayce T.’s.

Me: (Happy) Hi!!
Tayce T.: Hi dear! How you’ve been?
Me: (Low) Dyllis is still searching me... Ehm... I mean... I’ve been okay...
Tayce T.: You told me that we are going to think on the N64 this time...
Me: Yes...
Tayce T.: I’ll go get my recipe book. It’s been a while since I didn’t cook any of these dishes... It’ll be good remember good ol’ times...
Me: Okay.

*Tayce T. Returns with the book.*

Me: ¿What could we cook?
Tayce T.: Dunno...
Me: It should be something exclusive from the N64...
Tayce T.: What about... Making all the kinds of pops?
Me: Pops?
Tayce T.: Yes, pops! The Fire Pop, the Electro Pop, the Coco Pop and the Jelly Pop! They’re so easy to make!
Me: Okay!
Tayce T.: I need you to bring me Cake Mix, a Fire Flower, a Volt Shroom, a Coconut and a jar of Jammin’ Jelly.
Me: *searching in closets* Okay...

Me: Here’s everything! It has taken its time...
Tayce T.: Okay then... let’s begin! I’ve taken 5 bowls, one for the cake mix and the others for each mix we’ll make. In one bowl let’s put the cake mix. We’ll have to mix it with some water until it’s well blended.
Me: *nods*
Tayce T.: When you have it, distribute the mix between the other bowls. Now let’s go with the other ingredients!
Me: *nods*
Tayce T.: We have to make juice from all of them but the Coconut. It contain its own juice! *giggles*
Me: I’ll go to open this coconut then.
Tayce T.: I’ll be here blending this!

Me: Here’s the coconut milk! Oh god, it’s so hard to break one of these!
Tayce T.: Thanks! I’m done here! Well, now let’s mix all of this! Let’s pour the juices, one in each bowl.
Me: *pours*
Tayce T.: Now mix. We have to get a moldable dough! *grins*

Tayce T.: Done! Pick some of this dough and make an sphere. Put a stick and flatten it. Are you done?
Me: Yes!
Tayce T.:We have to put this in the icebox for 12 hours! The dough has to harden.
Me: Oh, then... I’ll come back tomorrow, okay?
Tayce T.: Okay! *smiles*
Me: Byes!

_o-*¨*-o_The next day..._o-*¨*-o_

Me: I’m here!
Tayce T.: *super happy* Hi!! I was defrosting the pops!
Me: Yay!
Tayce T.: (takes a pop) Yes, they’re hard! Now they’re ready to eat!
Me: (takes one. Licks) Oh... delicious!!
Tayce T.: You got the electro one!
Me: AW!! This sparks...
Tayce T.: *giggles*
Me: Eh... nevermind! Thanks for being here with me!
Tayce T.: You’re so welcome!

Fire Pop
Electro Pop
Coco Pop
Jelly Pop


Ingredients: Some Cake Mix and choose between a Volt Shroom, a Fire Flower, a Coconut or a jar of Jammin' Jelly.

  1. Make a mix from the Cake Mix and some water.
  2. Make juice from your chosen ingredient (except for the Coconut, you can just break it!). When you have it, mix the juice with the other mix.
  3. When you get a dough, make spheres, put a stick and flatten them.
  4. Put them in the icebox for 12 hours.
  5. Take them out and defrost them.

Thanks for being here reading, until next Cooking Guide!!

Font PeddlersPlace.png

Written by: Toadbert101 (talk)



Font WeatherForecast.png

Written by: FakeIco Edo.png Edofenrir (talk)

The weather this month proves to be very extraordinary and potentially problematic. Expert Shine Scholars (you know, the guys who get paid for staring at the sun all day) have determined that there will be a solar flare occurring at some point over the next week. Said phenomenon will last several days from then on.

The public is celebrating this event with outbreaks of mass-hysteria and general idiocy, as always. Right after the news were announced, several newspapers (excluding this one of course, since we have way more class) have jumped on the panic wagon and declared this the end of the world as we know it. The sales for sunscreen and sunglasses have skyrocketed, and stores are struggling to keep up with the steadily increasing demand. As a result, a small black market has formed, selling cheap imitation sunglasses made from cardboard and black duct tape to the gullible masses.

FW cheapcheap.png
Seems legit.

In response to, or more likely to accentuate the insanity going on, an especially concerned citizen has issued a formal proposition to the government to "lock up all bald men with funny names". When questioned about the purpose of said proposition, she replied angrily: "Them blasted reverse cyclopses are gonna pay for giving us the evil eye!" We... have absolutely no idea what this means, and feel a little weirded out. On the way out, we bumped into a ruffled looking Dry Bones who explained he was "fleeing from the lightning bolts". Then he broke down on the street and started crying excessively. Despite all the commotion and pessimism going around, sunflower farmers and beach goers remain hopeful.

In any case, we from the 'Shroom would like to take on the noble quest of dispelling the paranoia of the general masses and separate the "truth" from the "truth that is not quite as marketable". We are going to accomplish this by going into what a Solar Flare actually is.

As our trusty source Wikipedia says it, a solar flare is "a sudden brightening observed over the Sun's surface or the solar limb, which is interpreted as a large energy release", as well as "The flare ejects clouds of electrons (...)" Note the usage of the term "electrons" here. For the unscientific readers among you, moving electrons are basically an electrical current. And what does that mean exactly? Correct. Magnets!

The sun is hurling space magnets at us!

FW solarflare.png
Pictured above: a solar flare.

Now that we know what the threat is all about, we can work on taking precautions. There are the things you need to do that go without saying, such as putting little umbrellas over all of your tomato plants to protect them from falling magnets. However, there is some danger that might not be immediately obvious. Here are some of the things you should be wary of the most:

Beware the EMP. EMP stands for electromagnetic pulse. For the average person, these three little letters do not mean much, however, the mere mention of them will make any robotic life-form that hears them soil themselves...(?) In whichever way this is physically possible. So, if you are a robot, then whatever you do, don't stand around outside like a suicidal garbage can. The electromagnetic rays from the sun magnets will fry you and if you are unlucky, you will be shut down forever. Life equals false, you got that?

Just stay indoors, enter a radiation-proof closet or something, and bolt yourself to the ground if that is possible.

Don't carry any metal. I cannot stress this point enough. Too many people have been lost just because they refused to be sensible for as little as a week. And it is so easy to see the danger if you just stop and think about it for a minute. What is it that all magnets do? They attract metal. So, what is the logical consequence if you carry something made of metal around while the sun is turning into a huge magnet? Why yes, the sun will attract that metal. And it will drag you into the sky while you scream and cry and flail around like a useless little ragdoll that refused to listen to my words of warning. And then you will be hurled into the sun! Is that what you want? I doubt it.

So leave the metal out of your pockets if you don't want to get acquainted with Mr. Sun in the near future. Leave your keys at home. Just leave everything unlocked. People are too busy with freaking out to steal your stuff anyway.

Stop promoting global warming. This one requires some advanced science to fully understand, but I will try to explain the facts in simple terms. Every magnet has two poles: A south pole and a north pole. These poles determine how a magnet interacts with another magnet. For instance, opposite poles attract each other, while the same poles repulse each other. Understood everything so far? Good.

Now let us translate this to reality: The Mushroom World has a south pole and a north pole too, because it is essentially a huge magnet itself, even though it doesn't look like one. However, global warming is causing the north pole to melt. Soon, we will not have a north pole anymore. And the terrible consequence of that is that the balance will be upset when the sun turns into a super magnet during the solar flare. If our planet has only one pole, and the sun has two, then that means the sun will be stronger than the Mushroom World, because that is how magnets work. And as a result, when the stronger sun poles start repulsing the weaker earth pole, we will all be catapulted out of the solar system and drift through space, forever alone.

FW disowned.png
"Get yer useless bum outta ma house, yer darn no-good whippersnapper!"

That is terrifying. I am beginning to see why all those other newspapers are making this out to be such an apocalyptic event. I am going to retreat for now and cry myself to sleep. We strongly encourage you to do the same.

In any case, be careful out there, and don't do anything silly. Or at least not without telling us about it.

Font PoliceBlotter.png

Written by: Travix Man (talk)

Good evening, ladies and gentlemen, princesses and plumbers, for I am TravixMan, Chief of the Mushroom Police Force, and Boy, I say, have we got stories tonight! I have one story that is so huge, it'll blow your pants off. Ladies and gentlemen, let's take a look back into the Nintendo 64 era!

Super Mario 64: The Story that changed everything...

One day, Princess Peach was making a letter to Mario, telling him to come to her castle so that he can have cake. She was just walking out the door to go to the mailbox and send it, when suddenly, a black hole appeared. Princess Peach was shocked, and was wondering why a black hole would appear until the cause of it grabbed her. It was indeed Bowser, the King of the Koopas. He had taken the Power Stars prior to his kidnapping of Peach, and gave each one to his minions, and hid some in the castle. He even held on to some for himself, and hid them in his three worlds. He then took her inside his black hole to his world. Unfortunately for him, Princess Peach dropped the letter, which flew to a pipe nearby. Emerging from the pipe came a plumber wearing red and blue. Yes, it was Mario, hero of the Mushroom Kingdom. When Mario entered the castle, he was told to scram by an unknown voice. Mario then looked around the castle only on the main floor. All of the doors in the castle was locked, except for two wooden doors which led to the basement, and one which had a painting of Bob-Omb Battlefield. Mario went to the room, but noticed that the painting wasn't an ordinary painting, and new, strange, and unknown worlds were in each painting of the castle. Mario went in, and his adventure began.

When Mario had gotten past all of Bowser's henchmen, he had gotten 119 Power Stars back. Then Mario had entered Bowser's final world: Bowser In The Sky. Mario had to be very careful here, as Bowser had more tricks up his scales. Mario found all 8 red coins, and collected his very last Power Star. Mario then entered the pipe at the end, which he was met by Bowser. Maario had to grab Bowser by the tail and swing him to hit spiked balls three times, but Bowser didn't make it easy for him. When Mario finally hit him the third time, Bowser was finished. Bowser didn't have enough Power Stars left to help him, so he fled after that. However, Bowser didn't flee very far, as he went to the castle drawbridge, where he passed out. Princess Peach then congratulated Mario on his victory, and she, Mario, and two Toads went inside to get some cake. After that, Yoshi contacted HQ, and we arrived at the scene, Bowser still knocked out. His sentence: 2-4 years in Prison.

Well, there's your story for this evening. I hope you all have a wonderful night, and remember: If a Koopa King comes to your house, just grab him just grab him by the tail, and swing him to a wall. Or was it a spiked ball? Either way, it would hurt. See you all next month, on the Mushroom Kingdom Fake Police Blotter.

Font AskTucayo.png

by FakeIco Tcy.png Guess Who Talk

HI, curious readers! I'm your returning-counselor, Tucayo! I am a counselor, right? Or something. Where is 3K, you may ask. Well, your beloved G-Mod will take a break for this section, and I didn't want to leave you without someone to answer your questions, so here you have me. If you want me to answer your question, please send it via PM. You can ask anything about any subject you want. Just no relationship advice, I'm not the guy for that.

Let's get this started! This month's first two questions come from none other than your potentially-dangerous Fake News Director, MrConcreteDonkey!

How does it feel to be doing Ask Tucayo again?
This is a fun section, because you don't know what you'll be asked. I returned it from The 'Shroom's graveyard after Paper Jorge last wrote it, this section is one of the classic Fake News sections, so I couldn't let it take a break. It's a more personal section and it lets other know me better and help others and blah blah blah.

What's your favourite Nintendo 64 game?
And the difficult questions begin. My three favorite games ever appeared in the Nintendo 64, so choosing one requires thinking.

*Thirty minutes later

The winner is...Paper Mario! Ocarina of Time and Majora's Mask came in second and third place (not respectively). Why Paper Mario? It's the game that got me into RPG's, it was the first game I finished with %100 completion, and I enjoyed every moment of it. The sidequests were fun, the characters likable and the worlds fantastic. Hmm.. I would have described OoT and MM the same way...

Next question comes from LN1!

How would you make Dimentio appear in a Smash Bros. Game(including but not limited to background character of some stage, trophy and/or sticker)?
Well, Dimentio has only appeared in one game so far, which might reduce his chances, but that didn't happen for Pit in Brawl, so I'm hopeful. Plus, he has the potential to appear in another game. Now, to answer your question, I think he will surely appear as Sticker at least, but I'd love to see him appear as an Adventure boss. He's one of my favorite bosses ever, so I'm rooting for him. Him and Brobot would make a good stage boss.

And I also got an anonymous question. Yup, you can do that. Just tell me when you ask it.

What's your favorite TV Show?
Right now, House M.D. SNL and The Ellen DeGeneres Show are up there too. I just started to watch House after it ended, so I still have a lot of episodes to watch. Granted, I don't understand almost all the med talk, but I really like it. House's character has to be one of my favorite TV characters.

And that's all for this month's Ask Tucayo! And remember, you make this section possible, so please send your Q's! BYE!

Fun Stuff

Director Notes

by Gamefreak75 (talk)


Thank you for joining us today. As you may have heard, this is the Special Issue 64, which is indeed a truly special issue.

A lot of us grew up with the Nintendo 64 and remember it fondly. Unfortunately, I cannot say the same for myself as I never owned an N64 until 3 years ago. It had many iconic and ground breaking games, from Super Mario 64 to Donkey Kong 64, Mario Kart 64 and Mario Golf 64. Mario was not the only icon to have truly memorable and revolutionary games, we had Zelda, Star Fox, Kirby, and F-Zero, as well as now third-party games Banjo-Kazooie and Conker’s.

But enough with my boring speeches, it is now time for the Fun Stuff of Special Issue 64.

Mystery Images

by Tucayo (talk)

HI, loyal readers! I'm your celebratory Mystery Images writer, Tucayo! And this time, I bring you the most special Mystery Images section there has ever been. Why? Well, for one, because it's a Special Issue, and Special Issues need special stuff. But that's not entirely why, the real reason is that this is my 50th issue as writer of The 'Shroom! So I can't do anything but thank you, the readers. Those that have read me since that distant Issue XVI, those who just started, those who started midways... Anyone who reads my section, thank you. And to show you my gratitude, you'll get 50 images this time. One from every issue. There have been special themes, so I ought to clarify some things. Images 15 and 21 are non-Mario, 26 is a user of the SMW, 45 is a logo and 46 is a location in the Marioverse. Enjoy the section and enjoy the rest of the issue!

Shroom 64 005.png

The lengthy answers


by Raven Effect (talk)

Did you know that:

  1. MIPS the rabbit in Super Mario 64 's name stands for Microprocessor without Interlocked Pipeline Stages?
  2. Despite being called the Headless Snowman, the snowman in Super Mario 64 is lacking a body, not a head?
  3. Mario Tennis on the Nintendo 64 marked the debut of Waluigi and the reappearance of Princess Daisy after an 9 year absence?
  4. Originally, a Magikoopa was going to be playable in Mario Kart 64, but was taken out before the game was released?
  5. The Nintendo Power guide for Super Mario 64 refers to Mario as a visitor from Brooklyn?
  6. Lakilester from Paper Mario also goes by Michael, Spike, and Jonathan in the Japanese version?
  7. No matter who beats Bowser in Mario Party 2 the game will always name the land Mario Land?


By Post-Damage Invincibility (talk)

Charlieton PM.png

  1. In what game does Luigi say, "Luigi not afraid."?
  2. In "Mario Power Tennis", which character sees a Shy Guy without his mask?
  3. What does Wario pick up and throw if he gets a Double Bogey in Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour?
  4. In the ending of Super Mario 64 DS, who does Peach call inside at the very end instead of Mario, as was done in the original?
  5. A door is unlocked when all of the glowing rabbits are found in the same game from the last question. What is behind the door?
  6. Incidentally, Mario, Wario, Luigi, or Yoshi leave the room in terror if they enter the room again after collecting what is in it. Although never seen, what creature is heard?
  7. Geno answers to a "higher authority". Who or what is the higher authority?

A. God B. The power of the stars C. Rosalina D. It was never mentioned

  1. The Sockop creature of Bowser's Inside Story more than resembles Kuribo's Shoe. It's name is a pun of the word "Sockhop". What is a Sockhop?

A. A land ruled by Elvin Parsley in the Super Show. B. A 50's era high school dance. C. All of the above D. None of the above

  1. In Mario Party 9, what is the highest that can be rolled in the Scaredy Rat Race by the Scaredy Rat?
  2. Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door" is a fan favorite among many Mario Wiki users. What was the cost of the W Emblem?

Guess Who

by Turboo (talk)

  1. This character appears in the third chapter of the game.
  2. This character does not appear initially; rather, Mario must rescue him from the boss of the area before he is able to speak to him.
  3. This character was named by his grandmother.
  4. This character reveals that his ancestors once lived in a castle.

Guess that Game

by Turboo (talk)

  1. This game was rereleased on Virtual Console in 2007.
  2. Characters from this game reappeared in Mario Party 5.
  3. Two characters from this game also cameoed in its sequel, although more were scheduled to appear.
  4. This game has no optional partners.

Mind Bogglers

By GreenDisaster (talk)

Hello everybody, and welcome to my first issue of Mind Bogglers! As the rules state, you, as the reader, must find a number of characters hidden inside one giant image for the sake of your own entertainment. In this sunny July issue, you will have to go through the artwork for Mario Party 9 and find some much more flatter characters then the ones already visible: specifically, five of the various color variations of Yoshi from Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door. Since telling you which color Yoshis I've placed would make it too easy, I'll just tell you that Green Yoshi is not one of them, considering he's in plan sight.

Shroom 64 007.jpg

And now to show you where the five Yoshis are.


Non-Mario Crossword

By Gamefreak75 (talk)

For this issue, I decided to create a crossword puzzle on not only the best N64 game ever, but also my favorite game and series to date. Without further ado, I hope you are able to solve this KIRBY 64 themed crossword puzzle.


Word Search

By Gamefreak75 (talk)

The answers to June’s word search. WordSearch62012answers.png

This month’s word search: WordSearch72012.png

Find the Differences

By Pyro (talk)

The front North American cover art for New Super Mario Bros. 2



Hiding Koopa

By General bob-omb (talk)

Luigi is back from hiding under Mario's shadow in action! It looks like he has got quite a handful with some new challenges. Although, Luigi probably isn't looking for it, there is a Koopa hiding somewhere in this picture. (Surprising, I know.)



Music & Artwork

Director's Notes (Smasher (talk))


Hello again everyone, I hope you're enjoying this special issue!

I'd like to take a moment to welcome a new member to the Music & Artwork crew - starting this month, Soniccity08 (talk) will be writing Soundtrack of the Month. Welcome aboard!

I am now done so enjoy the rest of the issue and stuff.

Character Artwork of the Month (Rise Up Above It (talk))

Paper Mario promotional artwork: Kooper
Hola, Tucayo!

So, after last issue's facepalm-worthy section, some arcane magic and dropping the other contender from the top of some huge fortress, I have decided for this month's special N64 theme, Tucayo Kooper gets the feature here, being a great character from an N64 game (which I unfortunately haven't played) with actual, and great artwork (Whomp King is a great character too, but had no real N64 artwork).

Random Image of the Month (Paper Yoshi (talk))

Mega Bomb.png

Hello, readers, and welcome to the July Issue of Random Image of the Month!!

This month's random image comes from one of my favorite games, Paper Mario. It shows Bombette using one of her special attacks, Mega Bomb.

Bombette, one of Mario's partners in Paper Mario, is able to use Mega Bomb after being upgraded to Ultra Rank. The attack uses 8 FP, and requires the player to press A Button repeatedly in order to successfully execute it. It damages all enemies, regarless of their position in the battle field.

Music Factoid (Post-Damage Invincibility (talk))

Hey everyone, this month the Music Factoid is on Power-Up Music! Most of the Power-Up Music we hear to this day origniated from the game that started it all, Super Mario Bros.! The catchy tunes have endured through the ages, over a quarter century, since Ronald Wilson Reagan was president. But new games have brought newer Power-Ups, along with newer Power-Up tunes. Only time will tell what the tune for Flying-Squirrel Mario will sound like!

Super Mario Bros. Mushroom Sound Effect [[1]]

Super Mario Bros. Extra Life [[2]]

Starman [[3]]

Mega Mushroom


Ice Flower


Screenshot of the Month (Fawfulfury65 (talk))

SMG Space Junk Pull Stars.png

Hello 'Shroom readers! This month's Screenshot of the Month is taken from Super Mario Galaxy. In this picture, we have, of course, Mario, as he uses some pull stars to travel through the Space Junk Galaxy.

Obviously, this image has high quality and is a decent size, but besides that, I find this picture to be very pretty, with all the stars in the background. Another thing that seemed to catch my attention was that the rocks floating around Mario look kind of cool there. The L shaped rock in the picture is covered in star bits that you can collect if you use the pointer.

Well, that's what I have to say for this month. See you next month!

Soundtrack of the Month (Soniccity08 (talk))

Hey, it’s me, Soniccity08! And this month’s soundtrack is from Super Mario Bros. 3! It’s the final boss theme!

This theme goes along really well when you are fighting Bowser in his castle. It is kinda like the Super Mario Bros. final boss theme, but it has a faster and catchier tune. It really helps you during game-play to …basically…make Bowser commit suicide (if you beat this game you know what I mean)!Later in a lot of other Mario games, this tune was remixed into other Bowser fights.

Sprite of the Month (FunkyK38 (talk))

In honor of this N64 issue, Sprite of the Month is a little different this month! I give you this screenshot of Metal Mario from Super Mario 64! Sm64metalmario.jpg Super Mario 64 was one of Mario's classic games, and it was the debut of this ability. It has since become famous in several different games. Please enjoy this screenshot, and the rest of the N64 issue!

Pipe Plaza

Director's Notes (Paper Yoshi (talk))


Hello, everyone, and welcome to the Special Issue 64!! This month, the Core Staff decided to theme the paper around one of Nintendo's greatest consoles, the Nintendo 64, to match the issue's number. However, as the Pipe Plaza team deals mostly with factual information, our sections will not feature that theme, in order not to defy from their purpose.

And speaking of which, there are still four vacant positions in this sub-team, which are Monthly Report, Featured, Projects Seeking Contributors and Anniversary Announcements, so please sign up to one of those if you're interested in writing for the Pipe Plaza! The process is fairly simple: all you have to do is PM me in the Super Mario Boards or post a message in my talk page. I will then send you an application form, in which you must inform the position(s) you wish to sign up for, agree to the terms of writing for the paper, and provide a demo of your section(s). The Core Staff will then proceed to review your application and decide if you're fit for the position(s).

Having said all of that, I wish you enjoy this month's issue! Now go on with the reading!

More Info

Mario Calendar (Paper Yoshi (talk))

Hello readers, and welcome to this month's Mario Calendar! Here are all the Mario, Yoshi, DK and Wario games released in a July day.

Abb. Region
NA North America
JP Japan
EU Europe
AU Australia/New Zealand
KO Republic of Korea

And with that, we're done with July's list. I'll see you in Upcoming Games!

Forum Update (MrConcreteDonkey (talk))

Hey, everyone, and welcome to this special edition of the Forum Update! What makes this a special edition of the Forum Update, I hear you ask. Actually, I'm not sure. Anyway, here's June.

Top Story: We had quite a few staff changes this month. Glowsquid (Glowsquid (talk) resigned from being a Global Moderator, but, not long after, Kiyotaka Ishimaru (TheGreatBlockyBoo (talk)), Marioguy1 (Marioguy1 (talk)) and Mason (Puddin (talk)) were promoted to Global Moderators. So congratulations to those guys!

Statistics: In June, 659 new topics were made, and 27905 posts were made. 33 new members joined, and 162 was the highest amount of people online at once, and that's been the highest this year.

Smasher (Smasher (talk)) –34004
Rat (Ralphfan (talk)) – 25598
MCS (Mileycyrussoulja (talk)) – 23630
UltraMario (UltraMario3000 (talk))– 22143

Don Pianta (Superjeff64 (talk)) – 16097
Solar Blaze (SolarBlaze (talk)) – 15846
timaeusTestified (Lily (talk)) – 14703
Nabber (Nabber (talk)) – 13761
Baby Luigi (BabyLuigiOnFire (talk)) – 13745
Herr Shyguy (Shyguy27 (talk)) – 12273

Green signifies the user is at a higher position than last month.
Blue signifies the user is at the same position as last month.
Red signifies the user is at a lower position than last month.
Bold signifies the user is a new entry to the top 10.

Mafia: Currently ongoing are New Super Mario's (New Super Mario (talk)) World War III Mafia, Marioguy1 (Marioguy1 (talk)) and Monobear's (Bop1996 (talk)) Mafia Finale, Yasuhiro Hagakure's (MrConcreteDonkey (talk), AKA me) Vote to Lynch and, probably soon enough Northern Verve's (SonicMario (talk)) Courage the Cowardly Dog Mafia.

  • Yoko Littner (EctoBiologist (talk)) and Touko Fukawa's (QuizmoManiac (talk)) Pokémon Gold/Silver/Crystal Mafia was put on hold at the former's request.
  • Nabber (Nabber (talk))...seemingly won his Nabber Mafia. I don't think there was anyone alive at the end, so, yeah.
  • Plunderbird (Raven Effect (talk)) cancelled his Batman Mafia.
  • The Innocents won timaeusTestified's (Lily (talk)) Song Summoner: The Unsung Heroes Mafia.
  • An Innocent loss seems inevitable for Rocker64's (Rocker64 (talk)) NES Mafia.

I'd also like to mention that sign ups are open for Awards Mafia II, so if you want to play, all you need is a forum account! (unless you're one of the people mentioned in the first post as not being allowed to join)

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the rest of this issue!

Community Report (Bop1996 (talk))

Hello, welcome to July's Community Report section of this very special issue of the 'Shroom. Despite the fact that this issue is themed around the Nintendo 64, my section has absolutely no relevance to that whatsoever. Regardless, I hope you enjoy the entire event.

Policy Changes and Updates

  • MarioWiki:Userspace was updated to specifically prohibit the issuing of fake warnings (which were already explicitly prohibited by the Warning Policy) and to allow the on-sight removal of any spam on talk pages.
  • MarioWiki:Signatures was updated to allow the on-sight changing of raw coding signatures to {{User}} or something similar.

Proposals from the Past Month

Proposals and TPPs in Progress

Sitenotices from the Past Month

  • Policy update: We're now using the most-common titles and names for our visitors rather than the first English release versions. Based on our current demographics, this means U.S. titles and names.
  • Voting for the 2012 MarioWiki Anniversary awards is now open!

Promotions and Demotions

Tip of the Month (FunkyK38 (talk))

Make sure that when you create your username, it isn't too similar to someone else's. For example, a username Mariorocks24 would be okay, because it isn't too similar to others' usernames: it's just a statment that you love Mario. But a username like Purplemontage might be cutting it a bit too close. When usernames are too similar, sockpuppeting might be involved, giving the higher authority a reason to be suspicious. And always remember: no matter how much you might hate Birdo or Bowser or whoever, profanity in a username is never acceptable.

Upcoming Games - Special E3 Coverage: Issue 2 (Paper Yoshi (talk))

Hello, and welcome to the second and last Special E3 Issue of Upcoming Games!

This issue will cover the two Wii U games unveiled at Nintendo's E3 Conference last month. Those are New Super Mario Bros. U, a new installment in the New Super Mario Bros. series, and Game & Wario (working title), from the WarioWare series.

Miis, playing in New Super Mario Bros. U.
The Mii Craze is on!

New Super Mario Bros. U

Although the New Super Mario Bros. series is returning to a handheld console this summer, it surely isn't going to give up on home consoles anytime soon. New Super Mario Bros. U will be the flagship Wii U launch title, set to be released in this year's Holiday Season. It will be similar in gameplay to its prequel, New Super Mario Bros. Wii, while adding many new features to the series.

NSMBU will once again feature cooperative multiplayer, allowing players to choose from the four characters from NSMBWii and from various newcomers to the series: Miis! It will also mark the return of Baby Yoshis to the Super Mario series; those little dinos will be available in different colors, each having its own unique ability.

New Super Mario Bros. U will also take advantage of the Wii U GamePad, allowing a fifth player to join the fun by helping (or hindering) the other four players as they play through the game in a mode known as the Boost Mode.

Shutter, one of the minigames from Game & Wario

Game & Wario

Game & Wario, the latest installment in the WarioWare series, will include an assortment of minigames that use only the Wii U GamePad, which players must complete in order to earn medals and bonus items.

As of now, only four games have been revealed. In one of them, called Shutter (shown to the right), players are tasked with finding the "criminals" listed on the TV screen and taking photos of them using the GamePad before time runs out. Another minigame, called Fruit, will pit a single player against a team of 1-4 players. The main player must control a character using the GamePad and quietly steal fruit scattered all over town. The other players will then take the GamePad and try to find the thief.

Release Dates

  • New Super Mario Bros. U: Holiday Season 2012
  • Game & Wario (working title): Holiday Season 2012

And that's all for this Pipe Plaza issue!! We shall meet again next month!

"Stay tuned to Upcoming Games for news on the games you'll be playing soon!"

Project Yoshi (Paper Yoshi (talk))

Get it? Project Yos---oh, never mind.

Plot twist!!

Anyway, this is an idea I had a few months ago. I had originally planned to include it in this issue, given that it would fit with the theme; however, I decided to postpone it, most likely to the December issue, in order to have more time to plan everything properly.

While I won't reveal any details regarding this right now, I have to say something: one Yoshi alone cannot go on with the project. Therefore, I need other Yoshis to help me. Seven Yoshis, to be exact.

What that means is: I will choose seven Yoshi users from the Wiki to be part of this project, should they agree to the terms. If you wish to apply, all you have to do is PM me in the Super Mario Boards. Since two users have already been chosen prior to this issue's release date (and before I decided to open sign-ups), there are five spots open, meaning the first five users to send me a message will be contacted.

This section will feature news and additional information regarding the project during the following months.

And (now for real) that's all for this Pipe Plaza issue!! I hope you have enjoyed it!!

Critic Corner

Director Notes

Crocodile Dippy (talk)


Effing buggery, I have to write another section? Why did I agree to this? Why did I even suggest it? At least I won't have to bother with the tedious affiliates stuff, we were getting nowhere with that. Oh yeah, welcome to the brand new Critic Corner sub-team, a place for you to read the crap talentless, bitter hacks like myself have to say about other people's hard work. It's so much fun.

But yeah, don't fear, it's all still here; your tidy collection of all The 'Shroom's finest review and opinion sections, whether it be critiquing games, fan material, characters, movies, books, etc., or discussing issues such as beta elements and ethical concerns in the gaming medium. Put it all in a nice little corner and keep the main page a little neater, y'know?

So yeah, announcements. Let's see if I can do this right, since formalities are not my strong point. From the last issue, New Super Mario (talk) resigned from his position as a Marioverse Reviews writer due to busyness in real life, and Nabber (talk) has gone on a bi-monthly plan for similar reasons (his section has been renamed to Super Nabber Reviews). Meanwhile, our long-lost Caiman Gamin' writer Xpike (talk) has returned to the newsletter on a bi-monthly plan as well, so enjoy seeing those every two months. I would like to introduce our newest reviewer marioboy14 (talk), who will be writing a second Marioverse Reviews section. Glad to have you on the team, mate.

I have also established brand new section openings in the form of Film Reviews, Book Reviews (this month written by Tucayo (talk)), Wiki Fiction Reviews, and Game Soundtrack Reviews. Have any suggestions for other sections I could add? Want to write a second version of an already filled position? Just contact me about it and we'll work something out; at the very least, I'll pretend to care! Go on my userpage for places you can contact me.


This month, Nabber holds the flag for Mario Kart 7. [read more]

Is Yoshi's Island a suitable tourist spot? Find out in marioboy14's debut! [read more]

MG1 keeps things hot this Summer with his evaluation of Lava Piranha. [read more]


Crocodile Dippy (talk)

It's all riches and bows in Dragon's Dogma. [read more]

Back from deep space, Xpike shares his colourful ending in Mass Effect 3. [read more]


MrConcreteDonkey (talk)

Super Mario 64 was an amazing game. But MCD wonders how it could've been better. [read more]

Crocodile Dippy (talk)

Dippy ponders the issue of sexism in video games. [read more]


Tucayo tells you nine stories in fifteen minutes. [read more]

Super Nabber Reviews

Nabber (talk)

Welcome back to Review Corner! It’s Nabber again, working on a new bimonthly plan. This time around, I’ve been playing a lot of Mario Kart 7 for the 3DS, the latest entry in the popular - and often frustrating - racing franchise. Is it better than its predecessors? Let’s find out!


When you start up Mario Kart 7, you shouldn’t be expecting any major changes. At its core, MK7 is the same game as the other Mario Karts. You play as a variety of characters from the Mario series, and zoom around on tracks that are usually inspired by Mario games. Tricks are also back from the previous installment. And as always, there are a slew of items to make sure that the races are always completely unpredictable.

Of course, there are some new elements. Advertised on the box art are the new gliders, which spring out from karts off of certain jumps. These allow you to glide for a few seconds, which, if mastered, can allow you to shave off precious seconds from your total time. Slowing you down, however, is water. Suddenly, karts can go underwater - but only in certain sections, as you will apparently still drown if you go off course. Underwater sections have floatier controls, though that’s really all there is to them. While they make for a nice change of pace, they’re otherwise mostly unneeded.

The courses this time around are also very fun, though there isn’t too much to say on that matter. They make very good use of the glider and water mechanics, and are incorporated into pretty much every track. There are also plenty of opportunities to attempt quick shortcuts if one has the skills to do so. They also aren’t major shortcuts, which is fortunate. They won’t break the game but they can make all the difference between winning and losing.

The other new mechanic this time around is kart customization, which adds a new layer of strategy to the series. You can now make your own vehicles from coins you collect while racing. Every certain amount of coins you get, a new part - either a kart frame, a wheel, or a glider - is unlocked. Each part affects your overall stats in some way. Unfortunately, the order of which the parts are unlocked is completely random, so you may have every wheel but still only have 2 gliders. And since every part is unlocked randomly, when playing another person, they may have all sorts of parts that you don’t have yet.

Then there is the matter of what some have dubbed “Item Hell.” While it’s not as bad as it was in Mario Kart 7, expect plenty of frustration from this installment. To make things worse, the dreaded blue shell now moves on land, meaning that not only does it hit whoever is in first place, but it will also flip over anyone who gets caught in its path. The new items aren’t helping; both the Fire Flower and the Tanooki tail might be helpful if they didn’t use up your item space while you’re using it. And since the Tanooki tail usually lasts until after you get to the next set of item boxes, you’re screwed from getting any new items if that lands in your item slot. There’s also a new “Lucky 7” that gives you seven different items to use, but not only are they rare, but it disappears as soon as you get hit, so it’s not very useful either.

Now I suppose I should mention the online. Things are a bit different this time around. The first online option is to play against random people from around the world. Like in Mario Kart Wii, you earn points by placing well in races and lose points by doing badly. The difference is that this time you start out with 1000 points and work your way up. Luckily, you’re always placed with players of your own skill level. The second option is titled Friends, but instead of allowing you to play a 1-on-1 match with your friend, it allows you to join their worldwide match, something that is confusing the first time around. The new feature this time is Communities: players can create communities where any player with the group code can play. You can also adjust the rules so that players can only play certain courses or use certain items. There also isn’t much lag when playing online, a definite plus.

As for the graphics and music, they’re on par. The visuals look pretty good for a 3DS game, if not a tiny bit pixelated - but they still look just like the Wii version’s. The 3D works well, too. As for the music, there are a few themes that are actually pretty catchy, but most of them are not mind-blowing either.

As expected, Mario Kart 7 doesn’t completely change the series’ formula. However, it does bring some interesting ideas to the plate, and it’s a great game to have in your 3DS library, and it’s incredibly fun to play - even more so with friends. As such, I award Mario Kart 7 an 8.5/10.

Marioverse Reviews

marioboy14 (talk)

Yes, I'm going back to the days of the SNES. Super Mario World is one of my all time favorite games for many reasons.

The setting: Dinosaur Land. The famous brothers Mario and Luigi are taking a vacation with Princess Peach. The blimp lands, and the brothers fly off with the feather item. Peach is kidnapped by Bowser and the whole mayhem starts all over again to save the princess. (Surprise, surprise)

First off is Yoshi's Island. This is the start of the game so the courses are NOT that difficult to get through. Found in this land of the Yoshi, Iggy Koopa, the first of the 8 Koopalings. You meet Yoshi in this area, and you get the whole feel and vibe of the game. My overall rating of this world: 9/10. Just due to the fact it is very simple.

Next is Donut Plains. I happen to like this area very much because the obstacles get a bit more challenging and the feather item comes into play! There are many Donut secrets here, like finding keys to underwater realms and flying overhead a whole course with a sort of Pegasus Yoshi. Morton Koopa is the boss waiting at the end here, but he is fairly easy to defeat. Three bops on the head and you're on your way! My overall rating of this land: 8.5/10. The courses are still too easy and the boss is too!

Now for some fun, Vanilla Dome. Before I start, do you see something? These places are made out of sweet treats! Sweet! Anyway, my wish has been granted and the obstacles are longer and a bit more complex. From the lava pits to the underwater, this area is challenging! Lemme Koopa waits at the end and man, his castle is tough! If you manage to get by the Magikoopa guarding the castle at the beginning, you might be clear until the red doors. Lemmy has two look-alikes in pipes popping up. On top of that, Lemmy is in one of these pipes waiting to attack. My overall rating of this world: 7/10. Lemmy ruined it. Enough said.

Do I dare even consider the next place a world? It's called Twin Bridges. That's just it! There's only two levels the first time you play! Both are VERY long though... You win that round Nintendo! After you go through and find all the secret places and such, sure you got a world, but who wants to do that? Ludwig Von Koopa is the next boss to defeat. He just shoots fireballs and rolls around. Hmmm Nintendo, maybe switch Lemmy and Ludwig if it is ever re-released again? My overall rating: 3/10. 2 points for the land, one for effort.

Forest of Illusion: Pretty well thought up place... Wigglers and floating Goombas in bubbles are found here. Also, with a completed world, this place looks like an illusion! I like the concepts of the obstacles and enemies found. Roy is waiting at the finish line, as he stomps on Mario and the walls cave in. Dodge this one and keep going! My overall rating: 9.5/10. All I can say is very nice work. Way to make up for Twin Bridges.

Chocolate Island... Hard and aggravating. All these new purple dinosaurs are found here spitting up fire. And the obstacles take FOREVER! Yet they are challenging, and also fun (sort of). Wendy O. Koopa is at the end, and she has girl power! Just like Lemmy, the chick has decoys in pipes. Hard stuff! My overall rating: 7/10. Aggravation.

Valley of Bowser is the final stop. It is challenging, brutal, aggravating, and down right awesome. Larry Koopa is found... In the middle? Yup! Two bosses in one world! Larry is just like Iggy except he bought some enemy friends to help. After a few more long obstacles, Bowser Castle! If you manage to find your way through this maze, Bowser is there, in his Koopa Clown Car and throwing bombs and Mecha Koopas. Peach pops out every time you whack Bowser with a Mecha Koopa and throws a mushroom. Defeat him, save the princess, get a kiss (not really) and boom! The game is over. My rating of this world: 10/10. It's the end, it's hard, it's rewarding.

Overall, 54/70, which is a 77%. Ok, the percent is low, but the game is great! This was the first Mario game I ever played. Tell you what, I'm going to bump that 77 up to an 85 because it can be played in the SNES or the pocket sized GBA/DS. Great game Nintendo. Marioboy14 out!

Character Reviews

Marioguy1 (talk)

Fish...birds...what else could I possibly pick to review...I know! I know how much everyone here adores the heat, so let's pick a plant! A flaming plant! A Lava Piranha!


Paper Mario official art of a Lava Piranha.

A tropical island treasure guarded by a vicious plant that breathes fire. If it were anything other than a deserted tropical island populated only by lizards, it would seem stupid. But who knows what you can find in a jungle? It seems Nintendo found a pretty good boss. However, regardless of how well the Lava Piranha fits into the game, a running fault with Nintendo's bosses is that the bosses are random. You are going through an island, an overweight raven just got you to the volcano to find an ancient treasure...and piranha plant. Once again, what I really want Nintendo to do is stick some background to their bosses into the games. It's a serious flaw. For instance, they could have had some Yoshis whisper about how the volcano is said to have a terrible beast inside of it. But they don't even mention Lava Piranha until the end of the chapter, when it appears. It's ridiculous. While Lava Piranha fits the bill, there is not enough background to it.


During the first fight, Lava Piranha looks pretty cool, with its thorny vines extending from the lava like some sort of vegetable kraken. However during the second fight, the fires look very...pathetic. The flames are too small. In addition, I can't get over that ridiculous tongue that always hangs out of its mouth. It's ridiculous!


The differences of Lava Piranha's battle forms.
Hm, no tongue.

I never did find characters speaking in primitive language to be very funny. But apparently, Nintendo thought it was, because they repeatedly have a near-illiterate character in their games who shouldn't talk but does. If this is supposed to be humour, Marioguy1 is not amused.


Like I said, Lava Piranha could have been played up as the beast of the volcano, or as an infestation that took over the volcano, or something else, but with a backstory. However, aside from that, Lava Piranha shared one flaw with its relatives, it is immobile. So it's not going anywhere, Lavalava Island is the only place where it makes sense.

Used Potential

Aside from the lack of backstory, Nintendo used most of Lava Piranha's potential. I think they did pretty well in this category.


I give Lava Piranha a lovely 7/10, making him the first character to receive a positive review this year! Yay!

Character Who? Storyline Design Humour Potential Used Potential Overall
Fluzzard That guy 7/10 4/10 5/10 6/10 3/10 5/10
Boss Bass That guy 4/10 2/10 2/10 4/10 8/10 4/10
Lava Piranha That guy 8/10 6/10 5/10 8/10 6/10 7/10

Crocodile Style Reviews

Crocodile Dippy (talk)


Dragon's Dogma
Developer Capcom
Publisher Capcom
Platform(s) PlayStation 3, XBox 360
Genres Action role-playing game, hack and slash, sandbox
ESRB:M - Mature
PEGI:18 - Eighteen years and older
CERO:D - Seventeen years and older
ACB:MA15+ - Fifteen years and older
Available From

I am so bored of fantasy! For a genre that prides itself on the whimsical and wondrously imaginative, it appears to have squandered its entire creative savings and has spent the last decade or so trading in whatever dignity it has left to leech off the worn out scraps left over in Gary Gygax and J.R.R. Tolkien's bins. And Dragon's Dogma seems to be attempting to break some sort of record for most fantasy dumpsters turned over; between the dragons, goblins, undead, castles, haunted ruins, standard fantasy weaponry, conventional magic, and NPCs spouting the same line of dialogue over and over again, I was struggling to find anything that wasn't unaltered from the fantasy norm. Oh well, the opening theme is generic Japanese rock with hilariously bad English singing, so there's at least that.

I never bother with character customisation, so I just went with the default appearance with a few tiny changes. I regret that now that I know you can play as a stupidly fat midget.

Anyway, the game takes place in the kingdom of Gransys, home to a proud race of blank-eyed peons with all manner of bad Western European accents. It opens with the typical character customisation shit – but thankfully, you can actually play as a fat bastard instead of the usual six-pack/D-cup aliens of most RPGs, not that I noticed until it was too late, having spent a grand total of ten minutes in that skin wardrobe – before I was drawn into the intro cinematic, wherein I'm in a stereotypically quaint fishing village when it's ravaged by a demon dragon that promptly tears out my heart and eats it. And I thought my heart surgery was invasive, hyuck hyuck hyuck… Sorry. So I later wake up reborn as one of the enlightened ones called "Arisen", and am told to seek out a nearby settlement to get answers about my grand role in the world, which will inevitably entail skinning every wolf in the world and nicking every NPCs unguarded goods, prophesy be damned. To that end, I chose Thief… oh sorry, Strider as my vocation just to make my kleptomania formal, later upgrading to archer mage because I wanted to feel like Hawkeye for a few glorious hours. That's pretty much the full extent of the story which the game itself doesn't seem to be that engaged in; there's also a romance sub-plot involving the Duke's wife that doesn't change no matter what you look like or even what your gender is, but that never really goes anywhere either, so this implies Capcom have realised that as far as storywriting goes their best is like anybody's worst.

Let me just say that I found myself enjoying Dragon's Dogma a lot more than I thought I would, considering that it's fairly standard as far as fantasy games go. Dragon's Dogma can best be described as a mash-up of all of Capcom's modern big sellers; Devil May Cry, Breath of Fire, Monster Hunter, and even Resident Evil, doing survival horror far better than any game in that series ever has. I found the world beautiful and diverse enough to keep me interested in exploring, and the combat has that Devil May Cry flair of bitchin' combos and colourful strategies for killing beasts in the coolest fashion possible, made all the more fluid due to the character's swift parkour mobility, the defaulted third-person perspective, and the strangely friendly camera. The nature of the game to throw hordes of monsters at you when you most don't need it – especially at night – adds a layer of caution and tension to a journey that would otherwise get boring were you just some unstoppable conqueror of the frontiers.

A land of culture, ecology, and architecture, all of which wants you six feet in the cold, unloving ground. Good luck.

Indeed, Gransys appears to be a lush reimagining of Australia, as virtually every man, monster, his dog, and his dog's fleas seem to want you dead and are certainly not shy about it, but never fear for you're not alone in this quest! Being on the gods' guest list grants you the ability to use 'Pawns', human-like-but-not-actually-human blokes who are just a little too eager to assist you, even if that means fucking up a stealth section or repeating "helpful" advice that I swear are scripted to play every single bloody time you approach a certain part of the map, even immediately after you've just completed the quest or exploration objective they so desire to advise you about! Your main pawn is customised – I made mine a ridiculously tall, fat elven fighter with a stupidly high-pitched voice – but the other two that can tag along have to be hired from off the streets based on your own evaluation of their stats, skills, vocation ranking, fashion sense, and who their preferred power metal band is.

This is where the online functions come in since you can pick up other player's pawns, and have your own kiss someone else's ass for a bit while you're resting so they can bring back little goodies for you; likewise, you can give the pawns you've rented gifts and even grade them on their performance before sending them on their way as a sort of thank you note to the owners for providing you with such outstanding slavery services. I kind of prefer this approach to multiplayer, since it means I can assist others and benefit from their efforts without having to directly interact with them, kind of like Journey but with more prostitution. OK yeah, the pimping thing does get kind of weird after a while, but there's never really any attempt to paint them as anything more than mindless masochistic robots, so I never felt bad about using them for imported profit or forcing them into unwinnable scenarios while I looted everything in the next room, so that's score one for sociopathy at least.

Mind, travel is kind of a snorefest since there's no easier means to move from destination A to destination B aside from running as fast as you can before your stamina metre runs out, particularly draining when your objective is half way across the kingdom; I thought I was supposed to be some celebrity chosen one recognised by the Duke himself, but it seems even a horse is too much to ask from these freeloading whores. The absolute freedom of the game's large world may sound good on paper, but it lends itself to balancing issues as there's no indication that any given quest may be out of your league until you've travelled roughly the distance of the Tanami Track and have your face converted into cracker condiments by a randomly spawned chimera, so the word "grind" soon begins to creep up on you like a particularly clingy neighbour.

Sure it's fun, but is it as brilliant as it could be? 'fraid not.

Another prominent feature that the game has to boast about is monster climbing, the mechanic that made Shadow of the Colossus the single greatest game I've ever played, so forgive me if I seem spoiled when I say the monster climbing in Dragon's Dogma is kind of lacking, and that's not just because the feature is rarely ever used. Considering the average size for most of the big beasties is three times your height, they just can't hope to compare to the invigorating triumphs of Shadow of the Colossus' hulking monstrosities, and the lack of indication where you're supposed to hit for bonus damage doesn't bode well with the large monsters having stupid amounts of health relative to how much they can smash out of you. You can climb anywhere on the monster in opposed to Shadow of the Colossus' systematic puzzle-based hiking so movement can feel a bit wonky at times, not to mention many of them have an aggravating tendency to flip on their backside to crush you whenever you're most not prepared for it. Don't get me wrong, though, it's kind of hard to completely fuck up the excitement of monster climbing, but the way Dragon's Dogma does it feels like trying to joy ride on a disgruntled English Mastiff; it may be funny for a little while, but the benefits quickly pale in comparison to the blood streaming down the sidewalk.

Gripes aside, here's the thing; as unprofessional as it may sound, I sometimes don't play a game all the way to the end if I feel I'm just not having any fun, but here I am about 40 hours into Dragon's Dogma and I'm still playing so that should probably speak for itself. Dragon's Dogma isn't going to wow anyone with staggering innovation or imagination, but it's still fun in its own way, the mechanics are functional and interesting enough, and there's nothing particularly offensive about it, which is more than can be said about most triple-A titles. On the particularly dreary Winter days I've been suffering in my time playing this it's definitely an enjoyable time sink to drink hot chocolate to, so if that's all you want then definitely give it a chance; if not, then I guess you could just enjoy having a real life instead.

The 'Shroom: Crocodile Style Reviews
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
AssassinsCreedRevelations Icon.png
Assassin's Creed: Revelations
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword
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Kid Icarus: Uprising and Asura's Wrath
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I Am Alive and Journey
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Prototype 2
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Dragon's Dogma
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Spec Ops: The Line
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Darksiders II
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Sleeping Dogs
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Assassin's Creed III
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PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale
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Dead Space 3 and Crysis 3
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Tomb Raider
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BioShock Infinite
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Metro: Last Light
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Remember Me
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The Last of Us
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State of Decay and Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons
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Half-Life series
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Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate
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Darkest Dungeon and Hand of Fate
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The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
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Life Is Strange
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Until Dawn
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Mad Max
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Guitar Hero Live and Rock Band 4
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Assassin's Creed: Syndicate
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Fallout 4
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Ico and Shadow of the Colossus
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Far Cry: Primal

Caiman Gamin'

Xpike (talk)

I'm sure you’ve noticed that I haven't done this in…quite some time. But I have a good excuse! School. That’s all I'm gonna say about that, but I plan on popping on here and doing a review once in a while. I really don't have much to talk about in this introduction, however I guess that I should tell you to go and check out the Steam Summer Sale, IF when the time this article is published is still up. Oh, and The Dark Knight Rises is coming out/came out, so don’t forget to check that movie out! <shameless advertising ends>

Cg 7 12 1.png

Well now for the review itself. Remember last time, way, way back; when I said I was gonna review Mass Effect 3? Well, I got the game in time to fully play though it one time and review it, BUT Origin didn’t like that plan, so it spent 1 whole week doing everything it could to make the game not install correctly. So, I got to play it, but I didn’t finish it in time for me to make a good review out of it. Don't worry though, eventually that game will be reviewed someday. In the meantime, how about I review the other 2 Mass Effect games? And if I review Mass Effect 3 next month, it’ll even make a nice two-parter, so that’s a plus.
Review PC game for N64 month.

Warning: The review contains slight Mass Effect 1 and 2 spoilers.

Disclaimer: The review was made using the PC versions as references, and at the time of the review, no DLC for either game had been purchased.

Ok then, starting with Mass Effect released on 2008. The game is a space opera action RPG in which you control a space marine (what else?) named Commander Shepard, which as part of the appeal is fully customizable. Yes, that means you can use hours of your time as to make your own face be Shepard! (why you would do that instead of just jumping into the game and actually enjoy it is beyond me, though). You also choose his background, which believe it or not affects some side missions you get and I think it also changes some conversations.

The game itself starts on a mission to a human colony named Eden Prime, but SURPRISE some space elite guy has betrayed the galaxy and killed 2 of your partners. So you go to the Citadel, which is like the space hub, and nobody believes you of course, so you need to go to 3 planets with your team, which you recruited on the space hub part, and do things.

Remember when I told you there were going to be slight spoilers? Well, here they are: Turns out there's an ancient race named the Reapers that are giant robots that destroy almost all organic life every so and so years, and the bad elite guy was actually just a puppet of one of these guys, named Sovereign. End spoiler. Why was it necessary to say this? Because if you want to jump right into the sequel, and for purposes of this review, you'll really need to know this.

Cg 7 12 2.png
Imagine this, but with no skill required, and that’s pretty much Easy mode.

“But ENOUGH with the story, amirite?” someone normal would say. “What about the gameplay?” Well…honestly, I can't say much about the gunplay since the quick playthough I did for this review was on Easy. Yes, I know most RPG fans would burn me at the stake for that, but I honestly did not care too much about it. I was in it for the story. But I can say that the Mako vehicle parts are horrible, with the tank behaving more like a goddamn rubber toy.

The other part of gameplay I dared to travel to is the conversation system. Now, you may think I'm insane for thinking chatting with people is a vital part of gameplay, but then you haven't obviously played a Mass Effect game. More or less 60% of your game will be spent making choices and hearing someone talk. Now this may sound like it's a chore, but the writing and the space bar make up for it, and your choices most of the time actually open up new dialogues or affect the story and universe.

I think that's about it for the first game, which I must say, compared to its sequel, is somewhat lackluster, but I would and will still recommend it, because without experiencing a part of the trilogy, you really aren't doing it right.

Cg 7 12 3.png
Yep, the story starts with you dying.

Moving on the sequel, of which I can speak somewhat more, since I played it on Normal, let me start by saying that, in my opinion, Mass Effect 2 is a sequel that completely destroys the original in every aspect.

Now to start start, I'll begin with the story. After the bad guys lost on the previous game, Shepard is now searching the galaxy in case more Reapers rear their ugly head out, but a new, weird race called the Collectors track down Shepard first and kill him and his ship. Shepard is left floating in space, and some things happen that aren't explained in the game, but rather in some comics they published. ANYWAY, Shepard ends up in the hands of a human supremacist group called Cerberus, which, ironically, start a successful project to revive him. And even though it takes two years, Shepard is like new, and now working with the intel Cerberus gives him to take down the Collectors.

The game then dissolves into gathering your perfect team to face them in a suicide mission, and that’s about it without giving much away. The interesting part is that, if you played though Mass Effect 1, you can import your character into the game, and that makes every single choice you made affect the sequel, be it from character interactions, to sidequests and emails you get.

The combat is now much more like a normal 3rd person shooter, with the powers limited to optional ammo and 2 or 3 “magic” or biotics, which are now unlimited in use so you don’t have to worry about them. Like always, you have two squad members with you at all times. And that’s about it, it’s now a normal third person shooter.

Cg 7 12 4.png
It doesn’t really show in this screenshot, but Afterlife is a great place.

With that said, it's a really good third person shooter, and don't think that the story has taken a hit because of it. Your squadmates are all extremely well written, and you can see most of them develop while the story passes. The new settings are awesome, with especial mention to Omega, the galaxy's most corrupt place that houses the best nightclub in a game ever.

However, if there was one part of the game that really, REALLY, shouldn't be there, it would be planet mining. Imagine the fun of a text based adventure game, but it also being part gambling, and that's the gist of it.

In short, I really recommend both games to anyone who hasn’t tried them, and, spoilers, the third one is even better, but that’s for another time. Both are good science fiction games, and while the combat isn’t memorable, the story and characters, along with the setting and music, will sure pull you in.

…Geez, what a crummy last sentence.

By the way, there isn't really any sex in any of the games (the sex scenes don't show anything of anyone), don't really believe all you hear in media.

Should Have Been

MrConcreteDonkey (talk)

North American box art of Super Mario 64.
Superman- uh, I mean, Super Mario 64

Hey guys, and welcome to Should not Have joined Been. It's the 64th Issue of the 'Shroom, so I thought "why not cover a Nintendo 64 game which is arguably one of the best games ever"? Well, Superman 64 isn't a Mario game, so Super Mario 64 will have to do.

What should have been in this game?

Artwork of a Fire Flower from Super Mario World
Wouldn't you have loved to burn your enemies with a Fire Flower?
Joking aside, this is, in some people's eyes, one of the greatest games ever made. It set a very high standard for 3D games at the time. But that doesn't mean there isn't room for improvement... First, I'd have liked to have seen some classic Power-Ups in this game, like the Fire Flower or the Star. I like the different Caps Mario could pick up, like the Wing Cap, but I think they could have had more power-ups. Maybe Nintendo could have
Intro Princess Toadstool Peach
Never trust cake in video games. Ever.
even included power-ups from Super Mario Bros. 3 or Super Mario World, which could have stopped items like the Cape Feather or Super Leaf fading into obscurity (BTW HI MG1). Speaking of the Wing Cap, I found it pretty hard to control, and I think they could have improved the controls on that.

I think the game could have had a better story. While "Mario has to find 120 Stars hidden throughout levels and defeat Bowser because he has kidnapped Peach" is slightly different from the usual "Mario has to defeat Bowser because he has kidnapped Peach", I'd have enjoyed some variation on this. Maybe Bowser could have had a different motive for kidnapping Peach? Maybe Peach could have been stolen from Bowser by a new enemy? I know they varied this a few times after this game, but I think they could have done this as early as this.

You defeat this boss by high-fiving it to death.
Mario and King Bob-omb dueling on Bob-omb Battlefield.
Of course he's not a king. He's obviously a big.
I also thought the battles with Bowser were too similar. The only things that really varied were the arena and the amount of hits he took. I think Bowser should have had a few different attacks as the battles with him progressed, so it wasn't essentially the same fight three times. I think there also could have been more variation with the Bosses - while there were quite a few different bosses, many of them were just oversized versions of normal enemies; I mean, look at how many's names start with "big": Big Bob-omb, Big Bully, Big Boo (who's fought three times in the same level), Big Mr. I...and most of the ones whose names don't even start with "big" are just larger versions of normal enemies. Most of these bosses are defeated in the same way as their smaller counterparts, too. The Eyerok was probably the most original boss, and that was just a hand with eyes (and everything has eyes in Mario games!). I think there could have been more bosses who weren't just large enemies.
The Headless Snowman in Cool, Cool Mountain of Super Mario 64
You'd think this is in Snowman's Land,, it's the other one.

I don't think it was just the bosses that were slightly lacking originality: while I loved all of them, I felt some of the levels were too similar. For example: Cool, Cool Mountain and Snowman's Land; Jolly Roger Bay and Dire, Dire Docks. I think maybe the game could have had more different levels. For example, a forest or jungle level would have been nice, or perhaps even a beach level.
L is real 7/21/12
Additionally, it would have been nice to have some kind of town somewhere, probably in the hub (Peach's Castle and the grounds and whatnot). Not a town like the one in Wet-Dry World, but with actual NPCs, and houses you can explore.

I think Luigi should have been playable in this game. No, he's not playable. "L IS REAL 2401" is probably referring to Paper Mario, if anything. But, maybe after completing the game, an unlockable Luigi would have been nice. It would have been good to be able to complete the game again as Luigi, like in Super Mario Galaxy, which would definitely give the game more replay value. Next, the "you need one Stars" and "it that really you" mistakes should have been fixed in the final game, and there were many glitches that probably could have been fixed - some of them allowed the game to be completed in about 13 minutes. I'd imagine an old game to have more glitches than a newer one, but I'm sure some of them could be fixed.

Enemies who should have been in this game

Artwork of a Paragoomba in New Super Mario Bros. (later reused in Mario Super Sluggers and New Super Mario Bros. Wii)
A Paragoomba
  • Shy Guys – Shy Guys are pretty popular, and I like them. They could act like they did in Super Mario Bros. 2, and you could pick them up and throw them at other enemies.
  • KING BILL (or should i say BIG BILL)
  • Paratroopa/Paragoomba – I think it'd be more interesting if they had some of these, as opposed to just normal Goombas or Koopa Troopas.
  • A Wiggler as a regular enemy – It was good as a boss, but I think a Wiggler as a regular enemy too would have been better.

Beta elements

A pre-release picture showing an earlier Pokey design.
An early Pokey. Strangely happy, yet slow, as usual.
This game has quite a lot of beta elements, so I won't waste time with one of those silly intros you'd usually see under the first section, or at the start of the Fake News or anything like that.

Oh, wait, I just did.

Anyway, this game was originally planned for the Super Famicom (known as the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) outside of Japan), but was moved after limitations, and the fact that the era of the SNES was dying. Shigeru Miyamoto had thought of making a game like this as early as during the development of Star Fox. It's been rumoured the SNES version was going to be called "Super Mario FX", and was a 3D Mario game that used the console's Super FX chip. However, we can't be certain if this is true, as there's not a lot of evidence "Super Mario FX" existed.

An unused model for a Trampoline
The elusive(?) trampoline.
That Thwomp looks creepy too...I don't like it here in beta Super Mario 64, I wanna go home. :'(
There was once a multiplayer function for this game, but that was scrapped. It was going to be split-screen, with Mario and Luigi (duh?). There were originally meant to be a huge 32 courses in this game, but only 15 were used, in the end. A classic NES painting was found among the used painting textures, so that may have been one of the unused levels. In some sketch-ups of this game's early development in Super Mario History, Mario can be seen jumping on a piano, climbing up a ladder, crushing a rock with his head, swinging around a pole and crushing a rock with his head (ouch). A yellow ! Switch was found in the game, as well as a trampoline with a...oh, there's a picture somewhere near this paragraph, use your eyes for goodness sake.

Beta Flower.gif
Continuing on the unused stuff, a chequered platform, not too different from the elevator in Whomp's Fortress was found, but it was flatter than the elevator platforms, and did nothing. A platform that rotates every couple of seconds was found too. Bizarrely enough, a frames of a flower were found in the's where it gets strange - the texture for Lethal Lava Land.
Yoshi Egg
A Yoshi Egg was found in the texture of Wet-Dry World, and an ice texture with cracks was found in Cool, Cool Mountain. There was also going to be a cactus somewhere. Nintendo were also planning to incorporate the Flagpole into this game.
I need to think of better captions...
Mario and Bowser originally had different voices - Mario's voice sounded more screechy and childish, and Bowser sounded like a tiger. There were four unused music tracks - two were for Bowser battles, two were alternate versions of music in the final game. Big Boo's Haunt originally appeared to be based around Keys. The Big Boo held a key instead of a Power Star, and the keys would unlock the different rooms. As far as unused enemies go, the most well known is the Blargg, which remains in the game's data, and would appear at Lethal Lava Land. There was also going to be regular Bully-sized versions of the Chill Bully in Snowman's Land, and a water mine (which looked like those bombs in the Bowser battles) in one of the water levels.

Thanks for reading, and I'll hopefully see you next month!




King Bill

Dippy's Matilda

Crocodile Dippy (talk)

Hey everyone, it's back to serious face time on Dippy's Matilda, although a fair warning that this time I want to discuss something a bit more serious than usual. I don't really like writing articles based on topical subjects, since I'm not a news journalist and trying to write based on current events tends to leave me on short notice, and I prefer to think about issues for several months to really get a grip on the situation and think about possible solutions to the problem. But with the recent Tropes vs. Women in Video Games disaster, the controversial molestation charges surrounding the new Tomb Raider, and the recent wave of dismissal and predictably harsh internet arguments about the topic, I don't feel I can postpone talking about the issue of Sexism in Video Games anymore. Friends of mine can vouch that this has been something I've been mulling over for a while now anyway, so it's not entirely on short notice.

I would first like to clarify, however, that while I could elaborate on why the aforementioned misogynistic outcry against the Tropes video reflects very poorly on us as gamers, and why stopping sexual harassment and discrimination is without exception a responsibility of all gamers; given how serious and broad the subject of harassment is I don't feel comfortable writing about it at this particular juncture, and would rather wait until I have better solutions to the problem. Instead, I'd like to use this opportunity to explain some of the reasons I personally believe people get so upset with the generally degrading portrayal of women in video games and some ideas I have for how to correct these depictions. As I'm obviously not female, I don't claim to speak for all women and feminists; these are just my own personal conclusions drawn from my understanding of the situation and input I've received from some of my female gamer friends. So let's begin. although I should warn you early that there's some fairly questionable material presented in this article for the sake of example, so just be wary of that when you're clicking external links.

No Physical Diversity

Before moving into personality, I want to point out the distinct differences in how male and female characters are presented in terms of physical appearance. Limiting our view to human or humanoid characters, have you ever noticed that male protagonists in video games can come in all shapes and sizes, not just the overly muscular, tough guy look we normally associate with ideal masculinity? From Heavy's large build; to Cloud Strife's femininity; to Guybrush Threepwood's dorkiness; to Wario's lard belly and poor sense of personal hygiene; to Niko Bellic's rugged looks; to Agent 47's baldy-headed grimness. Hell, the most famous video game character of all time is a short, chubby Italian plumber; not exactly the hottest catch by conventional standards of male attractiveness. Now let's look at the average appearance of female characters in games; Lara Croft, Samus Aran, Tifa Lockhart, Cammy, Jill Valentine, Miranda Lawson, Sophitia, the list could go on. Ignoring their personalities just for a second, are you noticing a pattern in the way they look?

World of Warcraft – and well, virtually any fantasy game for that matter – typically offers a very disturbing contrast between the male and female characters.

Now no one is really against there being sexy and attractive female characters – after all, the male side still has Nathan Drake and the Prince for masculine good looks – but the issue here is that they're all depicted in the same generic standard of beauty that modern society still measures the merits of women on, while male characters have been depicted with a far greater range of body types and physiques, and it's really just not on. More variety in the way female protagonists look – especially when betraying the conventional ideals of beauty, as many male heroes and villains have – would be a huge step forward for the industry and send out a message that not all women in games are designed simply to cater to stereotyped sexual fantasies, and that we are mature enough to deliver female characters of all manner of physical appearance.

Some people argue that this isn't really a big problem in gaming because that's just the way things work in all areas of life, both in other entertainment and in daily life itself, but that's a terrible argument because that shouldn't be how it works. It's not how society should judge women, and it's not the mentality games as a prominent entertainment medium should encourage; we can't just insist this is the only way women should look, we need to display equal treatment of both men and women when designing characters, and that means a broader palette of body types and physical features.

Demeaning Marketing

This concept art of Heather Mason from Silent Hill 3 says that she's under a lot of stress in a dangerous situation, but is doing her best to keep her composure and defend herself if necessary.

Marketing is a very tricky matter, because it's not just showing off your gameplay or story; it's also trying to establish the personality and demeanour of the characters. So when we see a character in promotional art, posters, or videos we expect their actions and, in the case of still art, their poise and expression to say a thousand words about the character, to get the message across about what their attitude is and what defines them as a character. This is done far more varied for male characters than female ones; from this picture we know Mario is cheerful and go-lucky; in this picture we see fury in Kratos (even the Sackboy version tells us that); this picture indicates strength, which describes Akuma pretty well; here, we can understand through Nathan Drake's expressions alone that he has an air of smug assurance that he knows what he's doing; this art of Sly Cooper gives an impression of cheekiness and confidence. But for most female characters, whenever developers present them they fall back on suggestive or comprising poses and expressions, which degrades any sort of message about the character they were trying to convey; all we're likely to gather from these is that the characters are saying “we're here for your male gazing pleasure, so look at all of what's on sale to your heart's content”. The information you're supposed to gather from the artwork – about who these characters are as people, and why you should be interested in them – isn't communicated effectively at all since the primary focus, what you're meant to be looking at, is their body; most likely if you know anything about any of the above examples, it's because you researched them. This is not only objectifying to women, it implies we – as young males – shouldn't even be caring about any other aspect of them. And that's just degrading to both genders.

People are generally more complex than just how large their chest is in relation to their waist – or at least they should be – so it's really not good that more often than not, attempts to market female characters trivialises every other part of their personality just to accentuate their body. The fact that this sort of “titillation first, personality later” trick to character design is the majority definitely means there's a problem in the way we're trying to articulate our female characters. For example, see this poster for Soul Calibur V and this video for Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 (NOTE: they are very much NSFW), and you'll see what I mean by sexist marketing. Notice how all discernible features of the characters are eschewed in favour of showing you their oversized breasts, reducing those characters to mere objects that are meant to be ogled and nothing more. And no, the fact that many of the characters in these games are just one-dimensional eye-candy anyway doesn't excuse this sort of disgraceful objectification. This is not how we should present female characters, and we should not deliver the message that a woman's body is the only part of them we should care about. Simply put, this all comes down to equal treatment; if we're going to market our male characters on their attitude, behaviour, and actions rather than their bodies, and present them true to their personality in all official materials, then we must do the exact same for women.

Stereotyped Characterization

So we have the superficial done, so let's move into the most important part of this argument; the personality of female characters. With a few exceptions that I feel obligated to elaborate on later, many of them are very clichéd and stereotyped, abiding either by archaic ideals of gender roles or based on current incorrect societal assumptions of what women do and don't like and how they do and don't behave. In some regards it makes sense; I mean video games are still struggling with their male characters as well, but I feel developers have made more progress with delivering interesting male characters and exploring typically masculine issues but haven't quite got to the same degree of maturity with female characters yet. I don't really want to dwell on what we've got wrong – especially since I could fill an entire year's worth of Matilda stories with such ranting – so I'd rather focus on how we can make a truly amazing female character. Ultimately, no character should be defined by their sex, race, appearance or orientation; these superficial traits may be an important part of who they are and how they approach societal expectations of their demographics, but it shouldn't be the only reason we're expected to care about them.

Here's Jade, the character I always seem to fall back to during these arguments. She dresses, behaves, and speaks like a normal person; her occupation (photography) is something that we can understand and relate to; and her own personal ideals and talents unique to her in relation to the world around her are what truly define her as a character.

It goes without saying that there's not really that much of a difference between men and women as far as behaviour and personality goes; we're all human beings with our own set of problems, tastes, and ideals that can be shared in one way or another by thousands of other people from different backgrounds. There are societal pressures unique to each gender, yes, and they are an important part of who we are and how our personalities are shaped; but a woman's personality shouldn't be defined solely by those expectations and stereotypes alone, but rather their own personal convictions and approach to those stigmas – what parts of their world and society they refuse to conform to and what parts they choose to adhere to. Just like any good character, and really, just like any real human being; male, female, black, white, gay, straight, transgendered, and all other walks of life. I mean, no one ever thinks “Welp, here are all the ideals and norms society expects my demographic to adhere to, so I'm either going to completely conform to or completely reject them all with no independent thought of my own” unless they're either critically insecure or manically depressed. To give a few examples of really great female characters, we have characters like Jade from Beyond Good & Evil; Heather Mason from Silent Hill 3; Governor Elaine Marley from the Monkey Island series; Alyx Vance from Half-Life 2; Zoë Castillo from Dreamfall: The Longest Journey; Chloe Frazer from Uncharted 2; and even on the silent protagonist side, we can see this sort of dynamic displayed in Samus Aran's actions, Other M notwithstanding. All of these characters managed to seem real and engaging by transcending the stereotypes associated with their gender and standing out as unique individuals, defining themselves by the way they faced their respective obstacles and how they responded to the world and people around them, and the societal pressures placed on them.

But how does that work for, say, a historically accurate pre-civil rights setting where women still hadn't found equality and freedom of expression? Well, why not exploring how other characters interact with a non-conforming female character? You've got to admit, a woman with her own independent set of ideals – some conflicting with the gender roles of the time, some in-line with them – could add a lot of depth and development to the characters around her; on the male side, some would struggle to come to terms with her expression, while other less progressive people would seek to oppress it; and for women, those around her could either endeavour to emulate that freedom or choose to remain within the status quo of that era's gender norms. If you're just trying to go for a straight-up action game, how about drawing influence from female warrior figures like Joan of Arc or Hua Mulan… or hell, why not play as them?? These, in my eyes, are good starts to featuring independent female characters in an otherwise sexist or archaic setting. I'm fairly hopeful that the decision to make the protagonist of the upcoming Assassin's Creed III: Liberation an African-French female assassin in 18th century Louisiana, not to mention the actual Assassin's Creed III's move to feature a native American assassin as our main hero, will bear fine examples of how to create characters of distinct, oppressed minorities that aren't just defined by that fact alone. Fingers crossed.

Dismissing the Issue

Samus Aran is one of the finest examples of a good female character in the medium, especially since much of what makes her such a remarkable person is presented through her actions and mannerisms, not her speech or physical appearance. I mean think of it this way; do you really care that a D-cup hides under that suit? No, of course not.

I think the biggest reason why people get so upset in relation to the sexism in games argument is that so many people are unwilling to seriously confront the problem and discuss solutions to it; at least, that's what annoys me the most. Whenever it's brought up that gamers and developers alike haven't quite done all they can to deliver truly great female characters and create a more tolerant environment that's of equal appeal to both men and women, so many gamers just shut off or throw the dismissive arguments “just ignore it, it'll go away eventually”, “why are we even talking about something like this” or, in the worst case scenario, “stop trying to ruin the fun of games”. Not to be terse, but… grow up. Encouraging developers to create more realistic female characters that women gamers can look up to and appreciate should not damage the intrigue of those characters or even the appeal of the game for you just because they don't look or behave like Ivy Valentine, and it certainly won't stop certain developers from making oversexualised women catering to those fantasies if they still want to make them.

Games may be an escape from reality, but that doesn't exclusively apply to just men; as I keep saying, it's a medium for all people, of all ages, sex, orientation, racial background, and ideological views, and the idea that questioning any social norms that infringe on that open, non-discriminatory purpose of the medium, and that trying to bring some better ideals of equality into it, is somehow not important or even damaging to the appeal of games, is ludicrous. We should do more to reflect the openness and joy of the medium in not just our own behaviour and approach to equal rights concerns, but in the behaviour of our characters. Our combined voices and efforts can and will go a long way to making advancements for equality in video games, I can assure you.

Huh, that turned out a lot longer than I had originally thought… hope I've got you thinking at least, and hope I didn't mess up. Thanks for reading, see you next month.

Book Reviews

Tucayo (talk)

Full title: Fame: A Novel in Nine Stories (Ruhm: Ein Roman in Neun Geschichten)
Author: Daniel Kehlmann
Released: 2009 (German)
2010 (English)
Pages: 208
Buy: *Amazon

HI, readers! Welcome to the first EVER installment of Book Reviews. I'm your bibliophile Statistics Manager, Tucayo, and I'll be writing this section just for this time. If you want to sign up to write this review, please contact Crocodile Dippy on the forums.

For this first review, I’ll be taking a look at a not-so-known book by a German/Austrian writer called Daniel Kehlmann, Fame (original German title: Ruhm). The full title is Fame: A Novel in Nine Stories, but don’t let that fool you, this book is by no standards a novel, it’s rather a short story collection (according to experts, that was a marketing move). I’ll try to keep spoilers to a minimum, but there will be minor details about the plot.

The book tells us nine stories, eight of them with a different main character. The characters and stories are loosely connected to each other. The main character of the first story becomes a minor character in the eight story, a minor character in the first story becomes the main character in the second and ninth stories, and so on; which leads us to think, it’s a small world after all. All nine stories revolve around the loss of identity, and of course, fame.

The stories are told in different ways, be it from the eyes of the protagonist, from the eyes of a book author, from the perspective of a fictional character, or even by Daniel Kehlmann himself. While it is an interesting twist, it can prove mildly confusing, especially in chapters where the author gives no clue as to if it’s really happening or if it’s just a story. For example, chapter 6 (definitely the worst one) is told by a depressed author who writes self-help books (think Paulo Coelho), which leads to the chapter being narrated in a depressed and pseudo-poetic way.

The stories are designed to keep you thinking, since most of them have open endings (not my favorite, but they work really well in this book). The good part is, you get to decide who dies *evil laugh*. To sum up, it’s a short story collection, but the stories are very gracefully connected that it makes a nice read for those moments when you have nothing to do. But if you want a novel, this is book will definitely disappoint you.

Retro Feature

by Tucayo (talk)

HI, readers! I am your friendly neighbor, Tucayo, and I welcome you to the first ever Retro Feature. Before we get started, let me explain what this section is. When I unexpectedly announced I would be running for Director in the past Election, one of my proposals was to create a new section where past sections from our most notable writers were featured. What I had in mind with this was to allow new readers to better know the writers that have greatly contributed to The ‘Shroom, with high-quality sections.

For this first issue, we’ll take a look at the first-ever Fun Stuff Director, Z3r0 Tw0 (talk), also known as Volke and Luigi001. Z3r0 Tw0 joined the wiki on June, 2008 and three months after joining he wrote his first article, Beta Elements. He started on Issue XIX and wrote Beta Elements for 11 issues. However, Z3r0 Tw0 gave his section a twist, making it the first section to directly encourage readers’ feedback, this by adding a “feedback” header where readers could say what they thought about the Beta Elements mentioned (this started in Issue XXIII). But more than that, Z3r0 Tw0 established Fun Stuff as a team, despite only writing two sections for it. When the Fun Section was transformed into the Fun Stuff sub-team by Stooben Rooben, Z3r0 Tw0 was appointed as the first director and directed it from Issue XXIII to Issue XLI (19 issues!) at its time, it was the longest tenure for a Sub-Team Director. Shortly after leaving his position as Sub-Team Director, Z3r0 Tw0 returned to write a farewell, which also announced his retirement from the Super Mario Wiki and its community.

Z3r0 Tw0 was a great person to work with, and now, for those who aren’t familiar with his sections, or simply want to remember them, I present you Z3r0 Tw0’s Beta Elements article from Issue XXII, where, honoring Glowsquid (then called Blitzwing), he reviewed Super Mario 64/DS. Take a look.

Beta Elements

by LuigiZ3r0 Tw0Zerotwo.jpg

In honor of Blitzwing's retirement as director, we'll look at:
Super Mario 64/DS, featuring Snufit ball!

This issue will be a bit different, because it covers two games, so we'll start off with beta elements from the original:

1. The oringinal title was to be Super Mario FX, referencing to the use of an FX Chip. Luigi was said to be playable in the original, but was oddly removed.

Blargg...With no eyes.

2. Two removed enemies, a tan Cheep-Cheep and a Blargg, were seen in beta screenshots. But they never appeared in the final game for uncertain reasons.

Now we'll look at some of the newer elements of Super Mario 64 DS

Super Mario 64 DS
Every character once could fly.

1. In the beta version, screenshots prove that all four characters were to fight Bowser at the exact same time. Others show that every character could utilize the power of wings, not just Mario.

2. A mysterious purple rabbit was shown in a beta screenshot. The purpose was unknown, and why it was removed is unclear.

3. A co-op mode was planned for the game, which allowed two players to use Wi-Fi connectivity to play the normal star-collecting mode together.

Now those were some interesting elements (at least I think so.) But the truth and speculation behind them is just as interesting as the elements theirselves.

Element 1 (SM64). Well first of all, it's not all too significant that the game would use and FX Chip or be called Super Mario FX, but Luigi as a playable character? That is what is important here. Being a natural Luigi fan, I would buy this game in a heartbeat on the Virtual Console. But he was taken out of the game probably due to memory restraints. Thankfully, the sequel allowed him and two others to be playable characters.

Element 2 (SM64). Now two removed enemies isn't much, but why they were removed is really unclear. They probably wouldn't take up much data space, so why exactly were they taken out? My belief is the fact that they may have been hard to avoid enemies that take your life away faster. Having Blargg swallow you or a Cheep-Cheep on your tail wouldn't exactly be easy to avoid, right?

All four character face up against Bowser in an early screenshot of Super Mario 64 DS.
It's true, all four of them.

Element 1 (DS). All four characters could battle Bowser? I wonder how that would work. Maybe you'd have to alternate characters while beating him, or maybe it's just a fancy way of making a character select. But either way, it would be pretty easy using Luigi with his super-backflip-helicopter move to get through the last level. As for all four characters flying, that'd make the game all too easy. With already cheap moves like Luigi's backflip, having all four fly is just not right. But the spirit of this element lives on in Multi-player mode.

Element 2 (DS). One word, Waluigi! No, probably not, but the idea behind it is fascinating. I, personally believe it's just a neutral rabbit, somewhat like the silver rabbit idea; find all of them and you get a star. But why would it be purple? Well readers, what do you think?

A scan of a earlier depiction of a Bunny in Super Mario 64 DS.
So purple!

Element 3 (DS). Like New Super Mario Bros, (ironically was my last beta element subject.) the idea of co-op play was removed due to data restraints. But it would've been epic to play the game with another person, am I right? The multi-player idea was able to stay with the game, and their were actual in game areas used. But that's nothing compared to getting 150 stars with your best friend.

Alright, enough talk, let's get to buisness. So for the original game, both elements seem tempting and interesting. Luigi as a playable character is always awesome, and those removed enemies would be really cool to see. I still wonder on the Cheep-Cheep, though. A replacment was done though. As for the remake, option 3 is the only good one to me. Every character battling Bowser would be tough, and all characters flying would be too cheap. And who cares about some purple bunny? But co-op play is always epic, and this game would be no different. So that's all for now. And thanks to Blitzwing for suffering through all this time as director!

That’s it for this month’s Retro Feature. Stay tuned for next month’s feature, where I’ll show you the work of another of the users who has contributed greatly to this paper. BYE! 


by Stooben Rooben (talk)

Hey, everybody! It's time again for another interview, though you probably already guessed that. This interview was a bit tedious to complete, as it took 4 attempts to find someone who did not flee the scene upon seeing my face. But fear not! I will never give up on trying to bring you an interesting person to interview. This month, I was able to get Tucayo interviewed.

The Target

Tucayo; the name rings a bell in most people's heads around this community. Why? He's been a pretty integral part of the Super Mario Wiki for over four years now. Shortly after joining in early 2008, he started contributing to The 'Shroom (if you don't know what that is, I'm going to smack you silly), a staple part of the community that he's been contributing to ever since. From Fun Stuff writer, to sub-section staff, to sub-director, to Director, to sub-director, back to Director, to sub-director again, then to Core 'Shroom Staff, Tucayo has worked the ins and outs of our community paper to the farthest ends possible. No writer has worked as long on The 'Shroom as he.

But beyond his history with The 'Shroom, he also had a short tenure in the wiki's administration. Originally promoted to Patroller during an incongruous amount of troll attacks in early 2009, Tucayo quickly proved to the administrators at that time that he was ready for a full-time promotion — even if the promotion he received was only supposed to be temporary. Once the troll attacks came to a halt, he was demoted, but not for long. His work was considered impressive, and his knowledge, fairly expansive; within a month, he was repromoted to Patroller, this time, not out of necessity. Eventually he worked his way up to Sysop before the end of that year, and stayed at that position for quite a while afterwards, only being demoted on his own terms (due to a hiatus, and later, retirement). Despite that retirement, though, he still contributed to the thing he cared about most around here: you guessed it, The 'Shroom.

On chat, Tucayo was a regular visit for a year or so, before his retirement. On Userpedia, Tucayo was a relatively infrequent user, but still helped out in certain situations involving trolls. During the aftermath of the Jorge NukeDPL Incident on Userpedia in late 2009, Tucayo was one of a small handful of users given Sysop privileges for that night; he used those powers to restore numerous pages and articles which had been deleted.

Aside from his dedication to the community as a whole, he also use to have somewhat of a reputation as "that hyper guy". His overuse of exclamation points in chat was almost iconic, although, it did annoy a hefty amount of people. He's also been known to have a heated temper during select situations, which has led to a small number of members strongly disliking him. That said, his "enemy" count has always been particularly low—it's most likely completely dissipated within the last year, due to him working more behind the scenes than ever.

All those years later, he's still a very essential part of The 'Shroom's Core Staff, putting much effort into his sections and how to keep each issue running. And now, we get to see some history from his point of view.

The Interview

Me: Alright, have a seat
Me: (Is this mic on? ...Testing,
Me: Okay, it works.
Tucayo: You missed "three". >:(
Me: Nobody can count that high these days. Three is a scary number.
Tucayo: Its curves are so threatening.
Tucayo: 3
Tucayo: *shivers*
Me: dem curves
Me: Anyway...*cough*...Welcome to this month's interview!
Me: I am your short, but nonetheless dashing host, Stooben.
Me: This month, I've delved deep into the depths of...uh...somewhere, to find an easily-recognizable user.
Tucayo: Depths of hell itself!
Me: Say hello to...Tucayo!
Me: (say "hi" to your fans) Tucayo: HI!!
Tucayo: Wait, do I even have fans?
Me: Yes.
Me: It's pretty hot in here, and there's no air conditioning, so...
Tucayo: Should I take my shell off? I thought that wouldn't happen so early in the interview.
Me: You can, but the censors might get upset.
Tucayo: Censors? Does that mean I can't say "fuck", "shit", "dick", and some other words?
Me: You can. They don't mind that. :)
Me: In fact, they say them whenever you want.
Me: You just can't show everyone, let's skip past that.
Me: I guess I will start with the staple question: When and how did you come across the MarioWiki?
Tucayo: When... It was a rainy night. Well, more of a clear night. Actually, I think it wasn't even the night. Whatever, before being a member of the Super Mario Wiki, I had partaken in various online communities, one of them being VGBoxArt. The box-arts I favored were Mario-related, and at the time I had just finished Super Paper Mario and was obsessed with Dimentio.
Me: Oh man. I remember when VGBoxArt was really huge around here. Quite a few users used to contribute their own fanmade boxarts of all sorts of things.
Tucayo: I wanted to make a box art about him. I couldn't find a neat Dimension D image, until I came across the MarioWiki and this image. It's not that good of an image now that I look at it, but it worked.
Tucayo: I continued using the Super Mario Wiki as an image source, but always as a guest. Until I decided I would browse the wiki to see what else there was. And then I saw it. {{Announcement}} announcing (duh) the 2008 'Shroom Director Election. Of course, I had to see what this "'Shroom" was, so I went on and read every single issue. There were, like, eleven at the time, so it didn't take that long.
Tucayo: After that, I decided to join to know when new issues were released. That was January 16th, 2008. But I wasn't active until May 8th, 2008.
Tucayo: Also, here is said box art. It's horrid.
Me: So, it turns out that all your years dedicated to The 'Shroom...that's what also intially made you become a member of the site?
Me: That's very cool.
Tucayo: That's right. What made me join and what has kept me here all this time. By the way, this issue will be my 50th issue as writer!
Tucayo: 4 years ago, welp.
Me: Congratulations!
Tucayo: Thanks!
Me: So, let's see...that was the election where Glowsquid was running, right?
Me: (Or Blitzwing, as he was known at the time. :P)
Tucayo: Right. And he was the one who first hired me. And for three sections, so I owe him big time.
Tucayo: (I still call him Blitz sometimes but he doesn't like that. XP)
Me: Haha, yeah, he's not big on being called by his old names.
Me: Just call him "Gofer" and see where that gets you.
Tucayo: Might try it some day.
Me: Err...good luck with that.
Me: So, who was your first friend in the community?
Tucayo: Hmmm... The first people I talked to were Glowsquid, 2257 and Dom. But I made my first friends in chat. Don't know who was the first, but Paper Yoshi, SLNO, Palkia47, GreenKoopa, Neurario and Master Lucario were some of the first.
Tucayo: Some months later, I became good friends with Ralphfan, Super Mario Bros., 2257, KPH2293, Cobold, Yoshario, you and some other guys.
Me: Dom and GreenKoopa. Now there are some blokes that haven't been around in years.
Tucayo: Actually, GreenKoopa was on a few months ago in chat. We had a nice walk down memory lane. :P
Me: Wow, really? I miss everything these days.
Me: I'm assuming you met most of them back in #mariowiki?
Tucayo: Yeah, that's where I would hang every day. It was the best place to be around. Yes, there were some problems and then its downfall started, but back in the day it was a really nice place. And then I got access to #mwikistaff and met more of those who would go on to become my friends. Edofenrir, for one.
Me: #mwikistaff was a blast. I'm sure it still is, but you know me; I never come around anymore. :P
Me: How about the forum? What got you interested in joining there? I think you were also active on Userpedia at one point.
Tucayo: I actually joined the forum before I became active on the Super Mario Wiki, so I have no idea. Maybe I saw it on the sidebar and figured I should join? After all, I had enjoyed other forums I had been at. Most notably, the NSider Forums, until they were shut down...
Tucayo: Userpedia came over a year later. Everyone in chat talked about it, so I went there and requested an account. It was Glaive who created my account.
Tucayo: Oh, and the Chat Overlord Elections. I joined to post my campaign.
Me: Oh God, I completely forgot about the Overlord Elections.
Me: good times
Me: It seems like many of our more senior members were once active on NSider when it was around. Bloc Partier, Stumpers, MeritC, and some others, I believe.
Me: I was never a member there myself. What was it like?
Tucayo: It was the first online community I had joined, so I loved everything about it. For me, it was marvelous to be able to talk to other people who shared your interests, and even become friends with them.
Me: Although this isn't the first online community I've joined, I'd say that pretty much sums up my feelings for this place.
Me: I haven't had as much in common with people online at other communities as I have here. It's really nice. :)
Tucayo: It really is, I have really bonded with many people in here.
Me: Although, it seems like I'm very out-of-the-loop in this community when it comes to gaming. So, that's something I'll have to work on.
Me: That reminds me...what is your favorite Mario game?
Tucayo: My favorite Mario game has to be Paper Mario or Super Mario World, but maybe that's because I haven't played Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door.
Me: The Thousand-Year Door is absolutely amazing, but its predecessor is also really fun from what I have played. I should finish it some day.
Me: Super Mario World is a classic, too. Super Nintendo had some of the best games, I swear.
Tucayo: Super Mario World was the first game I played, so it holds a special place.
Tucayo: The second was Mortal Kombat. My mom wasn't pleased.
Me: Lol, I bet not. I wasn't allowed to play Mortal Kombat back when it first came out, but I did eventually play it at a young age (six, I think).
Me: I know how you feel about Super Mario World, though. Super Mario Bros. 3 acts the same way for me.
Tucayo: I was three, and I played it with my cousin who was two, so I understand my mom's feeling, lol.
Me: Lol, that is young. You naughty boy.
Me: What would you say are your favorite non-Mario games?
Tucayo: The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Majora's Mask and the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare series. And I was very reluctant to play first.
Tucayo: I had never been attracted to The Legend of Zelda until I saw a video game show that ranked Ocarina of Time as the best game ever, and I was, like, "well, I have to play it". And I didn't regret it. As for Call of Duty, I had never been a fan of first-person shooters until my uncle (the same one who introduced me to video games) told me to play it. Again, I didn't regret it at all.
Me: Ocarina of Time is a beautiful game. Definitely one of the greatest games ever made, I have to agree with that.
Me: Considering how much I enjoy first-person shooters, I have yet to play a Call of Duty game, though. I hear the older ones were good, but that the series is very watered down and redundant at this point.
Tucayo: It looks like they have basically just added new weapons these past few installments, but I do like the first two installments in the Modern Warfare sub-series.
Tucayo: I actually prefer modern warfare games to world war stuff.
Me: I'm not a huge fan of world war games myself. But more non-sensical or fictional wars (like Team Fortress 2, obviously) really appeal to me.
Me: I'd still like to try the first Modern Warfare game, though.
Me: Let's about we tackle another entertainment medium: Music!
Me: Who are some of your favorite artists, and your favorite songs by them?
Tucayo: Oh music, I love it. My favorite artists are Coldplay and U2. As for my favorite songs from them... "Swallowed in the Sea" and "Where the Streets Have No Name", respectively. (It took me three times to decide on my answers. :P)
Me: Coldplay has always been—and will always be—one of my favorite artists. I haven't listened to their X&Y album in a while, but I remember liking "Swallowed in the Sea" quite a bit.
Tucayo: X&Y is, in my opinion, incredibly underrated. Some people say it's depressive, but it's brilliant.
Me: I should probably listen to X&Y again so I could judge it better. It's been so long.
Me: As for U2, I'm not as big of a fan, but some of their songs are really powerful. The entirety of The Joshua Tree and War are really great albums.
Tucayo: I also like various types of music, but in my iPod you'll mostly find rock. From The Killers to Johnny Cash and everything in between.
Me: Johnny Cash. <3
Me: Sounds like you have a fairly expansive taste in music.
Tucayo: Heh, thanks. I try to listen to many things to broaden my musical scope. As of late I've been really into classic rock.
Me: What kind of classic rock have you been getting into lately?
Tucayo: I've mostly been into David Bowie, The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, Aerosmith and Queen.
Me: All of whom are huge classics.
Tucayo: Well, Queen's not-so-known songs, which are equally as brilliant as their better-known ones.
Me: I often find myself liking Queen's deeper cuts more than their radio hits, actually. Their song structures are really advanced. I love that about them.
Me: But...some songs they do...
Me: Radio Gaga. :x
Tucayo: Heh, I actually like it. It's a catchy tune.
Me: Fair enough. It is pretty catchy.
Me: What about local music? Are their any artists from Mexico that you would recommend to our readers?
Tucayo: Sadly, as of late local music has disenchanted me. It has gone downhill. Still, there are many independent rock bands that are pretty good, but I don't like most popular artists. That said, I'd recommend Zoe.
Me: Haven't heard of Zoe, I may give them a listen.
Me: Let's see...
Me: Aside from playing games and listening to awesome music, what kinds of hobbies do you have in real life?
Tucayo: I enjoy reading, watching television, playing baseball, and simply hanging out with my friends.
Tucayo: All of that sums up my summer. :P
Me: Haha. Hanging out with friends is always the best thing.
Tucayo: Especially when they're as crazy as I am.
Me: So you play baseball? Do you play casually, or are you on a team?
Tucayo: I used to play casually until my family got a softball team. Now we play in a local league. It's not baseball, but it's the closest I can get. :P We won our first real game some weeks ago, so yay for us!!
Me: Wow! Congrats! That sounds pretty exciting.
Me: You read too?
Tucayo: Yeah, I've been reading since Harry Potter got me into it. :P
Me: Do you have any literary recommendations for our readers?
Tucayo: For those who haven't read The Hunger Games trilogy, I highly recommend it. The Inheritance Cycle is a heavy read, but it's definitely worth it. If you are searching for not-so-known books, I can recommend Monster by Jonathan Kellerman, Search and Destroy and Timecaster. Oh, and I'll be reviewing a book on this month's issue, so check that out.
Tucayo: I prefer to read fiction and thrillers. Not a huge fan of literature, but if you are searching good literature, A Hundred Years of Solitude is a great choice.
Me: Those are some mighty fine recommendations. I can't wait to see your book review this month, either.
Me: The Hunger Games has gotten surprisingly popular in recent years, so I'm tempted to give that one a read.
Tucayo: It's a light read, but it's amazing. The last one is the only book that has made me cry.
Me: Wow, it must be a pretty powerful read!
Me: Hm...speaking of hunger...what are some local dishes you like to eat?
Me: I know I constantly jokingly associate you with tacos...but, surely there's some fine cuisine you really enjoy? :P
Tucayo: Ooooooh, food! Hehe, actually, tacos are my favorite Mexican dish. But as I have told you before, real tacos. With celery, onion and salsa (not Turb). Of anything; be it tongue, testicles, intestines, or whatever, they all taste great. Frijoles Charros are also great. They are beans with sausage, bacon, chile, tomato, and more.
Me: I've never had a REAL taco before. But I don't eat Taco Bell, either.
Me: Taco Bell is sacrilege.
Tucayo: I actually like Taco Bell, but I would NEVER consider it Mexican food.
Tucayo: Tamales are great as well. They are balls of mass made either of corn or of flour, and filled with something. As with all food, there are different types, but they are all good.
Tucayo: And, not a local dish but it's as local as tacos, Tequila!
Tucayo: I say not a local "dish" because it's a drink, but yeah. :P
Me: Tequila is a pretty potent drink. I've had it before (I'm underage, don't bust me), and its effects are something to tell stories about.
Me: One tequila, two tequila, three tequila, FLOOR.
Tucayo: Hehe, I'm underage as well, so I won't bust you. But yeah, it's pretty potent. It's not my first choice of spirit, actually. I just drink it when there are mariachis around because otherwise I'd feel bad hehe.
Tucayo: I'm more of a vodka kind of guy.
Me: I've only tried vodka once, but I don't remember liking it too much. Rum is my favorite, hands down.
Tucayo: I love the sweet taste of rum, but the cocktails you can prepare with vodka make me like it more.
Tucayo: Some of my best stories have started with vodka, olol.
Me: lol
Me: Maybe I should try it out again.
Me: Any stories you'd care to share? Or are they too embarrassing?
Tucayo: I shared one in chat some moments ago, so yeah, I'll share one with you. Or well, I'll sum it up.
Tucayo: I was running around naked, with a Mexican flag around me and screaming stuff in a mixture of English and German.
Tucayo: Good times...
Me: They should film that and show it every Christmas.
Tucayo: Hehehe, that would have been... inconvenient.
Me: But entertaining!
Me: I guess I'll circle back around to the wiki for a bit.
Me: What would you say is your proudest achievement around the community?
Tucayo: Around the community, it would be a joint achievement (of you, me and our amazing Core Staff). And that would be returning The 'Shroom to its old glory. Those were tough times. Wiki-wise, the lists of recipes. They have been improved since I last edited them, but they required a lot of work.
Me: I have to agree with that. The 'Shroom is thriving quite well now, too. After all this time, your (and everyone else's) efforts have paid off.
Me: I remember when you were working on the recipe lists, too. If memory serves, you polished it up so well that it got nominated for a Featured Article.
Me: ...Which led to a proposal being made on if "list" pages should be featured.
Tucayo: Oh yes, but it was featured. And it's still the article I feel the most proud of.
Tucayo: Proposals can be so problematic. :P
Me: Haha, yes. More fights and grudges have been born on the Proposals page than I can count. :P
Tucayo: But friendships have also flourished in that page; that's how I met SMB.
Me: Going back to your pride over your accomplishments with The 'Shroom...
Me: How does it feel knowing you've written for fifty issues?
Tucayo: Oh man, it's amazing. And it doesn't feel as I have been in here that long. It actually surprised me when I found that out. It's great because I have seen The 'Shroom change in so many ways, and I have helped with some things. I have also met some great friends in here.
Me: I know what you mean! It hardly seems like it's been 50 issues (over 4 years, haha).
Me: I know I haven't been writing for The 'Shroom non-stop like you have, but the thought that I started on issue...8, I think, and that we're on 64 now...
Me: It's rather mindblowing.
Me: What's your favorite section that you've written for The 'Shroom?
Tucayo: I have written 49 Mystery Images sections, so that holds some special value, but the sections I feel the most proud of are the World Cup Recap (I even teared up while writing Mexico's part), this issue's From the Mushroom Vaults, the Special Holiday Issue's Decade Top 10.
Me: I loved your Top 10. In fact, somebody was just recently asking me what some good 'Shroom reviews were, and that was one I recommended.
Tucayo: Heh, thanks. :)
Tucayo: That Special Issue was fantastic. Especially because no one expected it.
Me: Yes. It turned out fantastic, too. Definitely a shining spot in The 'Shroom's history.
Me: How about the Awards Ceremony? Are you excited for that this year?
Me: It's less than a month away now. :D
Tucayo: I'm really hyped!! I didn't partake in the Awards Committee this year because I couldn't make it to any meetings, but I'll be hosting 'Shroom Awards and presenting S9! There will be surprises! ...Or not!
Me: Surprises? I would ask...but...then they wouldn't be surprises.
Me: I'm excited to see the turnout this year.
Tucayo: I can tell it's going to be the best ceremony so far. And I always love them. They bring together the community, retired users come back, it's always a good celebration.
Tucayo: It's good to see the ideas of the Fail and 'Shroom Awards have worked so well.
Me: I agree. The 'Shroom Awards will be pretty big this year, I bet. It's nice to see Fail get an expansion too. I can hardly wait.
Me: oh wow i'm starting to run out of questions
Tucayo: So, let's turn things around.
Tucayo: Will you be presenting this year?
Me: You bet! Two presentations. A9 and U10.
Me: I'm a bit nervous, since I didn't present at all last year. I feel out-of-practice. :P
Tucayo: U10 is Lifetime Achievement, that's a big one! Any teasers on what may we expect?
Me: Nope, I'm keeping my lips zipped shut. B)
Tucayo: I'm most certainly intrigued.
Me: Good, you should be.
Me: I'm hoping for a somewhat unique type of presentation (not a game, though), but I'll have to see what's doable in the time I'm allotted.
Me: My plan...everything is coming together perfectly...muahahahaha
Tucayo: Oh Poochy, what have I done!?
Me: Oh, it's nothing you've done. Purposely, anyway.
Tucayo: Next question... Why is it you are the blue Yoshi Kid?
Me: Oh, that's an easy question.
Me: The Yoshi Kid has the best personality out of anyone (except maybe Bobbery) in The Thousand-Year Door.
Me: And is my favorite color.
Tucayo: Well, your hair is pink. Is that its natural color?
Me: Yes, I'm a natural melonhead.
Tucayo: Interesting, I have never met one.
Me: Well, now you have!
Me: People have been known to hunt my kind because natural pink hair is so rare.
Tucayo: You better watch out, some people might want to get some of that hair. Maybe a bald Koopa right here...
Me: You better stay away from my hair, punk.
Tucayo: And now, for the obligatory question: is this not uncertainly in a parallel universe the last question?
Me: Why are YOU asking the quesitons?
Tucayo: What? I was the one who asked you if you wanted to be interviewed.
Tucayo: I'm the one in the interviewer seat.
Me: Wait...when did this...huh, how? o_0
Me: are you that magical old spice guy
Tucayo: Of course I am.
Tucayo: We're on a horse.
Me: What happens if I look down?
Tucayo: Uh...I wouldn't be able to answer that
Me: oh god maybe we should move on
Me: i don't want to scare away the last of my viewers
Tucayo: I agree, by now the only one reading us is probably Edofenrir, and he's required to read all sections.
Me: He'll be gritting his teeth right about now.
Tucayo: Let's not scare him away. HI, Edo!
Me: Hi Edo! your hair is more lovely than usual today
Me: (please don't kill me)
Editor's note: Really tempted, but I'd have to bend all the way down just to get you, so nah.
Me: So, right, I have one last question before the last question...
Me: Favorite flavor of ice cream?
Tucayo: Tough one... I could go with a classic and say chocolate, but that would be boring. Hill Country Fare's 1904 Vanilla is pretty good. Blue Bell's Triple Caramel and Triple Chocolate are orgasmic (can I say that? I guess I can't... "Enrapturing", then). And I bet Ben & Jerry's Schwedde's Balls tastes great; Saturday Night Live made me want to taste it.
Me: That's an actual flavor of ice cream? dX5ZT.png
Tucayo: It is! I was surprised. And freaked out.
Me: I think that would freak anyone out.
Tucayo: Wait, poor choice of words on my part on that last sentence, that can be misinterpreted, lol. But that's the point of that ice cream.
Me: you worded it brilliantly
Me: ...I think Edo just walked away. ffff
Tucayo: That means we can swea—YES
Me: .-.
Me: Is that your final answer?
Me: ...wait no
Me: Is this the final question?
Tucayo: Seventeen.
Tucayo: That IS my final answer.
Me: You know what's funnier than seventeen?
Tucayo: What?
Me: Eighteen.
Tucayo: olol you funny guy
Me: me so funny
Me: Also...your answer...
Me: Hm...I'm sorry to tell you this, but... :(
Me: I'm going to be broke.
Me: You just won a million dollars!
*Stooben releases the confetti*
Tucayo: OMP!!!! Did I also win the TV toaster thingamajig over there?!?!?!
Tucayo: I bet I'm the first interviewer to win that much
Me: No, you didn't win that well.
Tucayo: May I buy it?
Me: It costs $1,000,003...
Tucayo: I have some spare change in my shell somewhere..... I swear I did.
Me: Change is good.
Tucayo: Here, money. Now gimme my TV toaster ._.
Me: (Yay, my get-rich-quick scheme worked!)
*Stooben gives the TV toaster*
Me: (TV toast sold separately.)
Tucayo: We all won!!
Me: A winner is we!
Tucayo: Thank you for reading how I interviewed Stooben, this is Tucayo signing off, good night!
Me: Thanks for interviewing me. It was a pleasure. :)

In Closing

Regardless of how long he's been working around this community, he's always found the time to be a normal person. A guy who cuts up and goofs off in chat, plays around on the forum (in fact, he is a frequent player of Mafia games there), yet one who is completely serious in his dedication and work. I think any 'Shroom writer who sets their goal to be like Tucayo, is a 'Shroom writer that's setting himself up for a steady "career" and a tenure of extremely useful contributions to the longest-standing staple of this community's group efforts. The 'Shroom has been one of the most celebrated and dearly-enjoyed aspects of the Super Mario Wiki for over half a decade. I think Tucayo is largely to thank for its success in recent years. ...As well as the rest of our senior Core Staff. Honestly! You guys do amazing work too!

... oh god please don't fire me.

From The Mushroom Vaults

by Tucayo (talk)

HI! I'm your marvelous Statistics Manager, Tucayo; and for this issue I'll be writing From The Mushroom Vaults. You probably haven't even heard of this section, so I'll give you all a brief introduction. Once a quintessential section of The 'Shroom, FTMV has been gone for 27 issues. In this section, one of the original sections of The 'Shroom, readers could get tips and cheats on Mario games. But, as Marioguy1 would say, it had faded into obscurity. Until now.

So, to follow this issue's theme, I'll be telling you how to get the 15 Castle's Secret Stars in Super Mario 64. Let’s-a-go!

I assume you already have enough stars to access every part of the castle, but in case you don’t I’ll be listing them from the star you can get first to the last you can get.

  • Stars 1 and 2: You need one star to get these two, so unless you just started, you should be able to get them. These first stars are in The Princess's Secret Slide. For the first one you just have to get to end, while for the second one you’ll need to finish the slide in less than 21 seconds. The easiest way to finish in the required time is to slide on Mario’s belly (run, A Button + B Button). It's OK if you fail to do so on your first try, since you'll still be able get the first star. You can only grab one star, so you'll have to slide at least twice.
The Secret Aquarium
  • Star 3: This star is located in the same room as Jolly Roger Bay, in the alcove in the wall to the right (you can get a 1-up in the left one). To get this star you just have to swim and collect the 8 red coins. But, since there is no way to the surface, you have to use the coins to replenish your health, unless you want to die.
Bowser in the Dark World
If you look closely, you can see Coin #4 in this image.
  • Star 4: More red coins fun, the 4th Secret Star can be found in the Bowser in the Dark World level. Even though you only need 8 stars to get here, it is recommended you already visited the Metal Cap Switch, otherwise you risk getting burned.
    • For the first two coins you have to press the purple switch, which will make some wooden platforms appear. Coin #1 is opposite to the flamethrower, coin #2 is right in the beginning of the level.
    • Coin #3 is really easy to spot; it’s in the area with the crystals. Needless to say, you have to watch out for the Amps circling above the crystals.
    • The terrible camera the game has may make you miss coin #4. This coin is on the yellow platform that goes back and forth.
    • Now, there is no way you could possibly miss coin #5. Just stand still in the corner of the blue moving platform and you should have no problem getting it.
    • For coin #6, go to the path opposite to the teeter-totters (the one to the island). It’s a narrow path, so, if you feel like you could fall, crawling is the option. But that is boring as hell, so take some risks and run, otherwise your life will be forever boring. The coin is in plain sight. Again, watch out for the Amp.
    • Use the second teeter-totter to get to the top ledges. Once you’re there, long jump to the first ledge. Coin #7 is there.
    • And the last coin, coin #8 is on the skinny ledge between the last two top ledges. Search around with Lakitu, otherwise you’ll miss it. After getting this coin, the star will appear behind the pipe leading to Bowser.
  • Star 5: World-famous Tower of the Wing Cap! Once again, you have to get the eight red coins. If you don’t know how to enter the tower, you’re disappointing me. Just stand on the rug at the entrance and look straight up. The coins are placed in a downward spiral, so if you follow the path you shouldn’t have any trouble. But let’s be honest, you won’t get the eight on your first try. If you miss some of the top-most coins, you’ll have to restart the level, since you won’t be able to fly that high again. If you missed some of the bottom-most coins, then just land on the tower, get the winged cap and fly again.
  • Star 6 and 7: Moving up to the castle’s basement, we have MIPS. That’s right, the rabbit. You’ll have to catch him in order to get the stars. He’s a slick mammal, so it’s easier to corner him. You can get the first star out of him after you have 15 stars, and the second one after getting 50. Yeah, you have to catch him twice.
Mario in the Vanish Cap Under the Moat
Moat, moat, moat, moat, moat. Funny word.
  • Star 8: More red coins. This time, it’s the Vanish Cap Under the Moat level. To access this level, you have to drain the water. And don’t tell me you don’t know how to do that, because it’s a must-know. But in case you don’t, you have to pound the two pillars you find in the basement.
    • 4 coins are on ledges in the hill at the beginning. You can try to jump from one to another, but there’s the risk you’ll miss one and you won’t be able to go back, so the safe choice here is to crawl from one to another. Use the camera to see where the next coin is. After getting those four coins, slide or crawl to the bottom, but if you slide you’ll have to jump to make sure you don’t fall into a bottomless pit.
    • Keep walking and you’ll find the 5th and 6th coins on the second teeter-totter. There’s no way you can miss these two.
    • Coin #7 is on the second-to-last lift. Stay on it until you grab the coin, and jump to the next lift before it flips you over.
    • Hit the switch and grab the coin. The star will appear behind a fence, but since you can get the invisible cap now, there is no problem with that.
  • Star 9: Probably one of the easiest to get. Just talk to the Toad standing by the Hazy Mazy Cave pool-like thing and he’ll give you the star. Yeah, as simple as that; no need for violence.
Mario in the Cavern of the Metal Cap.
  • Star 10: The only Secret Star you’ll find by entering one of the regular 15 courses. This star is found in the Cavern of the Metal Cap, which is accessed through Hazy Mazy Cave. To get here, you have to go to the underground lake and then drive Dorrie (an effing nightmare) towards the double doors. Once you’re there, you’ll find another of the pool-like thingies. Jump in it and voilà! You are there! The best thing to do first is to press the green switch, because the water will drag you out of the castle if you’re not Metal Mario. And it’s a real pain to get back to this place.
    • On your way to the switch, you’ll find coins #1 and #2, behind two pillars on your right.
    • Coins #3 and #4 are next to the switch.
    • Get the metal cap and fall into the water surrounding the switch. Coins #5-#8 are around the pillar. The star will also appear there.
  • Star 11: The last of the basement stars is in the Bowser in the Fire Sea level. To get to his level, you need to have at least 30 stars and after that you’ll have to get the first star in Dire, Dire Docks. And yes, you guessed correctly, this star is a red coins star.
    • Passing the first bully you find, you’ll see a ramp. Follow that path; the red coin will be at the end.
    • Continue the level until you get to the pole that leads you to the teeter-totters, the second coin will be on the first one.
    • Another pole will take you to a yellow and purple room (horrible combination of colors, I know). Coin #3 is in the far right corner.
    • Step on the elevator and get back to the purple room. The elevator will go up, and you’ll be able to see coin #4 right under it. Just jump down to get it. And then get all the way back to where you were.
    • The elevator will take you to the second floor, if you want to call it that way. Keep moving on until you get to the pyramid thing. Take the yellow path on top of the pyramid; it will lead you to coin #5.
    • Walk until you get to the yellow ramps. You’ll notice these platforms expand and contract. The 6th coin is on the second-to-last platform, you can get it when the platforms are fully expanded.
    • Moving to the third floor, coin #7 is right in front of the second flamethrower.
    • Coin #8 is in the building with the poles, right above the last pole. The star will appear on top of this building, use the first pole and your wall jump to get to it.
  • Star 12: The next stars are in the second and third floors of the castle. For this star you just have to talk to the Toad by the stairs leading to the third floor.
  • Star 13: You need 50 stars to get the last of the simple Secret Stars. Once again, a Toad will give you the star. This time it’s the Toad by the Tick Tock Clock.
Wing Mario Over the Rainbow
So many clouds, and rainbows, and chances to die.
  • Star 14: For me, this was the most difficult star to get. Wing Mario Over the Rainbow. This course is in the alcove opposite to the one that leads to Rainbow Ride. When you fall off course, you’ll be aggressively thrown into the lake outside the Castle, so it’s a pain to get back.
    • Coin #1 will be on the cloud you landed on.
    • Look around and you’ll see a cloud between two pink islands, fly to it and there you’ll find coin #2. Oh, and grab the Wing Cap again.
    • From that cloud, fly to the pink island below it (the one with the Bob-Omb Buddy). Coin #3 will be there. Talk to the Bob-Omb to open the cannons.
    • Aim towards the sun, that should take you to the top-most pink island, which has another cannon. Using that cannon, try to aim to the bluish cloud. Coin #4 is inside that cloud.
    • Fly around to a cloud connected by 2 rainbows. Coin #5 is there, as well as another Wing Cap.
    • Get back to the cannon island, since you need it to get to the higher clouds. Same procedure, aims towards the sun to get to the other cannon. Aim above the cloud with the poles. If you land above it, grab coins #6 and #7.
    • Fly around the cloud so that you get to the poles below it. Once you’re there, grab coin #8. The star appears on the main cloud.
Mario at the end of the Bowser in the Sky, before the fight with Bowser.
Forecast: Windy.
  • Star 15: The last star. And guess where it is. That’s right, in the Bowser in the Sky level. You need 70 stars to get here. But I highly recommend this is the last star you get (the 120th), because if you battle Bowser then, he’ll give you a different speech. And that’s a nice detail on his part.
    • For the first coin, you’ll have to push the big crate to the edge above the moving platform. Get on top of the crate and jump for the coin. Jump when the platform is out; otherwise you’ll fall into the purple sky.
    • Go up the ramp, across the stone bridge and past the spinning island. Coin #2 is in plain sight.
    • Fall off the teeter-totter and use the camera to look around the far edge of the platform. Coin #3 will be on a small step, so be careful when you get it.
    • Make your way to the metal ramp. The fourth coin will be on the topmost part.
    • Coin #5 is a tough one, since it’s on top of a diamond-shaped block and it can make you slide off course. Get on the moving platform and when you get to the diamond block, the best thing is to backflip, but this can be hard to do. If you don’t feel like backflipping, simply jump over the block and pray for the best.
    • Coin #6 is on the first spinning island. Pretty easy to get, but the camera may make you miss it.
    • The seventh coin is on top of the pole between the orange moving platforms.
    • And the last coin is before getting to the pipe leading to the final battle. It’s below the blue stairs taking to the pipe. After getting it, the star will appear next to the pipe.

Mario performing a Sweep Kick in Super Mario 64.
Break dance Mario to celebrate.

And that’s it! Now you have no excuse not to have the 120 stars. Thanks for reading this guide, and I hope it proved useful. If you liked FTMV, please apply to write it. Enjoy the rest of the issue!

Character Comparison

by Post-Damage Invincibility (talk)

Mario Party 6 promotional artwork: Mario along with a Ukiki helding snowballs. Inspired from the minigame Snow Brawl.
It is not difficult to compare Diddy Kong to Ukiki, There are both monkeys, after all. Diddy is famously quick and nimble. But Ukiki must be too, for he is fast enough to rob Mario of his hat in Super Mario 64. Not only that, Ukiki is also speedy and nimble, as he is not easy to catch to retrieve that hat. Which brings us to physical appearance: They are both monkey, Diddy being a chimp, Ukiki being a generic monkey. They are both about the same size. And most amazingly similar, they both wear red hats! Diddy is famous for his red hat, which had the Rareware logo until the treacherous company Microsoft (booooo!) bought them up in 2002 and destroyed one of the greatest companies of all time. Diddy is now property of Nintendo and the name of the Japanese company that means "Leave luck to Heaven" is now the logo embroidered on his hat.

Ukiki wears a red hat too, but it is not his. And he only gets to wear it when he steals it from the famous plumber, Mario Mario through his trickery. But it is an amazing coincidence. Ukiki will never be a famous adventurer as the more famous of the two simians, Diddy Kong. In fact, he even saved his best pal DK from the Kremlings in one of the greatest 2D platformers of all time. Nobody messes with a member of the Kong Family, for if you mess with one of them, you mess with all of them. In Mario Party Advance, when Ukiki's is kidnapped, his relative, Akiki, sends Shroomlock to go find him. I believe had her name been Akiki Kong, the she would have gone to rescue her relative himself! The bravery just isn't there. But Ukiki faked his kidnapping! It was all a hoax! Ukiki is only good for mischief. However, Diddy has sometimes shown to have a mischievous side, such as the cutscenes of Mario Power Tennis. Nevertheless, Diddy is the superior character. He would whoop Ukiki's ass, and that is why Diddy Kong is this month's Winner.
Diddy Kong with his jet pack

Brawl Tactics

by FunkyK38 (talk)

What's up, Brawlers? Welcome to BRAWL TACTICS! This month, I will be covering the stage Frigate Orpheon!

Frigate Orpheon is a small stage with two unconnected parts and several moving panels that appear with those two parts. The sides are relatively shallow, and the top is pretty shallow as well. I will be starting with the first of these unconnected parts.

You will be dropped off onto a small platform with one slightly smaller platform hovering to its left. This smaller platform is a great place to use Pokemon and assist trophies. The other half of this first stage will move up and down, and if you happen to catch it with an assist trophy on the way down, it's a PAIN to work with most of them because they get stuck down there. On the way down, however, this is a great place to hide from many Final Smashes including Mario, Marth, Samus, ironically, and Zelda. This part of the stage has two platforms that come up to the left and the right periodically. A good trick is to dump your enemy on one of them right before they take off. By the time they get up, it will be too late, and they will either take a KO off the side or fall to their doom trying to get back on the stage. Sweet victory shall be yours.

Once you've grown accustomed to the stage you're fighting on, an alarm will sound and you will be forcibly flipped from one stage to the other. Note that you need to be in the air while this switch is taking place; otherwise, there's no telling where you might land. Once you do land, behold the wonders: a stage that is slightly different than the one you were on before! A bottom half that is slightly angled in, and a top half that is more centered and a bit bigger. You will still get the same panels moving in and out as before, so you can apply the same trick as above. The new design with the slightly angled middle will allow you to use Pokemon and assist trophies easier. They won't fall off the sides or get stuck on another panel, but be careful if you throw them off the side to the panels that move back and forth. Use the shallow sides to your advantage with some high-launch hits that can KO your opponents for you.

With a little practice, you can use the Frigate to you advantage! That's all for me this month, Brawlers! See you next month for BRAWL TACTICS!

Mario Kart: Wheel Tips Corner

by Coincollector (talk)
The train as it appears in Mario Kart 7. I guess that everybody knows the number on the front, so I won't tell ya.
Respect the train signals when approaching the track.
The train as it appears in Mario Kart 7. I guess that everybody knows the number on the front, so I won't tell ya.
Taking this route was not very intelligent...
The train as it appears in Mario Kart 7. I guess that everybody knows the number on the front, so I won't tell ya.
The train as it appears in Mario Kart 7. I guess that everybody knows the number on the front, so I won't tell ya.

Hi everybody! Welcome to Mario Kart: Wheel Tips Corner. To celebrate this special issue dedicated to the Nintendo 64 and its history of memorable and acclaimed games, and as a means to make up for my absence in the past issue, today I'll talk about two tracks. These tracks come from Mario Kart 64 and are Kalimari Desert and Toad's Turnpike. Let's begin.

The first one I'll talk about is Kalimari Desert, the last race course of the Mushroom Cup. The track is located in a vast wild west-themed desert, with several cacti scattered about and sandstone cliffs. Additionally, the track surrounds a large cliff which is the home of the most remarkable feature of this track: two trains that constantly travel over a large part of the course. The trains are also a major hazard in this course. If a driver crashes into one, the kart will roll over. In the worst of the cases a train can hit a driver several times and push the kart away from the racetrack, leaving the driver in last place. You need to take care where the racetrack crosses the railroad. Another hazard in the road is the cacti, able to stop the racer that touches them. Fortunately, cacti are away from the road on the rough sand.

The track begins at the right side of the cliff. Go straight to find the first big U bend to the left with the first group of Item Boxes. That bend leads to the left side of the cliff and the first railroad crossing. Always pay attention to the railroad signals in case they announce that the train is approaching. When the train is crossing the road, it's best to decelerate and wait until the train has gone. After that crossing the track continues in a stretch that bends slightly to the right. In that part, you'll find the second set of Item Boxes. Right after said set is found another railroad crossing. The track continues in a large curve that turns to the right. To the left side of it there is a small area of loose ground from which the railroad can be seen. The main road then runs right next to the railroad, but players don't need to worry about being so near to the train, as a pair of fences blocks access to the railroad everywhere except the crossings. You'll go in a straight line to see the last group of item boxes and the railroad's tunnel's entrance, after which there is a slight S turn to the right before the end of the lap.

On a side note, the railroad's layout is a simple oval loop. It is possible to take the railroad route without problems, but the railroad is NOT a shortcut (despite what certain game guides say). If you go this way you'll likely lose time, and a lap completed by travelling through the tunnel won't be counted.

On the other hand, you can take shortcuts in some curves by going over the rough ground. As you know, that type of ground slows your kart down, so it's best to use a Mushroom or a Star when taking these routes. However, when using mushrooms be careful of the cacti that I mentioned before (using stars, these obstacles aren't problem at all). The first and third curves are ideal for this type of shortcut.

As a side note, the train may or not may have cars attached to it in certain modes, possibly to prevent graphical overloading. For example, in Grand Prix mode there are five cars, while in versus there is only the engine.

This track reappears in Mario Kart 7 as the first course of the Leaf Cup. The track has changed in some notable ways since Mario Kart 64. It's slightly shorter in length but having yet the two trains on the railroad tracks (online multiplayer only appears one). The railroad itself still can be accessed, and it's still not recommended. However, unlike in MK64 where you can enter the tunnel, in MK7 entering the tunnel will cause Lakitu to rescue you and put you back on the road. This has the effect of making it less of a setback to take the wrong route than it was in MK64. There are also some new alternate routes that allow racers to avoid having to stop for the train. At the first corner you can follow a slope near the cliff to a blue ramp and glide over the railroad safely. There is also another blue ramp in front of the second crossing, located to the right and separated from the road. You must use Mushrooms or Stars to reach these ramps. In the case of the second ramp, you should also take extra care not to fall, as it is rather narrow and steep. The first and third turns also add wooden ramps for racers to perform tricks. Before the last turn near the line there is another such ramp, and second is off the side of the road.

Dare choose this course in EXTRA... you'll learn that you should never go against the flow.
The most difficult part is to drive between two gigantic vehicles.
Dare choose this course in EXTRA... you'll learn that you should never go against the flow.
Narrow routes are likely to cause traffic jams.
Dare choose this course in EXTRA... you'll learn that you should never go against the flow.
Dare choose this course in EXTRA... you'll learn that you should never go against the flow.

The second track I'll talk about is Toad's Turnpike. This course is the first of the Flower Cup. Despite its name, it isn't a turnpike. It is a long highway with plenty of cars, buses and trucks travelling continuously around in an infinite loop. The track's name comes from the pictures of Toad all over the course. The only hazards on this track are the vehicles that drive on the road. Making contact with one of these vehicles will make the driver's kart blow up into the air. The track has no rough terrain, just a pair of grassy patches on each side of the road protected by guard rails. These make them inaccessible, and thus they cannot be used to evade the traffic and not get hit. Curiously enough, the Item Boxes are not found in the middle of the traffic. Instead, all the sets of Item Boxes are carefully placed to the side of the road (usually the left side). This setup makes it possible to take all the boxes of a set at once and prevent opponents driving behind from getting one.

The race starts in an isolated portion of the track free of traffic. After crossing the line, you'll immediately be on the main road. Straight ahead, you can see the first set of Item Boxes to the left side of the lane. After this set, the track turns to the left. The turn finishes in another straight-away under an overpass. There is a set of item boxes directly before and after crossing under it. This stretch ends in another turn to the left. Turn to the left without stopping and while swerving, you'll notice that the road becomes narrower, making it harder to evade the vehicles that are in front of you. In this curve, you'll find the last group of Item Boxes. The curve ends right before the chequered finish line that completes the lap.

Notably, the difficulty of this track also varies according to racers' engine class. With 50cc, there are few vehicles moving slowly in the same direction as the racers. Using 150cc, vehicles travel faster and more appear. The EXTRA engine class adds another complication, namely that vehicles on the track travel in the opposite direction from the racers. It takes a lot of experience to master this course at this level as a single mistake can cost a lot; being hit by a single vehicle makes you defenceless against another incoming vehicle, especially in the narrower part of the track. As always, if you use a Boo or a Star, you'll be immune to hits from other vehicles and you can run through them safely - but don't rely on this.

Despite its simple layout, Toad's Turnpike has a shortcut. To use it, start from the chequered line and go to the right towards the white guard rail. Jump right before you bump into it. You need to boost your speed with a Mushroom or the powersliding mechanics before jumping or else this method won't work. If you're successful, you'll see that the kart is stuck in the rail or has entered the grassy area. This will cause Lakitu to take you back to the road, but it will drop you below the overpass while you did the shortcut on top of it, allowing you to skip half the course. In some cases it is possible to jump from the overhang and fall right in the middle of the road below without being stuck and so saving even more time.

For Now, Toad's Turnpike hasn't made a reappearance in another Mario Kart game, although it would be good to see "that one level" in the next Mario Kart, don't you think?

And that's all Shy Guys, hope you have enjoyed reading this issue of Mario Kart: Wheel Tips Corner. See you around for the next tip here in The 'Shroom.

A History of Video Games

by Toad85 (talk)
“History is full of fantastic and important stories. These stories have the powers to spellbind audiences, even audiences of difficult seventh graders. These same stories… are directly relevant to our present society. Yet [students] sleep through the classes that present it.”
James W. Loewen, historian and author of Lies My Teacher Told Me.

Hello everyone, it’s Toad85 yet again. It’s July. It’s sunny over here, and there’s not a cloud in the sky. Perfect weather to swim, hike, play baseball, or sit on my butt and write a ‘Shroom article. This is another edition of “A History of Video Games”.

Now this time, I’m going to do something a little different. This issue is about five different little stories, instead of one overarching one. Yeah, five little stories about five interesting video games from the NES’s era; the ones I find the most interesting.

So let’s not waste any time, let’s get reading!

Part 6.1: Two games, or not two games

That is the question.

If you couldn’t tell yet, Super Mario Bros. was a huge success. Gamers around the world were ready to lap up anything Nintendo had to offer, and demand was super-high for a sequel. Nintendo thought it would be a no-brainer: make a good sequel, promote it it worldwide, and watch the cash roll in like tumbleweeds on a windy day.

Super Mario Bros. 2 was released in Japan in 1986, just a year after the original. It ran the same engine as the original, and looked very much like it, but it wasn’t a carbon copy. The graphics were slightly tweaked; there were now 13 worlds to explore, including the infamous “secret worlds”; new items and enemies were added.

The most drastic change was definitely in the difficulty. Good lord, this game is demanding. Wind blows from out of nowhere, powerups can kill you, invisible blocks knock you into pits, and enemies are difficult to circumvent. Needless to say, Howard Lincoln felt that the game’s absurd difficulty wouldn’t attract American audiences.

In another castle, Shigeru Miyamoto was busy designing a new platformer to celebrate Fuji Television’s Dream Factory Festival in 1987. What he came up with was a solid title named Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic (Dream Factory: Heart-Pounding Panic for you English-speaking folks). In the game, two little kids are kidnapped by a book, and the mascots of the festival (Imajin, Lina, Mama, and Papa) had to rescue them. Who the kids are and why they were kidnapped were irrelevant, it’s an effing awesome game.

Doki Doki Panic was a relatively obscure game, so it didn’t put up record sales figures. But it sold well enough to capture the attention of Nintendo of America. Howard Lincoln came up with the idea of selling Doki Doki Panic as Super Mario Bros. 2 for America and Europe, since the “real” Super Mario Bros. 2 wasn’t going to export.

Artwork of the game, which is based on the box art of Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic.

Lincoln’s team quickly made aesthetic changes to the game. Imajin became Mario, Lina converted into Peach, Mama ironically became Luigi, and Papa was transformed into Toad. To access a special zone, you had to drop a potion, rather than a lamp. Masks became mushrooms, characters can run, Phantos became much more menacing, the plotline was heavily altered, et cetera. The European/American Super Mario Bros. 2 was released on October 9th, 1988.

Granted, there was some backlash once the international crowd discovered that there was another version of Super Mario Bros. 2 that they would never get to play until 2007, but overall the game was received well. In total, 2 million copies were sold; that made it the third-best selling NES game at the time. Elements from the game, like Birdo, Bob-Ombs, and Luigi’s high jumping ability would later become staples of the series. Wart, the main villain, wouldn’t come back but did have a cameo in Link’s Awakening under the name Mamu.

Super Mario Bros. 2 may not have started out as a Mario game, but it’s effect on the series is evident in almost every Mario game made since.

Part 6.2: How many thunderbolts does it take to get to the eyeball center of a Yellow Devil?

The world may never know.

In 1987, Capcom was looking to expand into the home video game market. They had previously had some hits with arcade titles like 1942 and Gunsmoke, but by the late 1980s, the console market had far surpassed the arcade market. In order to keep working on new games and survive as a popular company, Capcom had to join the NES’s gallery of developers, and it took more than just porting these two. They needed something original to top it off.

Luckily for them, a young artist name Keiji Inafune had just joined the team. The twenty-two year old Inafune was looking to become an illustrator, and Capcom seemed to him like a good way to get started.

Inafune quickly began working as a graphic designer on Capcom’s next hit arcade game, a little thing known today as Street Fighter. Capcom was impressed with Inafune’s work, and he was reassigned to a new project: come up with a new game for the NES.

Seems easy, right? I mean, for a guy as talented as Inafune, coming up with an idea should be a snap. But then you had to factor in that he had to personally design the characters, items, logos, boxart, and even the instruction booklet. Not to mention that he had to turn all of this to pixel form when coding the game.

Inafune, inspired by anime like Speed Racer from his childhood, began drafting a robot character named “Mighty Kid” that would combat other robots. He was to be blue, since there were more blues on the NES’s color palette than any other color. Inafune noticed that several protagonists for NES games lacked good detail, and so making the character blue could allow him to stretch the NES’s limitations. Inafune would later change the character’s name to “Knuckle Man”, and then “Rock Man” in his final draft.

Mega Man in German comic book form because I was too lazy to upload another image.

Any sales chart of the NES can easily tell you that the most popular games of the 80’s were sidescrolling platformers, and Rock Man was no different. However, it did have a very noticeable twist on the gameplay. First off, almost all of the stages are available from the start; this differentiated it from games like Super Mario Bros. , where each level had to be beaten one at a time. Second, boss battles were reworked with the addition of a “rock-paper-scissors” element. Each boss is weak to another, and Rock Man had to use each boss’s weakness correctly to do the most damage. Sure, you can rough it out with the Mega Buster for a while, but if you really wanted to do some serious destruction, you might want to use the power-ups.

Rock Man’s name was a double entendre; it referred not only to the aforementioned “rock-paper-scissors” battles, but also to Inafune’s love of rock-and-roll. Inafune believed that if the game had good music, gamers would want to play it. And boy, did he deliver. Youtube some scraps and take a listen for yourself.

With all these twists developed into the game, Rock Man (known outside Japan as Mega Man) was released in December of 1987 to critical acclaim. This was not helped, though, by absolutely abominable cover art. In the game, Rock Man is a bright, cheery little kid garbed in blue with a cute arm cannon that can blow you head off. On the U.S. box art, though, Mega Man is a middle-aged man with a slanted face, ugly yellow garb, and a strange-looking pistol.

What really contributed to Rock Man’s success was word-of-mouth advertising. At the time, Capcom had a very small advertising budget, and chose not to waste it on console titles. Instead, those that bought the game and liked it told about it to their friends, who then bought it themselves. So word-of-mouth advertising is like advertising without having to pay for advertising.

Unfortunately, Rock Man, while it gathered great critical acclaim, was not the hit Capcom was expecting. However, Inafune convinced Capcom to give him a second shot with the series, and Rock Man 2 was released on December 24, 1988 in Japan. This time, Inafune got it right: the game was both loved by critics and the populous alike. The rest is history: Mega Man and his descendents would go on to star in hundreds of games, becoming the most profitable series Capcom had ever produced.

It’s seven. The answer’s obviously seven.

Part 6.3: Is this the real life?

Or is this Final Fantasy?

Caught in a landslide, there’s no escape from reality

In 1987, a minuscule developer named Squaresoft was undergoing a huge depression. Squaresoft, or Square for short, made games for the NES, but couldn’t compete on a large market with bigger companies like Capcom. In order to survive, they literally had to craft a hit game that would top or near-top the charts.

So what do they do? They decide to take one last shot to make it big; a “final” attempt for their “fantasy”, if you will. Square turned to Hironobu Sakaguchi, their head designer, to pump out the best darn RPG their low budget could muster. Square then created an “A-team” for the game; among them, artist Yoshitaka Amano was to produce the artwork for the game, freelance programmer Nasir Gebelli was to concoct the game’s engine and sprites, and anime director Kenji Terada was to write the plot. Sakaguchi, while a talented developer, was planning to pack his bags and leave the gaming industry if this game failed.

Sprites of the six main classes of Final Fantasy, for use in A History of Video Games in 'Shroom Issue 64.
This time, it was either upload an image or resort to a Mario Sports Mix screenshot. I reluctantly chose the former.

The RPG game, named Final Fantasy (see pun I made before for reason why), was about a team of four Light Warriors; either monks, black mages, white mages, red mages, thieves, or fighters, your choice. Also, there are these four crystals or whatever that represent the classical (read: unscientific) elements. Two centuries ago, a hurricane sunk a shrine that served as the center of an ocean-based civilization, and the water crystal goes all dark. This causes the earth and fire crystals to eventually go dark too, and the world turns into the ending of Mother 3; world destroyed, cataclysm everywhere, but everyone’s fine. In the present, these four heroes have found each of the four crystals and have to reignite them by defeating the four Fiends to bring the world back into balance.

Yeah, it’s a lot better than your basic excuse plot.

On December 18, 1987, Final Fantasy was released in Japan. And let me tell you, audiences didn’t know what to make of it. The game was so advanced, it so stretched the NES’s limitations that onlookers were mesmerized. Luckily, the game impressed enough consumers to make it the then second-best selling RPG for the NES; enough to keep the company well afloat. It was sold worldwide too, but RPGs didn’t sit well with action-filled American tastes, and not enough cartridges were produced for the PAL markets to really make a difference.

Square followed their impressive first run with Final Fantasy II. And then Final Fantasy III. And then Final Fantasy IV. And so on. Each installment only further cemented Square as the definitive RPG maker. Even after they started losing money in 2003, and had to merge with Enix, Square still remained top of the RPG world, and Final Fantasy that genre’s benchmark for perfection.

doggammit now i can’t get bohemian rhapsody out of my head

Part 6.4: ↑↑↓↓←→←→ A Button B Button Start Button

Almost as long as there has been gaming, there has been cheating. Gamers have always tried to get farther in the game while doing less work. The earliest cheat I could find was in the game Adventure for the Atari 2600; if you did a series of actions just right, you could witness easter egg credits.

Cheat codes back then were used primarily for the developers’ ease. Before releasing a game, a group of testers had to review every little detail, every microscopic crack, to see if there were bugs. In order to do this, they had to test areas and skills that were outside the normal player’s capabilities. These kinds of cheats were usually level-warping or invincibility cheats. Because, really, who wants to need to fight off enemies when you have to test hundreds of other mechanics? These codes were eventually either directly or accidentally leaked to the public for Pete Rose wannabes to use freely.

During the arcade days of gaming, there was a company named Konami. It was fairly successful, but its games were notorious for being pitilessly hard. When the NES came out, they (like Capcom) decided to make it big in the home market by porting Gradius, a sidescrolling space shooter, to the NES. However, they actually made the game harder than it was in the arcade booth. The game’s creator, Kazuhisha Hashimoto, couldn’t even beat his own game. If they were going to test this game, they had to implement some way to counteract its difficulty.

Hashimoto got the idea to create a code to help him out. The code would give him 30 lives, instead of just the standard five. This, he thought, would be enough lives to get through the game without getting a game over screen. The game was successfully tested, and was released in 1985 to moderate success.

In 1988, Konami made a port of an arcade game called Contra. But they made the same mistake twice: it was far too hard to test at first. The Gradius code was easily implemented, and the game was successfully debugged.

But then someone at Konami got an idea. He or she decided to release the Gradius code to the public, for whatever reason. Maybe he/she thought the game would be too hard for the public. Maybe he/she thought it would be a good Easter egg for the upcoming Nintendo Power magazine to report on. For whatever reason, Konami willingly revealed the secret to their code.

Long story short, the code went viral. Across the world, consumers would try the code and get 30 extra lives, something only developers were meant to do. The cheat code quickly caught on, and other NES games began to see the power of the hidden cheat code. And today, we have whole websites devoted to just listing every cheat code they can find.

Well, I’m going way too long in this article and I’ll miss the deadline if I don’t end it right now, so hold on for next issue!

I’m Toad85, your resident gaming historian, and that’s the way it was.

…any way the wind blows…

Fading Into Obscurity

by Marioguy1 (talk)
Angry Sun
Grrr, it's the Angry Sun.

Oh Mr. Sun, Sun, Mr. Angry Sun, please don't follow meeeee ?

You feel the searing heat, it feels as though the sun is swooping down behind you, you're so hot you think you can die, you're an average citizen in the year 2012. Or you're Mario, being chased by an Angry Sun.

Welcome to another issue of Fading into Obscurity! I don't usually review enemies, but it's technically within my coverage. So, for this lovely, incredibly hot, day of July (the forecast for today hasn't actually come out, I just know it will be incredibly hot), I thought I'd shed some light on this source of heat (light, heat, sun, get it?!?).

The Angry Sun is mainly a character in The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3, a TV series from 20 years ago. That was also around the time of its first and only appearance in a Mario-series game, Super Mario Bros. 3. In these two things, the sun is basically a moving sun that tracks down Mario and tries to hit him. In the TV series, it is shown that this sun has anger management problems, however after one episode where it attacks Mario and Luigi, we really don't hear much about it. I guess it has simply faded into obscurity, now if only our sun would do the same...

The Pits

by Iggy Pattel (talk)

Hey folks! First, just let me say, it's a huge honor to have my comic on this here site here! Let's hope it has a long life and many readers! So, I really hope you guys like the comic, and if not, it's here, so deal with it. I've been pretty busy lately, and you can expect more than two comics in months to come!

On a side note, have you seen Gravity Falls? It's a great, refreshing show, with a sort of Invader Zimmy feel to it. You should watch it.

Project Travel Guide x15

by The 'Shroom Core Staff

Life got you down?

Did your princess get kidnapped again?

Don't you think it's about time you gave yourself a vacation? Well look no further!

Good day, friends! It is I, the ever so ravishing King Bob-omb, and have I got a deal for you! For only 600 coins, you can enjoy a five night stay at the luxurious Bob-omb Battlefield. Still not convinced that Bob-omb Battlefield is the place for you? Then let me tell you about some of our find attractions and sights.

Bob-omb Battlefield is a historic place, and one that is dear to me. This was where the 1995 Battle of Kings took place, where King Bob-omb and his Bob-omb fleet and the Red King Bob-omb and his army of red demons and Koopa Troopas fought for control of this sacred land. Many remember this as one of the most explosive battles in history. In the end, the mighty King Bob-omb obliterated the Red King and exiled the Koopa Troopas to a sandy wasteland. Before I bore you, let' discuss the rooms and fun attractions that can be found here and ONLY here.


Our rooms may not be the greatest, but you're guaranteed to get the best damn view every time…for the right price! Heck, you can even rent out the floating island if you want to. The weather here is also perfect for pretty much anything. Never again will you have to worry about sweltering heat or frostbitten appendages. Volcanoes and snowy places are for chumps anyways. Don't even get me started on water worlds.

As you may know, this place was a battleground. Although many years may have passed, most of the cannons are still in working condition. Who said cannons can only be used for warfare? Not me, for the local Bob-ombs have fixed the cannons to allow us to utilize them as our main means of transportation. No more will you have to worry about getting blisters from walking. Reduce travel time from 10 minutes to mere seconds. And with not one, not two, but FIVE cannons and above average condition, you can pretty much visit the place in a few minutes! These cannons are guaranteed to almost always get you from point A to point B…most of the time…


Is the adventurer in you bottled up? Why don't you relieve yourself of them and take a nice hike and jog around the mountain? Lose a few pounds and dodge a few obstacles until you reach the top and get a breathtaking view from the top of the mountain…or you could just use the cannons to get there. Whatever the choice is, the view will always be more breathtaking than the last.

Your kids are sure to be ecstatic when you tell them about the local petting zoo! That's right, a petting zoo! You can get up close with the many tamed Goombas roaming the area. Try not to pet them too hard though, they get squished very easily. If Goombas aren't your thing, why not have fun with the last captive Koopa Troopa. But that isn't even our most impressive animal here. Chompers the Chain Chomp is sure to get your kids riled up. Make sure not to bring food or water near him though, I don't want another accident…


…Ah, I'm just joking. But seriously, no food or water is allowed in the vicinity of the petting zoo.

Speaking of food, why not drop by King Bob-omb's Burger Joint once you've finished sightseeing. Our food is made with 100% real Goomba meat. If burgers aren't your thing, there's always The King's Buffet, and Waluigi's Taco Stand for those of you brave enough to venture there. Mustachioed ladies and gentlemen get a 50% discount.

At the end of the day, join me and my staff as we watch the fireworks show performed by the local villagers. Not romantic enough for you lovebirds? Then why not dine outdoors as my fellow Bob-ombs cater to your hunger pangs with only the finest and most gourmet foods in this world. Free of charge, of course, for those that rent the Floating Island.


One more thing: No one, and I mean, NO ONE, mustachioed or not, is allowed to go beyond the metal gate. We are constructing a poolside resort complete with the largest water slide in this here town and we don't want anyone snooping around. If you are caught doing so, you and your family will be forcibly removed from the area and sent back home…via cannons. Either that or you run the risk of being crushed by the giant iron spheres.

We hope to see you soon. I will guarantee that your stay will be a blast.

-Respectfully yours,


What is your ideal vacation? Is it...a trip to the beach? Somewhere in the countryside? A bomb-ravaged battlefield? Of course not, what you really want is a huge, floating fortress!

I'm MrConcreteDonkey, and I'm the best darn travel agent in this project, and I think you should come to Whomp's Fortress. You'll have a better vacation than Gamefreak, who has to be lucky to come back in one piece. And who better to tell you about this magnificent vacation spot than its very own King Whomp!

this stupid mask is falling off aga- i mean, uh...

Hey! I'm the Whomp King! Why don't you wimps come visit my magnificent fortess?

Whomp's Fortress 64.png

(You see that little icon in the corner? It means no pictures. The guy who took this was flattened by a Thwomp.)

We have a wide variety of things to do! Like...getting flattened by a Thwomp! Ahaha! Or getting flattened by a Whomp! Hahaha! Or getting flattened by me, for twice the price! Hahahaha! The fun never stops at Whomp's Fortress!

We have some great places you can

Piranha Plant 64.png

stay! Unfortunately, we forgot to add doors to the fortress itself, but I'm sure you don't mind sleeping outside. Maybe if I'm feeling nice enough, I'll let you sleep under me! You'll get on great with the locals. The Goombas won't want to stay away from you! Those Piranha Plants are a bit snappy, but they'll grow on you...(N.B.: if they literally grow on you, seek immediate medical attention)

Our swimming pool, while lacking a deep end, attracts many visitors, all year. (N.B.: if you come in contact with the water from the swimming pool, seek immediate medical attention). Or maybe you'd like to travel around the fortress to see the sights? Our main attractions include:

  • Joe the Whomp - He's our best employee!
  • Moe the Thwomp - He's our best employee! - uh wait

Be careful travelling around the fortress though...sometimes, the walls could push you off a ledge! Or sometimes, the floor could disappear from below you! Or maybe you'll get...SPLAT! Flattened by a Thwomp! Haha, that never gets old! Also, why not try and get to our floating island, where they sell frozen yogurt (N.B.: if you talk to the frozen yogurt salesman, seek immediate medical attention), or our floating cage, where YOU sell frozen yogurt...and then get flattened by a Thwomp. After a long day of getting crushed, why not relax and admire the view from the tower? If you can get past the Bullet Bills, that is.

Doesn't it look- wait, why does it have eyes?!

You'll never run out of things to eat! Unfortunately, we have no way of storing, heating or cleaning food, but we still have such delicious foods as:

  • Rock candy - In fact, forget the candy part. It's just rock.
  • Brick pie - You can forget that pie part too. Oh, and keep your hands off my bricks!
  • Squashed Goomba - He's our best employee!

And when you're done with us, why not buy a souvenir, so you can share that crushing feeling you experienced here with a friend? Our gift shop sells...well, actually, we don't have a gift shop, but why not pick up any chips you find lying around? They cost 90 Coins.

now it's not coming off...

Thanks, King Whomp! Well, I hope you're convinced that Whomp's Fortress is the place for you! Enjoy the next level, but remember that it will NEVER be as good as Whomp's Fortress.

"*snort* *snoooooort* *snnooooooooooooorrrrttttt*-huh? What? Tour guide? Huh? No, no, I think you're mistaken. I only do tours between 10 and 2."

Your travel guy glances at his watch and notices that it's noon. "Oh! What! Ack! We're three hours late! Now I only have two hours to do the tour! Guess we're going to have to make this one a rushed tour!"

He rushes off, leaving you in the dust.

When you catch up with him, he is in a bathing suit and goggles, standing on the edge of the water. "Well folks, here we go!" He shouts as he jumps into the water.

Jolly Roger Bay Star 2
Those teeth could rip a bathing suit in half...

As you swim along, he gives you introductions. "Hello everybody! This is the Molly that's not it... that Dolly Podger? No, wait, the Jolly Roger Bay tour! I am your host...yeah, so, anyways, this bay is infested with deadly Unagis. But don't worry, our company has specialized equipment meant for deterring any Unagi attacks which would keep you completely safe...buuut since we were hard-pressed on time, I left that back in the base camp. Now let's take a closer look!

A few terrifying near-death experiences later and you are following him into a sunken pirate ship. Your guide turns around, the duct tape holding his torn suit together floating around his body, looking like seaweed. "Don't worry guys, there's no chance of drowning, the chests in here have air bubbles in them." You swim into the ship and he goes on his speech "-and the algae all over the walls indicates that the ship has been here over five hundred years. We do not know why the ship sunk, though we do know that the cause was this gigantic hole in the hull, which may have something to do with the gigantic cannon in the middle of the lake. But we'll check that out later! So-". It is at this point when he realizes that he is out of air, and that the chests were left open by the last tour guide. Probably him, knowing his track record.

I wonder if those rocks fall...

After a few minutes of CPR, he is leading you through an underwater passageway into a secret cave. "This is Ocean Cave. Dug out by pirates, it is where they stored their great treasure. Don't worry, it's completely saaaa-", he says as he is nearly crushed by a falling rock. You slowly creep after him. "-fe. As I was saying, this cave is filled with treasure, but you need to know the right order in which to open them."

Your tour then comes to a shocking conclusion. Of course, your sponsors would be nuts to let you leave without a message! Visit the Jolly Roger Bay, it's completely ssaaaaaaaa-"

Are you the kind of person that likes when the crisp, snowflake-dashed air delicately stings your face as it brushes past you? Have you ever wanted the chance to play with snowmen, and perhaps even dream of constructing one? Or how about being able to jump down chimneys like everybody's beloved Santa Claus? What if you were told that all of this, and much more, can be experienced all at once at one extremely special location? Cool, Cool Mountain is beckoning for you to come visit: this year-round winter wonderland is designed to accommodate all people who just want to have fun with the snowmen and the penguins and creatures that you might not have even known existed!


The skilift is one of many modes of transportation.

One of the first questions that many have posed to the traveling agency is "how exactly does one ascend or descend this mountain?" There are a variety of modes of transportation that have been installed throughout Cool, Cool Mountain to give the visitors the control that they deserve over how they move around the expansive icy paradise. For those who like the traditional method, the slopes of the mountain have been partially surrounded by fence in order to make the trip down and up a little safer. If you still want the excitement of sliding down the mountain, yet would also like to see the interior of the mountain, then there is a slide that goes through the entire base of the mountain (the entrance to which is located at the lodge at the top of the mountain). Bridges have been added for those who would like to have an easier trip over huge gaps that would otherwise be present. A ski lift allows for transportation from the lowest part of the base of the mountain to the highest point of the base. Donations and entrance fees have made it possible to fund research for teleportation, so if you would to get from the top to the bottom (or vice versa) in mere seconds, that would also be an easy way to do so. Finally, there are several cannons that are stationed throughout the mountain, so if you are a daredevil, then this is the perfect mode of transportation for you! In order to appreciate entirety of the magnificence that is Cool, Cool Mountain, though, it is suggested that one makes use of all of these methods. *


The penguins love to race.

As Cool, Cool Mountain has many slopes and slides, many visitors enjoy hopping on a sled and running it down to the base. Alternatively, you can go ahead without a sled and slip away! As there are many penguins in the area, sometimes they like to race on the slide that is located in the lodge (which can always be fun!). ** There is also a Headless Snowman that... loses his head often. Rolling snowballs down the side of the mountain is a fun way to reconstruct his head to give back to him! He also gives out rewards to those that help him, so you could be lucky! *** Playing with snowmen that throw snowballs at you is also a thing, as is playing with the little penguins that wander around. There is also an area set aside for wall kicking to the top of a maze, just for fun.

Overall, there are a lot of activities that one can do in this wonderful snowy land, and sometimes you can even make money from doing them.

Mario outside the mansion in Big Boo's Haunt.

HI, everyone! I’m your now-travel agent, Tucayo! And this month I’ll present you one of the hottest vacation destinies in the entire Marioverse.

You’re probably tired by now of nature. Honestly, who’d like to spend a whole vacation out in the snow or in a sunken ship with a creepy eel lurking around? That is why the best place to go this summer is none other than the only certified resort in the Marioverse, Big Boo Resort! You may know this place by its previous name, Big Boo Haunt, but we changed that name since it wasn’t fitting. Nothing haunts in here, we can guarantee that. Mansions in the Marioverse aren’t haunted, that’s just an old myth spread by equally-old Toads to stop the kids from going there.

Mario and Big Boo on the balcony of the mansion in Big Boo's Haunt.
Our Manager.

You have probably heard certain things about our resort, but I can guarantee most of those are rumors spread by other travel agents in an effort to take tourists from us, in our recently-renovated resort you’ll find 3 stories (and a basement!) full of fun and cultural activities for all the family to enjoy! One of your main concerns would probably be: "why is it locked inside a cage?!" Don’t worry; it’s all to ensure the safety of your family. You know how in other destinations you can fall into oblivion? Well, here that won’t happen, no sir.

Upon your arrival you’ll surely notice there are Boos roaming around. Don’t be scared of them, they are our friendly staff who will ensure you have a great time. Please don’t look at them in the eyes or try to attack them, since that will deliver a rather-creeping message to you.

Big Boo's Haunt Star 4

As I mentioned before, the whole family can have a nice time in here. Let’s assume your son is some piano virtuoso, or maybe you just want to get rid of him for a while, the perfect place to take him is to our music room! Our visitors have rated this room as their favorite place EVER ! You may notice there are some coffins on the room next door. Well, just ignore them and they’ll surely ignore you as well.

Mr. I. will never take his eye off of you.

Or maybe what you want is to relax and to get away from society for a while. In that case, just fall (as in jumping into nothingness) to our basement and follow the sweet sound of music. In Big Boo’s Merry-Go-Round you can just close your eyes and relax while you go round and round. OK, you may occasionally need to evade some fire, but, aside from that, you can just relax.

Just look at all those books


If music isn’t what you really dig, and you don’t want to be in a peaceful state of mind by eternally going round and round, then you can visit our library, which is the largest library in the whole Marioverse. You can tell the books really want to be read, they’ll even fly in a friendly fashion straight to you. Or maybe you are deeply entertained by running in circles; well, Mr I. would definitely love to see you do that. So what are you waiting for, book your vacations now and have a summer you'll always remember. Or at least you'll remember the Merry-Go-Round song, that's for sure.

TG mrmole.png

This is Mr. Montravail Mole.

Mr. Mole, like so many citizens, is an average member of the working class. Day in, day out, at 5AM sharp, the alarm clock rips him out of a lousy sleep. After having some severely under-toasted bread he drags his weary body to work, just so he will be able to support a bunch of ungrateful kids and his loving wife that keeps gazing longingly at the postman whenever she thinks Mr. Mole is not paying attention. Then, after twelve hours of tiring construction work and getting yelled at by the foreman, Mr. Mole, misses the bus home by two minutes and has to walk. When he arrives at home at 8 PM, he slumps down on his bed and is too exhausted to even be depressed.

Mr. Mole is, as we experts tend to say, a poor sucker. He, and many more live lives like this. Possibly even you! But why are all those poor people so tired and miserable?

"Well, I suppose it's because of terrible working conditions and the lack of support from their families", you might think now. Incidentally, this is also what moronic laymen without a medical degree think, which is why you need to leave the thinking to people who won't embarrass themselves, like me.

TG dieguy.png

I am Doctor Phil-Ermanno Die Guy, and I have discovered the cause of being tired after work. It is in the air! Whenever there is a place where people gather to work, that place soon starts to emit stress particles. The stress particles cluster around the oxygen molecules and pollute the air with stress gas. While you are at work, you breathe in the stress gas though your nose (or your mouth, if you're weird) and that makes you feel exhausted. It is all part of a conspiracy thought up by furniture stores to coax you into buying beds.

"Well, gee, I sure wish there was a way to do something about that", Mr. Mole said when I told him the truth. And there is!

Using the best methods that science had to offer, like electric shocks, or putting dynamite in a microwave, I have painstakingly developed a patented treatment for stress, called Hazy Maze Aroma Therapy.

You see, the stress particles are just sort of chilling out in your lungs right now! And they aren't going to leave any time soon, or at least not by themselves. That is why you need to kick them out by force. What we are going to do is lock you up in a labyrinth-like cave system filled with bright, friendly gas.

TG gas1.png
"My eyes are burning horribly, but at least I'm feeling something again!"

Since the harmful particles attach only to oxygen, oxygen is what we need to get rid off. One of our lovely nurses will attend to you and show you some breathing exercises to maximize the effect of the therapy.

And once all the oxygen has been drained from your body by our fun, friendly gas... Congratulations!!! You are now cured and you will immediately notice an extremely relaxing sensation. The relaxation means that all stress has been purged from your body. You might even be so relaxed, you will pass out!

TG gas2.png
Mr. Mole was so relaxed, he didn't want to leave anymore at all.

If all this convinced you to come and try out Hazy Maze Aroma Therapy, then I salute you, because you are a smart and sensible person that respects their body and values their health. If not, then that is of no concern to me, because your limited intellectual capabilities will inevitably lead you to choke while trying to eat stones anyway. I don't waste my talent on lost causes.

Just drop in, I will be waiting for you in my office in Mushroom City. It might be uncertain if your insurance will cover the costs, but you can take comfort in knowing with certainty that they will be completely outrageous.

I'm waiting!

Hey! Hey you! Yes, you! You'd better get over here right now and listen to what I have to say. Yup, you'd better. Or else.

Just some of the attractions you're going to see.

Now, you, my good friend, are going to visit Lethal Lava Land. Why? Because you are, that's why! I've got a perfect day planned out for you. Why a day? Because I doubt you'll last much longer. First up, you're going to visit my friend, Big Bully. This guy has the right idea of life, he's tough and not scared of anything. Exactly the kind of guy you want on your side in a fight. Unfortunately, he's never on your side in a fight. So beware of his charging power, or you'll get knocked into the lava.

After you meet my buddy, you're going to take a trip across the unstable ground floating in the lava lake. I guarantee you, it'll either get your blood pumping or stop it entirely. If the tilting platforms aren't enough to make you want to try it, then the rotating log in the sea of lava will. You'd better be a fast runner...or some very fancy ashes.

Finally, you're going to go on a shell tour of the land. The tour will show such highlights as the enormous volcano in the middle of the land and the delightfully terrifying Bowser picture - all from the top of a 1' green shell floating in lava! Best of luck! Maybe if you're (un)lucky, you'll even get to jump around on the inside of the volcano. Man, what I wouldn't give to be you right now.

Anyways, hup hup, get going, you'll miss your painting. Have fun in the Lethal Lava Land!

Oh yes MG1, that's a wonderful holiday right up until you trip on a Bully and singe your backside. Who needs lava when you could enjoy the relaxing heat and mud baths of the desert? Wouldn't you love a land where you can feel every step you take on the warm sands, and you can always let your guard down? If that sounds like a good time to you, then have I the perfect location; for in the heart of our fair kingdom lies the blissfully warm oasis, Shifting Sand Land, a land of culture, varied scenery, liveliness, and almost certainly nothing that could prove hazardous to your health or wallets!

There's much to be seen in this beautiful state, including sand, and pillars, and… sand, and… mud, which is just liquidated sand… and more sand… But, uhh, it's very unique sand, each grain special and foot-clingy on to its own, a masterful representation of how special each and every one of you are (unless you're poor, in which case go away; we don't need your riffraff)! Err anyway, as I said, we have the glorious four pillars that frame our amazing Pyramid Hotel, and look at the gorgeous ancient markings on them; ignore the crude penmanship, that's just how the uneducated ancients wrote! They're so magical, you can even climb up to the top of them by running straight upwards; go ahead, it's not like our tax insurers care about a bit of scratched paint or chipped stone, ehehehehe (it costs 500 Mushroom coins to see them; 200 extra to climb it. Refunds are not accepted). For a little more action in your holiday activities, try the Tox Box maze, which will surely put a heavy load of excitement on you; it costs 300 to play, no refunds.

"Just one of many ways to enjoy yourselves in Shifting Sand Land! Look at what a great time he's having!"

Our fantastic Pyramid Hotel accommodation houses a marvellous pool in the back – so refreshing it'll feel like you've been transported somewhere else - and state-of-the-art quicksand conveyer belts for swifter travel between rooms and facilities (costs 75 coins to use; don't jump around in it or we'll charge you extra)! The hotel goes a long time back, since the days when Shifting Sand Land was first colonised by disgruntled Koopa pilgrims to escape the oppression of the neighbouring Bob-omb Battlefield. Back then, it was a place of worship – now with the discovery of a huge moustache wax surplus, the nation has become a prosperous and bustling… merchant region run by the wonderful robed ones, now that the koopas have… mysteriously disappeared to faraway badlands. If you hear any groaning, crashing, or blood-curdling screaming coming from the basement, then that's just our lovely managers, Eyerok and Eyerok, and the guests that haven't payed their rent! Don't cheat us, or else.

Don't tuck your wallets away like a paranoid businessman; we guarantee your coins are safe with us, so that feeling that your pockets have become a little lighter is just the desert heat playing tricks on you! I would, however, take care when any bull-faced buzzards hover over your position, as they are likely seeking to steal your very expensive, very economically useful hat and use them to cheat someone out of an famous war veteran's zombie slaying hat. Damn barterers, traitors to good commerce, I say! We've heard a lot of comments about how our affordable and totally reasonable deals are robbery, but don't listen to them for they are manipulative Mushroom Kingdom totalitarians that want to oppress the hard-working lower-class of these mildly windy desert lands! So book your holiday to Shifting Sand Land today, and I guarantee you'll never leave… err, never want to leave! Hope to see you and your shiny valuables here soon!

Beware this fiendish avian; he is dangerous, taloned, and a threat to all hat owners. Proceed with caution.

NOTE: Absolutely no plumbers allowed at any time. That means you, D.

Dire, Dire Docks first area.
Such a beautiful area...

Hello everyone! Smasher here, and today, I will be showing you around Dire, Dire Docks! It's an absolutely beautiful area, and if you love swimming or surfing in the ocean, then this is definitely the place for you.

So, let's start with the large pool that most people who have heard of this place are familiar with. It's the perfect place to take your kids if they enjoy swimming or just looking at the water. There is also a large amount of incredible wildlife here. Some of you may worry about the sharks swimming about, or the whirlpool smack dab in the middle of the pool, but I assure you that as long as you do not bother them, they are perfectly harmless. If you happened to, say, accidentally throw your husband at the shark however, then his safety cannot be guaranteed. lousy wife, throwing me at these hostile creatures, I oughta...

But that's not all there is to this land! If you follow this tunnel, you will find yourself in another large pool. Don't worry about the size of the tunnel, there's nothing to fear.*

*caution: this tunnel is very dangerous and if you drown we are not responsible

Dire, Dire Docks Star 1
The object you see here is nothing more than a myth.

Some of you have probably heard rumors of Bowser keeping his submarine here at one point, and about how some of his minions have been left behind to cause havoc. I'll let you know right now that those rumors are nothing but lies. There was never a submarine here, and that big submarine sized hole is merely a coincidence. It was caused by a...tap dancing accident! Yeah...that's it.

Mario in the mission Pole Jumping for Red Coins at the course Dire, Dire Docks.
Good for exercise, and pretty fun too.

For those who don't care for the water, don't fret, there's a place in the cave where you can relax and watch the rest of the group splash around. This is also the ideal place for an athlete to go to. With poles moving around at the top of the cave, you'll be able to jump back and forth like an acrobat! And since they're above water, if you fall, there's no chance of you getting - *slip*

- hurt. *gulps*

The poor moron then crashes towards the hard ground, breaking his spine

I'm ok I swear

See? Friendly as can be.

And finally, if you go back to the original pool, you'll find a manta swimming around! Don't worry, he really is harmless. And you'll be able to follow him around, swimming through rings to show off your skill. And the best part of this area: there's plenty of treasure here! Those brave enough to swim towards the bottom of the pool while avoiding the sharks and whirlpool will be able to claim some treasure from one of the treasure chests at the bottom.

Is closing, Dire, Dire Docks is a wonderful place to spend a vacation, full of amazement and beaut - why do I feel something breathing down my neck?

Sushi 64.png


Snowman's Land Star 1
The snowman

Do you enjoy winter vacations? Well, Snowman's Land will change your mind is the place for you! Here to tell you about it is...King Whomp!, not really, I burned the mask in order to get rid of all the bad memories it held. But...



Anyway, Snowman's Land is probably famous because it houses the tallest snowman in the Mushroom Kingdom! The entirely safe walkways around the allow you to get a full 352 degree view of the official Gearmo Book of World Records holder! The snowman, however, enjoys his privacy, so his penguin bodyguards won't let you get too close, because they're not fun. I'm sure he'd love it if you walked right in front of his face!

Snowman's Land Star 6
This is your igloo. Of course there's going to furniture when you're there! It just...uh, went for a walk!

Your accommodation will be the luxury igloo, near the freezing pond. There may be some enemies inside when you first get there (or, more likely, anytime you leave and go back in), but don't worry. You can kill them quickly and easily. What's that? You're a pacifist? GET OUT. The igloo is only a short walk, long jump, stomp on a Spindrift and don't land in the lake away from the snowman, so you're not far away from the main attraction. Your table, chairs, bed and entire bathroom will be made of our finest ice.

Apart from the snowman, there's a lot more to do here! On the other side of the level, you'll find a stunning ice sculpture! Nobody's quite sure what it's meant to be, but it's brilliant! Really! You can also ride on your very own Koopa Shell here, so getting across that frozen pond will take seconds. Or minutes. Or hours. Or maybe you won't get across at all...but, erm, anyway, riding on a Koopa shell could also be fun! Sometimes some Goombas wearing hats (this offends me a lot, what game do they think they're from?!) start a campfire, so maybe you could huddle around the campfire with them and tell scary stories. Whatever you do, don't give them your money. They'll just spend it on Fuzzies, probably. What's that? You're a nice person? GET OUT.

Snowman's Land Star 3
Modern art? No, it's just terrible.

If you bring your skis, or your snowboard, or a friend you could use as a snowboard, maybe you could even engage in some exciting winter sports? Still thinking of visiting Dire, Dire Docks? Well, I've heard from an inside source that Smasher is a moron, and he's lying if he says anything good about that dump! So, in conclusion, I hope you're convinced that Snowman's Land is a brilliant vacation spot, and you should all flock here and stand in front of that snowman guy who I've forgotten about for the last two paragraphs.

What's that? You're sick of this gag? YEAH, I'M BORED OF IT TOO, go look at something else. There's definitely no more travel guides beyond this point.

Hey kids, have you ever wanted to go outside and play only to find it's raining so heavily even fish don't want to go out?! Until someone finds an aquaphobic fish, neither have we! Or have you desired to stay indoors to play video games, but are asked to do chores because it's such a clear day today? Then you're a very irresponsible child, you should respect your parents more. But if you don't want to heed that advice, then you should come on down to Wet-Dry World, where so long as you have the money we won't judge you or call your parents for the reward money!

The easiest way to describe Wet-Dry World is that it's almost exactly like living in a bathtub, except without the crippling loneliness and anxiety of knowing your wife is enjoying the night with someone else! I mean, it's like that because the water level actually changes whenever we say it changes, to open up a wide array of new daily activities and games for you, and hopefully not drown any late risers.

Our wonderful Heave Ho waitresses will look after your every need and escort you to all the fine facilities in our humble region. Which always entails hurling you five metres into the air; where you'll land, not even you will know once you've hit your head on the pavement! After all, what injury lawsuit-related problem can't be solved without a convenient concussion? Once you've been escorted to our therapy rooms, just sit down, relax, and feel the thousands upon thousands of highly unstable volts course through your every atom. With any luck, you'll stop feeling any tension or pain after the first three hours of therapy are over!

"I feel ten years younger already, like I no longer exist!"

Other recreational activities include swimming, which I'm sure you'll be doing quite a lot of whether you're in the mood for it or not. Just keep an eye out for Skeeters; those cute little guys have an adorable habit of following you everywhere even when you're submerged, and they'll suffocate you with their puppy-like affections. And because they'll trap you under water and viciously maul you the second you attempt to swim back up. EXTREME.

We have the finest accommodation over in downtown Wet-Dry World just a short ways away from the main hotel grounds, although it does require effort to reach, effort such as shooting yourself out of a cannon at breakneck speeds into what may be the very last feeling you ever have. It's EXTREME, perfect for any child with swag! And if you manage to survive that, we hope you can hold your breath for a couple dozen hours, because your rooms are elevated fairly low and thus almost always flooded. Don't worry, just wake up before 6AM when the water is scheduled to go back up, and you should be fine! Do not sleep in, it will end you.

Oh, and a reminder; don't you dare touch any of the crystals prematurely, for we have one of the strongest and most adorable bodyguards in the entire world, Chuckya! Can your wind-up toy play ring toss over the ledge of a tall building with filthy plumbers as the rings? Of course not! That would be completely absurd! Ours is a precociously designed robot, and it thirsts for blood!

"Now stay away from my wife, you fat moustachioed—[REDACTED]"

So from our rad and very legal evaluation, you'd have to be a mindless conformist mommy's boy slave to society to not want to come to the totally EXTREME and respectable Wet-Dry World! The one place in the world where we encourage you to tear each and every one of your ribs in half; who knows, you may have an arm for a leg and a leg for an eye by the time your trip here is over. How cool would that be? So don't be tame, come to Wet-Dry World and become lame!

Ain't I adorable?

Yo, it's an Ukiki here! Today, I'll show around my home, Tall, Tall Mountain! Smasher was originally supposed to do this, but after the incident at Dire, Dire Docks, he is currently in a coma. No, the shark didn't get him - after getting out of the water he tripped on a pebble and ran into the wall, then somehow fell off a cliff into a pile of broken glass.

Anyway, let's scale this baby. Obviously, we'll start at the bottom by this nice waterfall. In the distance, you can see a few mushrooms. We can't reach these, but not to worry, there's more up ahead that we can reach. It won't take long at all.

Mario reaching for a Red Coin in Tall, Tall Mountain.
Bounce, bounce, bounce...

And here they are! These mushrooms have have managed to grow very tall, and it's easy to access them, allowing anyone who wants to jump on them to...jump on them. So if you want to your kids out of your hair for a while, just send them over to these babies. It's completely safe...he he he...

Don't worry, it won't hurt...much.

A little past those, and you'll find some Monty Moles. They're pretty shy, so if you get near them they'll hide in the ground, They'll also try to throw rocks at you, but don't worry, it'll only cause pain, but that's nothing to be afraid of! You'll also come across an intersection here. You can either continue going straight ahead, or take the shortcut up this wall. The wall requires some skill to climb, so let's continue down the main path.

Jump on a couple of ledges and you'll reach the greatest thing found of this mountain - me! Yep, this the part of the mountain I call home. It's great, I have a Fly Guy friend living nearby (be careful though, he hates people), a tiny lake to swim in, and a house made out of my hat collection, which is actually pretty comfortable. Say, how about you bring your hats so I can add to my collection? I promise, the heat beating down on your head won't be too hot.

The rest of the trip may seem difficult, but it's really not that bad - you'll just have to roll on a log above the above the abyss, dodge explosives and boulders, jump across a large gap, avoid a cloud that tries to blow you away, and walk across thin ledges. Oh, and try not to trip on the gravestones, they're everywhere.

Tall, Tall Mountain Star 4
Can you discover the secret?

It'll all be worth it when you reach the top, however. The view is breathtaking, and the feeling of success you get when getting through something this tough is excellent. Just be sure to keep the Ukiki that is much less smart and handsome than I am off your head, he bites. Oh, and there's also a secret slide located somewhere on the mountain. It's incredibly fun to slide down if you figure out where it is! Try not to fall off though, unless you like death.

That's about it. I hope you consider visiting this amazing mountain. Don't forget to bring your hats! Bye!

Is your life dull and meaningless?

Do you wish to put some joy in your sorry existence?

Do you yearn to take a vacation, but the price is too steep?

Greetings folks, tis I, Koopa the Quick, and do I have a deal for you. Come visit Tiny-Huge Island for just a measly 550 coins. Such a HUGE deal for a tiny price. Why don't I tell you about some of the attractions we have here, though?

First off, you may notice the size of the animals we have here. That's right, we've got the Great Gargantuan Goomba Zoo and Amusement Park. Why not watch Giant Goombas in their natural habitat as they perform daily activities, such as walking. Goombas aren't the only giants we've got in this fine zoo. Although many get the urge to stomp these poor creatures, please refrain from doing so, as they are considered an endangered species in this part of the world. Check out the aquarium for the notorious, but quite tasty, Bubba. They say this fish's stomach is so huge, it can eat an entire person whole, but that's a bunch of poppycock. Lastly, why not drop by the Venus Fire Trap Habitat…just don't get too close to the plants…


Our sandy beaches are the best for miles and our Lakitu waiters are willing to serve you by the shore. I advise you not to swim in the waters between 1pm and 4pm because that's when Bubba goes out to exercise…and he's quite territorial. Enjoy a cool, refreshing drink that you can only get here, made with fresh ingredients that are literally out of this world.


Our little island also has a great hot spring located on the top of the mountain. Watch the beautiful moonlight glisten the water. Be careful where you step in the spring though, as the ground is quite fragile and directly below is the local county jail.

Lastly, by no means, and I mean it, BY NO MEANS, use the Warp Pipes on the island. They are not exits, they are not trash cans, and they are most definitely, not toilets. The pipes have been barred up for a reason. If you, for some unknown reason, feel like leaving the island, take the cannon. If you are caught doing any of these activities, you will be reprimanded and be sent to the jail for the rest of the day. I don't think you'd want to spend your night with Wiggler.


We hope you consider your next vacation with us.

This brochure is sponsored and approved by

Are you often intimidated by the craziness of everyday life?

Do you believe that life is but an extended sequence of events, void of anything like form, or structure?

Is your greatest desire in life to live inside a giant clock?


Well, probably not.

But now you can do it anyway!

TG trips.png

If you feel like your life is throwing every whimsical nonsense it can find at you, and you desperately feel the need to get some rhythm back into your sorry, chaotic existence, then coming and visiting Tick Tock Clock is what you must do. There is nothing more invigorating than hearing the loud and obnoxious ticking of a gigantic clock every. loving. second. Certainly did wonders for my marriage, let me tell you.

TG wife1.png
"Good news, dear! That clanking gear in your head isn't the most annoying sound in the whole world anymore! That means I love you. Please don't take the kids!"

Just come on over, and we will take care of everything you need to know, like how to get to your room. It is easy, really. Just ride on the giant hand and round and round you go until you find it.

TG room.png
This could be yours right there! Curtains cost extra, by the way.

Once you are settled in, you can enjoy any one of Tick Tock Clock's countless stunning attractions (not to be confused with those little electric metal balls that sometimes fly around in here. Those are known for their stunning infractions).

For example, the view from your room is gorgeous! It's true. It is a well-known fact that Tick Tock Clock's scenic beauty offers wonders without end. Emphasis lies on "without end" here, seeing how you will spend most of the time staring down a bottomless pit. That's not all, though. For the ones who are a little more conscious about their health, we have a massage specialist on the top floor. Just take one of the conveniently inconvenient rotating cube staircases.

And once you're done with your tour around the clock, we would be delighted to see you at our great Tick Tock Clock gift shop! What are we saying, you will be there anyway. It is so awkward to come home from a vacation without bringing some tacky tourist merchandise to throw at your relatives, and you know it. Nobody wants to be that guy.

Anyway, we will be there and sell you some fancy things that look like things that belong in a clock. They look that way because they are literally things we took out of the machinery and put price tags on. We figure there is no problem with that, since there is still plenty gears and screws left anyway, and a few less won't make much of a difference. Now don't go ahead and take this as an excuse to grab the stuff that isn't for sale! When we unscrew some stuff from the walkways, it is to support an honorable enterprise. When you do it, it's thievery, and reckless endangerment! Please don't do it.

Also, this is just between you and me, but stay away from the shop at 6 o' clock. Happy hour is at 6, and things get pretty insane during happy hour. Things have been lost, lives have been ruined, and you have been warned.

So all in all, it would be a good idea to buy yourself a trip to the lovely tourist wonderland that is Tick Tock Clock. We will make your vacation worthwhile! And if you book your voyage before 12 o' clock today, we will make your stay so special, it will seem like time is non-existent.

And if all of this sounds horrible and like a big waste of time to you... buy a trip anyway, and give it to someone you don't like! That way, we will all get something out of it!

TG wife2.png
That's how my wife ended up here, heh heh heh... Wait! Does she read this paper?

Hi! I bet you are glad to see me again. If big, luxurious, 5-star resorts aren't your type of vacation, don't worry, because I have come to offer you another hot destination for your summer vacations. And it's the one and only Rainbow Ride!

Rainbow Ride Star 1
Relax as the fresh air fills your lungs.

Now, this place is called Rainbow Ride, not Rainbow Road, and I clarify this because if you have visited some Rainbow Roads, it's highly probable you are now in a fetal position in some dark corner, recalling all the times you surely fell into oblivion. Well, this Rainbow Ride bears no resemblance to the other places with similar names. First of all, you won't drive into nothingness, since our brand new magic carpet has been designed by the best engineers in Star Haven, so you won't drive off course. Now, if you jump off course...

Rainbow Ride Star 3
Walls and coins, it doesn’t get any more fun than this!

It is difficult to get to us, but trust me, it's worth every star you had to get. We have various attractions, but choose wisely, since you won't be able to get back from many of them. On one side, we have triangles and swings. It's every bit as amazing and entertaining as it sounds. Next, we have a labyrinth. Carefully designed so that you have to visit every corner of it, this maze will entertain you for days. Or hours. Who am I trying to fool; you will get bored of this place after a couple of minutes. The good part is that after you visit our labyrinth, you can choose to visit ONE of our top two attractions. And before you get to either of them, the best part of the journey. As you may have seen in the other destination I presented, I love going round and round, and here you have 4 circles that spin at different speeds, so it’s perfect for everything. Or nothing. Or maybe you’ll end up all dizzy, throw up and then fall into the bottomless void.

Rainbow Ride Star 5
Triangles. Well, pyramids actually, but since when has Nintendo cared about geometric bodies?

On one side, we have an airship. You fell in love with them years ago, and now you can relieve all the nostalgia by simply watching the beautiful landscape and letting yourself get carried by the wind. Wait, no, don't get carried too much by the wind.

You better enjoy the view, because you’ll be seeing it forever, considering there is no way out.

If you'd rather feel at home and enjoy some activities by the fire, then the Big House in the Sky is right for you. Once you get here, you'll never be able to leave! Literally! Sit by the fire and get comfortable as the fire warms your heart. And your clothes. And soon after you'll be engulfed in flames, running in circles looking desperately for water. Bad news, we're in the sky.

Uhh... As you can see, it's a wonderful destination if you love triangles, labyrinths, spinning, falling into nothingness and fire! So what are you waiting for, book your vacations now.

And that was it for our Travel Guide (x15!). On behalf of all the 'Shroom Core Staff, thanks for reading this Guide (it was a lengthy read, we know), I hope you enjoyed it and I hope you like the rest of the issue.

Conker's Bad Fur Day Review

by Mario4Ever (talk)

To many gamers of the late 1990’s, the name Conker the Squirrel likely conjures fond memories of racing, flying, and floating across and around Timber’s Island in an attempt to defeat the diabolical Wizpig. It may also conjure slightly less fond memories of having to rescue Conker’s girlfriend, Berri, from the clutches of an acorn while armed with nothing but a slingshot.

These experiences, whatever one thinks of them now, reflected a light-hearted innocence which defined Conker as a kid-friendly character. However, a few months into 2001, that innocence died, and in a sense, so did Conker, for what British developer Rare unleashed upon the world (okay, North America, Europe, and Australia) then was and is anything but kid-friendly. It is a tale of love and loss laden with alcohol abuse, toilet humor, blood and gore, and absurd amounts of money, a tale that enthralled and continues to enthrall gamers in ways Conker’s previous appearances never did, a tale that challenged what was acceptable in video games for its generation, a tale known simply as Conker’s Bad Fur Day.

Within seconds of starting the game, Conker makes it clear that while he’s appearing on the Nintendo 64 for a second time (in what turned out to be Rare’s last game on the console), he’s cut ties with Nintendo as a character. After players are warned that the game is for mature audiences, Conker uses a chainsaw to bisect the iconic “N” and knocks it away before replacing it with and polishing the “Rareware” logo. From there, the events of the game are a series of hilariously bizarre events set in motion when Conker, after a night drinking with his friends at the Cock and Plucker, leaves the bar nauseated, vomits on a passerby’s shoes, and takes a wrong turn on his way home before passing out. He wakes up hung-over in a strange land and meets Birdy, a drunk scarecrow who introduces one of the game’s main mechanics, “Context Sensitive Zones,” large pads activated by pressing the B Button Button that provide Conker with an item he needs to progress through certain areas, such as Alka-Seltzer to manage his hangover or a flamethrower to torch bats, a feature that distinguishes Bad Fur Day from other platformers of the time.

Another major gameplay mechanic involves collecting money. Money in this game is anthropomorphic and has a penchant for using profanity, often calling Conker a “greedy bastard” and other such terms of endearment. It is earned by finding it in alcoves and other hard-to-reach areas or by helping characters with problems they have, and it is needed in order to access portions of the game. Despite this, the world of Bad Fur Day is open to some degree, since the characters’ problems in a given area can be dealt with in any order. However, because it isn’t obvious until encountering them which characters have problems that need solving, and because how to solve these problems isn’t always clear, there are points where players will end up wandering aimlessly in search of something to do.

Health and lives are initially nonexistent, so some players may be disappointed when they are finally introduced. The former consists of six pieces of anti-gravity chocolate, and the latter consists of squirrel tails. Finding the chocolate is preceded by the beginning of the game’s sub-plot. While Conker is trying to find his way home, the Panther King, a milk-loving feline who punishes his minions with duct tape (it’s implied to be unpleasant), needs a fourth leg for the table by his throne, since he breaks his milk glasses whenever he sets them down. Enter Professor von Kripplespac, a legless weasel who’s a bit of a mad scientist and the game’s main antagonist (he also invented the chocolate, though I’ll never understand why. With all of the other random things that go on in this game, it doesn’t surprise me, though). After performing comically complex mathematical calculations, he measures the gap between the broken leg and the floor and determines that it’s a perfect fit for a red squirrel (e.g. Conker). Von Kripplespac then initiates a secret plan to exact revenge on the Panther King for his usage of duct tape as punishment, and its execution, which includes an army of killer teddy bears known as the Tediz, is a major portion of the game.

Lives are more interesting, since they don’t come into play until Conker dies for the first time. In the empty darkness of the afterlife, he meets Gregg the Grim Reaper, an impatient and diminutive robed skeleton who hates cats, since they have so many lives. He informs Conker of the squirrel tails hanging from hooks scattered across the land, swearing and muttering to himself as he does so, before reluctantly letting him go back to the world of the living. From this point on, dying without having any squirrel tails in reserve will result in a game over, and there are several different scenarios that depend on where one is in the game as well as the condition of Conker’s body. If von Kripplespac has not solved the table leg problem, Conker appears in a “missing” notice on the back of a milk carton. If he has, and Conker is in one piece, he is brought to the Panther King’s castle, tied up, and is forced to act as the aforementioned fourth table leg. If he is not (or if he drowned or was burned), he is set at the Panther King’s feet in a burlap sack.

Now that I’ve finished with the background and explaining the game mechanics, it’s time to get into what I like and dislike about Conker’s first real solo adventure. Like those in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time or Ōkami, the characters in Bad Fur Day help define and enrich the overall experience. From a semi-cowardly pitchfork who’s determined to “kick [Conker’s] ass” to a bipolar cog to a giant, opera-singing pile of feces with sweet corn for teeth (whose song, like it or not, is quite catchy, not to mention vulgar, so listener discretion is advised), these characters are guaranteed to get and keep players laughing, or at least mildly amused. Even better are the characters, cutscenes, and game elements based on or taken from iconic movies, such as The Terminator, Saving Private Ryan, The Godfather, and my personal favorite, The Matrix, since seeing that movie’s motion effects in a segment reenacting one of its ending scenes is very cool.

I’ve never known Rare to make a bad game (if it has, I haven’t played it/those yet), and because of that, there’s little I dislike about Bad Fur Day. However, it suffers from the same problem from which Rare’s Donkey Kong games suffer, something I call the “gaudy girlfriend” mechanic, the inclusion of a female character who acts as a love interest to the main protagonist, who is designed as an object to be admired, and who has superficial qualities to the point that players become disgusted with the character, and in this game, Berri fits the bill. She’s obsessed with her body and only talks to people she deems “cute,” and even though this isn’t characteristic of the mechanic, her voice is grating to the ears, and she’s about as useful to gameplay and the plot as Ashley Graham is in Resident Evil 4, so it’s a relief when her role in the game is done (expect only Conker to shed a tear).

Other than that, the game is fantastic and worth playing at least once. Now what I have not yet mentioned? Let’s see…the environments are large, vibrant, and colorful, there are a few references to past Rare games (e.g. Banjo’s head is mounted in the Cock and Plucker), and the game has a decent multiplayer mode featuring seven minigames based in part on mechanics from the single-player mode. On that note, I suppose I should address Bad Fur Day’s remake for the Xbox, Conker: Live and Reloaded, which was released in lieu of a sequel.

Aside from a graphical update, the single-player campaign is almost identical, though some players may not like the fact that it’s much more censored than the original game (it really f***s up that song I mentioned as well as some of the dialogue. Thanks, Microsoft), it’s missing a few challenges, and it’s less refined in the lip-syncing department. However, it has a more extensive multiplayer mode, which I think is Live and Reloaded’s only selling point, so anybody interested in more than multiplayer should get Bad Fur Day if at all possible. It is one of the best experiences on the N64, if not in the history of the industry thus far, and perhaps the magnum opus of Rare as I knew it and Rare as I’ll never forget it.

Anecdote About the Old Days

by Snack (talk)

In 1996, the console wars were at a turning point. With the release of the N64, Nintendo finally entered the fifth generation console sweepstakes against the Sega Saturn and Sony PlayStation. I was there — sort of — and it was at this time I discovered video gaming.

I believe it was some time in 1998 — I would have been five at the time — that we got an N64, along with an extra controller in bright yellow. That one was picked out by my brother, Uniju, and he still has it, albeit in pieces in his Indiana Jones fedora after a scheme to hack the innards of a Wii Classic Controller into it and use it to play N64 Virtual Console games.

Back then, we only owned a few games, if any. We were a little poor, I suppose, although not uncomfortable. The family car was a 1990 minivan we got from my grandparents, which famously had a rear door with the hydraulic cylinder broken; when opened, it needed to be held up by a big wooden stick while we loaded moving boxes or newspapers for my father's paper route into the back. We rented our house from a woman, apparently an Army veteran, who we disliked so much we called her "She-who-must-not-be-named", a la Lord Voldemort. Much of the time, our games were rented too.

Ultimately the games we did have ended up, with the N64 and the controllers, in a brown paper bag that occasionally got dragged out, to our wonder when the N64 still worked after all those years. I remember, many moons ago, somehow getting the idea Paper Mario was a Mario strategy game (Having gotten into Age of Empires and Civilization on the PC) and being told the N64 was too old for us to buy new games for. The contents of the bag were later traded in for an Xbox. Nowadays, the N64 has probably reached "Retro" status, and I still remember faint images of the "90's" (Also including the first few years of the 2000s, up to as late as 2003 or 2004) as the "Good Ole' Days" of watching PBS cartoons, Antiques Roadshow, Nova, and The New Yankee Workshop (Commercial television, in those days, was evil and would melt your mind, or so said my mother).

Games, of course, are the real point of this story; I hadn't played video games before we got the N64, and playing games like Super Mario 64, Diddy Kong Racing, and Yoshi's Story surely contributed to my long standing gaming habit, and certainly to my opinions on the console market. After that, I was always a hardcore Nintendo fan, sneering at Sony and Microsoft's efforts. Even when we got an Xbox, we just used it to play emulated N64 games and watch DVDs and pirated copies of The Mysterious Cities of Gold. For many years I considered Super Mario 64 to be the best game ever made. Even though it greatly shows it's age these days, I still head back to it every few years.

In 1996, along with Nintendo's release of the N64 and Sony's release of their own counterpoint to Mario and Sonic, Crash Bandicoot, Sega was making their last big push for the Saturn. Sega Technical Institute, Sega's American branch responsible for the second and third Sonic the Hedgehog titles as well as Sonic & Knuckles and others worked on the ill-fated Sonic X-treme — an infamous 3D Sonic project for the Saturn which took STI down with it and almost killed one of it's developers — while Sonic Team in Japan worked on Sonic programmer Yuji Naka's magnum opus Nights into Dreams.

While I have never had the opportunity to play Nights, several years back, perhaps around the it's Wii sequel Nights: Journey of Dreams was released, I was discussing the game and my father, as I remember, mentioned playing it for about thirty seconds at Sears way back in late 1996 and being very impressed. While he had grown up playing the likes of Zork on 1980s personal computers, his parents had purchased a Sega Genesis (Which itself may still exist somewhere in their garage), and his younger brothers certainly were big Sonic fans back in the day.

And so, I do wonder what might have happened if instead, perhaps, I could faintly recall on Christmas Day in 1997 unwrapping a Sega Saturn (Perhaps with a copy of that year's big Saturn title, the dreadful Sonic R), instead of my actual faint memory of walking out of Electronics Boutique at the Burlington Mall near Boston (Which still exists today, as a Gamestop) with an N64 and a yellow controller. By the time we, in the real world, purchased a Gamecube and Super Smash Brothers Melee, the Dreamcast which succeeded the Saturn would have been in it's very last days. It was around this time as well, I believe, that we purchased our first DVD player — a hulking piece of machinery with a huge disc tray that could hold and switch three DVDs — so perhaps we would buy, as did so many people, a PlayStation 2.

Or, like Sonic the Hedgehog himself did, we may have moved to the Gamecube. I might've been a Nintendo fan yet.

Mario Quiz

by Phoenix (talk)
  1. In Super Mario Galaxy, the three Green Power Stars are found in what three galaxies?
  2. In Super Mario 64, which two courses have a mission with the same name?
  3. True or False? When Fracktail is encountered for the first time in Super Paper Mario, his eye temporarily changes into the spinning circular icon from the Wii Shop Channel at one point.
  4. In Super Mario Galaxy 2, collecting 240 Power Stars does what?
  5. In Super Mario Galaxy 2, what happens immediately after the player successfully completes a mission in any galaxy while playing as Luigi?
  6. True or False? In Super Mario Sunshine, it's possible for the player to defeat Gooper Blooper all three times without pulling any of his tentacles off.
  7. True or False? F.L.U.D.D. stands for "Flash Liquidizer Ultra Drenching Device".
  8. In Mario Party 8, what does Donkey Kong do if the player lands on a DK Space in DK's Treetop Temple?
  9. In Super Mario Sunshine, after Yoshi has turned an enemy into a platform by spraying it with pink juice, in what direction does the platform begin to move?
  10. True or False? In Super Mario 64, the Vanish Cap allows Mario to walk through any wall in the game.

Bonus: True or False? During the events of Banjo-Tooie, Kazooie suggests the idea of calling Mario to unclog a talking toilet.

Non-Mario Quiz

by Post-Damage Invincibility (talk)
Epona Link Sticker.png

No Mario Games or Questions N64 Quiz

Mario is not welcome in any of the questions for this N64 quiz!

  1. Name the N64 game where the following line is from: Sorry to jet, but we're in a hurry!"
  2. From Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire, on what planet did Dash Rendar tangle with the bounty hunter droid, IG-88?
  3. How many years did Link fall asleep in Ocarina of Time?
  4. Name the sentient Christmas lights from Banjo-Kazooie.
  5. In Banjo-Tooie, we learned at the end of the game that Gruntilda's last name was what?

There you have it, a non-Mario quiz. Not something I usually do, but great games nonetheless.

Theoretical Macroevolution of the Koopas

by Walkazo (talk)

One of the things I've always loved about the Mario series is how it leaves so much to the imagination. You can spend endless hours trying to reconcile all the conflicting information presented to us by creators who obviously don't think a happy-go-lucky series like Mario needs to bother with consistency, but to me, that sort of problem solving is just as fun as the games themselves. Yeah, I know, I'm weird - and it gets weirder. While I started out simply wanting to mash all the games and their worlds together into one timeline and one master map, my real passion isn't history or cartography: it's science. At first, you wouldn't think that science has much business with games based on a portly plumber who eats mushrooms to grow giant, shoots fireballs from his hands, and jumps three times his height (when he's not simply using a raccoon tail to fly), but hey, in the Mushroom Kingdom, who says you can't have magic and science?

My favourite branch of science is zoology, which lends itself quite handily to the vast array of species found in the Mario series. In particular, I focus on the Koopas - their diversity is fascinating, especially if you think outside the box and include Clubbas, Spinies and Buzzy Beetles. It's always made me wonder how they're related, and by extension, how they evolved - and from what. Of course, taxonomy is considered to be one of the drearier breeds of biology even amongst zoologists, so rather than bore you all with a detailed analysis of the Koopa family tree, I've decided to stick with the macroevolutonary half of the equation and do a quick overview of where I think Koopas in general came from. But don't let the jargon scare you off: macroevolution is the least nitty-gritty of all the evolutionary subjects (in my opinion), and I'm not about to bring stuff like gene flow, allopatric speciation or the Red Queen into a discussion about Mario. Just some good old speculation about the enemies we know and love.

Everything You Know is Wrong

An image for Walkazo's Guest Section for July 2012.
Children's literature: making herpetologists everywhere weep.

First of all, Koopas are not turtles. And I don't mean that in the "well, they live on land so they're more like tortoises" sense - I mean it in the "there is no possible way these guys are or evolved from turtles" sense. Why? Well, the most obvious difference is that various Koopa species can remove their shells and still function, whereas a turtle shell includes both its spine and ribs, all fused together with a set of bony dermal plates. If Koopa shells were turtle shells, then de-shelling a Koopa would be akin to pulling someone out of their own ribcage. This would not end well. One could argue that the turtles that gave rise to the Koopas could have evolved so that their vertebrae and ribs are free-floating again, while the dermal plates remain, but you don't evolve that degree of specialization and then go back. Yes, in evolution, certain traits are gained and lost and regained sometimes, but not to this extent, especially when you consider all the other unique aspects of turtle physiology. Even their breathing is specialized: since they can't move their ribs anymore, they use their throat, gut muscles and even the muscles attached to their legs as a set of bellows to pump air in and out. Koopas don't do this: as you can see in many of the RPG sprites, Bowser and the other Koopas inhale and exhale like the rest of us.

But wait, you say: the games are always calling the Koopas "turtles", and messy biology aside, they do look pretty similar. Two words: convergent evolution. Plenty of things evolve to look similar, for example, glass lizards may be legless reptiles, but they're not snakes; harmless hoverflies purposefully evolved to look like stinger-bearing bees and wasps; and Glyptodon looks a lot like a turtle too, but it's actually an ancient relative of the armadillos. Given the benefits of a shell, it's no wonder they've popped up multiple times in both real life and the Mushroom World. And as for the "turtle" stuff, there's lots of completely unrelated animals being called the same thing in real life. European Blackbirds aren't related to American blackbirds, but to American Robins, which, in turn, aren't related to European Robins at all - those are a kind of Old World flycatcher (not to be confused with the flycatchers you get in North America, of course). And earthworms, tapeworms and ribbon worms are all long, limbless "worms", but we're more closely related to fish than they are to each other. With real life science that screwy, it's not surprising that the fictional characters have trouble with their nomenclature too.

Koopa Creation

Okay, so Koopas aren't turtles - but then what are they? Well, first of all you need to identify the first Koopa and work backwards from there. Most people assume that Shellcreepers were the first Koopas since they, well, came first, but I disagree. The main issue is the old removable shell problem we see in both Shellcreepers and the next, better-known evolutionary step: the Koopa Troopas (the four-legged kind, not the two-legged ones - which are a different species, even though they're called the same thing in the games, but I digress). You think turtle shells are specialized? Detachable Koopa shells are ten times crazier: that kinda thing would take time to evolve - there's no way Koopas started out with 'em. It'd also be a lot harder to go from a quadrupedal lifestyle to bipedalism when you've got a heavy shell pushing down on you, whereas it's a lot more understandable if certain two-legged Koopas dropped to all fours from time to time. Plus there's the fact that, shells aside, Koopa Troopas are pretty plain, whereas the other species have a myriad of special powers, from firebreath to walking on the ceiling and everything in between. Yeah, all those could have evolved multiple times, and I certainly can't make a perfect Koopa family tree without some powers appearing and disappearing, but it's still more plausible if the common ancestor of the Koopas had the skills right from the start, and they just wound up dormant in different descendents.

An image for Walkazo's Guest Section for July 2012.
Bowser clearly stole his look from Gastonia, a relative of Ankylosaurus.

And that brings us to the most powerful Koopa of 'em all: Bowser. He has firebreath, lighting and teleportation powers, shockwave-inducing Ground Pounds, a poisonous bite, black magic, and the ability to pull massive amounts of hammers out of nowhere - and that's not even including his variable size and other extra powers given to him by objects like the Grand Star, his transformative abilities in the anime movie, or the fact that he can have all his flesh burned off by lava and come back for more. If you consider his kids too, you can add Flutter Jumping, limb-stretching, Sonic Roars, both high-speed spinning and double team-like attacks, and the ability to climb vertical walls and walk on the ceiling to the list of mad skills. Not too shabby for a species Nintendo hasn't even officially named yet. It's also pretty representative of what Koopas as a whole are capable of, minus a couple things like changing colours, turning invisible, pulling spiked balls out of your mouth, or swapping your arms for wings, but like the removable shell stuff, those kind of specializations would have come later. And, while some games imply that Bowser's own shell is removable, the only time we actually see this is in the MS-DOS version of Mario is Missing! - but that also had the tail being green and part of the shell, and even though it only covered Bowser's back, taking it off miraculously made boxer shorts appear in front too, and really, this is the game that brought us Weegee, so how much faith are we seriously going to put in its science?

Personally, I say shell-removing doesn't happen until we get down to the Koopa Troopas, with the Strikers being early examples. I've got a whole complex theory about how the shell removal arose, but I'll make this as fast as possible... Basically, the neural spines of the vertebrae extended upwards and fused with bony plates on the skin (think Spinosaurus meets Ankylosaurus), and similar plating eventually curved back down around the body forming the plastron part of the shell. The hollow between that plates and the ribcage became a reservoir for hammerspace energy, with the bony connection with the spine and all the fleshy bits receding, until eventually the only connection is energy itself. The Strikers can break it momentarily to throw their shell and materialize a new one, and Koopa Troopas have gotten to the point where their energy can recede inside their body, allowing them to exist without one indefinitely. The shell stuff isn't the only change that happens, of course, but as I said earlier, this article isn't about the evolution within the Koopa family - all you really need to take away from all this is that something like Bowser was the first "Koopa".

Beta Bowser?

An image for Walkazo's Guest Section for July 2012.
Start with inspiration from an anime ox, throw in the name of a Korean soup and mix it all up with the realization that the leader of the turtles should also be a turtle, and voila: you've got yourself a Koopa.

With that finally out of the way, we move on to the question of where Bowser's species came from. Bowser himself was actually inspired by an anime ox character, and his shell was only added later on in development because one of the developers realized it made little sense to have a cow as the turtle king. And back then they were a lot more turtley: not including the non-Koopa Troop Shellcreepers from Mario Bros., de-shelling wasn't introduced until Super Mario World, and the Super Mario Bros. Koopa Troopas were still four-legged as far as the sprites went. The Hammer Bros. were bipeds, however, and unlike their cousins, sported bird-like beaks, which might have been because Shellcreepers originally had beaks, but might also be a reference to another fictional, beaked, shelled biped: the Kappa.

An image for Walkazo's Guest Section for July 2012.
A "Kappa Bro."

Lots of Mario fans assume that the Kappas were the inspiration for the Koopa name, but in Japan, the turtle soldiers and their kingdom aren't called "Koopas" at all: only the king goes by that, having been named after a kind of Korean soup. (As an aside, his English name origin is a lot less concrete. One theory is that he's named after Jon "Bowzer" Bauman of the rock band Sha Na Na, like how the Koopalings were later named after musicians, but I prefer the hypothesis is that it comes from a kind of fuel tanker - large, round and potentially fiery, just like the Koopa King.) Soup is even more useless to us than the Shellcreeper stuff as far as trying to build on real life development goes, but while both the design inspirations and etymology of the Koopas prove to be a dead-end, the Kappa connection is going in the right direction: we're just barking up the wrong myth.

Here There be Dragons

At least one add for Super Mario Bros. spoke of "conquering dragons", and y'know what? It was right. Aside from that, nothing official calls him a dragon, but he does breathe fire. Not convinced yet? Then I direct your attention to the Koopa that's not a Koopa: Yoshi. Yes, as evidenced by that shell on his back (I'm sorry, but saddles are not grown, and they are not dome-shaped), Yoshi was originally envisioned as a kind of benevolent Koopa, and he also has a few draconian traits too (most noticeably in his Super Dragon Final Smash). I'm not saying Yoshis are long-lost Koopas, but I do think they're at least a distant cousin, and while I won't argue against Yoshi being a dinosaur, I challenge the notion some people have that he can't be a dragon too (making Koopas a member of both classifications as well). In real life, dinosaur fossils were confused for dragon bones at least a couple times, and now they're naming all sorts of those new Chinese dinos after dragons (and also this guy, the "Dragon King of Hogwarts"). Of course, scientists know better than to get the two confused, but when you're looking at fictional dinosaurs, many of whom breathe fire (i.e. Yoshis, Birdos, Dino-Torches and Reznors), the fact that the lines are getting blurry is quite understandable.

Artwork of Hooktail from Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door

So we've now established that Shellcreepers weren't the first Koopas, Bowser's species was, and they didn't come from turtles, they came from dragons, which in turn are a kind of dinosaur. But which dinosaur? Given the vast diversity of Mario dragons (including Koopas, Yoshis and other dragonish dinos), there's no way they came from any one dinosaur. Firebreath and flight are cheap in the Mushroom World: convergent evolution involving those powers happens all across the board, so it's more likely that different dinos developed dragon tendencies than one firebreathing breed giving rise to everything from Rexes to Blarggs to the TTYD 'Tail family. Unfortunately, this is when the solid information dries up: there are no dragons or even dinosaurs in the Mario games that remotely resemble Bowser and the Koopas. But macroevolutionary biologists are no strangers to big gaping holes in the fossil record - there are ways around them, and our way is a movie most people wish never saw the light of day: the Super Mario Bros. live action film.

The Lizard King

President Koopa in the Super Mario Bros. film.
Koopa's de-evolution gun makes evolution canon.

The idea that dinosaurs could evolve into things that look exactly like humans is totally unrealistic, but at least this movie gives us some official material to back up the Koopas-are-dinosaurs idea. It also gives us an ancestor for ol' Koopa: the "lizard king" himself, Tyrannosaurus rex. Too bad that doesn't actually work - and for reasons similar to the turtle problem. T. rex may not have developed a highly specialized carapace and a unique internal organ design to go with it, but by the time this species arose, the forelimbs of its line had degenerated pretty severely. Its arms were pretty strong, but they were also inflexible and teeny compared to the overall body size, and it's unlikely that the two-fingered hand could give rise to the human-like Koopa limbs: once you lose a toe, you don't typically grow it back with new and improved opposable action. So, while T. rex is a good starting point, for the Koopa ancestor, we need to go back further.

Of course, this is easier said than done, since there's a bit of a Catch-22 in the Tyrannosaur family: the higher up you get, the more fingers you find, but the dinosaurs get smaller too. But all is not lost: the theropods were a diverse bunch, and while we have to jump ship completely from the Tyrannosaur line, other families have plenty of promising possibilities. Allosaurus is probably the quickest option to come to mind, since it's basically a slightly smaller cousin of T. rex with longer arms - but only three fingers. Another family gives us Acrocanthosaurus, which is large and sports robust limbs, plus, its neural spines are already elongating, but once again, only three fingers. And then there's Ceratosaurus: it's not overly large, its neural spines aren't particularly tall, and its forelimbs are short, if muscular, but it does have four fingers, and the bony deposits in the skin running down its back could be the precursor to the armour plating that becomes Koopa shells, while the weird lumps on its head just need to move around a bit to give you the start of Bowser's oxen horns.

An image for Walkazo's Guest Section for July 2012.
D'aww, isn't he cute? Yet somehow, I doubt they'll make him the star of Jurassic Park IV.

Admittedly, while it's the closest match I've found so far, Ceratosaurus is far from perfect. There have been plenty of times I've even considered scrapping the four-finger limitation and simply saying the Koopa ancestor had three fingers and regained a fourth as its thumb (polydactyly is a pretty well-documented mutation, after all - just ask Inigo Montoya). That'd certainly make the search a lot easier, but then again, where's the fun in cutting corners? I've loved dinosaurs even longer than Mario and could spend hours digging through Wikipedia for new species - it is a bit frustrating when you realize a perfect Koopa ancestor is actually an artist's impression and the only fossils they have of it are a couple leg bones, but that could easily change by the next read-through as more and more fossils are unearthed, expanding our knowledge and forever changing how we think of these ancient creatures. The discovery of Yutyrannus earlier this year, was a game-changer, for example, not only because its large size and three-fingered hands were unheard of in the Tyrannosaur line (as I mentioned earlier), but because the thing's covered in feathers from head to toe. Now scientists are wondering if Tyrannosaurus rex was also a big fuzzball, thereby ruining the mental images of children's favourite man-eating monster forever - and also providing a possible origin for Koopa hair, if I may play devil's advocate here. (And while we're at it, how 'bout them feathery Paratroopa wings?)

An image for Walkazo's Guest Section for July 2012.
A quick sketch of what the Koopa ancestor could have looked like. It's got spikes, horns, a snout, flexible arms and ribbed belly scutes like Bowser's species, with bony plates starting to form what will eventually be the rim of a shell. Along with its firebreath, the wings are a holdover from its dragon roots, but like species to come, they're feathered and sprout above the border of the proto-shell. It's also got feathers on its head and neck like the theropod dinosaurs, as well as their digitigrade feet - for now.

So who knows - with new species being discovered all the time, maybe the perfect Koopa ancestor simply hasn't been dug up yet. And with Nintendo still churning out new Mario games, there will always be a supply of new Koopas to add further down the evolutionary line too. Macroevolution may be a real life field of study, but as you can see, it can be applied to both real and fictional dinosaurs alike. I certainly find both halves of the equation to be quite engrossing, and while I doubt anyone's quite at my level of weirdness, I hope I at least gave you some idea of how interesting this stuff can be - whether it's solving a paleontological puzzle, or a pixelated one.

Dangan Ronpa Explained

by TheGreatBlockyBoo (talk)

Hello, 'Shroom readers! I'm TheGreatBlockyBoo (aka Superchao), bringing you a special guest section. As those of you who frequent the forums likely noticed, myself and several other people got name changes around a month and a half ago to a bunch of different Japanese names. These characters originate from the japanese-only game Dangan Ronpa.

"But Blocky", you may ask, "what is Dangan Ronpa and where do I find out more about it?" Well, I'm glad I wrote that you asked that, because I have all the answers right here.

What Is Dangan Ronpa?

Dangan Ronpa (lit. something like "Bullet Rebuttal") is a Japanese-only murder mystery game that came out in December 2010 for the PSP. Our protagonist is Makoto Naegi, who was chosen to attend the super-prestigious and super-exclusive "Hope's Peak Academy", as a person of "Super High-School Level Good Luck" (i.e. he was chosen randomly). Every character in this game is Super High-School Level - from a baseball player to an idol to a gang leader, they all excel in some field.

When Naegi steps into the school, however, he's suddenly knocked out by a mysterious force. Waking up in a classroom, Naegi soon finds that the other fourteen members of this year's class are all in the same predicament - and the school has turned into a prison, with metal plates over every window and a giant vault-style locked door in place of the entrance that Naegi had just walked though.

It turns out that they've all been locked in the school by this half-white, half-black bear, named Monobear. Monobear declares that they have two choices: either they live in the school forever... or they "graduate" by killing someone and not being caught. When the first murder case happens, Naegi is forced into the role of detective, and it falls on him to solve the mystery behind each death.

But When Did It Get Popular?

In December of last year, the Something Awful user orenroren created a Let's Play of this game in their LP forum. Since the game was unlikely to ever be localized, orenroren decided to show it off via playing through it and translating it. The LP became rather popular due to the game's interesting cast of characters as well as the premise, and pretty soon it began to spread to outside of the SA forum.

The LP itself really picked up during chapter 2 of the game - the first chapter took about 45 pages at the default, but by the end of the second chapter the thread was over 200 pages long. Now in chapter 4, the thread has already gotten past 350 pages, far more than most Let Plays ever get close to.

But Why Is It Popular?

To answer this question, I polled various members of the wiki community who are regular readers of Dangan Ronpa. Their responses are published here.

<Salsa> i think the characters are interesting
<Salsa> also the plot
<Salsa> i mean im usually really interested to see what comes next

<Crocodile_Dippy> For one, it's part of the murder mystery genre, the only reasonable application of the horrendously pointless visual novel genre. But I enjoy the unique story, colourful cast of characters, interesting cases, and how much of it doesn't really feel like the standard motions of an anime-esque Japanese video game.
<Crocodile_Dippy> The LP is genuinely well-done and beautifully translated, especially orenronen's explanation of Japanese culture

<Prims> i think the concept is intriguing and the characters are interesting enough to make it solid
<Prims> i guess?
<Prims> also i like stories that make me despair as long as they're not -complete- downers
<Prims> more like love-hate than like

<Anton{Hypnotoad}> it's relatively easy to understand what's going on
<Anton{Hypnotoad}> and discuss with people
<Anton{Hypnotoad}> I like the characters

<Crash> For one it's entertaining, the plot is intriguing, and other stuff, why?

<tfp> i dunno its unique
<tfp> ive never read a vn like this
<tfp> this is my second vn

<Edofenrir> its well-written and enjoyable

<Bop1996> Well, I find the plot genuinely interesting, the characterization always keeps me on my toes, the music to be excellent, the gameplay diverse, and the overall package to be very entertaining.

<MrConcreteDonkey> well, i find the story interesting and engaging and i like most of the characters (who are all different)

Mario4Ever: I think that as a video game, it has some unique elements that some would not think would work well until actually seen or experienced, but as something I've been reading/watching (when videos are available in updates), it has a great story, and it has a great story because of its characters, who are really fleshed-out (rather than stock characters whose only function in the story is to die. Even if characters do die, they contribute much more to the story) and have varied and entertaining personalities, which really shine when they interact with one another.
They make me want to keep reading to see what happens to them, to see who ends up being the culprit, who dies, and what sort of crazy shit Monobear's going to pull because it feels like that I'm not just an observer. It feels like I'm experiencing Hope's Peak alongside the characters. There's a saying I'm sure you've heard before: "The less you think about the hunk of plastic in your hands, the better the game is." Of course, here, it's not plastic but a computer screen, but the sentiment's the same.

In summary, it seems the greatest strength of the game is the characters (as well as the plot). The game's developer said that his goal was to make a murder mystery that makes you care about the victims and the killers, and it seems he has succeeded admirably.

The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess Review

by Bop1996 (talk)

Hello everyone, my name is Bop1996. I was asked by the Core 'Shroom Staff to do something for this very special issue of The 'Shroom, so here I am. Upon realizing that I needed to think of an idea before actually writing anything, I racked my brains for original ideas. Finding no ideas that would amuse more than fifteen people, I decided to do something entirely unoriginal and review a game. Of course, I didn't want to do a game someone had already done, which ruled out my automatic first choice, Chrono Trigger. I pored over many old 'Shroom issues and made my decision: The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess.

Twilight Princess was released in late 2006 for the Wii and Gamecube. I'll be reviewing the Wii version, which comes included with complimentary pointer and motion controls and Link’s right-handedness and all that. With that over, let's get on to the review.

The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess starts out in typical Zelda fashion; Link is a young boy in a small village, with no parentage to speak of and plenty of villagers ready to ask for and lend a helping hand. Within a few hours of gameplay, Link's already collected his first sword, some great evil menaces the world, Link is thrown into the thick of it, etc. This reiteration of the Zelda mythos comes free included with a rather clumsy and poorly-done alternate form, a new companion, an extremely large Hyrule Field, and a cast of villains that can't seem to make up its mind as to who the boss truly is.

The gameplay is still the basic formula that originated in Ocarina of Time, with a few new features added to make it feel less like they were still riding off the same thing Ocarina of Time did. The foremost of these is the Wii motion controls, which were likely added late in the game’s developmental cycle, and certainly seemed that way. One of the most prominent areas that was given a motion control makeover was sword fighting. A simple shake of the Wii remote takes care of most of Link’s basic combat needs, which lends a rather lethargic rhythm to the game’s basic combat. Link's basic sword fighting moves can be augmented by seven "Hidden Skills", six of which are activated by a "Howling Stone", which functions as the game’s musical aspect, except with much less regularity and a lot less actual musicality. These skills are only useful as a convenience most of the time, seeing as how only one is required, and even it is not strictly necessary except for one fight. The average enemy encounter is managed as simply as Z-targeting the enemy and shaking the remote a few times, which makes for combat as easy as it is dull.

The game's items are, for the first half of the game, fairly typical Zelda fare: Bombs, the Bow and Arrow, the Boomerang, et al. These remain for the most part unchanged from their uses in previous games. However, during the second half of the game, the developers managed to pull out a whole host of new items; a portable roller coaster, a mace and chain, mind control for lifeless statues, and a new type of Hookshot that allows Link to cling from wall to wall like Spiderman. While there were some inventive uses of these new items in their parent dungeons, there were little to no interesting things to do with them outside their dungeons, which greatly damaged the game's in-between-temple questing and puzzle-solving. Of course, even if there had been actual things to do with the items outside their temples, this would have failed to redeem the game’s iteration of Hyrule field, which consisted of a giant field with approximately one interesting object you didn’t really need for about five minutes of foot travel, which made for a lot of rather boring treks around a large open area with nothing to do but twiddle your thumbs and rid yourself of the occasional bird with some fancy horse-riding skills.

Another prominent feature is the wolf form, which of course plays a major part in the game's plot as well. Once the game reaches a certain point, Link is forced to visit three provinces of Hyrule in sequential order as a wolf so he can clear a giant curtain of Twilight from the area. These sections also come free with the game's token companion - in this case, a scantily-clad imp named Midna from the race of the people who brought about the very stuff you were trying to banish in the first place - who constantly rides Link down (in more ways than one) and generally treats him like dirt for the entire first half of the game. The wolf form comes included with some very wild and jerky basic attacks with the Wii Remote; a special area of effect attack that is literally useful in only one situation, albeit a laboriously repeated and unnecessary situation; heightened senses that allow him to see things he couldn't normally see, such as invisible enemies, quest-specific scents, and holes he can dig up for a few Rupees here and there; and a special lunge move that allows Link to scale cliffs in certain situations. The wolf form was generally unpleasant and useless after the first half of the game except for the sections where the developers felt the need to force you to use the wolf form to remind you that they put all that work into designing it, which was terribly off-putting in the middle of the few brief periods of time the game actually seemed to be trying to do a good job.

The game also comes with its fair share of sidequests. There are bottles, quiver upgrades and the like, people to talk to, heart pieces to collect, very annoying bugs to catch, and the always-necessary "collect so-and-so number of these and I'll give you a reward" guy. These comprise a somewhat engaging diversion from the game’s plot, but were nothing special.

That brings me to the plot, which was by far my least favorite aspect of the game. The plot gets to the "some evil is menacing the land and you alone can save it, Link" trope fairly quickly, and carries this as the primary driving force for the vast majority of the game. Link does start out as being somewhat motivated to save his childhood friends from the starting village, but that is quickly revealed to just be a cover for the same old plot recycled into another storyline. However, the game does pull out one major twist mid-game; Zant, he of the creepy mask and poor dental hygiene, has really just been a puppet for the series' mainstay villain, Ganondorf, who is somehow alive for the umpteenth time to get his revenge on the one land that consistently spawns a young teenage boy to defeat him. This cop-out pretty much dooms whatever good thing could have come out of the storyline, ruining the entire set-up they'd given Zant as the main villain and tacking on an entire extra dungeon at the end just to prove their point. The developers also decided to give Midna a long backstory, which involves a lot of flashback sequences and things. These did a fairly good job of characterizing her, but really disrupted the flow of the game in places. There were also a few nice scenes with Link’s child friends that actually did make me feel glad I took the time to save them. These moments, however, were few and far between, and came at the cost of a good deal of cheap padding in most of those occasions. These brief high points were not sufficient to make up for the overall lack of plot direction and purpose.

It wasn't all negative, however. The game did admittedly manage to get across its point fairly well at a few points, and some of the puzzles with the Spinner and Double Clawshots were honestly a good deal of fun. The biggest problem Twilight Princess had was that it tried so hard to be this adventure of epic proportions, only to fill giant portions of the game with so much padding, such as a map screen with large fields with nothing of interest except a few invisible sidequest enemies, a few insects, maybe a heart piece or two, and copious amounts of cannon fodder enemies that served no other purpose but to aggravate you on the long, boring treks through otherwise bland locales. It had a chance to make things better during the game’s second half, but opted to use the same strategy and made exactly the same mistakes. It tried desperately to have bosses of gigantic proportions, with almost every one of them dwarfing Link in size, only to have every single one succumb to the inevitable formula of "temple item to stun, sword to damage, repeat", with only two bosses out of the entire cast even being worth designing. It tried very hard to have a more massive story than before, but its lack of focused plot ruined whatever momentum it had, and left the entire story with a depressing lack of meaning.

In the end, despite the game's few bright spots, the lack of a unified goal for the story, mostly bland gameplay, a great amount of empty spaces that served no purpose except to hide a sidequest object, and general lack of scope did it in. I've had much better experiences for one-tenth the cost, and so should you.

Nintendo 64 Memories

by QuizmoManiac (talk)

Sometime in June (I think), Dippy asked me to write a section for the ‘Shroom. I promptly accepted, and then forgot about it until a day before it was due two days after it was due 4 days late two weeks late 4 days late (Author’s note: Don’t believe this idiot, I didn’t forget about it).
For me, the N64 is a bunch of hazy memories of shredding my hands in Mario Party, beating my sister at Diddy Kong Racing, and being too scared to go into the basement of the castle in Super Mario 64. The N64 was the system I grew up with (along with the Gameboy colour). It will always have a special place in my heart, even though most of the games that we owned were borrowed from my older brother’s friend and never returned. The N64 was the only system my Dad ever enjoyed playing, and the only console that sent me to the school nurse.
Today my N64 is somewhere in the basement (I think). I served me and my family for years on end and for that it is my favourite console today. An allstar lineup of games that brought all the boys to the yard were the worlds I spent many a day lost in. My games ranged from Pokemon Stadium 2 to Banjo-Kazooie (which I never liked *cough* Smasher *cough*).
Editors Note: At this point, the author went into a coma from which he has not yet recovered. The rest of this article will be auctioned off for advertising space.
Oh man, what do I do now? I’m completely out of ideas. Maybe I can fill the rest with pointless filler and no one will notice! Authors do it all the time! This reminds me of the time I was down in New Mexico hunting ducks. Now, of course, I didn’t have a Visa or a passport, so crossing the border was quite a challenge. So, I took some advice from my cousin Rodriguez, and bought a hang glider. So, I purchased a hang glider from Rooney’s Sporting goods store. Now, a hang glider costs about eight hundred dollars, but I only had sixty eight ninety nine. Luckily, I pulled some strings with Oprah Winfrey to get a deal on hang gliders. After that, I realized that squirrel season was over and that I’d have to try again next year.
If you’ve made it this far, something is wrong with you. I really am not very interesting, so I can’t comprehend how you would be willing to read four hundred and forty one words of me ranting. Unfortunately, if you’re reading this, you’ve wasted too much of your valuable life on me, and cannot be saved. I hope you’ll realize that the rest of this article is just going to be me making dumb jokes and stuff. I wouldn’t even read it if I were you. You probably will though, so I’ll stop you the only way I can, by ending this right now.

Ask Nintendo 64 Characters

by Count Bonsula (talk)

Bonsula : Hello everybody! Welcome to the first and only audition of “Ask Nintendo 64 Characters”! I know, very creative title, isn’t it? Anyway, I’m sure every single one of you know what a Nintendo 64 is. It was one of the most successful consoles in history of paradox space gaming. Without further ado, I give you our two guests, Banjo and Kazoo-

Shroom 64 001.jpg

. Bonsula: (Hey Barney cut to commercials, now!)
Barney:(Yes, sir.)

Shroom 64 002.jpg

Bonsula:Sorry about that everyone. As I was saying, I give you, Banjo and Kazooie!

Shroom 64 003.jpg

Bonsula:Hello there you two! How are you doing?
Kazooie: Better than you, smellyfangs.
Banjo: Kazooie! We’re doing great, Mr. Skullvampire.
Bonsula: So why don’t you tell us about your great adventures?
Kazooie: Well there was that one time where we built vehicles to ex-
Bonsula: NO NOT THAT ONE!!!!!
Banjo: Kazooie he said “great” adventures!
Kazooie: Oh alright. Well there was that one time where we had to rescue Banjo’s sister from Gruntilda, the evil witch.
Bonsula: Oh yeah what happened to Tooty, anyway?
Banjo: You don’t wanna know.
Bonsula: Oh come on! Every Banjo-Kazooie fan wants to know!
Kazooie: Please shut your trap or else we’re going Wonderwing on your ar-
Banjo: Kazooie! But yeah, we’re not telling anyone what happened.
Bonsula: Okay okay fine. So you had to rescue Tooty. Tell us how you did that.
Banjo: Well, when we heard the terrible news from Bottles, we headed straight for Grunty’s Lair. It turns out we had to collect these jigsaw pieces called Jiggies and musical notes throughout levels to advance. We eventually reached Grunty and we had to play her silly quiz game thingy to save my sister. We won, Tooty was saved and then we went to the roof to battle Grunty. And we won!
Bonsula: I see.
Kazooie: Yeah but two years later she came back in skeleton form, killed goggles boy and started turning people into zombies with a weird machine. So we had to collect jiggies yet again, reached Cauldron Keep, kicked her butt and played football with her skull.
Bonsula: Wonderful. So do you guys have hobbies?
Banjo: I like making umbrellas!
Kazooie: I like collecting heads.
Kazooie: What?
Bonsula: Er, nothing. Anyway, time to wrap up today’s interview! Any last words?
Banjo: Well, thanks a lot Mr. Bonsula. I feel honored to be on this show! And me and Kazooie would really like to go on another crazy adventure that doesn’t involve vehicles and empty areas!
Bonsula: I would like to see that too! Kazooie?
Kazooie: I like your head.
Bonsula: Hahaha, so funny. Okay everyone thanks for watching. See you later!

*20 minutes later*

Bonsula:Eh? What’s this? Looks like they dropped something.

Shroom 64 004.jpg

The Fresh Paper Mario

by Super-Yoshi (talk)

Whatup everyone! TheFreshPrince, aka C???, writing right now live for this 64th issue! This is my first time writing for The 'Shroom in my time here, kinda weird but I’ll go with it, but anyway, c’mon, you know I gotta do a N64 game, it only fits in with this right here issue, so I’m gonna be doing one of the good ol' classics, that new fresh flow style, Paper Mario (rated E for Excellence!)

Released waayy back in the day, 2001 for “us” (get it?), this game was the pinnacle of greatness. That’s probably why it also got released on Virtual Console in 2007, it was just too good. This was the first of the series, and one of the best ones too. There was also Super Mario RPG but that game was, y’know, not even made of paper, man, shit was straight out the door! I mean it was fun and all but Paper Mario took the throne by far. I should also mention this was developed by Intelligent Systems, the first real, like, game that Nintendo and them worked on together (the other one was Tetris Attack but who cares about that). Now you got some of that background knowledge let’s get on to the core stuff about why this game is that fresh!

Paper Mario official art of a Lava Piranha.
WOAH SNAP he's spittin' that hot fire

The story is epic. Why? You’ve probably never seen Mario get his ass handed by Bowser so that you could progress through the story! Bowser gets sick and tired of building like 100 castles and shit so instead builds one, right underneath Peach's Castle (man I couldn't believe it either) and steals the Star Rod from Star Haven to, well, take over the world once again with his girl Princess Peach. Peach invites the Mario Bros. to a party in her castle, but just as Mario heads up the stairs, you’re friendly neighbourhood Koopa crashes the party, hands you the white flag with his new arsenal of OP moves, kicks you out the castle and lifts his castle above the ground high into the sky, BOOM! Since you’re in paper form, sticks and stones still break your bones but a 50 foot fall won’t kill you at all (oh snap!) Just as when all hope is lost, Mario lands in a forest near Goomba Village and Eldstar appears in his dreams, telling him to head up Shooting Star Summit and rescue the 7 Star Spirits in order to stop Bowser’s plan. A whole new adventure begins, a massive tale at that.

That feel when your partner is down :(

Gameplay, damn. Paper Mario has sick line up of everything. The graphics are really nice and cutesy, most N64 games have like, polygon type of sprites, but this sticks with 2D, however, the environment is 3D. Everything looks amazing, play this on any type of TV and you’ll have loads of fun, besides, who cares about graphics anyway when the gameplay is super fun? The action packed storyline of 8 epic chapters seamlessly fits in with the simple controls for the game. One of my favourite things in the game is the Spin Dash, you press Z and you can go faster, knock out enemies, etc. It’s one of the best moves ever in Mario history. More about controls, you can do many things with your Boots or Hammer, and even get upgrades for the that allow you to do crazy shit like the Tornado Jump (just hearing the name of it sounds like some amazing shit, eh?) The battle system in this is really neat too, just stomp or smash an enemy (or they might hit you!) to engage in one. Here, you could see your Health Points (self-explanatory), Flower Points, basically your "Magic/Mana Power" for you RPG fans out there, using these make you perform moves that are more powerful or tactical against foes, and Star Power, which you gain after each Star Spirit is rescued, and can do a wide variety of things, such as healing you or damaging all enemies. Also unlike more common RPGs, this one is much more simplistic, with few HP points and no confusing and unfresh shit like magic defence or anything like that, its just health, defence, and attack power. Winning battles earn you Star Points, collection 100 of them lets you raise your HP or FP, and of course (most importantly imo!) Badge Points, which allow you to equip the vast majority of Badges found throughout the game. Badges are so fun to collect and use, theres many powerful and tactical ones, and even ones that change sound effects and do other things like make enemies drop more items or increase your Spin Dash distance. Badges are the best thing ever, sometimes I wish it was possible to equip all the badges, I'd be invincible, sadly there's a cap to it once you reach a certain level.

Fuck boats, this is how the fresh people do it

You can also use items in battle and on the field, there's many and they do lots of things, such as revive you when you run out of HP, or deal massive damage to all enemies. There's so many ways to battle, it just depends on what type of player you are. Oh, and let's not forget partners, they are essential for you as they help you progress through the game. They also have special moves, one of my favourites is Parakarry’s Shell Shot. God damn, that thing is too good man, just aim & shoot, boom, that guy is out the door. There are, however, a downside to partners. They can’t use items for shit (like c'mon, Mario you greedy ass) & they can't use Star Power, nor do they have any HP. If they get hit, they are unable to move for a few turns, which sucks a lot. The last thing you should know about battles are Action Commands and Guarding, these are basic tools that help you deal more damage, and well, take less damage haha. Action Commands vary from tilting the Control Stick, tapping buttons (usually A), and a variety of other things, if executed correctly, deal much more damage than without it. Guarding isn't as great here as it was in Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door, where a Superguard would deflect all damage and deal 1 to the foe, but it's still effective and blocks some damage.

Lastly, the Music/Sound in this game. Everything is perfect, Paper Mario definitely keeps it fresh. You'll probably find every single song in this game enjoyable and never get tired listening to any of the songs. One of my favourite themes is probably the Koopa Bros. battle theme, god damn, fast paced, has that good ol' nostalgic feel to it, and catchy. I dunno what it is but it's a really great song. Hell, I'd say every song is my favourite, seriously, there's not one I dislike. The sound effects fit in well too, man, it's like they already knew which ones to use. I can't really say anything else, it's just that good =O

Overall, Paper Mario is one of the best N64, nah, probably one of the best Mario RPG's out there. If you haven't played it yet I highly recommend you do, this game is like, almost a 10/10, with a few flaws here and there but like minuscule. The game started it all, the root of all future Paper Mario titles, this is one series that you definitely have to check out, starting out with this of course.

I hope you all enjoyed my review, seeya around!

Mafia: Tricks of the Trade

by Marioguy1 (talk)

Hello, ladies, gentlemen, and mafia players of all ages! For all your tips, tricks and strategies in mafia games, this is Mafia: Tricks of the Trade. I am your host, Marioguy1 (talk), focusing on a specific tip, trick or strategy for the month to help you improve your game. If you have any feedback, feel free to send me a PM or put it on my talk page.

This month, I have a tip for mafia hosts. If you don't get into your own games, the people playing those games won't get into them either. You have to spin amazing tales for the phase changes, be constantly keeping the thought train going in the game, keep people thinking. If you stop making stories, then the game will just be boring. So keep up the effort, it really shows in the overall activity of the game.

OK, there's my tip. Now I feel I should explain. Welcome to my new section, Mafia: Tricks of the Trade! A new section brought to you by the Mafia Hosts Guild. This section is to help people improve their game, so that they can have that much more fun in mafia. If you don't know what mafia is, check out my Mafia 101 section from the December issue, or look at the FAQ in the Mafia board on the forums. I'm hoping to have this section instated as a permanent section either in the Main Team or the Pipe Plaza, so look for it there next week. For now, it's a special section for the special issue. I hope you enjoyed, and I hope hosts learn something from this, to make their games just that much better (of course, there will also be tips for the players in the games). See you next month!