Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Beside the Controller - Paper Mario

Hello, hello!  Long time no see!  Yet again I've been terrible at updating!  Long story short I've two weddings to attend in the next two weeks (one of which I'm heavily involved with planning) and life have been moving fast as a result.  Also, I'm almost done with school, so I've been applying for jobs like crazy (That might be a hint at a special, upcoming post!).

With all that personal garbage out of the way, let's take a brief look at a game I LOVE to watch.  Why a brief look?  Because just reading the title, you know this is a good game.  There really isn't much I can say by way of analysis that hasn't been said.  But I can offer you a personal look into why I love it so much and possibly open up some conversation about why all of you love it!  Overall, this is going to be more of a retrospective than a review.  Now let's jump down the pipe and take a look at "Paper Mario" for the Nintendo 64.
Get all your screams of joy out now
As I said before, it's hard to talk about this game with about singing all the praises that have been sung time and time before.  For the sake of being somewhat original (or just lazy) I'm going to go over the 5 things I love the most about this game!  This is in no particular order other than what comes to mind first.  HERE WE GO! <-----Slight Mariokart reference

1. Turn Base Fighting 
Paper Mario was my first experience ever with turn based fighting.  To be honest, when my sister (who was playing at the time) entered the first combat where you had to select your attacks one turn at a time, I was beyond confused (keep in mind I was in like 3rd or 4th grad at the time), but I learned to love it!  I appreciated being able to stop and think about your attacks and not have to just spam buttons at a moments notice!  I’ve become quite good over the years at picking attack orders, making me one step above useless when viewing my games! 
2. The Story
I’m not going to go deep into the actual plot of this game (look it up) but I will touch on my love of the story.  Somehow Paper Mario manages to have a fairly simple story that we’ve seen time and time before that still feels fresh and new.  I chalk a lot of this up to the amazing levels and characters provided in the game.  Meeting odd people in odd places makes the story feel exciting.  The humor of the story also creates a very tongue and cheek relationship between the players and the makers.  Trust me, you’ll believe this story and become fully submersed in it, I know I did!
3. Bow
20% of my sass I learned from her!
The Queen of the Fan Smack, the sister of sass, the boo to boo above the rest: Lady Bow!  She has always been and always will be my favorite character in the Paper Mario universe.  There is just something so adorable and admirable about her assertive attitude.  She will get the job done, but play by her own rules.  Plus, she freakin smacks her enemies with a fan (Something her and I share in common!), how badass is that?

4. BAKING A F*&%#$ing CAKE
SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UP!  Just let me frost in peace!

Why yes, I am aware I'm a girl and yes I realized the terrible irony in admitting that I love playing as Peach in a level where your single purpose is to bake a cake, but hear me out first.  Long story short, you play as Princess Peach between ends and starts of new levels.  One particular time, the Mushroom Princess stumbles on a character as Gourmet Guy (There's ABSOLUTELY NO PUN IN THAT NAME, shame on you!) and he strikes a deal that if you can bake him a delicious cake, he will give you some helpful tips for Mario.
Who could say "No" to that body?
This is the only times you will ever here me say these words with joy: TO THE KITCHEN!  The cake baking processes reminds me a great deal of the mini-games in Mario Party, so maybe that’s why I love these so much.  Also, it’s an easy enough task with little consequence if you screw up, a plus for someone as bad at button timing as me!  Plus, and I’m sorry to admit this, but it’s just so damn cute to make that pretty little cake!

5. Animation

Honorable Mention goes to Bowser's need to re-staff 
Honestly there isn’t much to say that visuals can’t say better:

No witty captions here, just enjoy the view!
Yes, I have found memories of this game.  Perhaps someday I will go into more of the personal stories and memories I have with this game, but until then, I want to hear from you.  What are some of you favorite things/parts/characters/levels found in Paper Mario?  Favorite sidekick?  Boss fight?  I want to know!  Leave a comment below. 

Until next time, I bid you farewell.  Oh and don’t you worry, I’ve got an extra special (and possibly extra LONG) post coming up in the next week or two.  Until then, I’ll try to be timelier and (if need be) briefer. 

OH!  And my views have soared the last few days and I’ve even gained a few more followers!  I want to welcome all you new comers and thank you faithful followers!  You have no idea how much your support means to me!

One last note, I swear!  I’m planning on doing a video soon, but I want your input on what I should talk about!  Do you want a review (movie, book, game, other?), a story, a reenactment of my favorite My Little Pony episode with sock puppets?  Let me know and I’ll see what I can do!


Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Request of a Fangirl - Help the Staten Island Academy of Performing Arts

Hey Guys and Gals!  A friend of mine could really use your assistance!  Please visit the links below to find out how you can help!  From the bottom of my heart nerdy, little heart, thank you!

The Mental Cast is having a fundraiser for the Staten Island Academy of Performing Arts

Please tune into The Mental Cast at on May 22nd, 2012, from 6pm - Midnight EST

If you are interested in donating, please send a donation via PayPal to:

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

RIP Maurice Sendak - The Loss of a Great Artist

I know this is a day late, but I just wanted a chance to say goodbye a very inspiring artist.  As many of you know, Maurice Sendak, author of the acclaimed book "Where the Wild Things Are" (among MANY others) passed away yesterday from stroke complications.  This man will be missed and cherished by so many for decades to come.  I'll admit that I did not enjoy "Where the Wild Things Are" as much as a could have as a child.  When I got older I came to understand how pleasant his story is for all who read it.

How I wish to remember this man.  RIP

No, one of my greatest childhood memories stemmed from the television show based on his work, "Little Bear".  This show always brought of smile to my face by way of it's quiet charm and large imagination.  It was one of the first shows I watched and felt encouraged to dream as big as my thought bubbles would let me.  I thank him for such a wonderful inspiration and for introducing the song "Blow the Man Down" to forever be stuck in my head (it already is, upon mentioning).

Not to mention his spit fire appearance on The Colbert Report made him my all time favorite, cranky old man.

Rest well, sir and thanks for the ride.