10 July 2013

The Great Galaxy Experiment Pt 5: The Rise and Fall of Bowser

Wrapping up a series of blog posts following my playthrough of Wii's Super Mario Galaxy. (Previous episodes: part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4.)

About a week since I begun playing Super Mario Galaxy, with all the main main levels beaten, and a bunch of bonus levels — 95 stars out of the total 120 in the game — I figured it was time to proceed to save princess Peach, and the universe, from Bowser. The final level was pretty fun, and challenging as well, although the final boss fight with Bowser was surprisingly easy; beat him on the first try.

Peach is safe, the credits roll. But of course the game isn't really 'over'. You can still return to get the stars you missed, and in fact there are new bonus stars that can only be gotten after beating Bowser. So what I have left are a handful of hidden stars (some I haven't found, and some I haven't managed to beat) and a bunch of 'Prankster Comet' levels. The latter are primarily about revisiting old levels with additional conditions. I've beaten a bunch of them already, but some of the later ones are pretty darn tough (and the newly unlocked Purple Comet levels I of course haven't even tried yet)...

Apparently once you get the full 120 stars you can replay the whole game as Luigi. And once you beat it with Luigi, you unlock one final level... Whew, that's a lot of gaming. I kinda doubt I'll ever even get around to getting all 120 stars first time around. In most games, this tends to be the place where I quit and move on to another game. I tend to find 'post-game' stuff boring and un-motivating. But like I've said earlier, the driving force of this game is not so much the story, but the levels themselves. So we'll just have to see...

So, to wrap up this past week... My comeback to the world of Mario turned out to be a pretty positive experience. Super Mario Galaxy is a very well put together game. Even deceptively simple on the surface, the gameplay is fun, addicting, and challenging. The level design is cool, original, and very creative. And there are a lot of levels to beat (a week of daily gaming for at least a couple hours each day, and there's still more to do). The original Super Mario Bros. was a groundbreaking title in the early days of video gaming and Galaxy proves the series is still going strong — good, solid, fun gaming in its purest form.

I will very likely have to get my hands on the sequel at some point. Before that, I may or may not still visit Super Mario Galaxy to get a few more stars. But in any case this should be the end of this blog post series. See you when I have something new to write about, and in the meanwhile, keep on gaming! Oh, and one last shout out to the Mario Marathon crew for inspiring me to play this game in the first place!

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