Saturday, November 14, 2009

It's been well over a year since I last posted--I've been busy. :)


Owning a Gamer's Soul Calibur FOREVER.

How can Nintendo--the savior of the gaming industry and best videogame company, nulli secundus--to own the souls of gamers for all time?

Thanks to Brawl and the Virtual Console on the Wii, Nintendo's off to a good start: though hampered by the budget 3rd party software (shovelware!), the good 3rd party games and Nintendo's franchises have put Nintendo back on top.

Still, it wouldn't hurt for the House of Mario to win back the MMORPG fans at least.

Feel free to steal this game idea: MarioOnline (name still in progress).

Essentially, it's World of Warcraft with Marioverse characters--and I mean every single character and class from the Marioverse. You could either be one of the many characters in Mario's game world--regular Mario, Paper, Party, sports games, or SMRPG--or you could create a character. Square could be involved for RPG, bringing back Geno and Mallow; alternately, Intelligent Systems could handle the battle system.

Improve the online connection so that gamers outside the Nintendo loop can join in--release versions for the PC (and Mac), X-Box and Playstation.

The game for all three systems would cost the same as a standard stand-alone high-end 1st party title, and this would include the cost of a subscription (access to the server). I'd price it at about $60; the game would have online, single player, and standard 4-player multiplayer modes.

If we really wanted to expand this past the Marioverse, add in other Nintendo characters from other gameworlds and call it Smash Bros. Online. Again, release versions to the other two systems, and Master Chief and Kratos could duke it out with Giga Bowser--finally! The Captain N reunion(likely minus the title character, the teen princess, the dog, and the Game Boy) would be possible as Simon Belmont and Rock could harass Pit. Yes! (Although you could act as "Kevin" with the chara creation feature.)

Note that I'm suggesting all of this for the inevitable "next system" that Nintendo releases, versus the Wii.

A good sendoff for the Wii would be based on a fanfic idea of mine. Marioverse meets Ico/Shadow of the Colossus.

The idea sprung from a silly YouTube comment about Bowser being "too easy" (you endure Bowser's vicious levels, then hand the dragon-turtle his scaly ass in a minute). In the final SM Galaxy boss bout, Mario fights Bowser thrice; the third time with this epic orchestral/techno music in the background. At the end, Bowser falls into the sun; the YouTube poster in question wanted Bowser's fall into the sun to lead into the true final battle:

Yes: When Bowser starts to fall into the dol-gurned sun, with everything melting around him, he--rather than being defeated by the Brothers Mario(Luigi in the vid above)--merges into a massive super-boss for the final battle.

My idea, then was for a Koopa Emperor to emerge, the ruler of his kingdom and lord over eight Koopa kings and queens (including Bowser himself).

The game is that Bowser wants to overthrow this Emperor and the other Koopa sovereigns, so that he will be the Emperor, his eight kids to rule over the eight kingdoms (his favorite, BJ (Bowser Jr.) rules Dark Land, his home kingdom), and--with the united might of the Koopa Empire--take over the Mushroom World, including the kingdoms of SMB3, Yoshi's Island, Sarasland, and whatever else strikes his fancy.

The emperor, in fact, seems pretty weak: he's stuck alone in his palace, his only company a statue similar to the Statue form of the Tanooki suit power-up. The emperor's about Ludwig von Koopa's size, in appearance more like a older Kamek than anything fearsome like Bowser and the other Koopa rulers.

Bowser's plan: defeat the other seven kings, who are too busy jockeying for control of each other's kingdoms and who fear Bowser himself as a loose cannon (what with his repeated attempts to conquer outside kingdoms and the whole damned GALAXY...), then-- with his children as rulers of their own kingdoms--seize the Imperial Koopa throne. All Bowser has to do is remove the current emperor from the Imperial Palace and he's gold.

Method: The Mario Brothers are always an obstacle to his devious plans--but this gives Bowser an idea! As Mario and Luigi tend to be gullible saps at times, if he convinces Peach that the other seven Koopa kingdoms are plotting to invade the Mushroom Kingdom--something that (the Brothers and Peach would reason) Bowser would never want to happen, to keep Peach to himself if nothing else--then Peach would send Mario and Luigi with the seven Koopalings to defeat these other Koopa kings and queens.

After the player (either Mario or Luigi) defeats each kingdom (each w/about eight levels), there's a cutscene where each Koopa ruler confronts a Koopaling, youngest to eldest (SMB 3 order). (Again, BJ stays in Dark Land, so he won't feature much in the game.) The Koopalings interact differently with each plumber; they're friendlier with Luigi, with the exception of Roy, as he's a real asshole (much like The Sky in SMB3--there's one fortress that's damned impossible, and thankfully, can be skipped).

Larry Takeover: Larry zaps the deposed king with a magic wand, turns him into an game arcade token, then pops the token into an arcade game; the Koopaling sends the deposed king to Minus World.

Morton Jr. Takeover: Morty meets the young queen, a shy and sweet girl (for a Koopa--she's a nicer version of Wendy); he marries her and they rule together. Heartwarming.

Wendy Takeover: Wendy confronts...her and her seven brothers' mother (Bowser's wife in an arranged marriage, annulled the moment she laid the eggs), who had abandoned them as eggs to Daddy long ago. (BJ hatched late.) The Koopa queen offers Wendy a post as princess, but Wendy declines, trapping Mommy in a picture locket. Wendy invites Luigi (if the player chooses Luigi for the level) to rule at her side, but he declines and flees to the next level, frightened of the Koopa mother-daughter reunion.

Iggy Takeover: Iggy transforms the deposed king into a Yoshi egg.

Roy Takeover: Another marriage one. Roy demands to be the king, as he defeated the newly-deposed king. This king refuses to be conquered by one of Bowser's hellspawn--but is done in by his own spawn: the king's daughter, a tough-as-nails girl version of Roy. They marry and rule together. Aww, how cute....

Lemmy Takeover: Lemmy turns the castle into an action playset, with the king as an action figure. The player's plumber opts to leave, though if that plumber is Luigi, Lemmy invites him to play.

Ludwig Takeover: Ludwig transforms the queen into a pipe organ, then invites the player to hear a private concert. The plumber(either Mario or Luigi) declines, opting to meet Peach and his brother(either Mario or Luigi) at the Imperial Palace.

After the player beats these seven kingdoms, the heroes and Peach enter the Palace. Inside the throne room, they note the sleeping emperor and the Statue. Mario and Luigi make funny faces at the Statue.

The Statue laughs, shakes, and then...

...Bowser appears, with an arrogant grin on his face. He's tricked the heroes into doing all the dirty work for him! All he has to do is defeat the emperor, and he rules the Koopa Empire.

At this point in the game, the player--as Peach--makes a decision, posed by Bowser:

A. "Just try and stop me now, Mario and...Green Guy! From this point forward, I am the Emperor. You might beat me, but then you'll have to fight the whole Koopa Empire--under the command of all eight of my darling children."

B. "So, Peach, you have a choice to make: Join me at my side."

C. "Refuse me, and we go back to our old routine. A shame, really, Peach: we made a great team."

"Refuse me, and we go back to our old routine. A shame, really, Peach: we made a great team."

Player chooses A: Mario and Luigi fight and defeat Bowser, then invade the kingdoms again to remove the Koopaling usurpers from the original Koopa monarchs' thrones. If this game is won, then the Koopalings head home to Dark Land empty-handed.

But all is not well that ends well: the restored Koopa rulers want revenge on the Mushroom Kingdom--so the seven kingdoms unite and take over the Mushroom Kingdom. Bad ending.

Player chooses B: Peach reluctantly agrees to marry Bowser. Bad ending.

Player chooses C:
Peach vows to restore the original rulers to power. She and the Mario Brothers return to Peach's castle; Mario and Luigi later invade the kingdoms again to remove the Koopaling usurpers from the original Koopa monarchs' thrones. If this game is won, then the Koopalings head home to Dark Land empty-handed.

But all is not well that ends well: the restored Koopa rulers want revenge on the Mushroom Kingdom--so the seven kingdoms unite and take over the Mushroom Kingdom. Bad ending.

Player chooses D: Peach opts for a tactical retreat, they turn to leave the throne room when they notice a old silver-mustachioed gentleman in a Tanooki suit. They help him to his feet, then the four humans leave the Palace.

Then the following happens:

Bowser picks up the emperor and carries the old Koopa sovereign out of the Palace. The emperor cackles, happy that Bowser "liberated" him.

Outside the palace, the old man, taking off the Tanooki suit, introduces himself as Salvatore. He notes Bowser and the emperor outside and trembles, dropping to his knees in despair. "You two..." Salvatore hisses, pointing at the Mario Brothers, "you broke my concentration. Now he is free...." Salvatore reveals that he had left behind his family: his son Giuseppe, his daughter-in-law Fiona, and his two infant grandsons...Mario and Luigi! This startles the Brothers.

Peach asks if Bowser would be able to take advantage of the old emperor; Salvatore laughs at the thought. Bowser and the Koopa Empire is not the big concern; rather, it's the Koopa emperor that should be worried about.

As if to underscore Salvatore's point, the Koopa emperor uses the Koopa equivalent of FORCE LIGHTNING to subdue Bowser; the would-be ersatz emperor of all Koopas is flung to where the humans stand. Bowser struggles to his feet, facing three annoyed plumbers and a pouting, icily-angry princess. "What do you want me to do?" he mutters.

The five confront the Koopa emperor, who reveals his true power--growing to massive size as a colossus!

This is where the final four-stage level begins: the Mario Brothers, Salvatore, Peach, and Bowser have to defeat the Koopa emperor together.

Let me know what you think.

~ acsound