Mario’s Express Ticket to Subcon An Examination of Mario's Sleep Habits

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor nor an expert on sleep disorders. This article is for entertainment purposes and should not be consulted for medical advice. If you are suffering from a sleep disorder, please consult a specialist.

It’s January again, a time of year when many people resolve to improve themselves and their lives. Long-time Nintendo fans are no strangers to the subject of self improvement. From the Brain Age games to the recent Ring Fit Adventure, Nintendo has a history spanning over a decade of releasing products to improve the health and cognitive well-being of their fan base. There was even a time not too long ago that the Big N toyed with the idea of building a third pillar to their business around the idea of quality-of-life consumer electronics. The only product in this line that we fans ever even heard about, however, was a device that was supposed to improve the user’s quality of sleep. As someone who has trouble maintaining a healthy sleep cycle, I was disappointed when they announced that the project had been canceled.

Now that I think about it, though, I’m not the only one with an odd circadian rhythm. One of Nintendo’s most iconic characters has exhibited strange and potentially worrisome sleep behaviors on multiple occasions: Mario. Ever since his landmark 3D debut, Super Mario 64, Mario has often been depicted as nodding off in a matter of minutes if left inactive. This leads to me wonder: how does he do it, and is it cause for concern?

A Brief Overview of Sleeping Disorders

Before we examine the sleep habits of the man himself, let’s take a second to talk about sleep disorders. Sleep disorders can be divided broadly into three categories: dyssomnia, parasomnia, and circadian rhythm disorders. Dyssomnia refers to a disorder that affects sleep itself, specifically falling asleep, staying asleep, and waking up. Parasomnia refers to disorders involving actions occurring during sleep, such as sleep walking. Lastly, circadian rhythm disorders—as the name implies—are disorders pertaining to the rhythm of one’s sleep.

The Symptoms

In Super Mario 64, Mario starts to nod off after a mere thirty-one seconds of inactivity. He’ll yawn, sit down, and quickly start snoring. After about a minute of this, Mario will shift to a more comfortable position. While the times involved may differ, this holds true for every explorative 3D Mario game. Moreover, he’ll do this even after intense physical activity. While recent research has shown that moderate physical activity doesn’t have much impact on one’s ability to fall asleep, the same studies have also shown that intense exercise, such as the sort Mario typically engages in (running, jumping, acrobatics), does impact one’s ability to fall asleep immediately afterward due to raised heart rate, body temperature, and the presence of hormones such as adrenaline in the blood stream. This suggests that Mario may have some form of dyssomnia.

In Super Mario 64, Mario starts to nod off after a mere thirty-one seconds of inactivity.

Additionally, in Super Mario 64 and Super Mario Odyssey Mario will periodically mutter the name of varieties of pasta. That alone confirms Mario has a form of parasomnia: somniloquy. Admittedly, sleep talking is about as benign as sleeping disorders get and rarely affects the well-being of those who have it. As someone who’s witnessed it first hand, it’s more inconvenient to those sharing a room with the sleep-talker than the somniloquist himself.

Ironically, I've lost quite a bit of sleep writing this article.
It doesn’t take long for Mario to nod off, nor is he terribly picky about where he sleeps.

Possible Diagnoses

Now, the first possible sleep disorder that comes to mind is narcolepsy. Narcolepsy is known for causing those that have it to pass out immediately. However, narcolepsy can strike at any time, during any activity, not just when the narcoleptic stops moving. Moreover, Mario doesn’t appear to be suffering from any of the other symptoms of narcolepsy. For instance, he doesn’t seem to suffer from excessive daytime sleepiness; most of the time he seems very energetic and fairly alert. Additionally, he doesn’t appear to suffer from hallucinations, nor does he seem to have difficulties staying asleep. I’ll just scratch narcolepsy off the list.

Let’s transition to circadian rhythm disorders for a moment, namely irregular sleep-wake rhythm. Sufferers of this disorder often take frequent naps throughout a 24-hour period, with very little consistency from day to day. This often results in not having a main, extended period of restful sleep at night. This is more likely, but I’ve never seen any indication that Mario has trouble getting to sleep at night, plus he still doesn’t seem to exhibit excessive daytime sleepiness, which is a common symptom.

Perhaps it’s the quality of his sleep? Mario does snore like a chainsaw, so maybe he has sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is caused when the airway is obstructed during sleep, essentially resulting in brief bouts of suffocation all throughout the night. Again, he doesn’t seem to be tired except when standing still. Because those with sleep apnea are constantly briefly woken up during the night, excessive daytime sleepiness is the major waking symptom of sleep apnea. Additionally, Mario’s snoring is very consistent and steady while he sleeps—almost like clockwork. If he had sleep apnea, we’d hear him snort, stop breathing, and then start back up.

Bug or Feature?

It would seem I’m running out possible sleep disorders. While there are many more out there, most don’t even come close to describing Mario’s ability to fall asleep at the drop of a floppy, red, monogrammed hat. Maybe I’m looking at this the wrong way. Perhaps it’s not a disorder, after all. Perhaps it’s tactical decision.

Perhaps it’s not a disorder, after all. Perhaps it’s tactical decision.

Okay, hear me out. Back in World War II, the U.S. military noticed that the immense strain placed on pilots was often too much for them to handle, resulting in accidents and increased casualties during combat. Hoping to reduce their losses, the Navy developed a special method to help soldiers relax. It was so effective, troops were able to fall asleep in as little as two minutes, allowing them to get some extra rest whenever they could.

The method itself is relatively simple, too. All a person does is focus on relaxing every part of their body, one limb at a time if necessary, and then thinking peaceful, relaxing thought, or letting their mind go blank. So in other words, completely relax both physically and mentally. A simple trick, but effective. Tests showed that after six weeks of training, 96% of test subjects were able to fall asleep in two minutes or less, under any conditions.

So maybe when Mario realizes he has a little down time, he actively chooses to take the opportunity to get some rest. Think about it: when adventuring, Mario is constantly moving. The man almost never stands still when Peach is in danger. Moreover, despite his reputation as a lumbering brute, Bowser is a master of the element of surprise. Seriously, think back to how every Mario game starts: Bowser always launches a surprise attack and gets the drop on the heroes. Considering that Mario never knows when he’ll have to drop everything to run through fields, swim across oceans, climb mountains, and jump over everything that gets in his way, being able to identify and utilize any opportunity for rest would be an invaluable skill.

Being able to identify and utilize any opportunity for rest would be an invaluable skill to someone in Mario’s position.


Of course, it’s entirely possible that despite his peppy exterior, Mario could just be a lot more tired than he lets on. Back when I first started college, I’d often sit down to read through my text books thinking I was fully rested, only to lose consciousness ten minutes into my study session. Until Nintendo finally gives us that Mario life-simulator spin-off where we get to explore every facet of his daily life, I don’t we’ll ever have enough information to definitively say whether Mario is getting enough sleep. That said, I think it’s safe to say the evidence clearly shows that he’s not suffering from a disruptive sleeping disorder.

…unless all of that sleep talking about pasta is indicative of sleep eating. Hmm…

TBC 020: How to Manage a Backlog

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Are you buried in unplayed games? Do you keep purchasing new titles, knowing full well that you don’t have the time to play them? Are you drowning in a long list of classics that you want to try and make time for… someday… eventually? If any of this sounds familiar, we know exactly how you feel. And we’re here to discuss a strategy and make that backlog manageable. Hop on board the TBC train!

“Exit the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

TBC 019: Luigi’s Mansion 3

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Glen and Scott are back to discuss Luigi’s Mansion 3, a beautiful game and strong Game of the Year contender. They have a lot to say about the game’s pros and cons, so get cozy and listen to their deep dive on Luigi’s newest solo outing.

“Exit the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

TBC Table-Top: Episode 03 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

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Join Scott, Simeon, Glen, and Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games on an adventure through the backwoods of Hyrule as the crew plays a table-top R.P.G. inspired by The Legend of Zelda.

After making their preparations, our heroes relax with a little arm-wrestling before venture into the woods.  Who or what will they encounter in the forest? Read more TBC Table-Top: Episode 03 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

Super Mario Odyssey Spit Shine

Back in August, I finally managed to complete Super Mario Odyssey. While I found much to love about it—the gorgeous and eclectic visuals, the fast-paced story, the fact that Mario is weird again, the myriad of accessibility features, etc., etc.—there was a reason it took me nearly two years to complete. While I definitely intend to replay the game’s story someday, I can say with confidence that completing it is a task I will never undertake again.

As the number of remaining moons dwindled, so too did my enthusiasm. In fact, by the end of my run, I was having more fun grinding for coins in Luigi’s Balloon World so that I could afford the last few moons needed to max out the counter than I did hunting for the ones populating the game’s various worlds. Why was that, and what could Nintendo have done differently to avoid the slog? That’s exactly what I intend to answer in this edition of Spit Shine. Read more Super Mario Odyssey Spit Shine

TBC 018: Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening

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Glen and Scott sit down to discuss the recently released Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening for Nintendo Switch. How did Nintendo’s latest remake sit with us? What was improved, what was memorable, and what left a bad taste in our mouth? At the end, each host shares a surprising game they would like to see remade next from the Legend of Zelda series.

Review: Untitled Goose Game

Untitled Goose Game by House House is a unique, charming game for Nintendo Switch.

Disguised as a goofy goose sim, this stealth/puzzle game has you work your way through to-do lists, perfect for a productivity nerd like myself. But these tasks are all mischief related, and involve messing with innocent people’s things without getting caught.

There are four areas to explore, so while you may have an ear-to-ear grin throughout the experience, the credits could roll before you feel that your investment has been returned. It took me under two hours to complete (though post-game content in the form of additional to-do lists should effectively double your play time).

Everything is quite sound here, whether we’re talking about controls, music, systems, graphics, etc. This game took awhile to release considering its short length, and it is evident that the developers made the most of that time to iron out any potential kinks in the gameplay.

While I would love to praise the game in specific ways, it’s difficult to do so without spoiling the moment-to-moment gameplay, which is often humorous and always inventive and charming.

I had a great time solving all the puzzles as they progressively got more complex. Making someone spit their coffee out as a troublemaking goose was an experience I won’t quickly forget.

Making someone spit their coffee out as a troublemaking goose was an experience I won’t quickly forget.

Untitled Goose Game is clearly lacking one feature, however, and that is a hint system. After having just played BoxBoy + BoxGirl, I can’t help but think of how helpful that hint system could have been if implemented in Untitled Goose Game.

Without an option for hints, some puzzle solutions just will not present themselves to you, no matter how long you waddle around the level flapping your wings and honking to no effect. You can always Google a walkthrough, but something more subtle and built-in would have been a worthy inclusion.

The value proposition for Untitled Goose Game is… well, suspect. House House is up against a lot of great competition on the eShop, especially around the $20 asking price. My gut tells me that the game will perform well during sales, but otherwise will have a hard time convincing people to part with a crisp green Jackson.

Conclusion: Untitled Goose Game is a tight, fun, memorable experience that leaves the player wanting more.

7/10

River City Girls: Review

Product provided for review. Thanks WayForward!

Please note that I played the P.C. version of the game. The following review is for the game itself, and does not cover platform specific details such as performance or glitches.

Developed by Wayforward Technologies and published by Arc Systems Works, River City Girls is, as the name would imply, a spin-off of the N.E.S. classic River City Ransom. Much like its 8-bit predecessor, River City Girls is a blend of side-scrolling beat-em-up combat and open-world action-adventure exploration with a sprinkling of R.P.G. elements on top. The game follows the adventures of the tough, temperamental, and sarcastic Misako and the cute, bubbly, and emotionally unhinged Kyoko as the two set out to rescue their respective boyfriends from being kidnapped. Read more River City Girls: Review

TBC 017: Breath of the Wild Sequel Wish-List

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Glen and Scott are joined by Zelda expert GameOver Jesse! What brought about such a momentous occasion? Why, the announcement of the sequel to Breath of the Wild! Join us for a podcast packed with hype, speculation, analysis, and complete guesses.

How GameStop Betrayed Game Informer

On Tuesday, August 20th, a series of tweets from different Game Informer writers made it clear that something was amiss. One after another, employees of the longstanding gaming magazine informed their followers that they had been let go.
The first tweet I saw made me sad. When I started noticing more, I became worried.
They all had a common theme: the parent company, GameStop, had unceremoniously dropped seven staff members from the editorial roster. Via email, no less.

As part of the gaming industry, you and I have known that GameStop has seen better days financially. Even so, the sheer number of layoffs that hit the GI office, and the unprofessional and scummy way in which these employees were let go, was shocking.

Here’s a sampling of the injustices that took place:

  • GameStop also let go several GameStop associates on the same day, equalling a staggering 14% of their personnel. However, they fired a disproportionate amount of GI staff when they gave the axe to 7 out of their 19 editorial team members, crippling the magazine’s manpower in one fell swoop.Javy was notified of his employment termination while overseas, covering Gamescom in Germany. Can you imagine being on a business trip, giving up evenings and weekends at home for a company, only for them to fire you in the middle of the convention you’re covering?
  • Jeff Marchiafava received his notice while he was on vacation. And I sincerely hope he was able to find some enjoyment during his travels, meanwhile having to deal with this terrible and life-changing news.
  • GameStop proceeded to lock these employees out of Game Informer headquarters, so they couldn’t even grab their own belongings without setting up an appointment like some kind of outsider.
  • The corporation couldn’t even be bothered to allow the employees’ health insurance to remain intact through the end of the month, a mere week and a half, forcing these former staff members to go without coverage for the time being or purchase extremely expensive COBRA plans.
  • Not only were the seven ex-employees given no advanced notice, but the layoffs also appear to have taken the Game Informer Editor in Chief, Andy MacNamara, by surprise, giving him no time to prepare for print deadlines and Human Resources nightmares.
  • GameStop also let go several GameStop associates on the same day, equalling a staggering 14% of their personnel. However, they fired a disproportionate amount of GI staff when they gave the axe to 7 out of their 19 editorial team members, crippling the magazine’s manpower in one fell swoop.

All of the factors I cited lead me to believe that GameStop was completely and utterly out of touch with the GI side of their business. The ignorance and uncaring attitude that would cause someone to be let go while overseas is disgusting! The fact that Andy had no say in who was more or less crucial to the team is unbelievable!

I understand that layoffs are an unfortunate reality of business sometimes. But they don’t need to be handled this horribly.

On Monday, the Game Informer office was made up of 19 editors, with a few people gone for vacation or work trips. On Tuesday, 12 remained. It was as if Thanos grabbed his Infinity Gauntlet and snapped a huge portion of them out of existence. This is the type of event we would expect in an Avengers movie—in a fiction story. But it was their reality.

After such devastating blows, fans of Game Informer were reasonably wondering if this spelled the end for the publication, but we have received confirmation that GI issues will continue to be produced.
The Editor in Chief also laid to rest concerns that the print edition had become unsustainable, saying that the magazine will continue to be available in physical and digital formats.

The fact that the magazine is continuing is a testament to the team’s tenacity. But the scars of GameStop’s betrayal remain; destroying remaining team’s morale, their trust, and their sense of job security.
Continuing to cover all the news in the industry, pumping out entertaining podcasts and videos, all the functions of Game Informer now seem like monumental tasks on an emotional level in the wake of “corporate restructuring.”

So what does this mean for me?
I will not support GameStop. Honestly, I haven’t stepped foot in their stores for a long time, and I won’t ever need to. There are better deals everywhere and I can’t give my money to a dying business that treats its staff members as expendable commodities.

I will, however, increase my support for GI. I will subscribe digitally, or get the more expensive print subscription directly from their website, avoiding the PowerUp rewards program through Gamestop.

I’ve already started networking with some of the industry professionals I know that may be hiring, recommending the excellent writers who are now looking for work.

And I will also continue to be vocal with my gratitude for the GI team. Their podcast has always been severely underrated; it’s long, consistent, has zero ads (they never mention GameStop, and they don’t even plug their own magazine!), they have a rotating panel of experts, always give a generous amount of time for listener mail, they include detailed timestamps in their shownotes, etc.)

As a whole, their outlet deserves more respect. It’s one of the only gaming industry mediums that has remained pure, largely avoiding politics and entertainment focus, keeping games first and diving deep in journalism, traveling the world for expansive cover stories.

Please show Game Informer some love. They deserve it.
Game Informer: https://www.gameinformer.com
Subscribe: https://www.gameinformer.com/index.php/subscribe
GI Podcast: https://www.gameinformer.com/p/gishow.aspx
GI YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/gameinformer

The 7 ex-employees:
https://twitter.com/elisefavis
https://twitter.com/imranzomg
https://twitter.com/GIJeffM
https://twitter.com/KyleMHilliard
https://twitter.com/mattbertz
https://twitter.com/SurielVazquez
http://javygwaltney.net

TBC Table-Top: Episode 02 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

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Join Scott, Ryan, Glen, and Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games on an adventure through the backwoods of Hyrule as the crew plays a table-top R.P.G. inspired by The Legend of Zelda.

In this episode, our heroes continue their preparations by swinging by the general store and searching for armor.

 

Cast

Sigil: Scott

Trouse: Nathan Blake

Noire: Ryan

Sage: Glen

 

Music Credits

Divinity
Nostalvania
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

Hawaii Shoppi’n
NoppZ
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

Battle (Field)
Manaka Kataoka
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Original Sound Track
Nintendo

The Guru
The OC Jazz Collective
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

Does “Indie” Still Mean Anything?

Perhaps one of the greatest movements in the history of the game industry is the rise of indie development in the late 2000’s. With the advent of widespread digital distribution, increase in instructional content available on the internet, and the introduction of affordable game development software suites, such as the Unity or Unreal engines, game development opened up to be available to the general public, and not just those lucky few who managed to get hired at an established studio. Likewise, said established studios were freed from the need to secure funding from large publishing companies to keep their doors open via crowd funding services such as Kickstarter or the topically named Indie-Go-Go.

But what exactly is an indie game? Read more Does “Indie” Still Mean Anything?

TBC Table-Top: Episode 01 A Zelda T.T.R.P.G. Adventure

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Join Scott, Ryan, Glen, and Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games on an adventure through the backwoods of Hyrule as the crew plays a table-top R.P.G. inspired by The Legend of Zelda.

In this inaugural episode, our heroes learn that the town that they’re passing through is in trouble: the river that’s vital to their lumber trade is drying up.  They then band together to discover the cause and begin preparations for the journey ahead.

 

Cast

Sigil: Scott

Trouse: Nathan Blake

Noire: Ryan

Sage: Glen

Music Credits

Timeless Journey
Sam Dillard
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

Heart Home and Hearth
Rebeca Tripp
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

The Guru
The OC Jazz Collective
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

 

The rules used in this podcast can be found at: https://1d4chan.org/wiki/Legend_of_Zelda_RPG

Buck Bumble That Was a Thing

It’s spring again, and you know what that means!

Rain… Lots and lots of rain.

At least where I live, that is. Not that I mind: I like watching rain fall, and rain brings with it flowers. And with flowers come bees.

My history with Buck Bumble is much like that of my experience with Bomberman Hero: I rented way back in the 90’s and it always stuck with me. Unlike Bomberman Hero, however, I never even got close to beating it. Heck, having played it again recently, I’m not sure I ever even got past the tutorial.

Buck Bumble is a third-person shooter published by Ubisoft and developed by the now defunct Argonaut Games. Hold up, Argonaut Games? Yes, the company that helped develop the Super Nintendo’s Super FX Chip and the first Star Fox game. Strange, I heard that after Nintendo turned down their proposal for a 3D Yoshi game—which would eventually become Croc: Legend of the Gobbos—they had a grudge against the Big N and only released their games on every other system. Well, if that rumor is true, it apparently only applied to the Croc games, because they not only made Buck Bumble for the N64, but went on to develop several other games that were released for Nintendo platforms: Bionicle Matoran Adventure for the G.B.A., I-Ninja for the GameCube, and… Catwoman: The Game… Hm…

Wait, where was I? Ah right, Buck Bumble! As with Bomberman Hero, I stumbled across Bumble in a used game store—possibly the exact same one—for a mere ten bucks. Needless to say, I didn’t hesitate to take advantage of the opportunity to see if this game was worth remembering. Read more Buck Bumble That Was a Thing

How Cliched is Shadow the Hedgehog?

I’ve been a fan of the Sonic franchise for almost my entire life. Over the years, I’ve seen Sonic’s ups, downs, and all-arounds, either first-hand or from a safe distance. The franchise’s difficulties with maintaining relevance in the modern day have produced an incredible amount of debate as to what works and what doesn’t work for Sonic games. Fans have argued over every aspect of the series: game mechanics, storytelling, character redesigns, and so on.

One particularly controversial figure in the Sonic series is Shadow the Hedgehog. Shadow is simultaneously a fan-favorite character, often ranking in the top five in popularity polls, and a symbol of everything wrong with the series post Dreamcast era, with many fans citing him as an egregiously clichéd “bad Sonic”.

So is Shadow a bad character? Is he just a cheap and cliched “anti-Sonic” or does he bring something of his own to the series? Let’s take a closer look are the Sonic franchise’s resident antihero to find out.

While I will admit there are many legitimate issues one can take with Shadow’s characterization (convoluted, self-contradicting back-story; inconsistent characterization; the entirety of Shadow the Hedgehog, etc.), when it comes to the question of whether or not Shadow is a walking cliché, I think the issue isn’t as open and shut as many like to make it out to be. Read more How Cliched is Shadow the Hedgehog?

Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse and Shantae: ½ Genie Hero Spit Shine

With my recent completion of Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse, I am proud to say I’ve finally gotten all caught up on WayForward’s Shantae series. From the first game via the 3DS Virtual Console, to ½ Genie Hero on the Switch, I’ve played every game in the series all the way through (not counting bonus modes for the half genie’s latest title that is). Those of you who’ve seen my review of ½ Genie Hero know I greatly enjoyed that game, as I do the rest of the series, but that doesn’t mean I don’t take issue with some elements of the games’ design. Read more Shantae and the Pirate’s Curse and Shantae: ½ Genie Hero Spit Shine

Savor It Scott's Thoughts: Smash Ultimate is HERE!

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is here! This blog post concludes the Ultimate Countdown.

What a wait it has been! It’s been so fun to see glimpses of this game over the past nine months, and the next character reveal was always an event to look forward to.

Now we have the game in our hands, and our wait has been rewarded.

Savor it.

To savor is to enjoy completely. 

This game has to be the title with the most content, the most replayability, of any Nintendo game ever!

Nintendo fans have a horrible reputation for being insatiable, for calling a game “old news” the week after it hits store shelves.

It be tempting to start calling for certain balance patches, to create campaigns for additional DLC…

But this time, what about being content? How about being satiated? Let’s appreciate Sakurai, the development team, the marketing folks at Nintendo, the Treehouse testers, everyone who was involved in making this superb title.

And let’s enjoy it fully for years to come.

My Release Night Plans Scott's Thoughts: 1 Day to Smash Ultimate

It’s Thursday—AKA, RELEASE NIGHT!

We’ve endured the long wait for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, although if you think about it… the wait really hasn’t been that long! We only learned about this title in March, and development faced zero known delays, something that’s almost unheard of for this series.

Word on the street (read: Reddit) is that eShop servers will update at midnight Eastern, which is fortunately 9pm in Pacific timezone where I live. If you preloaded the game digitally, that’s when it should unlock on your home screen!

Simeon and I are ready and extremely excited to play. I just wanted to share a quick post about our plans for release night.

  • Get done with a meeting about 8:15pm. It absolutely must NOT go late, or there will be consequences!
  • Rush to Best Buy so I can pick up my physical copy at 9pm.
  • Simeon will accompany me, and will then use his phone’s mobile-hotspot feature to connect his Switch and unlock his digital copy.
  • Speed through every red light and stop sign to arrive at home. Periodically shoot Simeon dirty looks of jealousy as his Switch’s speakers emit sounds of smashing in the passenger seat.
  • Scale the 3 flights of stairs up to my apartment in about 7.3 seconds.
  • Slam the cartridge into my Switch (after a quick lick).
  • Start up a stream on our YouTube channel [ring that bell to get notified when we go live].
  • Unlock characters as fast as possible.
  • Kick Simeon’s sorry tushy with Dark Samus.

If you’re not picking up the game and playing it right away, we’d love to have you join our release night stream!

I’ve got one more blog post in this series, publishing tomorrow, Dec. 7th at noon Pacific.

TBC 016: Custom Robo Retrospective

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The Two Button Crew makes a surprise return! We’re here to discuss… Custom Robo of all things! And who better to have on the podcast than Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games, Custom Robo expert?! Listeners are in for a treat.

Ready for more TBC Podcast? We are an ad-free show, and you can support us on Patreon: http://patreon.com/twobuttoncrew

Get Your Daily Nintendose of Fandom on our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/TwoButtonCrew

“Exit the Premises” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Will there Be Another Smash? Scott's Thoughts: 2 Days to Smash Ultimate


ul·ti·mate
/ˈəltəmət/

noun: the best achievable or imaginable of its kind.
adjective: 
being or happening at the end of a process; final.


Will Super Smash Bros. Ultimate be the last game in the series? Is the subtitle more of a noun, or an adjective?

It certainly seems that this 5th entry in the series is a celebration of all things Smash. Until E3 2018, we were unsure if the Switch would see a simple port of the Wii U game, or if we would get a true sequel. From the moment the words “Everyone is Here” flashed across our screens, we knew that this game was something special.

With every character and nearly every stage reporting for battle, it’s easy to see why some would think this is the climax of the franchise.

Not to mention Sakurai’s constant threats that he may be finished with Smash development after each entry nearly kills him. He calls the games being completed a “miracle” and has battled various physical conditions while new games are in development, often putting strain on his wrists and his sleep schedule.

I believe we’re nearing a time of turnover in Nintendo’s headquarters in Japan. Of course, the President’s chair has seen a few different occupants in recent years, but their stable of developers and directors is also showing its age. Miyamoto-san has been actively raising the next generation of Mario makers, resulting in many of the new ideas found in Super Mario Odyssey. It’s only a matter of years before Aunoma decides that it’s time to retire as well.

Sakurai is a bit younger than his aforementioned contemporaries, but has seen more crunch-time than just about anyone in the industry. He also tends to take on more responsibility than necessary, insisting on doing all the balancing himself by hand. Carrying a franchise as large as Super Smash Bros., with a roster as big as it’s grown, is too big a burden for one man.

I can easily see Sakurai stepping down after Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. If he had additional games in him, I don’t think this Switch title would have gotten the name it did.

Now, from a business perspective it’s hard to imagine a world without a new SSB game in the pipeline. It’s one of Nintendo’s most dearly loved franchises, one of their best selling series, and is one of their few tenuous connections to hardcore, competitive gaming and events like EVO and Genesis.

I don’t think Nintendo will ever let Super Smash Bros. die, but Sakurai will likely pass the leadership on after the Fighter Pass DLC is complete.