Top Tuesday: Least Favorite Super Mario 64 Levels

Happy Tuesday!

So, a couple weeks ago I talked about my favorite Mario 64 levels since we’ve been playing through Super Mario Odyssey. I’m sure I’ll talk about my favorite Odyssey levels at some point, but I thought I’d discuss some of my least favorite Mario 64 levels.

5. Tiny-Huge Island

While this level is super clever and I love the idea of growing big and small within the level, this is a tough one for me. It’s not even that hard of a level, but I fail miserably at it. And I get confused easily.

3. Rainbow Ride

While this level is pretty and well done, it’s definitely one of the hardest. I mean, I guess that’s why they saved it for last. Still, this level is a death trap for me.

2. Wet-Dry World

Admittedly, I hated this one when I was a kid. I appreciate it more now that I know what’s I’m doing in the level. Still, it’s not my all-time favorite. I find myself dying a lot inside this level and the water levels always confused me despite how easy they are.

2. Wing Mario Over The Rainbow

Death. This is just death. (Okay, so this isn’t technically considered a level, but it’s where you unlock the wing cap and you still get a star, so I’m counting it.)

1. Hazy Maze Cave

Is there really anyone out there who enjoys this level…? If you’re unsure, just think about getting the 8 red coins. That should infuriate you enough.

What are some of your favorite levels? Let me know in the comments below!

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Top Tuesday: Favorite Levels In Super Mario 64

Happy Tuesday!

With so much hype for Super Mario Odyssey, I’ve been thinking about Super Mario 64. The two games are similar, yet vastly different. I enjoy both games, but I do miss playing Super Mario 64.

 

Top Tuesday, Super Mario 64 Levels

5. Bob-omb Battlefield

I think this level is one of my favorites by default. It’s the first level of the game and can be considered the easiest, but I think it has a mixture of easy and hard. Flying with the wing cap can be difficult, yet getting the star behind Chain Chomp can take two seconds. Or an hour depending on how well you can get Mario to land that ground-pound.

4. Whomp’s Fortress

This is another level that’s well designed. I especially love this one though merely for the fact that it hands out a lot of coins. I love collecting coins.

3. Tick Tock Clock

This is a very well crafted level. It can be tricky with so many high places to jump up to, but I think it’s awesome that they have the cogs work at a certain speed depending on what time you jump into the clock to enter the level.

2. Lethal Lava Land

Um, there’s fire and a volcano. So it’s cool.

1. Big Boo’s Haunt

I always love the Boo mansions in any of the Mario games. They’re tricky with twists and turns and I just find the levels to overall be well designed because they’re supposed to be spooky and hard. While this particular level in Super Mario 64 isn’t that difficult, I still enjoy the design and the music.

What are some of your favorite levels? Let me know in the comments below!

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Pokemon Stadium Memories

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Title: Pokemon Stadium
Company: Nintendo
Console: 
Nintendo 64
Release Date: 
February 29, 2000 – NA
How we got the game: 
We bought it

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Pokemon Stadium was revolutionary for us Pokemon fans back in the day. To be able to have Pokemon battles on the big screen of a television — in 3D models, no less — was amazing! It gave Rachel and me the ability to play our Pokemon together without the cables and wires that were necessary back then.

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It was one of the best games. You could battle each other by picking your own team and just going at it, or there were tournaments you could enter and attempt to make it to the top defeating CPUs with a random team the game gives you.

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While we tended to pick our own teams to go head-to-head, there was also the option of importing your Pokemon from the Red, Blue, or Yellow version of the core games. Pokemon Stadium 2 allowed you to do the same with Gold, Silver, or Crystal. It was a treat to see your Pokemon in 3D for the first time!

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I remember we used to get the roaster up, at the time it was only the main 151 Pokemon, and we would leave the room while the other picked their team. That way our opponent’s team was a surprise to us. If I recall, we often ended up with a lot of the same Pokemon.

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Yes, we tended to stick close to our favorite Pokemon, or ones that we believed would be really powerful. We didn’t know much about strategy when it came to types and move-sets back then! I also remember us randomly picking types out of a hat to comprise a type-specialist team to surprise the other with. Those were fun!

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Yes, I remember that as well! I used to always pick Charizard and then the three legendary birds… Though I think we, at one point, made a rule that we couldn’t use any legendaries. Lapras was always a big hit with us.

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Yes, we loved Lapras for some reason. I don’t believe I ever trained one in the core games, though… Perhaps I should try to go for one soon! I remember you always having the Legendary birds, haha! Considering that Pokemon Stadium was one of the best-selling Nintendo 64 games, it’s a wonder that it never made it to the Virtual Console. I suppose Pokken Tournament is the spiritual successor of the Stadium games, but it would be nice to see an updated, free-for-all Pokemon Stadium at some point. It’d be code-heavy with all the Pokemon, but it’d be fun!

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The Switch may be able to handle it, who knows? It can handle Breath of the Wild, after all. It would just take up all the memory space! Still, I hope we’re able to play the same again at some point.

Do you remember Pokemon Stadium? Have you ever played it? Let us know in the comments! 

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Flashback Friday: Yoshi’s Story

Double Jump Kris MiiYoshi is one of the most adorable characters in the Super Mario franchise, and with good reason. Ever since Yoshi’s first appearance in Super Mario World in 1990, the character has appeared in nearly 60 games!

This month’s Flashback Friday post is dedicated to one of those games, Yoshi’s Story.

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Yoshi’s Story was released for the Nintendo 64 in December 1997 in Japan and March 1998 in North America. A side-scroller platform, the game was released on the Wii’s Virtual Console ten years later and the Wii U’s virtual console almost ten years after that. Yoshi’s Story is actually the last main platform game starring the titular character until Yoshi’s Woolly World for the Wii U in 2015.

While it’s considered almost a sequel to the SNES’s Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island, Yoshi’s Story is more puzzle-orientated with a cuter style in both graphics and music. It’s levels appear as a pop-up storybook, images resembling materials that one would use to make a scrapbook, such as fabric, cardboard, and paper.

The game had two modes, Story and Trial. Trial Mode enabled players to pick a course to go through as often as they wanted, but they were not unlocked until the player beat the course in Story Mode. Getting a high score was the main objective of each level, with the level ending when the Yoshi ate 30 pieces of fruit to complete the border around the screen. Considering the story of the game involved the Yoshis journeying across their island in search of Baby Bowser, who stole the Super Happy Tree. By eating the fruit, the Yoshis can stave off gloominess while trying to save their island.

Before each level loaded, a Lucky Fruit was chosen at random, which earns more points than any of the other fruit. Players could also get bonus points for eating the favorite fruit of whichever color Yoshi they happened to pick or for eating the same piece of fruit multiple times in a row. Players can go through each level as quickly as possible by eating every fruit they come across, but they can unlock secrets of the courses by biding their time and exploring every nook and cranny of the level.

Yoshi’s story got mixed to positive reviews, averaging only about 60% to 70% by most critics. It was, however, the second most downloaded title on the Wii U’s virtual console during the week of its release. With that said, the virtual console version received similar, if not worse, reviews than its Nintendo 64 counterpart.

I remember this game from ages ago. Rachel and I never owned it ourselves, but instead borrowed it from time to time from our aunt. We didn’t do too much in the Story Mode, being young enough to find it rather confusing, and amused ourselves with picking and choosing courses in the Trial Mode. We were always fans of Yoshi and had lots of fun with the game, its art style, and especially the music.

And, don’t lie, you all got the theme song stuck in your heads as much as we did:

Have you ever played Yoshi’s Story? What did you think of it?

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Flashback Friday: Pokemon Snap

Double Jump Kris Mii Happy Friday, everyone! Is everyone ready for April?

This week is all about one of my favorite Nintendo 64 games: Pokemon Snap! This game was everything that I wish Pokemon GO had been right off the bat. 

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Pokemon Snap was first released on the Nintendo 64 back in 1999, then on the Wii’s Virtual Console in 2007. Just last year in 2016, Pokemon Snap came to the Wii U’s Virtual Console. It’s developed a nearly cult following with its addictive game play.

The game’s premise itself is fairly simple. As the avatar, you travel around various areas on Pokemon Island in a special vehicle to take pictures of different Pokemon species. Your goal is to get the best shot to impress Professor Oak and gain the highest score. There are a few secrets around the island, such as landscapes that will resemble Pokemon when photographed from the right angle. Unlocking these secrets will reveal the final area where you can try to photograph a rare Pokemon.

 

The more photographs and the higher your overall score becomes, the more items you unlock to help your photographs improve. Apples and Pester Balls can make the Pokemon do various moves or pose differently as well as unlocking even more species to photograph, either by driving the species out of hiding or even making other Pokemon evolve.

Pokemon Snap, while simplistic in design and mechanics, is one of the most nostalgia inducing games that I remember playing. Pokemon is a fantastic franchise, and to have a side game that includes the adorable creatures in a relaxing setting was a good move on Nintendo’s part.

Have you ever played Pokemon Snap? What was your favorite aspect of the game?

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Connections

connections

krismii
It’s not much of a secret that Rachel’s favorite video game is Paper Mario for the Nintendo 64 while mine is Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars for the SNES. Both of those games are dear to us, considering they’re both probably the games that we each picked up on our own when we were old enough to hold onto the controllers and read the stories.

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While this has been known to both of us for quite some time, we were talking about it the other night and realized how… funny? Coincidental? I don’t know… How weird it is that those two games happen to be our favorites.

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We both grew up with video games, taking on the mantel of gamer when our uncles, father, and older sister stopped picking up controllers. I had watched our relatives play games on the original NES before picking up games myself on the next generation console. Rachel did the same, having watched me play the SNES before playing on her own on the Nintendo 64. We were amused at how we each started playing a console generation apart.

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Meanwhile, the first game Kris played and beat on her own was Super Mario RPG while for me it was Paper Mario. Both games are similar to each other as Paper Mario isn’t a “sequel” exactly, but it’s still a successor of RPG.

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I believe, originally, Paper Mario was going to be a sequel to RPG, but there was a bit of an issue on some character copyrights. Still, I consider them to be in the same series, if you will, as both promote the role-playing elements of party members, overworlds, and — of course — the aspect of collecting seven stars.

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I’ve always loved watching Kris play Super Mario RPG, too. Then when Paper Mario came out… I still watched her play it first (I think) because I love just watching, but I fell in love and decided to try it for myself. And fell in love again. It’s funny how we love similar games, just one generation/console apart. If that doesn’t say “player one” and “player two,” then I don’t know what does.

Did you find this as fascinating as we did? What’s your all-time favorite game and/or the first game you ever completed on your own? Let us know in the comments below!

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Throwback Thursday: Mario Party

Rachel Mii Double JumpHappy Thursday!

Since it’s a new year, I thought it would be appropriate to do a Throwback post.

…Remember last year? It was a week ago.

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But I’m not going to be talking about last year. I’m going to talk about one of my favorite game series, Mario Party.

I recently got Mario Party Star Rush and I’ve already played through the entire game in just under 10 hours. For a video game, that’s not a long time.

While I felt the game was better than Mario Party 10 (there will be a review for Star Rush at a later date), I definitely missed the replay value of the other Mario Party games. It wasn’t so much the gameplay that bothered me this time around. It was the replay value.

I could play Mario Party 1 through 8 over and over again for the rest of my life and never get bored. And I could highlight all of the games, but I won’t. I’ll just stick to the original and the latest (good) one.

Mario Party 1 was released in the US  for the Nintendo 64 in February 1999. While there wasn’t a large character roster, there are 8 boards to play on (two of those boards you have to buy with in-game coins and unlock). Each board has its own level of difficulty as well as certain quirks and features of the board making each one a totally different experience to play from the other boards in the game.

And the mini-games? Awesome. No matter what Mario Party game I play, I will always just sit down and play through the mini-games without bothering to play in party mode.

Its latest successor, in my opinion, would be Mario Party 8. I never played Mario Party 9 and you know my thoughts on Mario Party 10.

Mario Party 8 was released in the US for the Nintendo Wii in May 2007. This game was a big deal because it was the first Mario Party game with the new motion controls of the Wii. And, while some people found the controls and some of the games annoying, I didn’t mind it. I personally liked the motion controls… As long as it worked properly, of course.

Compared to Mario Party 1, there were more playable characters in Mario Party 8. However, there were only 6 boards to play on and they were pretty simple. Each one had it’s own characteristics, as usual, but some of them were too easy.

The mini-games were cool with the motion controls. There were definitely some games I loved more than others, but it was overall pretty cool.

With that being said, the old school Mario Party games were definitely better and more fun than the ones that are being released today.

And, of course, we all know that everyone’s favorite is Mario Party 2.

Which Mario Party is your favorite? Do you remember playing the older games? Let me know in the comments below!

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