Mario Should Always Run! HOLD B TO RUN!

As I write this, I’m on holiday in America spending some time with my best friend, Kat. We’d be doing the requisite sight-seeing, but there’s not much to see in El Paso, Texas; it’s effectively a desert. Predictably, this has led to us playing video games. Correction: this has led to Kat failing at Super Mario Bros.


Seriously, she just jumped into the same Goomba four times and yelled at the screen. What’s going on here? This is someone with the patience to beat the fun-but-frustrating Prototype without ever toning down the difficulty or destroying a controller.

I suppose it’s sometimes hard for me to remember that not every core gamer grew up with a NES (or 2600, or C64, et al) and the thought that a gamer’s first console might be the N64 makes me feel ancient. Kat, who probably obsesses over games more than I do (which is saying a lot), first cut her gaming teeth by way of RPGs such as Harvest Moon 64 and Paper Mario. As such, she excels at games which give her the breathing room to think about a situation and make the best decision. Conversely, she’s always struggled with genres which require twitch-based gameplay and fast-reactions.

The face of failure

Here at Ready-Up, we’ve got gamers who specialise in every genre, from FPS to driving to the Japanese RPG. Personally, I would describe myself as an all-round gamer, although I’m utterly pants at RTS. Over the last six years, I’ve tried to introduce Kat to more old-school and action-orientated games, to broaden her gaming skill – and for the most part it’s worked. She packs a mean Bill in Left 4 Dead. She’s bested bi-pedal nuclear tanks by the dozen in every Metal Gear. Recently, she even beat Dr. Wily in the original MegaMan. Maybe she’ll conquer Super Mario Bros. yet?

Hang on, she’s figured out the warp zone! Wait, no. She died on 4-1.

Anyway, I think my point is this: just because you suck at a genre right now doesn’t mean you always have to. How you started gaming definitely influences the way you’ll play, but don’t be put off trying something new. Give fighting games a chance. Try an MMO. Go retro. Maybe you’ll love it. Practice makes perfect!

When all else fails, turn to alcohol. Another valuable life lesson!

Comments made by Kat while I was actually writing this:

“Damn it, Mushrooooom! I killed the mushroom.” “Ahh, I didn’t even see that.” “I would have never found that on my own.” “GAPS!” “WHY CAN YOU RUN ACROSS THE LITTLE GAPS?” “This game would be way better if it was MegaMan.” “I miss having fireballs. That was way better.” “[while swimming] OH NO, THIS IS TERRIBLE. EVERYTHING ABOUT THIS FEELS WRONG.” “I had a mushroom that time. Eat it, plant.” “The jumping fish are scaring me.”







7 responses to “Mario Should Always Run! HOLD B TO RUN!”

  1. Simon avatar

    Ha ha yes!

    Why can you run across the little gaps?

    It is odd to think that many people didn’t grow up playing 2D Mario.

    I suppose there are many people out there who’ve never seen Jurassic Park either.


  2. Celeste avatar

    Get her to play The Impossible Game, the subject of my upcoming blog. Gotta have lightning-fast reactions for that. Oooh oooh oooh – Ikaruga. Oh man we could have so much fun with this. Get monkey to dance! 😛

  3. arc14716 avatar

    I counted at least four consoles in those pictures–Super NES, Genesis, Wii, and I believe there was a PS3. How the heck do you sort out all the wires behind the tv and all that?

    And, yeah, back in the day, I used to yell a lot at the TV when things didn’t go my way in a game. I would actually add 3000 points to my score because in my mind, I didn’t screw up. The computer did!

  4. The Rook avatar
    The Rook

    Super Mario World brings back fond memories. I still think the US SNES looks weird. How does Kat fair with A Link To The Past, another classic SNES game.

  5. Mark P avatar

    I tried to get back into Super Mario Bros on the SNES, but I can’t find it! Woe is me.

  6. Duncan avatar

    I’m an RTS gamer! I take a strange, yet sad, amount of pride in that. 😛

    And OhMyGod there’s a Genesis! It’s like the Megadrive only it has a way cooler name. <3

  7. Kat avatar


    Actually, I’ve got ten consoles hooked up to that single TV (PS3, Wii, 360, SNES, Genesis, PS1, N64, Gamecube, PS2, and Dreamcast), as well as a DVD player, VCR, a mac mini, and a bunch of extra wires that make up my online streaming set-up (every other weekend or so you can find that here: Soon I’ll be adding an NES to that collection, as well.

    The long and short of it is that… well, the back of my TV is a mess. I had the cables organized once upon a time, but then I had to move the whole setup between rooms and now it’s just sort of a disaster. Ah well!

Leave a Reply