Monday, August 04, 2014

Super Mario Galaxy: completed!

Mario landed harder than normal.  Was it arthritis setting in?  Or had gravity been tampered with, maybe in an effort to get him to stay?  The toadstool blinked as if he was trying to remember something, then with a large sign shuffled towards me.  As he had done previously, he handed over a letter - maybe the same one, as the wording was identical.  There were five more lives enclosed, though some were starting to decay.

It had only been a year and a half, but the space station seemed to be creaking.  I looked at the map, wiping the layers of dust off, and realised that I had no idea how to find any more stars.

I saw that in the engine room there was a question mark over a grey star, but on arriving at this room I couldn't work out how to collect this rather than the previous star.  I assumed it was hidden on the same level, but I had no idea how to go about finding it.

There was a boss level sitting unplayed - a lava world.  But no, what was I doing?  I had 74 stars, was I going to try to get all 120 before facing my foe?  I didn't know if you even could get all 120 beforehand, and even if you could then I would never reach that point.

The time had come.  Peach had been languishing for seven years, Bowser waiting patiently for his plans to be finalised.  I ran down the path towards Rosalina, my burdens suddenly relieved.  I was going to finish this, and everything else was optional.  It did not need to happen!

The space station turned into a spaceship, and I was on my way to the castle.  It seemed to be well preserved, maybe due to a slowing of time at the centre of the galaxy. My seven years may have been mere minutes.

Bowser implied not.

The final battle was long and hard.  It took me ages to work out how to hit Bowser during the first part of the fight - having to work out where to stand to hit his head as he rolling towards me was tricky.  I managed it after losing two lives, and the last part of the battle seemed easy by comparison.

And that was it.  The star gleamed over the pole of Bowser's miniature planet, slightly corroded by time.

I ran to it, desperate to escape before the world disintegrated to dust.  Escape I did - though the end credits sequence was a bit odd, with Mario, Peach and Bowser waking up outside the castle in its grounds.  Everything seems to be connected.

Except, of course, that's not the end, and there are still many stars to collect.  New galaxies opened up, purple comets appeared, and Rosalina welcomed me back with a knowing wink.  45 more stars are needed to unlock something, it seems, and many of those will be up in the top of the space station, as well as following comets around.

Not right now.  I went back to the lava boss world, so I could be sure there wasn't an empty existing galaxy, and completed that.

Then I found myself at the gate world, where I was introduced to red stars and purple coins.  The flying controls are pretty awful - in fact, I've found the controls overall hard to adjust to, after my lengthy break.  A number of deaths falling off the side of the world or running into enemies that I should have been able to avoid.

It's completed, in that I've rescued Peach and her long-term incarceration is over.  I've seen the end credits.  I've not completed every star - I've not even played on every level - but I'm happy with that.  For now.

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