Occasionally, I take a look at myself and I wonder about how people perceive me. I tell myself: "Guillaume, you're a pretty damn big Nintendo nerd, but are you truly the biggest Nintendo nerd you can be? And how can you make sure that people will know just how much you obsess too much about Nintendo and its games?"
When these thoughts present themselves... I start a Nintendo podcast.
But you can only do that once. What is the second best way to shout at the world: "Hey, look at me! I really think about Nintendo a lot more than someone with no stake in the company should!"?
For those of you who want a very good English book on the history of Nintendo, I have to recommend Game Over by David Sheff again... it's intriguing stuff that even dives into some surprisingly personal things about Yamauchi. You can get it used or download an ebook on the internet.
So I started with the book that I heard the least good about, The History of Mario. I'm up to the chapter where they're starting to work on Super Mario Bros. Chapter 7. Nearly halfway into the book! The preceding chapters were more about Donkey Kong and Nintendo's arcade days.
And you know, I'm not the biggest DK fan, or the biggest arcade fan, but the history of DK is more interesting to me than I would have expected. Basically, the book answers a lot of questions I always had about Donkey Kong and the original Mario Bros game (the arcade one where you compete to kill a dozen creatures). It basically gives me the context I was lacking since I wasn't there in those days.
It describes how the Donkey Kong arcade game sprung out of a Popeye Game & Watch concept. It explains how Mario really wasn't the star of the game, how it's really thanks to the Universal Studios lawsuit that DK took the back seat and Mario got the spotlight, although Mario Bros didn't impress that much. How Nintendo itself was also part of the problem when the video game market crashed, with its arcade and G&W rehashes. Etc.
The book basically shows how unlikely it was initially that Mario would become Nintendo's mascot, and then proceeds to show why he did.
It's a pretty good read so far and I'm enjoying it. He does quote Game Over a lot and I wish I had read that book now so I could compare, and be able to point out what this book covers that Game Over didn't. I'm also disappointed that the author relies on other people's Japanese translations (some taken from Neogaf!).
The author of The History of Nintendo at least is fluent in Japanese, I think it's going to be the superior book, or at least I'm sure I'll find its information more trustworthy.
In the previous game, Donkey Kong stole Mario's lady, wrecked a construction site and nearly tried to KILLED him while he was trying to undo the whole thing. Clearly the world is better (and safer) with DK behind bars.
Heck, DK is even destructive in his jungle home - think of all the statues, ancient castles, pyramids, etc that DK absolutely DESTROYS in the Donkey Kong Country series (especially in Returns) just to get his bananas back. I mean, seriously? He does all that for bananas. Bananas! Why is he so worried about a bunch of bananas? It's not like those are a limited commodity.