Earlier this week I suggested there's some shady stuff going down in the mean streets of Super Mario Odyssey's New Donk City. I wasn't just referring to the alleys filled with rats and soiled newspapers, either.
New Donk City – and the entirety of Mario Odyssey, if we're going to be frank about things – gives off a beautifully creepy vibe thanks to the game's core mechanic: Mario can use his ghost-hat to possess enemies, animals, and human-frickin'-beings.
"I'm-a Thou, and a-Thou art-a I! Woo hoo!" pic.twitter.com/jQdC3MQzUG— Nadia Oxford (@nadiaoxford) June 13, 2017
I'm not the only one who's picked up the "Mario Odyssey is kind of effed up" ball, either. Mario's new Exorcist-brand power-up has garnered jokes and memes at a rate that a plain ol' Super Mushroom can only dream of. But when Twitter user "samandfuzzy" posted a Kirby image instructing people on how to tell the difference between Kirby's inhalation powers and Mario's new possession powers, Nintendo finally stepped in to literally "Um, actually" its fanbase.
Um, actually he's been "Captured" by Mario. http://go.redirectingat.com?id=87431X1573192&xs=1&url=https%3A%2F%2Ft.co%2FRNqL1SqAGl— Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) June 21, 2017
There you go, then. Mario doesn't possess other characters in Super Mario Odyssey. He merely captures them.
I have two responses to this:
1) Oh, I get it – "CAP"-tured. Ha ha! That's pretty good.
2) I guess Nintendo would rather avoid the term "possession" because of its religious connotations. OK, cool. Thing is, "capture" isn't exactly a soft word. Know what else captures other living organisms? Venus fly traps. Tar pits. Bear traps. Rabbit snares. Pelicans.
So now when I think of Mario Odyssey's new power, I won't think of black magic. I'll think of trapped prey struggling fruitlessly against the iron grip of death: The desperate flailing against the inevitable, the slowing struggle, and finally, grim acceptance.
That's much better!