Retronauts Takes to the Skies with Super Mario 64

Retronauts Takes to the Skies with Super Mario 64

This week, USgamer's classic gaming podcast digs into one of the most important early 3D games of all time.

Games used polygonal graphics and 3D environments before the 1996 release of Mario 64, but it's safe to say Nintendo's work proved these new types of experiences wouldn't just be awkward curiosities—they would be the future.

I know because I was there. I played plenty of 3D games before Mario 64, but it was the first one to feel right. And while it may be an easy target, you only have to look at the wretched Bubsy 3D to see how things could have turned out for Nintendo. Of course, the designers of Bubsy 3D weren't trying to make a bad game—like many developers of the mid-90s, they were struggling to figure out the essential rules that hadn't quite been created yet. NIntendo just had the benefit of hiring industry changing visionaries whose talents weren't limited to a certain style of game; remember, the folks who made the first Mario also made the first Zelda. (And the same is true of Mario 64 and Ocarina of Time.)

But I don't really think you need me to tell you Super Mario 64 is important—and if you do, the following 90-minute podcast should really come in handy. Of course, that's not the entire point of this episode: By the end, you should come out the other side with a new appreciation for this 1996 classic, and know more than you ever needed to know about the ins and outs of its primitive 3D world. (That's the Retronauts Difference.)

Joining us on this one is Polygon's Danielle Riendeau, who we managed to nab before she moved away from the increasingly expensive Bay Area, and Henry Gilbert, who hosts the comic book podcast Cape Crisis on the Laser Time Network. As always, you can keep up with the latest Retronauts news via our Twitter and Facebook accounts, and check out some of our video content over on our YouTube page. And, in case you forgot, Retronauts is fully funded by our Patreon campaign, so if you can afford to donate even a dollar a month, please consider it! Every little bit really helps our cause.

Download Links

Libsyn (1:28:53 | MP3 Download | SoundCloud)

Sometimes we include links to online retail stores. If you click on one and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. See our terms & conditions.

Read this next

Super Mario 64 Hack Mod De-Makes Super Mario Odyssey's Sand Kingdom

Welcome to the new Sand Kingdom! Watch out for sharp edges.

Super Mario 64 Mod Lets the Game Run at a Crazy 60fps

No way that crummy penguin will outrace Mario now.

Super Mario 64 Battle Royale Mod Combines all Worlds Into one Huge Area

Snap that neck, and then again, let's do the Mario, all together now!

Video Shows off Rare Clean Footage of Super Mario 64 Beta

Crisp, clean video of Super Mario 64 in its earliest form doesn't come around every day.

More Articles

We Tested Google Stadia at Dunkin Donuts, Safeway, and Panda Express, And We Were Surprised by the Results

Trying out Google Stadia in the real world is an interesting experience.

8 of the Best New Pokemon in Sword and Shield, From Polteageist to Grapploct

Eight of our favorite new monsters from Pokemon Gen 8.

Where is Our Shenmue 3 Review?

Reviewing things takes time.

What's Your Favorite Pokemon Generation?

COMMUNITY QUESTION | Red and Blue? Ruby and Sapphire? We want to know that generation of Pokemon speaks to you the most.

More on Nintendo 64

What's Your Favorite Video Game Monster?

COMMUNITY QUESTION | We love to be scared of 'em.

Why Doom 64's Switch Port Is a Big Deal

One way Doom 64 differs from the original is that it's never officially been ported.

Downhill Jam: The Game Industry Reflects on 20 Years of Tony Hawk's Pro Skater

Tony Hawk's Pro Skater turns 20 in September, so we spoke to people across the industry who remember the series fondly.

How One Modder Builds Handheld Custom Consoles Through the Magic of Community and Self-Teaching

For modder Chris Downing, making his own handheld consoles is even more fun than playing them.

Here's What Banjo and Kazooie Look Like in The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker

Rare's iconic animal duo weren't originally native fauna on Outset Island, but a mod is changing that.

A New Nintendo 64 HD Adapter Lets You Play Classic Games Like Star Fox 64 on Modern TVs

The Super 64 gives your old Nintendo 64 a second chance.