Mario to Halo and beyond

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Over the last 30 years, as video games have gone from being the smallest, weediest of the entertainment industries to a hulking behemoth grossing more money than cinema and music, one thing has been constant… a short, chubby plumber with a mustache.

Mario has become an iconic figure, recognizable across the world and arguably the figure head for the games industry. But is he likely to be as prominent in the future of video games as he has been in the past?

The huge increase in the processing power of video games consoles, and the leaps in graphical sophistication that has come with that has led to a change in the style and content of many of the most popular video games…

Where as the small color palette of consoles such as the Sega Master System favored cartoon styled platform games, the photorealism todays consoles are capable of, has seen a huge rise in more visceral experiences such as Halo and Modern Warfare.

I for one hope that this does not herald the end of the road for the Super Mario Series… as they have been among best games ever made. Just as the films of Pixar, though cartoons, are often the most intelligent films at the cinema, the Mario games tend to have more imagination and clever design than any number of identikit FPS games on the market…

Long live chubby plumbers!


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