Before we begin.
Hello, before we begin this story, I'd like to take my time to say that this is written adaption of this video right here. I do not own the original story, I just wanted to do a written version for anyone who'd like a story to go along with the original video. That being said, let's begin.
I could easily start this with some dramatic crap about how "I'll never look at Mario the same way again," or "What happened to me has scarred me for life." No, in my opinion this was just a case of severe bad luck.
It was a Sunday afternoon, and I was tending to the plants in my backyard before heading back inside. I was bored out of my mind to say the least. I had no plans, all my friends were busy, and I wasn't really in the mood for a game like Team Fortress 2 or Half-Life. I was more in the mood for something classic. That was the moment when my eyes turned to my Super Nintendo, picking up dust and cobwebs in a box that laid in the corner of my open closet, isolated from any potential wielders of its simple yet intuitive controller.
I wasn't the most positive at the time, self-doubt riddled my mind along with a not so desirable view of one's self. But there was one thing that always sparked the child like joy in me; Mario. It was just something about his peppy attitude and his colorful world where the hills and clouds have eyes that just made me giddy all the while I played any of his various titles. I got up off my bed and picked up the box from the closet, I sat the box on my bed and reached in to let the contents of the box out of its cardboard structure.
I pulled out the SNES console itself, the two controllers, and last but not least; all my cartridges. To name a couple, the games I had were Star Fox, Bart's Nightmare, F-Zero, and my favorite of them all; Super Mario World. I smiled warmly as I looked at the wonderful art work of Mario riding Yoshi with his yellow cape blowing in the wind. I chuckled, feeling that familiar child like joy the series brought me. The joy lasted until I noticed that cartridge was filthy, particularly at the bottom in its bottom opening. I didn't know how it got so dirty, but I guessed it might have been due to staying locked up in my closet for a long time, untouched and therefore unkempt.
I made my way to the kitchen to give the cartridge a scrub, but not before looking up on my phone on how to properly clean a SNES cartridge just to be sure I don't ruin what was one of the world's most favorite games of all time. After taking a look at the cleaning procedures I got to work, I took a look inside the cartridge and saw the gold contacts were covered in a sticky black substance, seemingly oil. "Oil?" I thought, "How the hell did oil get into the cartridge?"
After taking a soap soaked Q-tip and thoroughly washing the inside of my cartridge, as well as wiping the outside with a rag just to be sure, I decided that the cartridge was fit and ready to be played. I headed back up to my room and hooked up my SNES to my TV and gently inserted the cartridge into the system, not wanting to break anything inside the cartridge of console.
This was when it all changed.
When the Nintendo Presents screen popped up, the coin sound effect was severely pitched down and slow, the logo was slanted to the left a bit, and the screen certainly lasted a lot longer than it should have. I tried pressing buttons on the controller in confusion, but nothing happened. Until a loud beep came out of my TV speakers along with the image distorting before cutting to black, making me jump in surprise. Soon the title screen appeared along with some major differences. The background was black along with the Nintendo logo, some of the wooden boarder was missing, and the logo was red and only said "Mario World," and Mario was no where to be seen.
In a hurry to get off this weird screen, I kept hitting the start button, only for nothing to happen. Suddenly the music began changing. It went down in pitch, until it became extremely loud, and the logo and wooden boarder tilted, along with the colors becoming heavily saturated and distorted. As I covered my ears I noticed that the game finally started, thank God.
As the intro music began to play and the message box appeared, everything became warped, and the message box contained nothing but distorted letters, it was all something that should've been impossible on the 16-bit hardware. It almost looked like a painting. Not only that but the music became loud as well, almost as if you raised it to max volume and bass boosted it
Before the screen cut to black, I noticed that it changed again. Everything was a silhouette, the background turned red and the message box only said "NO HOPE" over and over. The world map finally appeared, except there was no music, no level name, and no Mario running in the top left corner. I also started on the Yoshi's Island 2 level instead of Yoshi's Island 1. Unable to move, I pressed A. The level was majorly different, the background was from New Super Mario Bros, and the level was flat with no obstacles at all. I held the Y button and moved right, running along the flat plains.
Over time, the background suddenly became less saturated and the music went down in pitch. Then the background was fully black and white, and the music was pitched down more. Soon everything became much worse. The background became inverted and wavy, and the music was an unrecognizable mess, and suddenly the music became loud once more. I saw that on the left was a shadow slowly coming towards me, I tried to outrun it but it was too fast, soon Mario was consumed by the shadow until the world map appeared again.
This time there was a shadow starting to creep in around Mario, and there was a level name now. It was hard to read due to some gibberish hiding it, but I managed to make out "LOSE YOUR HOPE NOW." With a deep breath, I started the level again.
Much like the intro screen in the split second before it took me to the world map, everything was a silhouette with a red background. The music this time was a slow mess of chip tune notes, certainly not a tune I could recognize at all. I tried to jump, but it was like there was a ceiling directly above Mario as I could not jump at all, I couldn't move either. Suddenly Mario disappeared for a second before reappearing, walking forward on his own with no influence from my controller inputs.
After some time of just Mario walking, he came across something that caused him to stop. It seemed to be Yoshi, impaled on a spike. I was a bit disturbed, even if these were just 16-bit sprites, the fact that something caused my Mario World cartridge to contain a completely different game sent chills down my spine. After a couple of seconds, there was a low pitch beep, before Mario turned white and wavy, and the background turned into splatters of blood, along with a ear piercing high pitched noise. The screen turned to black and some text flashed, from what I could make out in that short time I read "YOU COULD NOT SAVE HIM." Was Mario trying to save Yoshi?
Once again I had returned to the world map, except the shadow was closer and the colors were more saturated except for Mario's, and there was an eerie quiet whispering coming from my TV speakers. The level name this time was just gibberish. I pressed A and started the level once more.
When the level started, Mario was in the middle of a square made of stone blocks with a sky background, and on the right was a note block that wasn't moving at all, the music as well was an eerie tune that seemed to be reversed. I moved Mario to the note block and hit it, nothing happened. Then I hit it again, still nothing. Until, Luigi appeared on the left. He wasn't moving and had intimidating red eyes. The more I hit the block, the closer he got, until it seemed like it would be the final time for me to hit the block and bring him close enough to Mario to do God knows what, the level changed.
Everything became tinted red and the music became loud and bass boosted, and Luigi was gone. In the middle of the room was pipe with a piranha plant popping in and out, wanting to see if the pipe would get me out I jumped on it and pressed down. Instead of warping to a different area however, blood squirted out of the pipe along with Luigi flashing around the level, and I could hear Mario's scream from Super Mario 64, along with the sounds of bones crunching and growls. It didn't take long for me to realize that Mario had just gotten eaten alive by that piranha plant. I wiped a bit of sweat from my forehead, I felt hot even though my fan was on, I took some breaths to calm myself and pushed on.
I felt my heart sink a bit as the world map appeared again.
Everything was black, except for the level dot I was standing on, the background was red and this time there was a level title; it said "the hell awaits for you." Wanting to just get to the end I pushed A and started the level. In the level, Mario was eyeless, and walking on his own. The background was red and the logo was at the top of the screen. There was a low quality piano melody playing, which made me a bit more unnerved.
As Mario walked he passed the corpses of Bowser, Bowser Jr, and then himself. All impaled. Mario stood there and looked at himself, almost as if he was just looking at his reflection in the mirror. I noticed that Luigi would appear for a second behind a Mario before disappearing again. Something told me that Luigi had something to do with this, if only I could know what.
The screen cut to black and I returned to the title screen, this time Mario was there, walking through the demo level. I looked in confusion, was it over? Not wanting to deal with anymore of it I turned off the console and took out the cartridge, I threw it in the garbage bin next to my desk and went out for a walk, needing to relax.
I might never know what happened, whether or not it was some spirit or my game changing by itself is beyond me, then again I don't really care at this point. I wanna put it behind me and move on. I know one thing though; I'm getting a new cartridge.