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Super Mario Galaxy

I got this game soon after its release in North America on 12 November 2007. It was the first game from the Super Mario franchise I ever owned, and I can still recall enthusiastically bringing it home, loading it up, and immediately being impressed by the typical Nintendo polish of the opening scenes, a feeling that would persist for the entirety of my experience playing this game. Unlike many other video games I've played, however, in the case of Super Mario Galaxy, I played it intensively for maybe upwards of a month, from November to December 2007, and possibly into 2008, before I set it down and never returned to seriously playing it again. This was certainly not due to my finding the game unfun; probably the best explanation that I can give you for this is that my attention was occupied by many other video games that were more attractive and fun to me.

The main goal of the game is to collect stars by completing missions; there are 120 such stars, though only 60 are required to play the final Bowser boss battle. Regrettably, sometime in (probably) 2010 I ended up deleting all of my saved game data on my Wii, including my game data for Super Mario Galaxy, and thus all records of my progress in this game have been lost. However, I can still clearly remember having accumulated, without much difficulty, well over 60 stars (I cannot remember the exact number I had before I stopped playing the game, though it was probably somewhere around 80), but I delayed playing the final Bowser boss battle, having decided that I would collect as many stars as I reasonably could before undertaking it. Ultimately, I stopped playing the game—and then deleted my Wii's save data—before I ever got around to even attempting the boss battle, so this game is, admittedly, another one of my unfinished titles.

Although the gameplay is quite fun, it is the outer space setting and the visuals—which together result in remarkable and wildly creative environments—and especially the soundtrack that I remember the best. Nintendo truly held nothing back when it came to this game's music, hiring a full orchestra to perform (I think) every composition. My favorite pieces from the game's soundtrack are the Good Egg Galaxy theme, which plays during the game's first few missions; the first, second, and third variations of the theme of the Comet Observatory, the location which serves as the game's overworld and which I have calming memories of exploring while listening to the music that would play as a way to relax between playing missions; and the Gusty Garden Galaxy's theme. Of the last composition I am particularly fond; no other piece of music in this game I associate more strongly with Super Mario Galaxy than this one. It is, in my opinion, the best track in the whole game, as well as one of the finest pieces of music I have ever had the good fortune of coming across in any video game, and I strongly urge you to listen to it—even if you've never heard it before and therefore hold no nostalgia for it, I can guarantee that you won't be disappointed.

I also have very warm memories of watching a video recording of a live orchestral performance of the Gusty Garden Galaxy's theme on YouTube near the end of 2007 (I think that I saw the video prior to even buying the game, in which case it was certainly another motivator for my eventual purchase). As I watch this video today, I am simultaneously flooded with memories of playing Super Mario Galaxy and of my fun experiences on old YouTube, and with the realization that, as of November 2020, it has already been thirteen years since I first viewed this video and played what was, at the time, a cutting-edge blockbuster Wii game from Nintendo nearly every day after school while sitting, comfortably cool, on our artificial-leather couch back in the winter of 2007–2008, when the days got dark early and the room was lit almost exclusively by the light coming from our big-screen TV.

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This page last modified on 28 March 2021.