I sat at my computer, pondering that question. People tell me Tomb Raider is old and boring and nothing new happens. Yeah well I was nearly peeing my pants when in Chronicles they introduced corner shimmying! Yes, I did find that amazing. I have always been a huge TR fan and every time Lara can do something basic and new, I wet myself.
People are starting to become uneasy with Grand Theft Auto and the fact that it could very well be the same as it's predecessors but just prettier. So you could say the same about any other series that repeats the same character in the basically same setting with a slight story line change.
Now before I get the onslaught of "OMFG U H8 MARIO!!11 u sux", I don't. I enjoy Mario. I like Mario games. I'm just potentially getting bored of them. I also understand that Mario will never really go further than what it really is. Miyamoto has made a game for all ages in mind. All ages usually means markets its self to the more casual of gamers, who want that 3-hit kill boss and want that basic "save the princess" story line. They want simplicity, fun and it to be short.
As gaming becomes more mainstream and gamers become more hardcore, can Mario still stand up in a sea of deep games with more than just mushrooms and stars to their look. Gaming is ultimately about fun, which Mario is. We all complain about games repeating the same thing. We all complain about franchises getting old. So ...
Why are we not complaining about Mario? I believe nearly every new platform Mario game after 64 has been called "a new take on Mario 64". Why? Because well ... it is. So don't tell me Miss Croft is getting boring and old when half the gaming population still gets off to the fact Mario 64 is coming out next year with a new bloody Mario 64. It's like Madden all over again (oh yeah I went there).
Not to say I am anti-Mario. Hell no! Even though I am a small fraction of people who didn't ween themselves off of Mario's teet into the glorious world of gaming, I sure as hell did play through a whole bunch of Mario titles. I enjoyed the ironically named New Super Mario Brothers with its slight change of gameplay and completely same outcome in recent years even though when I was a bit wee child, I played the same bloody thing on a SNES.
What are we to question innovative and intricate game design, when most of us all go on about how ****ing great Mario is (que Nintendo Fan boy fapping). Yes Mario was fun, Mario was original and Mario was a great childhood friend who taught us absolutely nothing about life but everything about using our imagination. So what's happened?
Mario is still the same guy we grew up with, reassuring to be honest, however why do we forgive Mario for not doing anything more than the same bloody thing over and over? In 2D, 3D, HD (??) he does it again -- Save that cock teasing princess from what? It's not like Bowser is really man enough to do anything relatively deviant or evil to Peach. I mean can you imagine playing Mario and you get to Bowser's castle to find him raping her brains out as she screams for Mario? No, that'll never happen. Will you ever really see an emotional and deep story line between a plumber and a princess? No.
Sure Mario is made for kids and adults alike. Kids however don't mind repetitive games. Actually kids tend to enjoy something repetitive. As adults however, we praise something that ultimately shows us nothing new year after year. We buy his clothes. We buy his mushrooms and we dance around the room in happy glee. It's "cool" to be a Mario fan. It's "cool" to play Mario games. To not like Mario makes you less of a gamer apparently.
Hey Mario? Continue with your spin off's of Parties and Smashing brothers from another mother. However, if your going to be a platform game and appeal to more gamers, try something different. But god damn you're fun ... I'm just growing out of you ... maybe?
I'll leave you with a quote from like-minded gamer Monir commenting on a review of Super Mario Galaxy.
"but is no one bored of Mario any more? it is exactly the same every time, the puzzles are all exactly the same, the bosses always die by 3 hits by doing a certain thing. Mario needs to die, quickly. I was disappointed with the new super Mario game on ds, it got stupidly high ratings from press and average people. the game was awful, I completed it within less than 3 hours, and I've only played 2 other Mario games in my life, but even then, I recognized that there was nothing new in any of the puzzles or enemies. the repetitiveness is annoying."
Has he got a point?