Monday, 14 January 2008

'Super Paper Mario' or 'How to keep a OCD sufferer happy'

I've manged to waste about a day of my life on this game over the past week and it's now seriously starting to cut into my knitting time. The only problem is that I can't stop playing it! The game itself is relatively easy- none of the baddies have caused me real problems as of yet and I'm advancing through the levels fairly rapidly. The only problem is the 'extras' or side-quests that they have tacked on. One involves collecting 'cards' which is essentially the computer format of top trumps only you don't duel with them. Each one represents one of the characters from the game and it's a case of finding them or buying them with coins that you collect as you bounce through the levels. There are 256 possible cards to collect so of course I'm completely addicted to getting each and every one.
They also have a similar function for recipes. For this you find items such as an egg or cake mix (which act as power up items for health) and then you take them to one of two chefs who cooks them up. In most cases this creates a better power up item with special abilities (such a curing poison) that you need to heal yourself. You get a little recipe book that logs the stuff you make so you know what gives you the best power ups etc but at the same time it turns into a game of trying to work out all the possible combinations to make the best stuff. There are 96 recipes in all so of course, I'm also trying to get all of these!
And if that wasn't bad enough they also have an arcade section with mini games where you have to try to get the top score and thus win tokens. You can trade the tokens in for power ups and cards- argh!
Whoever designed this game knew exactly what they where doing and I'm not sure if I love them or hate them for it. It's bringing back the computer game geek in me which on the whole I don't mind as I find it very relaxing to play these sorts of games but they are so addictive! I keep catching myself thinking about the game and planning my evening around playing it for a few minutes (ahem....hours). I see that I'm going to have to go cold turkey- it's the only way I'll ever get anything important done ever again.

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