Greatest video-game tragedies of the last decade

 Zeroes from the Aughts
By LASER ORGY  |  January 20, 2010

10. Luigi's Mansion (2001) and Super Mario Sunshine (2002) bring shame to Nintendo

Luigi's Mansion trailer

Super Mario Sunshine ad

After the revelation that was Super Mario 64, which took the Mario pantheon from the simple pastures of the platform-jumping side-scroller into the immersive world of 3-D, gamers looked to the Mario titles on Nintendo's next console to be just as jaw-dropping. Instead, Nintendo launched its new GameCube platform -- which finally made the leap from cartridges to discs -- not with Mario, but his useless and even-more-irritating bro, Luigi, who spent the entirety of Luigi's Mansion running around with a vacuum cleaner and a flashlight. (Looking for Mario, tellingly enough.) Adding insult to injury, Nintendo finally followed up Luigi's wild ghost chase with a proper Mario title in 2002 ... except Super Mario Sunshine turned out to be a wretched chore of a game that condemned you to an island of gibbering blobmen, where you were to solve obnoxious puzzles, collect an endless number of blue coins, and clean up graffiti with a high-tech hose. Yes, the game was technically a commercial success. So what's the tragedy? That it took five years and a new console for Mario return in top form -- and sans wanky gadgets -- in Super Mario Galaxy. (This video really drives home the difference between the two.)

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