What can even be said about Mario is Missing that hasn’t been said about penicillin, microwaves, or the (modern) ladder? From Mario’s humble beginnings climbing up steel beams to rescue Princess Peach from Diddy Kong, to his first “leap” into 2D platformers with Super Mario Galaxy on the Nintendo Game-and-Watch, Mario is Missing marks what is recognized by the industry as the prime example of gaming perfection, and pushed the Mario franchise into new dimensions.
While it’s been out for nearly three decades, game developers far and wide have referenced the thrilling spectacle that is Mario is Missing across ALL genres, and it’s mark on society is evident in modern celebrated titles such as Call of Duty, Dark Souls, and Call of Duty 3: Duty’s Revenge.
Originally launched in the summer of 1990 on the Nintendo Switch, Mario is Missing tore down the walls of traditional game design by being the very first game to acknowledge the existence of history itself. The player controls Luigi as he travels to many locations, some from real life such as Cairo, Paris, and New York City, as well as some notable locations taken out of Japanese role-playing and fantasy games (Tokyo).
While in these locations, Luigi must find ancient artifacts from centuries past such as Big Ben and the Mona Lisa, as well as other works of famed painter Vincent Van Gough, in order to rescue his cousin Mario. He must also find hidden treasures to help him finance his quest, as he has lost gainful employment due to the fact that modern plumbing didn’t exist in the early 1990s.
What Mario is Missing left on modern gaming cannot be understated – it simply became the template for not what games could be, but what they should be. If you have the opportunity to let yourself become immersed in the work of Mario is Missing, please do yourself a favor and jump right in. You’ll feel right at home in Luigi’s overalls.
Have you had the pleasure of exploring the fantasy lands of Mario is Missing? Let’s hear about your (obviously positive) experience in the comments below!