Your Princess is in Another Castle

I have a confession to make.

I have never seen the ending to Super Mario Bros.

…or Super Mario Bros. 2, Super Mario Bros. 3, TMNT, Jurassic Park game for Sega, or any of the Sonic the Hedgehog games.

For a long time, I thought it meant I sucked at video games in general. This inability to beat the early games (invariably, always platformers) gave me a deep-seated fear that I would never finish any video game, ever. Especially not by myself. So when other types of games came out, and I heard the story was really good, I almost didn’t want to play them because I’d never find out the ending.

Because, for me, the Princess is still in another damn castle.

When I actually beat Starcraft, I thought it was a fluke.

Then came Mass Effect, the 3rd person action RPG. I really, really wanted to play it. And I really, really wanted to beat it and finish the story. Why? Because I like stories. A good story, for me, is a huge component of a good game. When I started playing, I nervously set out on a Normal difficulty. When I got to the “surprise” battle on Therum just before going into the prothean mine to save Liara, I died. I died a lot. But I got through it. Then [i]after[/i] saving Liara (something I later came to regret, but that’s another story) with the krogan Battlemaster and a bunch of geth troops, I died. I died several times. And the old fear came back—verily, I did suck at video games. Yet, I kept trying, and eventually got past it. I’m glad I stuck with it.

Because, little did I know that that particular battle with the krogan was one of the most difficult battles in the entire game (if you’re playing a new character and go to Therum first once you get your ship). I went on to beat the game. Then, in a burst of courage, I tried the game on Veteran. I beat it on that difficulty, too. Next came Hardcore. And then I tried Insane. I was shocked, even speechless, when I beat the game at that difficulty. Oh, and ecstatic.

Recently, I stumbled my way onto this video via Twenty-Sided Tale. It makes the case for Prince of Persia being the most innovative game of 2008—but not for obvious reasons.

Turns out, I just suck at platformers, not video games as a whole.