How to be an Asshole at Super Mario World

Writer: Steve
Raising a little Hell: Ryan

There is nothing better than being able to reap pleasure out of the misfortune of others. Sometimes, to achieve this end, you must bring said misfortune on the parties in question yourself and for some, this is not easy. The real skill involved in this process is that of being an asshole. I am quite proud to announce that I do indeed posess this most marvelous of skills, and will be sharing some of my inside tips with you lucky bastards in my new article series "How to be an asshole...", where the "..." is replaced with an event or situation in which I will explain how to be an asshole.

The maiden article of this series is about how to be an asshole while playing Super Mario World, for the SNES. To refine the situation, the only way to really be an asshole while playing this classic is to be playing it with someone else. After all, if you're playing alone, the only person you can annoy is yourself. While the game is quite simple by today's standards, there are still a myriad of ways to torment those unlucky or foolish enough to play with you. These ways could be hard to determine to many of you, lacking my superior intellect and awesomeness, so I've made the monumental decision to share some of the fruits of my ponderings with you in hopes that you too may someday be as skilled as I am at being an asshole at Super Mario World.

I suppose there are a few people out there that don't know what the fuck I'm talking about, so for those people, I'll give a brief summary of the game (feel free to skip this paragraph if you already know what it's about). Basically, It's your standard side scrolling platform game wherein you're a plumber seeking to assassinate a giant turtle who rides around in a giant flying teacup. You go from level to level killing large (but not giant) turtles in an effort to try and get to the giant turtle at the end and do away with him. I'm sure there's some kind of storyline beyond this, but I'm not too sure what it is and I can't be bothered to look it up.

To be an effective asshole at the game, you must first understand some of the game's workings. Firstly, only one person can play at a time, this makes it really boring for anyone watching you and is a good starting point for determining an asshole method for the game. Secondly, and somewhat to our disadvantage, there is a time limit of 300 seconds in each level. This fact makes doing something like trying to kill enemies over and over again so that you'll get enough points to get 99 lives (this would take a long time and would be very boring to the other player(s)) impossible. Thirdly, this game does not autosave after each level, meaning that you could potentially die and then lose quite a bit of progress. You can also steal the other player's lives, but cannot reduce said player's lives to zero.

The first and simplist way to achieve assholeity while playing the game would probably be to take as long as you can to beat levels that have already been beaten. In this method, the other player must watch helplessly as you stand by the finish line and do nothing for 200 seconds, and then even when you cross said line, the other player does not benefit from the lengthy procedure due to the fact that you just beat a level that had already been beaten. The first time you pull this off, the other player might just be slightly annoyed, or they might even seem to think it's funny, but after three or four turns of having to watch you beat "Donut Plains 2", they'll be begging you to stop and trying to gouge their eyes out or trying anything else they might think of to end their now horrible existance. I suppose something to watch out for if you're going to try this method is that you want to avoid getting lives. If you pick up one of those damned green mushrooms, or somehow mannage to get enough points to merit the "reward" of another life, you're helping the very person you're trying to piss off because if they ever lose all their lives, that life you earned will keep them in the game. Avoiding this effect is easy, either you purposely let the time run out and die, or you beat the level without actually earning any points. Of course, boasting is a big part of being an asshole, and you can't very well brag when you die because your time ran out, so the second way is definitly the better one. The good thing about this method is that it creates a hellish boredom for the other players, but the bad thing is that it really doesn't hinder them too much and they'll still be able to progress normally through the game, slow as their progress may be.

While the previous method may irritate the other players somewhat, the one I use will have them throwing things and possibly shooting at you. My technique is one of such brillance and ingenuity that only the very skilled will actually be able to make use it effectively. It will not only accomplish making the other players irate, but will achieve the other main goal of being an asshole as well, for when the other players see you executing this phenomenal technique, they may seem unimpressed on the surface, but what they are hiding is the fact that the very fact that you know of this method proves that you are indeed far superior to them, and a small part of them dies when they come to the realization that there is no way to halt this amazing procedure. This techinque is built on the foundation of two of the game's major flaws; There is no autosave, and you can get to the giant turtle relatievly quickly by using star road (a secret passage to the last level from one of the first ones). When you first start playing, play as normal, but try and put an emphasis on getting through star road. Once you have access to the last level, beat a ghosthouse to save the game. At this point, you may think that the other players will want to stop playing because you can technically beat the game, but seeing as how it probably only took about 15 minuits to get this far, they'll probably want to keep playing and get to the boss by actually beating all the levels. This is where the assholeishness takes form; Beat the boss. That's it, that's all you have to do, just go to the last level and beat the boss. Now, you're probably all thinking "Man, this method sucks. I wish I had opposable thumbs and wasn't so damned ugly.", but as usual, your feeble minds fail to grasp the effects of the simple action. The beauty of this technique lies in the fact that when you beat the boss, the game doesn't save, it just restarts from the title screen. So if the other player beats a level, and then you beat the boss, then the game restarts and it is as if the other player has never beat the level. The only way to save the game is to beat a level, but you can only save after beating certain levels, so the other player(s) will never be able to progress in the game. Not only this, but the other player(s) will also be exposed to your showboating and boasting each and every time you kill the giant turtle. Imagine the suffering; not only are they becoming more and more bored with the game, giving you an assholeish pleasure from thier misery, but you also get the confidence boost that comes with all the bragging that you'll get to do. The only downside with this is that if you're not skilled enough to beat the boss consistnetly, the whole plan kinda falls apart, but If you are skilled enough, there is no better way I can think of to be an asshole while playing Super Mario World.

There are probably plenty of other ways to be an asshole while playing the game, but these two work for me, and so I really don't care about any other methods. I'm sure you can all find you own ways to piss people off while playng the game (That's really just a figure of speech, I actually think very little of you people, but the phrase seems to fit well in a conclusion.), but try and remember this little rule of thumb: You want to annoy the other person as much as possible without actually making them wnat to leave. You could be an asshole by just hitting the reset button every time it's their turn or unplugging their controller at crucial times, but then they'd just get pissed off and go away, and then your source of entertainment and self-aggrandisment (their misfortune) is gone.