One of the biggest announcements at E3 2009 was Nintendo's revelation of Super Mario Galaxy 2. We're all super-excited to re-visit the world of Mario when this game drops, but the question is: How will Super Mario Galaxy 2 differ from Super Mario Galaxy? One key change: It will be much lighter on story than the first game.
In an interview with Wired, Nintendo's Shigeru Miyamoto put it this way:
"I’ve talked to (Galaxy director Yoshiaki) Koizumi about that a lot, but this time I’d like to go with as little story as possible. I’ve always felt that the Mario games themselves aren’t particularly suited to having a very heavy story, whereas the Zelda series is something that lends itself more naturally to that idea. We’ve differentiated a little bit between those two, because the Zelda games have had an in-depth story whereas the Mario games have not. Mr. Koizumi is the type of person who, whenever we’re working on a new Mario game, he always wants to bring more story elements into it, as he did with Super Mario Galaxy. But in talking with him this time, he agrees and feels that with Galaxy 2, there won’t be a need for as deep of a story. I think you did see a person carved out of a tree stump in the trailer. That person has a bit of a story."
Thank god. I thought the story elements in Super Mario Galaxy were interminable and ridiculous and didn't add a thing to the gameplay. I might be in the minority here, though.
I think there's "too much" story in a lot of games, actually, and I think game stories are too often poorly integrated with gameplay. I'm one of those people who skips the majority of cut-scenes because, frankly, I'm playing a game to have fun, and when a game tries to be all serious, gets too complicated or tries to have some kind of important message, I tune right out.... there are exceptions, of course -- Bioshock, Portal, and a few others -- but those kinds of games generally have plots that are worked into the gameplay, as opposed to having a plot that exists separately from what you actually do when you play the game.
What do you think? Do you like story in your Mario or are you okay with just running around and jumping on turtles for no other reason than they're there?