Autumn: There was a terrible old Nintendo game I used to love. Autumn: You played as Waluigi, and at the start of the game, you get trapped in a library. Autumn: As you might expect, the way to escape is to learn about the power of books. Hawaii: who's waluigi? Autumn: Wario's creepy brother. Hawaii: who's wario? Autumn: Mario's evil twin. Hawaii: who's mario? Autumn: A heroic Italian plumber. Hawaii: so waluigi is a plumber's brother? Autumn: No, that's Luigi. Mary: Mario is a generic fairy-tale hero, except the fairy tale has a lot of mushrooms and dinosaurs in it for essentially arbitrary reasons. He's an Italian plumber due to historical graphics limitations. Mary: Luigi is a version of Mario with differently colored clothes, who's taller and thinner because one of the early games he was in was a reskinned version of an unrelated Japanese videogame, and that game happened to have the second playable character be a bit taller than the first one. Mary: Wario is a villain who was created by making every aspect of Mario more suggestive of evil. His mustache looks jagged and menacing, for example. If you spoke Japanese, his name would convey to you: "This character is Evil Mario." Autumn: He also farts a lot! Mary: The video game franchise had an ongoing need for more characters, so they created Waluigi by applying both those modifiers at once. He's derived from Mario in the same way as Luigi and the same way as Wario, stacking their attributes together. Mary: Like Luigi, he's tall and thin, and appears as a major character less frequently. Like Wario, he's an antagonist and has an offputting color scheme. Hawaii: then why isn't he named wuigi? Mary: Because "Waluigi" does a better job of conveying the Japanese pun on the word for "evil" than "Wuigi" would. Hawaii: do you speak japanese? Mary: No, but it's one of the languages I autotranslate. Autumn: ANYWAY Autumn: The neat thing about the game was the shapeshifting powers you got. Autumn: As you collected books, you got the ability to become something from that book. There was a book called something like How to Run a Restaurant, that let you turn into a cook. Autumn: Most of them were like that, just generic fake books where the title told you the whole point of it. Autumn: But there were a few classic literature ones mixed in too. Moby Dick turned you into a whale. Autumn: It was better than a Kirby game, because you weren't limited to creatures that already existed in your reality, you had all of fiction to work from. Autumn: If you're Kirby, and you want to turn into a unicorn, you'd better hope unicorns are already real in your game world. Waluigi didn't have that restriction. Hawaii: who's kirby? Autumn: It would be a horribly overpowered ability if he were smarter, because then he'd write his own books to give himself whatever powers he wanted. Autumn: But nobody wants a video game about writing books... Autumn: The one restriction this ability seemed to have was that his face always looked the same. Autumn: Oddly, that didn't stop the transformations from working as disguises. Autumn: You would think that if you were trying to keep Waluigi out of your restaurant, you wouldn't let in someone who was clearly just Waluigi in a chef's hat and apron. Autumn: An apron with a picture of his own face on it, I might add. Autumn: But you would be wrong!
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