Monsieur Gabrille got home from Aus sooner than I did; he'd beaten Super Mario Odyssey by the time I'd even started it. I had a fantasy that I'd begin my journey on the way home, but I had Picross on there, and… I had Picross on there. If you have the sickness, I needn't say more. And if you don't, you might not see how a grid with some numbers by it could take precedence over a new Mario game.
I woke up very, very sick yesterday, which gave me an opportunity to finally start it up. I feel like a team of men a railroad spike into my forehead every 3.7 seconds, guided in their precision by some kind of working song. So, being Mario instead was a nice change of pace for a while. He's somebody who attacks other people's heads, and that's very empowering for me right now.
It's pretty easy to get bewitched by Odyssey. My current usage case is to play in bed with no pants on, I'm going for a "zero pants playthrough," with occasional pauses to blow my nose. It's incredibly hard to put down, because hard stops are pretty short and cute plus getting this game's whooziwhatsits - the Shine Get equivalent Power Moons - doesn't reset the level or nothin'. You just get the Goddamn thing and go get another one. They're like Sweet Tarts. No: they're like Chewy Sweet tarts, the big round ones that taste exactly like an Olympic Medal does.
I'm not a hundred percent sure on this. I'm unlikely to ever get an Olympic Medal. If you can't bite into them and then wiggle the remainder free while your teeth creak against each other in your gums, something needs to change about those medals immediately, and I know what.
So, the mastery at play here as I have said before is that while everyone says you can't go home again, Nintendo figured out how to do it. They've done it several times this year already. There are some cool new twists, specifically around what Cappy enables in both single player and assist mode. I play with the controllers snapped onto the sides, which precludes some other novel interactions I'll approach later. Every few minutes they give me something new to do with skills they've been teaching me almost my entire life. That's a relationship a little beyond, perhaps, "a new platformer."
There are the occasional metaphysical concerns, but it's to their credit that I spend more time collecting collectibles than pondering the bleak ribbon that ramparts the living and the dead.
Here is the reminder I promised about getting your PAX South panel in the queue - the offer stands. Build a balanced panel the same way you might build a balanced party in an RPG, then bring it to the show and do whatever the RPG equivalent of informing others and making a better convention is. It's a pretty good deal, and in exchange for adding your uniqueness to our own you're granted free Speaker Passes. They even say "speaker" on them; the social capital they emit is incredible.