Is it time for Nintendo to give Mario a break?

There's nothing analysts like better than making sweeping statements. True to form, a Japanese newspaper recently reported that financial analysts reckon that the reason Nintendo's share price has dipped below 10,000 yen for the first time in over 7 years is that everyone's fed up with Mario. According to Japan's Senkei News, "As the game market evolves, Nintendo seems unable to move beyond creating games that rely on the image of Mario..."

Mario Kart 7 may have got a perfect 10 from us, but what do we know? Apparently that's 6 Mario Karts too many. You could argue, in fact, that Nintendo has created a brand so recognisable, it can make money in any language and give gamers of any age a good experience.

You could also add in that Mario games are only similar in name alone and that the core series is actually fundamentally different every time it arrives, with the exception of Super Mario Galaxy 2 - a game to which we still awarded another 10. Mario games make the most of the unique capabilities of the hardware they're on, which arguably keeps them forever fresh.

But then there's the flipside. The side that says: "Do we really need NINE Mario Party games?" The side that says perhaps Bowser should concentrate on being evil rather than keep ringing up Mazza for a game of basketball or tennis. And sleeping with the enemy and teaming up with Sonic and friends to help sell an Olympic tie-in? '90s Mario would be ashamed.

But we want to know what you think. Should Nintendo give Mario a rest, or not? Just click the answer in this here poll and your opinion will magically be turned into a pretty statistic:

Poll: Is it time for Nintendo to give Mario a break?

No halfway house here, folks - it's yes or no. And if you really can't deal with such a polarisation so early in the week, you can leave your fence-sitting provisos in the comments.

Justin Towell

Justin was a GamesRadar staffer for 10 years but is now a freelancer, musician and videographer. He's big on retro, Sega and racing games (especially retro Sega racing games) and currently also writes for Play Magazine,, PC Gamer and TopTenReviews, as well as running his own YouTube channel. Having learned to love all platforms equally after Sega left the hardware industry (sniff), his favourite games include Christmas NiGHTS into Dreams, Zelda BotW, Sea of Thieves, Sega Rally Championship and Treasure Island Dizzy.