Review Information
Game Reviewed Mario's Garden Job, by EvilYoshiToes
Review Author King Piranha Plant
Created Aug 15 2021, 10:08 AM

General Commentary and Game Overview
Mario's Garden Job might be my favorite game to have come out of Ye' Old MFGGe Game Jamboree. Like the other games from that jam, it's very short, a bit intentionally sloppy, and most importantly, seeks to emulate the feel of old fangames made in MFGG's crazy Clickteam days (from the era around 2001-2006). But EvilYoshiToes seems to have channeled more than just a goofy, ridiculous old fangame here - instead, he went for something that borders on charming and authentic, while still containing messy graphics and strange moments.
Pros *Has a classic MFGG story-based fangame feel, delivered in a surprisingly adorable, nostalgic way.
*Jumbled graphics from different games that are pulled together in a deliberately amateur style that somehow works well.
*It's got that one obscure lady Piranha Plant character from the Mario comics, Piranha Sue. Does anyone even know who that is?
Cons *It's so short you want more of it (though it's made for an MFGG jam, so not actually a con).
9 / 10
Mario is summoned by Peach to deal with a gardening issue, some Piranha Plants causing trouble and such. The gameplay is really laid back with slow, generic platforming, a few quirky little sidequests, and a charming segment where Mario wanders and talks to NPCs. Oh, and at one point, you have to hit a bunch of cats with your hammer. The game spends most of its time creating a goofy, relaxing atmosphere that will really resonate with old-time MFGGers. It also throws a couple boss battles in at the end (which, I have to say, the final boss's explosion animation being off-center was a nice touch of historical accuracy).

The only thing that keeps it from being a 10/10 is that it feels like it should've been just a little longer. You get the impression the second half was rushed, and there's not much replay value. Honestly, I'd love to see EvilYoshiToes create a longer game in this style!
10 / 10
The look of this game is a mess, but in a good way that will remind you of your very first experiences trying to throw a fangame together. Mario walks around talking to 3D-rendered knights next to pixelated Toads, with N64 backdrops mixed in with 2D sprites. Somehow it all fits together into a cozy collage.
10 / 10
Surprisingly good choices here. Fangame-y (but not overused) music files thrown into some old version of Clickteam's The Games Factory, with Paper Mario sound effects that used to be very prevalently used in MFGG's past.
Final Words
9 / 10
A comfy callback to a bygone era. There's something genuine and charming about this one. It feels like a fangame a kid might have made, intending to make something decent, not just as straight-up a joke, back in the early 2000's.

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Aug 21 2021, 9:31 PM
I appreciate the time you took to review my little game. I loved reading this! It’s great to know that people have an appreciation for the strange but comfortable atmosphere of the old fan games. I’d love to give this kind of thing another go for the fun of it, hopefully with a longer game. Capturing that “my first game” atmosphere is a lot of fun.
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