Reviews for Journey of a Century
YesNoMaybeIdk chapter 1 . 11/4/2013
Beautiful. Absolutely beautiful and heartrending. That's all I have to say.
JessicaAsh008 chapter 1 . 10/28/2013
I really like your writing style and a good story.
Aemilia Jacobus chapter 1 . 10/6/2013
This is my favourite piece of fanfiction on this site. I feel that this is beautifully descriptive of every familiar location our favourite plumber visits, and I love the nuances that your story portrays and the bittersweet love story between Mario and Peach behind it all. I would love to read more Mario fanfics from you and I'm very pleased that there are some writers on here that can write with what I believe some resemblance of Romanticism.
MissScorp chapter 1 . 9/16/2013
I'm definitely not fandom blind when it comes to Mario (who really has never played a Mario game at least once in their life?). As such, I absolutely loved this piece. You had me on an emotional roller coaster at times, cruising between smiling from the beautiful imagery that you had at work all throughout the piece or in tears over some simple line that expressed deep feeling and meaning. Absolutely loved the twist that you tossed in. I absolutely expected that this was a story about Mario journeying home, or after I saw how he loved the Princess, that he was journeying home to her. Really love that you took that expectation and turned it, making this a journey of memories, of sadness and pain, of grief and saying good bye and beginning again. Really awesome job!

Some lines that I really liked:

((Right here at this patch of a brick road among the grass, the wooden boxes floating in the air above me and the spot below them where the brown, zombie-like Goomba species first made its appearance to me.))- Really like how you start the beginning by describing to us the world environment and keeping it very game-canon specific. Rather than making it real world, or static-like and fake, you create the game world and let us know that this is a game fiction in the process. Really appreciate that.

((I'm not a god or a saint or a superhero. I'm just a passionate, romantic fool who would do anything for the one he loves.))-Really really like that you are absolutely taking the road that he's in love with the Princess and that he'd do anything because of his love for her (... can almost hear "But I won't do that..." from Meatloaf in my head as I say that...*cough* anyway). This is also character defining to me because it's very specific, telling us character traits that we don't see really during the course of gameplay. We never see Mario profess his love for the Princess, or show any outward emotions beyond some silly little grin. I also love that you tie in the 'notion' about Italian being hopelessly passionate and romantic fools who would do anything for love (again, hearing Meatloaf...).

((as a koopa lets me on. With the war over, they've slowly integrated into our society without much harm or problem. I have no further qualms with them; the war is over after all.))-Using this and bridging the gasp of diversity and showing how even the Koopa clan might not have been happy beneath Bowser's command really works for me. Because it makes the game so much more than just a game. It adds a bit of real world element, defines the characters just a bit more and puts a harder emphasis upon war.

((It's a shout that jars me to attention...))-I loved the entire nightmare scene. Really plays upon the fact that Mario most likely has a form of PTSD from being involved in a war for so many years. It makes him sympathetic, makes us feel for everything that he's had to go through, that he's seen and witnessed, that he's had to do.

((I was simply Mario to you. To me, you were love. Not much more could be said than that. It was not the hate for the dragon that motivated me. It was the love for the princess.))-This honestly teared me up a bit. It's just very beautiful to imagine that this kinda love existed.

((Of course I'll never forget you, or stop loving you. But I have to acknowledge that I'll never hear another new sentence from you, or the old familiar ones such as I love you. I'll never see you again, nor shall I hold you. I'll never kiss you, I'll never carry you in my arms across the oceans to somewhere only we know. I'll never comfort you again, and I'll never have you to keep me strong and sane again. I'm on my own, with only the perfect memories that I hope will last me forever.))- Oh man, I was tearing up again here. I did not expect that Princess would be dead, or that there wouldn't be the happily-ever-after-after-all (to spoof a little Shrek here). Really hammers home that this journey is not Mario journeying back home, but journeying to say good-bye to his love. So poignant and sad and tragic. So so brilliant.

((But not every story ends with happily ever after, because we never have had forever after.))- You could have seriously ended the fic right here and I'd have totally been FINE with it. THIS line is the line of the whole story to me. Because it sums everything up PERFECTLY!

In all, I greatly loved this journey. Did not see the twist of it being a journey to say goodbye, but that's okay. Twists done right are good twists and this was a good twist. You created something wonderfully fantastic with this piece, and while I would say that splitting it up would have helped, it never felt tedious or boring because of the changes that you kept putting in. Very awesome job! :)
Ersatz Einstein chapter 1 . 9/9/2013
There are some grammatical errors ("There was once fifteen coins down here") and some awkward phrasing and the narration is kind of dense (you didn't have to go through the events of all of those games), but I loved the general plot, the characterization, and the second person aspect of the narration.
Edhla chapter 1 . 9/9/2013
Enjoyed this, even though my only knowledge of Mario really comes from R/Ring Verran's wonderful fics.

It took me virtually the whole fic to discover that he was actually addressing Peach rather than the reader directly. Either way is interesting artistically and for a lot of it, I'm not sure it matters. I find that sort of self-conscious narrator sometimes sounds a little precious, but, perhaps because of the whole setup of it being based on a very constructed reality, it works well. The "my dear" part tripped me up a little, but hey, I'm canon blind so that may well be perfectly in tune with the tone of canon.

"My own" being repeated twice in the second section tripped me up a little, too.

The line "maybe things really do get better" gave me all the feels. I love a serious Mario fic... the challenge pleases me, and this has some great imagery and was a pleasure to read. Cheers.
SunnyStorms chapter 1 . 7/20/2013
You get the honor of being the first mario fanfiction I've ever read. I honestly did not know what to expect and the depth with which you've written the character resulted in a very interesting and at times bordering on uncanny experience for me reading this. A big part of that is because Mario was a part of my childhood as the very first video game I played and then through the many incarnations of him after that. He is associated with many happy, carefree, and fun childhood memories for me so it was indeed strange to read something from his point of view that imbued him with very heavy human emotions and experiences. I'd definitely never considered him in such a light before, but I thought you did great with it. Reading this made me think yeah, he really could have thought and felt and lived life like this if you were to consider things from his point of view. And now I feel bad about sending him off to save the kingdom again when the next adventure pops up. XD

Overall, your writing was clear and flowed well such that this was a pretty effortless read even with its longer than average length. I didn't notice any major, prevalent SpaG-type errors that got in the way of enjoying the story, just minor ones here and there. If you are however interested in polishing this up further, something to particularly keep an eye on in looking it over are for instances of too many uses of the same word close together as they make the prose sound repetitive. One example of such a section is here with the word "ship":

/ I see flames protruding from the sides of the ships, dissolving the wings of the ship slowly. I look to the left to see a cannonball flying towards the ship, breaking a hole in the window and causing smoke to pour into our ship. /

Mario here as you've written him had a very strong and consistent voice. I could see the world as he did, revisiting all these places that I've been before with him through the more reflective, nostalgic lens that you've put on him and on us as readers. It really did make for a unique reading experience as his journey wasn't just a physical one but emotional as well with each location bringing about a new emotion from peaceful, relaxed reflections to anxiety, fear, and grief. Nicely done. It's a great tribute piece to an iconic character and was a very interesting way to take us down memory lane with him.
Tune4Toons chapter 1 . 7/9/2013
...So how have I not read this story yet of all stories?

And here we see that familiar, emotional touch of MoD where words come straight from the heart. I can definitely see Mario as a romantic like the way you have him here, that sweet hero that'd do anything. Now this is what I've been missing a lot of from you lately that happens to be here, all that easy-to-imagine imagery of all these landscapes he travels mixed in with his own personal thoughts that give these places life- because they show parts of Mario's character too from the way he describes them.

What I like about this a lot is Mario's progression, that transition from lighter relaxed moments to dark and emotional burning ship moments to the sweeter moments between Mario and Peach. There we can see him at his most relaxed, at his most anxious, at his most stressed, and we go through this entire journey along with him. Not only that, his goal is super clear, easy to see where his determination lies, and how you leave us sad in the end because of what happened- it just enhances it further. But I'm quite happy with the hopeful note in the end because we can see more of his growth that way, that moving forward like he had in his journeys.

(I can see why everyone loves this piece so much XD) Cheers darling!

Green Phantom Queen chapter 1 . 1/7/2013
This is beautiful.

I know the story of Mario and Peach, but we never get to see how much they truly love each other and how much they mean to one another. Here, we see that Mario still loves Peach even after a century, and will always love her. However, he needs to move on, and that is always the hardest part.

The launch star gift was pretty amazing, and it's nice to see Rosalina and Luigi helping the whimsical plumber go through such a terrible time. I'm glad that he's learning to begin anew and not waste all the time he has; it was such a wonderful note to end the story by.

(Claps hands and blows nose in tissue). Brava. Brava!
Dominus Tenebrosus chapter 1 . 11/1/2012
I'd like to start by saying that my familiarity with the canon is... Well, I think the first game? That's the extent of it, more or less? Hrm. Anyway, just a heads up, there. Moving right along...

Rolling Commentary:

My first thought, at seeing the word-count? "Crimony, that's a long one." Bet you could divide it up into three chapters and it'd be better... At least for Review Tag. But hey, I can understand not doing that, too. I'll let you know if there are any good points for a chapter break, sort of doubt I'll find any though.

Back at the start indeed. Of course, she's always in another castle. Though I guess, by the way he describes it... It's the right castle? Hm. And nice lampshade on Mario's extreme leaping prowess. :P

A lampshade on a lampshade? Nice.


Hmm. So why's Bowser quiet? And for that matter, why is this journey so hard?

No one uses them anymore... Except for plumbers with red hats, at least.

Yes... Going back over the same level is, on reflection, a bit sad. You've already looted everything, and it's sort of empty feeling. Never really thought about it until now, given as I would always be rushing back to the point where I got whacked, but... Hm.

You know, the wooden box bit makes me wonder about Mario's other power: Taking hard knocks to the head without ill effect. I'm surprised you didn't hang another lampshade there. :P And ah. So those are just forts. That explains things.

Hey, Y U NO use the hills, Mario? They want to be used! And looked at. And... Hm. Never mind.

A dream? a reference to another Mario game, perchance?

Hm. The original Mario game without monsters... Hm. While games without monsters can be good (I'm looking at you, Portal), I can't see Mario being good without them. Of course... Not that kind of story. :P Sorry, I'm writing this whilst a bit ill, and it's making me take unusual trains of thought.

Bah. Where there's smoke there's fire, Mario. It's just inside a fireplace. And heh. Fleeing from the paparazzi, eh?

Hm. You know, sounds like Mario's got just a touch of PTSD. Anyway... Okay, what's Mario got planned, anyway? It sounds like it's gonna be something bad.

Hm. Considering, I'm surprised he doesn't go for an aisle seat by instinct. More room to dodge hastily there.

Wings and rocket engines? Hm.

Oh dear, that doesn't sound good. Time to take things on, again?

...Ah. Can't move, horrifying visions... It's a dream, isn't it?

Called it! And... Yeah, just a spot of PTSD. Looks like you did your research on it, incidentally. Well met.

Man. Poor guy. Yeah. Not the best place to be. Normality can return somewhat though... See a shrink, Mario.

Ah, what's on that paper, I wonder?

Referencing another game there, I think. Time travel plots? And heh. That explains, perhaps, his powers?

D'aww... ...Hrm. You know, I get the feeling why things are so difficult for him is because she might have, ah... Gone the way of the airship? ...Ah screw it, I think she's dead.

Sounds like a nice place, all things considered. It's the Yoshi island thing, right?

Poor Mario. Bodies heal, but minds... Well, he says it best, really.

Ah, so it is indeed Yoshi's Island. Hm. "Yoshi's," not Yoshi. My mistake. And heh. Sounds like he wouldn't mind living there.

Oh hey, comes out and says that next paragraph, cool. Hm. "Not yet." Interesting.

Hm. Is it selfishness to wish for simplicity? I think not.

You know, that begs to question... Doesn't he have a pocket he could keep that note in? Under his hat seems to not be working the best.

Heh. One of the main attractions of diners: The atmosphere.

"It is said that a painting can summarize a whole era, contain a whole world. I once discovered this to be true." -Literally, I suspect. ...Confirmed in the next sentence. Also: "Leaping through paintings and fighting for golden stars within them made one of my top priorities upon finishing making sure that I had not been drugged." -That sentence reads a bit odd to me. I think it may need commas... Somewhere. Don't ask me, not my strong suite.

Heh. I'm reminded of the Cheers theme song: "Sometimes you wanna go where everybody knows your name." Or your preferred dish, in this instance.

...Man. What, exactly, is he getting himself into? Why might he not return? Hrm...

Yeah... After that last nap, I'd be a bit reluctant too. Either way, should have brought a book.

Hm. Reference to yet another game, I suspect. Was he framed? I'm guessing framing.

Yes. And he plans to eat that- ... You know, never mind. Mmm, fruit.


Ahh, some sort of travel aid. One of a kind, perhaps not refillable? Hm.

...Yeah, I think it's just one of those "you'd have to play the game" things.

Heh. So there was a crossover at some point? ...Heh. Was it SSB? Hm.

Ah. Well. That confirms some suspicions. Why you keep hitting me with feels, man? :/

Yeah, incarceration would leave a bitter taste in one's mouth.

Heh. D'aww. Sandy d'aww.

Heh. Sounds like whatever happened was... Kinky. ;)

"This island, miles away from..." Hm. Makes me think of the old idiom: "Absence makes the heart grow fonder."

Hm. So ol' Mario's getting up in his years, then. Either way, sounds like a nice place. Cozy.

Ahh, the tribulations of growing old. ... Worse, the tribulations of growing old when your friends die young.

"Melancholy swoops..." ...Huh. So she... Huh. Didn't see that coming, considering. Man. Poor... Both of them, really.

"The cabin was..." Man. All the feels in this paragraph. :/

So... Where _is_ his final destination? And... Hm. Somewhat pragmatic view, somewhat ALL THE FEELS view. Just, makes you want to give him a hug or something. :/ And hm. What's this hidden device bit?

Hmm. So... Hm. No more FLUDD?

More transportation thingies!

Hmm. So. What exactly is this place, and why is it his final destination?

Often unacknowledged part of immortality: You eventually get bored. Subtle lampshade about that, there.

So... Is this a sequel to another one of your stories in any way? Because I remember something not dissimilar about those two particular characters... Hm. Maybe my brain's just playing dirty tricks on me again, though. Kind of like Mario's seems to be, right now.

"When they finally pull..." Man. Considering. That's... Not particularly cool of them, if I'm reading that right.

Heh. So. Seeing those musings on L and R... I wonder what, exactly, Mario has visited them for.

Yeah, I can see why you'd envy them a little. And also why you wouldn't. And... How specific. Less than 70%, you say? And... Yeah, it makes sense. Poor guy.

Hoo boy... Here it comes. Let's see...

...Seriously, what is he doing, anyway?

"I notice my reflection..." So many feels. So many... :/


So. That's what he's doing. Hrm. I... Yeah, I got nothin' to say to that. Just... All the feels, man.

And... There it goes.

...Youch, man. Just... Egad. You do so know how to pull on the old heartstrings, don't you?

"But not every story..." Particularly if you're writing it, eh? :P I think I've seen a couple that do, but... Heh. You just like tugging on heartstrings too much. :P

Yeah, crying does have that effect.

Heh. Yeah. You need a day or so, don't you?

"As we do, I discover..." Always temporary. *nods*

A full week, eh? Sounds like you needed it, too.

Yeah, figured he might return there. *nods*

Hey, a start is a start, right?

Heh. She can wish you luck, but I think everyone that just read that is wishing you luck too.

General Thoughts:

I know I said I'd point out good places for chapter breaks, but I didn't really see any good ones. So... Hm. Guess that's why you didn't do so yourself. :P

It's... A good story. Depressing, even if it ends on a somewhat uplifting note. I'm not entirely sure what else to say to it though, because... Well, feels, man. Leaves me kind of silent.

Good stuff.
Megalink1126 chapter 1 . 10/31/2012
Sorry about making you wait a little bit there, Cam. I was going to review this last night but then some stuff came up that got in my way. But anyway, let's get on with this show, yes?

Alright, so being fairly familiar with Mario, I was able to follow along with most of the things you included in this fic rather well, such as Yoshi Island and Isle Delfino with the FLUDD (by the way, does this need periods after each of the letters since it's an acronym? I never played Sunshine, so I'm not quite sure if it does or not) and then with the Galaxy references closer to the end. I really like how you managed to blend everything together in a setting that seems more game-like from the descriptions than like the real world, such as with the floating blocks and the platform hills, yet you also try to supply a sense of realism, such as when you supply the dimensions of the pipe that makes things seem really crazy when put in that perspective.

The best part in my opinion though was probably the characterization. Mario's personality shines through pretty much the entire story, which is a bit of a feat in itself considering he's not that much of a talker in the games. And it seems like how he would act in an older age too, offering realistic personality traits and flaws from his past experiences. Even Peach's personality comes through very strong, and she's not even technically in this story! This in turn really helped to bring out a lot of the emotions Mario has as well, and you can't help but feel sorry for the guy after everything he's gone through.

So as for SPAG and stuff, there really wasn't all that much that jumped out at me. I noticed some missing commas needed before a few conjunctions in places where they technically are needed. Also, there were a few places in there where you used the same word repeatedly in a sentence to describe something that kind of made the sentence sound weird, namely in the end of the train scene before he got off the train at Yoshi's Island with the word "cap," and there was also somewhere in there before that that the word "hat" was repeated two or three times right after another. Really, this is more of a personal preference than anything, but still, figured I'd point it out.

Overall though, I really, really enjoyed it, and I'm going to add it to the archive. Be proud, because it's the first one I'm adding to it, so that makes it special and stuff. So yeah. Good job with this one, Cam!
Picasso of Precision chapter 1 . 10/31/2012
Well, I liked it. A wordy and daunting monologue that could probably get trimmed and adjusted here and there, but it worked once I eventually settled into the story. I looked back at your publishing date and wondered how I missed this story when I realized it was in the Mario section (slow day for me). I actually thinkt his is a whole lot better than your later works. Or maybe you're just more natural with the character of Mario.
skywideopen chapter 1 . 10/27/2012
I have to start by commenting on the length; it is very long. I'm very familiar with the difficulties of juggling extreme length versus keeping the story unified and whole, but it is daunting. So the question then becomes - does the story remain strong enough to retain momentum through its whole length?

And the unequivocal answer is yes.

Let's not beat around the bush here: this is a supreme overture to the challenges of the hero, the special one, the anointed who has seen too much. I don't know the backstory or the canon and all, yet I felt that the characterisation and voice was so strong that I didn't feel this hindered my reading of the story whatsoever. The use of first person present tense is simply inspired - I, as a reader, feel like I am experiencing the events not just with Mario, but through Mario's eyes, creating a close emotional bond with the character. Also, the way simple things like the restaurant are imbued with emotional heft is wonderful.

If I would have one concern - and it is minor - it is that the pacing falters in the middle slightly, as we seem to skip over much of the tense, violent scene on the ship and move to a more melancholy, tranquil setting quite quickly. I imagine you have good justifications for this, however.

Anyway, you said you hoped this was the tribute Mario deserved. And you have absolutely delivered. Well done.
Sychronergy chapter 1 . 9/9/2012
Wow, that was really a journey. The first person POV was a little weird to read, but it was a good idea, but it kind of touches the reader more.

I liked it. :)
PlainSimpleGarak chapter 1 . 7/24/2012
While Mario usually isn't my fandom, I have to say the idea of a serious Mario fiction looking back over his life really intrigued me. I was not disappointed. This was very well written and I love the little details from the generations of games Mario has starred in that you featured.

This: "I'm surprised that the power of physics hasn't ripped my face off" is my very favorite line. That's a great snicker-wink to all those Nintendo logic moments.

Overall this was sweet, sincere and nostalgic. I really enjoyed it.
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