It's Not Easy Being Luigi
After nearly three decades of backing up Mario, Luigi gets a third chance to shine in the 3DS exclusive Luigi's Mansion 2.
History is full of famous people and their less popular siblings. In politics, there's former President Bill Clinton and his lesser-known brother, Roger. In sports, we have Super Bowl winning quarterbacks Peyton/Eli Manning, and then Cooper.
In the video game world, it's Nintendo's franchise superstar, Mario, and his brother Luigi, who's for the most part remained in his brother's shadow.
In fact, the green clad plumber was merely a palette swap in the original 1983 Mario Bros. arcade game. He didn't receive personality traits until Super Mario Bros. 2 in 1988, where he not only jumped higher than Mario, but was taller as well.
For much of his career, Luigi has filled the role of Mario's bumbling sidekick. He's appeared in numerous games, from the Mario & Luigi RPG trilogy to the Super Smash Bros. series, but only twice has he received a starring role. The first came in 1992's Mario is Missing!, while the last was 2001's GameCube launch game, Luigi's Mansion; the latter went on to sell over 2.5 million copies.
One could make the argument, though, that each game was created out of pity, and only serve to undermine Luigi's position as a dominant hero. Neither involves rescuing a princess or saving the Mushroom Kingdom. Instead, he sets off to find Mario, who was kidnapped both times.
This brings us to Luigi's Mansion 2, which is set to arrive on 3DS early 2012. Finally, after nearly ten years, Nintendo has seen fit to give the green clad brother another chance to shine. Even better, the plot (thus far), has nothing to do with Mario.
Quite frankly, we hope it stays that way. Mario has starred in well over 100 games with three more on the way, those being Mario Kart 3DS, Paper Mario 3DS and Super Mario 3DS; titles subject to change. Surely, the biggest video game character of all time can step aside so his brother can bask in the spotlight and vacuum some ghosts.
We just hope Nintendo does the right thing in making Luigi's Mansion 2 just that: all about Luigi.