Once I Left Wario’s Castle

Picture a younger smaller version of me, Franklin Raines, not but single digits, sitting with my mom on an airplane ride going from one side of the country to the other. I remembered specifically that it was the last time I rode a plane at night, making the event stand out more than past or future rides. I found myself bored, which for a kid at that age, felt like a lifetime. I was getting close, but have yet not achieved the necessary skill to read the fiction I would soon like, so books are out of the question. This only left me with my trusted teal green Game Boy Color found in my possession. I used the excuse to go walk to the bathroom at the end of the rows of passenger seats, where I notice another young boy. Just like myself he was traveling with his Game Boy Color and his mom (thinking back, of course I noticed the Game Boy far faster than the mom), so I talk with him until I decided to loan him a game until the plane touches down. I forgot what I loaned him, but remember that what I got in return was Wario Land II.

Having played hours worth of the sequel, Wario Land III, I instantly started to look for similarities between the two. Wario Land II still had me playing as the money-grubbing anti-hero Wario, where III dropped Wario into an alternate universe by way of crashed plane (coincidence to my present environment not noticed), II found Wario asleep in his castle as three shadowed creatures steal his treasure and flood his home. The thieves even left Wario a living alarm clock just to spite him. Wario wakes up and I, now the player, decided to work with what I knew from my experience in III; otherwise known as find walls to shoulder charge and floors to ground stomp through to find coins, to which my younger self found oddly comforting in its familiarity. A younger me found just enough time to finish the first stage of five levels before he had to stop at the second stages’ forest when the plane landed. Figures one would have to leave right when they started exploring the area outside of Wario’s castle.

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