With Mario Kart 8 Deluxe selling like hot cakes and Nintendo Switch exclusive Super Mario Odyssey releasing in October, the famous red plumber has never been more popular. Already a global icon, Mario is having an especially good year and it makes sense to capitalize on that with merchandise.
Unfortunately, not all of that merchandise is going down well as the Internet was on fire today, mocking a new Super Mario puzzle. The puzzle, which is currently on sale for $10, is exclusive to GameStop but that’s not what caused the mockery. Instead, it was the sheer amount of red puzzle pieces that this thing includes. Out of the 1,000 pieces that make up the puzzle, the majority of those fiddly, jagged shapes look identical.
While the red background alone would be frustrating to put together, the fact that the same shades of red are used for Mario’s clothing is what really makes this the Dark Souls of jigsaw puzzles. On top of that, his gloves make up a large part of the puzzle and these too are created with very similar looking white and grey jigsaw pieces.
The GameStop listing describes the puzzle as “playful” but judging from the response on social media, many only plan to buy it for a masochistic experience. Successfully putting together all of those red and white patches could feel like a massive achievement. Yes, it will be hard as nails, but for a small group, it may feel like a worthwhile time and not at all like a waste of an afternoon.
As far as bad merchandise goes, this Super Mario puzzle is far from the worst example. Just one month ago, a very awkward Pikachu USB cable was revealed, for example. That was less frustrating and more ‘bizarre,’ ‘ridiculous,’ and ‘totally weird.’
Additionally, a line of Pokemon lingerie went on sale a year ago letting people go to sleep in style. If Pokemon-themed underwear can be considered a fashion statement, that is.
Nintendo is also gearing up to launch its Super Nintendo World theme park and it’s likely that this too will feature plenty of examples of bad or embarrassing merchandise. But as the saying goes, one man’s weird merchandise is another man’s collector’s item, so watch this space for more oddball offerings.