In case you are a newcomer to the unchecked exuberance characteristic of It's-a Mario World, you should know that we are obsessed with the thematic nuances of the Mushroom Kingdom. From the trivial to the crucial, we like to keep up on what's happening in the Mario universe, particularly since much if its mythology is further developed with each new release. That said, we should no doubt acknowledge the most recent entry into the Mario canon, Mario Super Sluggers.

Because we are incapable of making any objective evaluations of Mario-related content in this feature, this is not our review for Sluggers. Instead, think of this as unwrapping the cellophane. Well, tearing it off. Then rolling around in it just shouting, "Let's-a play ball, woo-hoo!!!" If you're not into that kind of thing, or prefer reading a critical analysis, refer to our official game review (I'm assured it will be up on the site on Monday). Otherwise, spread out your capes and fly to our new gallery, in which we highlight nine characters who make one hell of a batting lineup.

*Note that this gallery features some unlockable content, and therefore possible spoilers. Now, go read it anyway.
It's-a Mario World is a weekly feature in which the ubiquity of Nintendo's flagship character is celebrated: We'll incessantly ruminate about mustache wax, debate the curious whereabouts of the princess and covet the luminous power stars strewn about the galaxy. Check back here every Friday to find out what strange and wonderful thing has got us tipping our caps. Is your rabid lust for Mario yet to be satiated? Check out this week's new Virtually Overlooked for more Mario goodness.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.