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Demystifying the physics of Super Mario Galaxy

Chris Greenhough
March 27, 2008
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As we've already established, we're not science people ('D' grade at GCSE Science, thank you). Bring up a subject such as photosynthesis, or the properties of sulfur dioxide, and it's likely you won't get much of a reply, short of us standing there and saying "buh?" like some slack-jawed, mouth-breathing farmhand.

In other words, Gamasutra's article on debunking the physics found in Super Mario Galaxy never stood a chance of entering our enfeebled brains and staying there. Oh, it definitely interested us, but terms such as "unit vector" and "collision mask" quickly appeared to make us feel like absolute thickos again. What we did pick up from the feature was that gravity can only exist in the real world on spherical surfaces, and that the laws of physics themselves were twisted to accommodate Galaxy's zany world of misshapen planetoids.

If you're one of those people who feels confident conducting conversations about "surface normals," give it a look.

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In this article: physics, platform, smg, super-mario-galaxy
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