Cory Barlog may have sneered at what he deemed to be Super Mario Galaxy's "vapid story," but game researcher and designer Douglas Wilson couldn't feel more differently. Writing for GameSetWatch, Wilson argues that Galaxy is not only the first Mario title to produce an engaging story, but that it addresses human tragedy more expertly than most other games.
To illustrate his point, Wilson draws on the story told by Princess Rosalina, whose life story is recounted throughout Galaxy. Although this narrative thread starts life as the kind of standard fare you'd expect from a Mario title, Rosalina's tale quickly becomes tragic, as she recalls how she realized her mother had passed away -- or, as she touchingly puts it, is "sleeping under the tree on the hill." Sad face.
As Wilson points out, this surprisingly poignant turn of events creates a pretty weird dichotomy. After all, Galaxy is a game where you fight a giant piranha plant in a diaper.