Luigi's Mansion is a 2001 video game produced by Nintendo and released as a launch title for the Nintendo GameCube. Though set in the universe of Super Mario Bros., the game is unusual in that it is not a platformer, but a third-person adventure game (it could even be considered a sort of Mario-themed comic parody of the survival-horror genre, right down to a spoof of the Resident Evil loading animation) and in that the character of Mario plays the role of brother in distress and is not a player character at all, appearing only briefly around the middle and at the end of the game.The plot follows Mario's brother, Luigi, who won a mansion in a dark, spooky forest from a mail-in contest he didn't even enter. Once he finds it, he gets burdened with some grim news: The mansion is not only infested with evil ghosts, but their leader has trapped Mario inside a painting and is waiting until midnight to take possession of him forever, using Mario as a new body for his disembodied self.With the help of a kindly old ghost-buster / Mad Scientist named Professor Elvin Gadd, Luigi straps on his trusty Poltergust 3000, a vacuum cleaner that can trap ghosts as well as money, items, and some minor props, and sets forth to rid the mansion of its ghastly inhabitants and rescue his brother from the spooky mansion.Basically, the aim of the game is to capture all ghosts in the mansion while finding as much cash as possible, which is littered around the mansion in the form of gold coins, bills, gold bars and jewels. At the end of the game, the amount of money you were able to obtain is tallied up, and Luigi uses it to buy a house in accord to how much he has, from a truly regal estate if you did really well to a decrepit little shack if you really suck at the game or a tent if you go out of your way to avoid gathering money.Despite not having a sequel for many years, the game has been represented in other games such as Mario Kart, Super Smash Bros., and Nintendo Land, showing that Nintendo hasn't forgotten the game. Eventually, in 2013, a sequel finally arrived via the Nintendo 3DS: Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon.
An Ice Person: Sir Weston is a portrait ghost trapped in a cube of ice, who, when awakened, will launch icicle waves at Luigi. Some ghost mooks are frozen and must be defeated through the direct application of flame.
And I Must Scream: Reading Sue Pea's description states "What was supposed to be a short nap turned into eternal sleep for the young Sue Pea." This also hits terrifying levels when you realize the Adult Fear of something happening to a child after they fall asleep.
Mario being trapped inside the painting possibly for all eternity. Of course, you could say the same thing about what happens the Portrait Ghosts, but at least one of them (Madame Clairvoya) doesn't seem to mind that at all, actually asking Luigi to put her there.
Art Initiates Life: Vincent Van Gore is probably the most blatant example of this ever, bringing the ghost mooks to life from portraits he paints.
Asteroids Monster: Boolossus is an amalgamation of fifteen Boos. When punctured, not only will he split up into his components, he'll recombine after a few seconds.
Auto Cannibalism: According to the character descriptions, Mr. Luggs was so insatiable that he just ate himself to death. He still wasn't satisfied and spends his afterlife eating ghost food served by waiters, in the dining room.
Beat Them at Their Own Game: A villainous example: King Boo's Bowser mecha has an attack that uses a vacuum of its own to swallow Luigi if he gets too close.
Blackout Basement: Normally, the lights come on once every ghost in any given room has either been caught or otherwise defeated. The last fourth of the game features a mansion-wide blackout, however, during which no amount of ghost-catching will bring the lights back. To fix the problem, you must work your way back from the third-floor balcony to the basement to turn on a backup generator .Or you can take the mirror to the Foyer.
Blinded by the Light: Luigi has to stun ghosts with his flashlight before capturing them. The sequel makes this even more effective with a chargeable strobe function.
Bonus Boss: Quite a few of the Portrait Ghosts (including Slim Bankshot, Mr. Luggs, Jarvis, and a few others) are optional, and you can complete the game without bothering them at all. However, beating them often gains you some valuable treasure. Most Portrait Ghosts are required battles, though.
Bonus Feature Failure: What do you unlock for beating the game? A hidden mansion! What happens in said mansion? Well, the ghosts and Poltergust are stronger... and that's it. In non-American versions of the game, The Hidden Mansion did do something: it was impossible to get the best rank without playing it, because the normal mansion doesn't have enough money.
Averted in the European version, in which the hidden mansion mirrors the entire game, ramps up the difficulty (ghosts deal more damage and there are fewer hearts), changes some of the puzzles a little, switches the money and gem locations all over the house, and retools some of the boss encounters, varying from mild variations in their attack pattern to the entirely different Boolosus fight, which has the whole floor covered on ice and Luigi has to ride the Poltergust to "snowboard" across the arena.
Camera Screw: Part of what makes Boolossus so difficult is that once it's down to just a few Boos, the camera will inexplicably move in much closer to Luigi, making it very difficult to see incoming Boos before they swoop in to attack.
Jarvis, who hides in the various jars in his room.
Some mook-level ghosts work like this too, jumping out at you when you investigate nooks and crannies for extra loot. Subverted with the blueones (Speedy Spirits) in that they still give up a ton of valuable shinies when you defeat them, though.
Color-Coded for Your Convenience: Chests. Blue ones contain keys; green ones are full of money; gold ones are boss loot and have keys to new zones in them; the ones containing the medals are red, blue, and white respectively; and the ones containing Mario's items and those used as scenery in the secret rooms are all red.
Convenient Weakness Placement: Boolossus' stage has two unicorn statues at either end, which can be used to pop him. (Then again, this is probably deliberate — the smaller Boos are fast, and get faster the less of them there are.)
Cordon Bleugh Chef: Gadd might qualify. After Luigi defeats Bogmire, he offers to make dinner, and make his "old family recipe", which is "pickled dandelions with barnacles in a diesel marinade". (Of course, we never see it or Luigi's reaction... Who knows? It might be better than it sounds.)
Cowardly Lion: Luigi, given that he still saves the day despite his obvious fear.
How many promotions allude to the fact that Luigi was timed and had to rescue Mario within the night, or else Mario will be lost and Luigi will be possessed by a ghost as he leaves the mansion.
How images of Luigi were to follow the final new mansion to show his reaction to it (one with two peace signs while grinning, another with one, and a third with him sulking while holding a flower).
The Game Boy Horror only taking the lower corner of the screen over the entire screen.
A ghost who can harm Luigi to temporarily make his max HP 50 in addition to other damage.
The Poltergust 3000 would burst into flames if left running for too long.
Dynamic Loading: If the action freezes right before you open a door, that means the area hasn't finished loading yet.
Easter Egg: Stand next to the Well and listen closely. It may be referencing the time-limit that was once in the game.
Mario: Hey, Luigi! What's the holdup?
End Game Results Screen: The state of the mansion at the very end depends on the amount of gold you obtained, and you're given both a letter grade and an appropriately happy Luigi. The mansions range from a beautiful manor for an A to nothing at all for an H.
Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors: The elemental ghosts, when sucked up, allow the Poltergust 3000 to expel fire, water, and ice. These elements factor into gameplay and can affect things around the mansion.
Extremely Dusty Home: Walking around and opening drawers seems to disperse a lot of dust. Examining furniture with the Game Boy Horror occasionally makes Luigi note how dusty the mansion is. The cellar is so dusty that it actually blocks Luigi unless he vacuums it up.
Fan Disservice: One of the portrait ghosts is first seen in the shower, and her shadow is a beautiful shapely (and nude) woman. When you pull back the curtain to reveal her, however, she looks like Fatso's twin sister.
Fighting a Shadow: Bogmire projects shadows of himself. Luigi has to capture these shadows and encase the genuine article in them.
F Minus Minus: You can get a grade for your performance as low as an H, but this requires effort.
Flunky Boss: All the bosses except King Boo and Costume Bowser are like this. Chauncey fights with the help of giant bouncing beach balls and haunted rocking-horses, Bogmire casts several shadows over the room (all of which act independently from him and one another), Boolossus gets "popped" like a balloon on the horn of a unicorn statue and becomes several smaller versions of himself, and Vincent Van Gore makes the figures in his paintings come to life and attack you.
Goo Goo Godlike: Chauncey is Neville and Lydia's third son, who for some reason unbeknownst to Lydia is more terrifying than the twins. It might have something to do with the fact that he's a Reality Warper.
Gotta Catch 'Em All: The ghosts and the Boos. Getting the best ending also involves collecting as much money as possible (and ironically, getting so little of it is a challenge, having to "avoid" the money). If you get all fifty Boos (excluding King Boo), then you get one of the only two golden diamonds, the most expensive treasure you can get.
Holler Button: Pressing the A button when not near an interactive object makes Luigi shout "Mario!" The way he says it also depends on how much health he has left. If Luigi's at full health, he'll sound confident. If he's low on health, he'll be a stammering mess.
Human Popsicle: Sir Weston died in ice, and during battle, he encases himself in ice.
Humongous Mecha: King Boo's Bowser Costume. It doesn't need to "look" robotic to qualify as such. The fact that it's lifelike in appearance — especially for a giant costume — shows how much further ahead of the rest it is. That, and it emphasizes King Boo's trickery.
Hurricane of Puns: Most of the Boos' names. There are a total of thirty-six Boo puns, each cheesier than the last. One is even named Booigi! (There's actually a practical reason for this: It helps you keep track of them. You need to catch a certain amount to fight Boolossus and even more to fight King Boo, and catching all of them gains you a Golden Diamond, the most valuable treasure in the game.)
"Anyway, who would actually believe that mansions get given away in contests? Talk about stupid! What do they feed you Mario Bros. anyway? Gullible soup?"
The Jeeves: Shivers, who roams the house in search of his master's will.
Jump Scare: The poster in the 2nd floor bathroom and screen in the projector room will suddenly change to an image of a Boo with the words "get out of here" scrawled across the top if you vacuum on them for long enough. This can be quite alarming on the big projector screen.
Mad Scientist: Professor Elvin Gadd. (His name is a pun: Professor E. Gadd.)
Made of Evil: Bogmire, although in this case, it's more like "Made of Fear", and he actually might be sort of a sympathetic figure: His biography claims, "A product of the mansion's fear and despair. He's not sure who to fear or what to despair these days."
The Man Behind the Man: Many hints throughout the game seem to indicate that Bowser, not King Boo, is the one who trapped Mario. This turns out to be a subversion, however, when Luigi blows "Bowser's" head off... and he is revealed to be just a Monster Suit. Controlled by King Boo.
Metal Slime: Speedy Blue Spirits and the Golden Mice. You have only one chance to catch each individual one, and they will fight you bitterly if you manage to get them within range of your vacuum (except for the Gold Mouse ghosts; those are wimps). If you do catch them, though, they release absurd amounts of riches for you to collect.
Money Spider: Portrait ghosts release pearls of various worth when they're caught, but it depends on how much you struggled to pull them in. If you can trap them in one long vacuum-suck, they release enormous pearls. If they keep escaping your pull, you'll be limited to the smallest pearls.
Mook Maker: Almost every non-portrait ghost is created by a single boss, Vincent Van Gore.
He also qualifies as such when Luigi actually fights him, sending waves of Mooks after the hero. Once all the Mooks are defeated, Van Gore himself is actually a pushover. (In fact, he kind of gives up.)
Multiple Endings: At the end of the game, Professor E. Gadd builds Luigi a new house. Which house you get depends on how much treasure you collected in the game. (Getting the worst option is actually harder than getting the best; you'd likely have to pick up no treasure at all except the stuff that you automatically gain.)
The D-rating appears to be the canon ending, because that appears to be Luigi's house in the sequel, judging by the picture above his couch. However, the Rank A mansion appeared in Luigi's Circuit from Mario Kart: Double Dash!!.
Neat Freak: Luigi is implied to be one to some extent in his commentary. Examining furniture with the Game Boy Horror makes him complain about moth holes in furniture, how the place would never pass a white glove test, and how he regrets to have not enough time to tidy up a desk. Fittingly, his weapon of choice in this game is a modified vacuum cleaner.
Nightmare Face: Chauncey is pretty cute (for a giant ghostly baby). But when he cries...
Regional Bonus: The Hidden Mansion becomes a mirror version of the regular mansion and bosses have noticeable changes in how they are fought. Unfortunately, other regions get The Hidden Mansion detailed in Bonus Feature Failure.
Sexy Silhouette: When Luigi enters the bathroom, he at first sees the silhouette of an attractive woman behind the shower curtain. Subverted when the curtains are pulled back and we see that it's actuallyMiss Petunia.
Shmuck Bait: Lots. A trail of coins leading to a door, a red button that has a sign hanging under it saying "Don't push!" But you have to, to unleash the Boos, and so on.
The cover is reminiscent and a parody of Home Alone.
Luigi parodies The Scream by Edvard Munch in most ads.
There are several references to Ghostbusters, such as:
The Garbage Can Ghosts being based on Slimer.
The final battle being on the roof.
The first human ghost being located in the library.
Sore Loser: Henry and Orville ask Luigi to play hide and seek with them, while Jarvis challenges him to a game that's sort of like "whac-a-mole". In both cases, if Luigi wins, the ghosts get angry and attack him. (However, this is the only way he can capture them, something which is required to proceed in the case of the twins.)
Theme Tune Cameo: In an effort to keep himself comfortable, Luigi rather nervously hums the game's theme music when he isn't calling out his brother's name. If the lights in the room are on, Luigi calmly whistles the theme instead. In an effort to keep Luigi uncomfortable, the ghosts start humming along with Luigi in dark rooms.
Very False Advertising: The mansion as depicted on Luigi's directions to the place looks far less menacing and is accompanied by such features as a bright blue sky and rainbow. The lightning strike when Luigi looks up to compare it to the actual mansion drives the point home.
Weaksauce Weakness: ALL of the Portrait Ghosts are impervious to the Poltergust 3000 (or sometimes cannot be fought or even seen at all) until you do something that makes them vulnerable. The method is different for each one (it's easier with some than others) and you have to figure each one out.
When All You Have Is a Hammer: Everything that needs to be done in this game comes down to using the Poltergust 3000. Luigi captures ghosts with it, sets things on fire with it, puts out fires with it, and freezes water with it. Then again, the game gives you no ability to jump nor any physical attacks, what else is there?
Wind-Up Key: The Clockwork Soldiers all have them, which you have to pull off in order to suck them up.
Worthy Opponent: This game actually implies a sliding scale for this. Your skill at capturing the gallery ghosts results in one of three different images: one each for a Bronze, Silver, or Gold frame. (Mind you, some of the ghosts' pictures are ambiguous and hard to discern. Most are easy to figure out, though).
The bronze frame is the worst, in which the ghost will generally assume a bland and uncommitted pose or is slightly obscured, in which case you can argue the ghost is deciding to ignore Luigi. (e.g. Nana's greyed out photograph, Sir Winston's fuzzy traveling image, Sue Pea returning to her upside down posture in-frame).
In the silver frame, the ghosts clearly acknowledge Luigi, but with clear disdain or resentment. (e.g. Lydia scowling, Chauncey shrieking, or Melody scoffing).
The gold frame generally features the ghost's fanciest pose or at its most photogenic, which suggests that the ghost is putting on a bit of a show and wants to be thought well of, that they seek Luigi's respect. (e.g. Neville posing with his rocking chair, Shivers smiling with a lit candle, the Floating Whirlindas waving cheerfully).