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Rename: ambiguous: The Mario

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Chimaera Doctor Where
Doctor Where
Feb 17th 2011 at 1:43:57 PM

The Mario could mean so many things. The trope is actually about statistically balanced characters, but one would think this is about Italian plumbers. Anyone with me?

Well that was like playing a game of Whack-A-Mole where "mole" is defined as "Cthulhu". -Count Dorku
troacctid "." from California
Feb 17th 2011 at 1:52:24 PM

We know there are people with you because this issue has come up several times before.

The Mario is an excellent example of a lot of the problems with character-named tropes while also being an excellent example of why we don't just change them all. The problems with the name being that this trope isn't the primary thing Mario is known for, so we shouldn't expect people to associate him with it, making the title unintuitive; and the problems with changing it being that in spite of what we'd expect, it's performing exceptionally well, with nearly 600 wicks, 1600 inbounds, and no significant misuse.

So, while we might predict from the name that the title is confusing and we wouldn't expect it to perform well, in practice, it surprises us by attracting lots of correct, widespread usage. We don't really know why it works, but somehow, it works. If people are confused by it, it certainly doesn't show.

edited 17th Feb '11 1:53:15 PM by troacctid

Rhymes with "Protracted."
Feb 17th 2011 at 2:31:13 PM

People have tried to rename The Mario half a dozen times in the last two years, but the trope is just WAAAAAAAAYYYY too entrenched to actually change it's name. It's too popular and too common. People know it and refer to it too well. There are tons of viable redirects that would serve as a better name, but this name is too deep to change at this point.

I want to see it changed too, but it's just not possible without causing damage to the site in general.

Scardoll Burn
Burn
Feb 17th 2011 at 11:22:06 PM

The reason why it's so intrenched is simple: Entry pimping for characters. The stock competitive builds for games are easy tropes to attach to characters even outside of games, and nearly every game that includes characters with differentiated gameplay includes a Mario.

It's an extremely prevalent trope that's often stretched outside of its original bounds, so people use it a lot and turn it into a monolithic establishment.

Fight. Struggle. Endure. Suffer. LIVE.
ChrisWWII Loyal Imperial Guardsman from University of St Andrews
Loyal Imperial Guardsman
Feb 25th 2011 at 5:17:37 PM

While being the Mario isn't the number one thing Mario is known for, it's spreading. Games like Mario Kart and Super Smash Brothers have pervaded to the extent that people can fairly quickly grasp the idea that Mario is the balanced one out of all the characters/factions. It's entrenchment is even deeper here in TV Tropes. Changing it would just cause too many problems....

Of course, if you've got a ridiculouslly awesome name for the trope that sums it up in a way that just blows Mario out of the water, feel free to tell us!

"If everything on Earth were rational, nothing would ever happen." ~Fyodor Dostoevsky
FallenLegend Lucha Libre goddess from Navel Of The Moon.
Lucha Libre goddess
Feb 25th 2011 at 5:48:43 PM

I would vote for a rename .But it's too popular for a rename and nearly impossible :/ https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/posts.php?discussion=1297748086043520100&page=1#16

That's why it is better to stop them. Before it is too late. like here.

edited 25th Feb '11 5:59:32 PM by FallenLegend

Make your hearth shine through the darkest night; let it transform hate into kindness, evil into justice, and loneliness into love.
Mar 4th 2011 at 10:37:54 PM

I think I created a thread on this trope a while back, and I still support a rename. It's ambiguous and mario is know for a lot more than just being a 'balanced video game character'.

Which is only applicable to spin-off games, not the original ones he showed up in.

It doesn't make sense to keep it like this, it's a poor name for this trope and should be renamed now.

Balmung Three Strikes from Nebraska Relationship Status: Above such petty unnecessities
TripleElation Diagonalizing The Matrix from Haifa, Isarel
Diagonalizing The Matrix
Mar 5th 2011 at 5:19:02 AM

Here we go again...

Last time we had a huge thread about this, we kept it by a narrow margin. It'll take a very strong and coherent case to topple it. It might exist; I'd look into it, except I won't be around for the following two weeks or so for personal reasons. If this thread is still alive by then, I'll look around and post my findings.

One significant thing that has changed is that now we have the Ptitle Replacement System so changing it is a one-click thing instead of a daunting weeks-long project. This is in no way an actual argument for renaming, but in practice we all know it counts.

edited 5th Mar '11 5:19:58 AM by TripleElation

Pretentious quote || In-joke from fandom you've never heard of || Shameless self-promotion || Something weird you'll habituate to
rjung Playing cruel tricks on EVIL! from Fifth and Main Relationship Status: I like big bots and I can not lie
Playing cruel tricks on EVIL!
Mar 8th 2011 at 11:59:51 AM

The title might be a little misleading, but the description makes the trope very clear. In that regard it's no worse than Xanatos Gambit.

—R.J.

Elle Relationship Status: I wanna know about these strangers like me
Mar 8th 2011 at 5:52:23 PM

Point of contention: Xanatos Gambit at least has "gambit" providing context to the title. The Mario (which I still oppose as a name, same as before, same reasons as before) doesn't have that benefit.

Though I just thought of a compromise title playing on The Average Joe: The Average Mario.

Hearthstone Recruit-A-Friend (Americas Server) (I get free stuff)
Bailey from Next Sunday, A.D.
Mar 8th 2011 at 6:08:13 PM

Regardless of my feelings about The Mario, I'd just like to say that Scardoll's point is entirely valid, and something we sometimes gloss over in rename discussion.

Wicks can be a useful measure of a name, but if the trope itself is something that's going to be on a huge number of character sheets no matter what we call it, then the wick count is maybe not incredibly relevant in that case. I think this was brought up when we last talked about The Libby, but kind of got forgotten.

troacctid "." from California
Mar 8th 2011 at 6:15:12 PM

[up] If it were just a matter of entry pimping, we would also expect a low inbound count, but The Mario has lots of inbounds, so the scenario you describe probably isn't the case here.

Rhymes with "Protracted."
Elle Relationship Status: I wanna know about these strangers like me
Mar 8th 2011 at 6:21:37 PM

For what it's worth, with the new system, inbounds would be preserved.

Hearthstone Recruit-A-Friend (Americas Server) (I get free stuff)
troacctid "." from California
Mar 8th 2011 at 6:26:01 PM

Eh, inbounds would be preserved with the old system too, because we could make the previous title a redirect.

Rhymes with "Protracted."
Mar 24th 2011 at 3:27:19 PM

While a rename might not be needed, it probably wouldn't hurt to do some redirect farming. Redirects Are Free, after all.

DrStarky Okay Guy from Corn And Pig Land Relationship Status: Staying up all night to get lucky
Okay Guy
Mar 24th 2011 at 4:24:33 PM

I don't care for the name, but I've seen a suprisingly large number correct uses for this trope. This name is only broken in theory.

[up]Jack-of-All-Trades is a redirect.

Edit: I'm Sorry, that was Jack of All Stats.

edited 24th Mar '11 4:25:55 PM by DrStarky

Put me in motion, drink the potion, use the lotion, drain the ocean, cause commotion, fake devotion, entertain a notion, be Nova Scotian
Fnor Does not work that way from Haha, no.
Does not work that way
Mar 24th 2011 at 5:30:49 PM

We just did this like 5 months ago! The trope's fine.

aaeyero aayero
aayero
Apr 17th 2011 at 1:22:39 PM

So far, the only reasons against this I've read are "it works" and "it's entrenched" or "to hard to change", with no clarification whatsoever. Those aren't really good arguments, and don't really address the reason for the move which is that just because everybody knows Mario, that doesn't mean that when they hear Mario, they think of a completely balanced character, so the name has absolutely no hints to what the trope is about. That the trope has a good summary has nothing to do with the title. If someone has to leave a page to find out what a linked trope means so they can understand what the original page meant, then there is a problem with the name.

Apr 17th 2011 at 1:41:53 PM

[up]The default position is always not to rename. The burden is on the ones proposing a rename to show why it is necessary. Or, as Everything You Wanted To Know About Changing Names says, "if you claim that [a name is] confusing or misleading, show that people have been confused or misled."

The name having good inbounds and little misuse is one of the "Reasons Not To Rename" listed on the renaming guidelines. The current name works. There is evidence that it works. No further arguments against a rename really need to be made, I think.

I mean, I'm confused. "It works" is a great reason to keep the current name. If the "only" argument offered is "it works," and there's evidence that it does, indeed, work... Then I really don't see why any further arguments would be needed. As the renaming guidelines make clear, renaming a trope is an extreme action that is only justified when the current name is horribly broken. If the current name is shown to work, why would this being the "only" argument against renaming be insufficient?

edited 17th Apr '11 1:49:25 PM by girlyboy

Heatth from Brasil Relationship Status: In Spades with myself
Apr 17th 2011 at 1:49:53 PM

[up][up]These are excellent arguments. In fact, they are all we need for not renaming. Particularly the "it works" one. What would you gain by renaming? Avoid misunderstanding, misuses? Things that are not happening anyway? Renaming a trope that works give trouble without giving any benefit.

DragonQuestZ The Other Troper from Somewhere in California
The Other Troper
Apr 17th 2011 at 2:23:50 PM

Has anyone checked for misuse? I mean, if a lot of the wicks are about Mario in the context of the main games, that could be a case for it. But we have to confirm it.

I'm on the internet. My arguments are invalid.
DrStarky Okay Guy from Corn And Pig Land Relationship Status: Staying up all night to get lucky
Okay Guy
Apr 17th 2011 at 3:26:03 PM

I wouldn't be surprised if there was a small bit of missuse, but not enough to worry about.

edited 17th Apr '11 3:26:17 PM by DrStarky

Put me in motion, drink the potion, use the lotion, drain the ocean, cause commotion, fake devotion, entertain a notion, be Nova Scotian
DragonQuestZ The Other Troper from Somewhere in California
The Other Troper
Apr 17th 2011 at 3:38:13 PM

We shouldn't guess these things. Trust me, I know.

I'm on the internet. My arguments are invalid.
Apr 17th 2011 at 10:51:08 PM

Why do people keep saying that this trope is so successful?

The Mario found in: 628 articles, excluding discussions.

This title has brought 2,104 people to the wiki from non-search engine links since 20th FEB '09.

...that's a decent number, yes, but when you consider its age, it's actually not that high, especially considering what a common trope this is. It's not particularly successful given how long we've had it. It's not really a trope of legend or a hugely successful trope, it's just old.

As for misuse, I've found a few (almost always using it to refer to the character):

AlternativeCharacterInterpretation

Combat Medic

DrMario

Mushroom Kingdom Fusion (sort-of; it's used to state that Mario in this game is not The Mario.)

New Super Mario Bros Wii

Shigeru Miyamoto

Super Mario RPG

SuperMarioRPG

WithVideoGames

New Super Mario Bros Wii

...pretty much anywhere where this trope could be reasonably misused, it is getting misused.

(Also note that this is not a comprehensive list. It was easy for me to say 'wait a minute, people are probably using this trope to refer to the character'; hunting down places where it's being used by someone who believes it refers to one of Mario's other traits would be harder. But, in any case, there's plenty of misuse; and, again, it's not as healthy a trope as people make it out to be, given how old it is.)

edited 17th Apr '11 10:52:31 PM by Aquillion


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