I am going to start a very in depth review of Paper Mario, which I just completed over the long weekend. This will be a bit different from other reviews you might read because I am going to go into depth about play mechanics of the game using my programmer's hat to explain how I would have coded the game if I was working on it and my designer aspect to point out game design aspects that I thought were well done and things that I would have done different.
Why am I doing this? To be perfectly honest, this is something that I do every time that I play a game. The difference is that I never write down my thoughts. While there may not be anybody interested in what I think about games that I am currently playing, writing things down allows me to focus my thoughts and will hopefully improve my own games.
For those of you who just read reviews to determine if you should get the game, read the summary I wrote when I first purchased the game to see if the game is something you want to play. Then note that I am giving this game a letter grade of A. For 1000 points (US$10) you really do get your money's worth out of the game. It took me about 40 hours to finish. While it is probably possible to finish the game faster, I would say that even if you rushed through the game, it would still take over 20 hours to finish.
My next few installments will cover the basic components that make up the game. After that I will quickly run through the game pointing out some story specific elements and finish off with a rant about why I hate bosses. I should remind anybody who is reading this that my FLOSS entries and drafts of making One of those Weeks will continue.