A new science study may provide answers as to why Nintendo gamer favorite Mario runs from left to right. The study claims the game character was programmed to walk like that simply because players like it.
The science of Mario
Lancaster University psychologist Dr. Peter Walker closely inspected thousands of still and animated pictures using Google Images. He found evidence of a rightward bias in motion shots. However, there was no evidence of leftward bias found on stationary images. The science study further elaborates the game could feature a left-to-right bias.
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Dr. Walker further elaborated that artistic conventions are often used to show motion of animated objects. One graphic convention note depicted items leaning forward in the movement. Another convention depicts objects moving left to right. The left-to-right bias demonstrated when designers italicise text to show a notion of motion or speed. Same method is used in Hebrew Typography as readers scan text left to right.
Dr. Walker claims it was the inspection of Hebrew italic fonts show another artistic convention for showing motion all based on the fundamental bias of what people want to see.
Nintendo holds on to the past
Mario is just one of the most popular game characters from Japanese game maker Nintendo. The company built an empire based on the SuperMario Brothers franchise which includes many game titles and licensed merchandise. Mario is a key asset to Nintendo. The game giant holds on tightly to the past, which explains why it continues to rehash updated releases of classics from Mario and Zelda.
A recent post from CNET highlights this fact. Last month, a sales report showed the Nintendo 3DS led sales away from Microsoft Xbox One and Sony Playstation 4. The success attributes to a re-released version of The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask. The game also happened to be one of the best selling and fastest selling games in history.