Next to the inviting electronic glow and crackle of a virtual fire, it was there I started my year by tossing objects (with a scarily joyful smirk) into my brand new Little Inferno fireplace. Doing so warmed the place right up in those cold January months! What it did not do, however, was stop those grizzly murders from happening. Difficult to ignore, I turned my attention to solving case after case with my very own Scooby Doo gang: the Investigation Team. It was tough staying up until midnight and venturing into the television on those crazy nights. I also really hated that thick fog. Umm, maybe I should not have burnt those toys after all. Plus the screaming when I did was none too pleasant…

In between the demon fusing with Persona: The Golden, I went flying like a squirrel through some colourful worlds. I also beat up turtles with the Super Mario Bros. Have no fear though, as they deserved it. Probably. Though, you know what I wish? I really wished I had those flying powers when I went ghost busting my way through creepy mansions with Luigi under that Dark Moon. Somehow, I went through a weird door and ended up getting lost in a forest with fairies, while a weird robot tried to knock me out of a bird's nest in Breath of Fire IV. I soon grew tired of that melancholy life of robbing people blind, and opted instead to settle down in a town living carefree and wild with the animals. It turns out those animals are jerks and constantly have me on the go by running errands for them. I continue to do so, even now, when the first snowfall has blanketed my town.

It's amazing the sort of things you get used to. It only made sense that I should continue my life in the service of others. And so, I set out on a Journey... an Odyssey to the West, some might say. Unfortunately, I did not get very far as New York's new apocalyptic environment broke my fragile mind. And so I next went into a deep sleep with Luigi and Mario. The Dream Team consisted of so many Luigis, it was awesome! Sadly, I had to wake up some time. When I did, the nightmare that was freshly picking rupees with Tingle really stressed me out, and I wanted to go back to sleep. I figured I could just distract myself by going hunting for Dragons on my sixth Quest or so, and thus I did.

Whilst questing, I found some demons who tried to eat me and while in captivity, I heard them saying something about Hyrule being in trouble after they dealt with me. So I fizzled my way out of there, and zoomed over to a graffiti-laced Hyrule castle. Those horrible painting things were hurting my eyes, so I wandered off into Lorule expecting better. Alas, it was not. So I then fused into the walls into the world of Contrast. Being a shadow was okay for a while there, even though I felt seriously nauseated trying to figure out some of those puzzles.

Yes... if only!

I do so dislike abandoning a quest however, so it's back to those demons for me. I also need to forge ahead and find a path through that one place. Hrrmm. I'm also thinking I need to take in some courtroom drama for a second time very soon. "Justice for all!", I'll say. Although, I could always be Luigi the cat if things get too intense...

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Thinking back on the year I've had with all the games I played, Nintendo got a lot of my time, attention and money. I can count how many games I played/touched this year on my ten fingers. Of the abysmal eleven (...eh?), six were some of the biggest titles released by Nintendo at the end of last year and within 2013. There's just something curious and lighthearted about a Nintendo game. They're so well-thought out in level design. Musically, A Link Between Worlds has an amazingly beautiful soundtrack (and that's an understatement). But most of all, the ones I played by Nintendo this year were just fun.

Is that really why I tossed so much gil at Nintendo? Or is there something more sinister at work here?

Mario & Luigi: Dream Team

During a chortle I had at one of the many hilarious exchanges as adorably expressed by Dreamy Luigi's fabulous personality, I began to squint my eyes inquisitively.

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There was a merchant who set up shop quickly during a most opportunistic time of an on coming apocalypse.

Then a bird showed up. And he wanted to me to pay him for his services.

"This game sure is all about the money..." I found myself questioning this point on more than one occasion.

Animal Crossing: New Leaf

But you know who else is all about some money? That's right! That rat raccoon bastard! Sure I can shake money from trees and hope not for bees. Certainly I can hit up that money rock for all those shiny bells. Yeah, I can catch sharks and stuff them into my pocket for a profit. Side note: The Able Sisters sew amazing clothes and even more amazing pockets, what can I say?

While I am at it, let me just buy all the pretty furniture and clothes I can possibly get my fashionable, Gracie-approved mittens on.

I have this urge to collect lots more of it and gil toss (bell toss?) at frivolous things. But the collecting! So fun! Such. Mindless. Mesmerizing fun.

"...hmmm. Money sure makes all of the Nintendo Worlds go round," I remarked loudly.

Suddenly, I see a pattern forming here...

Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon

Vaccuming up the money, cash, ghosts? Those spectres were just a bonus. Make no mistake but gold bars were my motivation. That quaking-in-my-boots, scaredy cat, nervous whistling front? All part of a well-thought out ploy to get closer to some gold spiders hanging from the ceiling and gold mice running into their mouse holes. Okay, maybe I did it to get closer to some Boo too. They are so adorable after all with their paleness and their devious nature. It's the Year of Luigi and I am living large!

Whoa. Excuse me. I have no idea why I just wrote all that.

I mean, seriously though, what's cuter than that?

Freshly Picked: Tingle's Rosy Rupeeland

Well now that I have all this cash, what am I supposed to do with it?

I have two options.

I can continue to collect more rupees and use it to get to Rupeeland where the future is looking bright enough where I gotta wear the recommended shades.

... Huh?

Or...

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds

I can continue to collect more rupees and use it to pay off the Rabbit Ravio and save Hyrule and Lorule.

Hrmmm.

Decisions. Decisions...

Yes. I know most games have some form of currency but all the Nintendo games I played seemed a little indulgent and completely obsessed on the money acquisitions angle, spending of said money and subsequent hoarding.

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Is it just me or is Nintendo trying to insert subliminal messages about money in their games and by doing so, telling me I should throw money at them?

I think I'm on to something here, guys! It's the secret to all that money that Nintendo prin…

All glory to the HypnoToad...

Gil Toss Total on Games/Consoles Spent This Year: (+/-) $752
Gil Tossed at Sony: $507
Gil Tossed at Nintendo: $245
Number of Saves: in the hundreds, if I had to guess!
Number of Enemies Defeated: also in the hundreds! The thousands, perhaps?
Number of Times Defeated: That's a rather personal question, don't you think?
Times Defeated: ...I said I don't want to talk about it!
TAY Classic: Free