I’m buggered. As soon as I heard the emergency call I shot my rocket nozzle straight towards Pianta Village. Taking advantage of the chaos, Shadow Mario stole my FLUDD backpack as I went through the pipe. Great. Doesn’t he get tired of ruining people’s lives?
Things have been tough ever since we arrived at Isle Delfino. I’ve been framed, thrown in jail, and treated like a criminal. Shadow Mario propaganda is all over town, and the Piantas all look at me in disgust. This was my chance to make things right.
Mamma mia! What a crisis. After talking to the townsfolk I gathered that everyone had been evacuated, thank goodness. There was one exception, however. Atop the highest mushroom tree, the Mayor of Pianta Village was stranded. He had evacuated everyone but himself, like a true leader. With lava threatening to engulf and burn every structure and tree to the ground, I had to act fast.
In contrast to the soaring heat emanating from the lava, it was refreshing that nobody was treating me like a criminal or guarding their wallets. We had too much work to do and everyone was focused on the task at hand. I knew if I could find a way to rescue the Mayor people would see I’m not a dodgy plumber. Without FLUDD to clear away the lava however, it was going to be quite a challenge.
One Pianta had copped an ember on his backpack and was running around like mad. Sorry mate, I don’t have FLUDD with me. Might wanna jump in the river? Or maybe… take the backpack off? He was too panicked to hear me or notice. I had to get FLUDD back.
Cleaning tools sure are getting durable these days, this bloke was sweeping up lava like a champ. Amazing. I asked to borrow it but he had a job to finish himself, fair enough. I might have to order one, apparently you can get it with 4 easy payments of $19.95 from D.E.B.S. hotline. Unfortunately it wouldn’t arrive in time to save the Mayor, so I looked for another way.
Underneath the village were sheets of metal grates that held up the town’s sewerage system. I’ve seen some complex systems in my plumbing days, but nothing quite as dangerous and extravagant as this.
Oops, shouldn’t have looked down. I was hanging on by the tips of my fingers, this was no time for doubt or uncertainty. One small mistake would mean certain doom, for myself and the town.
After carefully avoiding spiders and navigating electric turtles, I found an opening near the middle of town that was safe. Relatively safe, that is. I had to be very careful when wall-jumping out. After dangling my legs over the abyss for so long, it felt extra satisfying to have something solid to kick my feet off.
It was now time for some serious platforming. One missed jump here would turn me into a charred pizza. I lined up each jump methodically with my camera controls- I mean hand-eye coordination. Slowly but surely I was able to climb higher and higher while avoiding flames and throbbing lava jellies. My whole body was aching at this point, but the adrenaline from the pounding heat was keeping me going. Just… one more ledge.
There it is, my baby. Shadow Mario must have been here, and he didn’t even bother to rescue the Mayor. Do we need any more proof he’s the villain? Maybe this is some kind of political coup to overthrow a democratically elected leader. It makes you wonder why Professor E. Gadd’s logo is on Shadow Mario’s paintbrush… is he funding terrorism? Nah, impossible.
I was still too low to reach the Mayor, but FLUDD opened up a whole host of possibilities. I cleaned up some of the surrounding lava to buy myself some more time and cool things down a bit. Our friend at the edge of town was still struggling.
Oi, come back! Stand still for a sec mate. With some erratic spraying I put out the Pianta’s backpack and he seemed pleased enough to pay me for it with a coin. He made it seem really special and valuable, but really it was just a regular coin painted blue. Perhaps there’s some kind of underground market for this somewhere. Right now, there were more pressing issues.
Taking full advantage of FLUDD, I managed to jump, hover and wall-kick my up the central tree, clearing fire and lava along the way. I finally found a spot where I could cool off the Mayor, and joined him on the platform. It’s raining!
No worries. I landed right in front of the Mayor with my FLUDD tank almost empty, phew. The town was safe at last. I offered to take him down, but it seems like he was happy to stay for a while and reflect on the situation. I looked around too, and the whole town started cheering. For the first time on Isle Delfino, I felt a little bit of hope. They finally accepted me.
Shadow Mario may still be out there with more ecological disasters looming on the horizon, but it’s not all bad news. At least we knew we could pull together in a moment of crisis. In the days after the fire, the Mayor commissioned a major rebuilding of the town. All the coins extracted from the inferno were reinvested into the town’s development and restructuring. Piantas, Noki, and Toads from Pinna Park, Ricco Harbour, and Gelato Beach all came to help as new jobs were created to develop ways to use water more efficiently and make the plumbing system a bit safer. With this newfound community spirit and booming economy, Pianta Village would be stronger and safer than ever.