3D Cartoon Land: Safari does the Mario.
Apple’s app store isn’t the only digital distribution platform facing a scourge of knockoffs and imitation games, but the iDevice’s market dominance makes the app store a popular target for unscrupulous bootleggers.
Chinese developer, Jiang Zhi, is keeping the proud tradition of shameless rip-offs alive with 3D Cartoon Land: Safari, a game which looks like a creepy pod-person-version of Super Mario 3D Land.
Jiang Zhi is presumably hoping the small changes it’s made to Mario’s visual formula will protect it from Nintendo’s legal wrath, but instead it just makes the entire game seem profoundly wrong in a David Lynch kind of way. Koopa Troopers are now “angry tortoises,” the ? boxes that litter the Mushroom Kingdom have been replaced with ! boxes (subtle) and the central character looks like Buffalo Bill from Silence of the Lambs wearing Mario’s skin as a coat. Eurogamer described the game’s Goombah stand-ins as “small shuffling pine cones,” but to my jaded eye they look like butt plugs that have just gained sentience and figured out what their role in life is.
Believe it or not, this is actually a step down the copyright infringement ladder for Jiang Zhi. The developer’s library includes such classics as Fury Birds, Line Ski, Cube Craft, Angry Pigs and, my personal favorite, God of Warriors, which includes the most hilariously chill picture of Kratos you’ll ever see.
3D Cartoon Land: Safari is available on iOS for 96p, but I wouldn’t count on it being available for long.