Nintendo Power's strategy guide to Super Mario Bros. 3 increased my interest in video games, but not at the level that it is today. It was still just a mild interest that wasn't emphasized over all of my other interests. However, it was interesting enough for me to want to get more magazines and guides published by Nintendo Power. I remember getting three that truly fascinated me. The NES Atlas Guide, the SNES Player's Guide, and Mario Mania. Reading these guides kind of made me want to try other video games besides the ones my parents tried to show me, like the Mega Man games, and Startropics. Mario Mania was a fun read because it was not just a guide for Super Mario World, but it also served as a mini-encyclopedia on the history of the Mario franchise up at that point. My family must have assumed that me reading stuff about Super Nintendo games meant I wanted a Super Nintendo, so imagine my surprise when I got a Super Nintendo for Christmas during launch year, 1991 (which I still use to this day).
I didn't know I wanted it, I didn't know how to react to it, but I was still happy nonetheless. It was just like when I got the Nintendo. And just like the Nintendo, there was a video game that compelled my Dad to invest in the system more than I did, F-Zero. And like Ms.Pac-Man, I found myself fascinated watching him play through all the courses, and struggling to overcome some of the tougher ones. The last course, Fire Field, was the one my Dad struggled with the most, as he could never place higher than third place. One day, I decided to try my Dad's game. Could have been curiosity that drove me to it, or just wanting to actually experience something that was fun to watch. I played through the game, and when I came to Fire Field, I managed to complete the course placing first. Something my Dad was never able to do, and I did it on my first try. I will never forget that moment as long as I live. It was that moment when I realized how good I was at video games, and how much I enjoyed playing and experiencing as much of it as I could. It lit the passion inside me that continues to burn to this day.