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A compendium and critique of the most beautiful, bulbous and downright dangerous video game butts.

When it comes to video game character designs, one of the most commonly overlooked aspects is the buttocks. Sure, we might see tweets when a game launches about how nice a female character's big arse is, or we might giggle at GIFs of farts from time to time, but how often do we as lovers of interactive media stop to really think about the meaning of the butt?

How often do we take some time out of our day to really think about the lore implications of Skull Kid from Majora's Mask shaking his booty, and what that tells us about his chances of redemption, or Miranda from Mass Effect, and the fact that her perfect cheeks are actually a sad reminder of her predestined upbringing? Probably not often enough.

As an author, I have dedicated years of my career to the study of posteriors, from the large to the small, the formless to the toned, and in this book I hope to bring the fruits of that research to you. By the time we're done, you should hopefully know the difference between a but that's attractive for attractiveness sake, and one that's actually narratively informative, telling us something of worth about the person it belongs to, or the world it inhabits.

Things I Learned From Mario's Butt is a 40,000 word illustrated coffee table book all about video game character butts. Wedged full of original artwork by Zack Flavin (@FlavinFlve), this book aims to explain why Luigi's butt is so dexterous in Smash Bros., why Ellie in Borderlands 2's butt is the epitome of body positivity, why Miranda in Mass Effect's butt being perfect is actually tragic and upsetting, and so much more.

Featuring interviews with game developers about butts they love and have designed, and guest butt reviews from internet personalities including: 


            Jim Sterling                             Zoe Quinn                          Justin McElroy 

PLUS: Brian Altano, Max Scoville, Brentalfloss, Greg Miller, Tim Gettys, Dan Bull, Dodger, and Stuart Ashen.

This book aims to give you some butts to giggle at, but also some real deep topics that are butt adjacent to contemplate. Butts can be fun, they can be informative, and they can be downright integral to the games we play.

While the book is still being developed, we currently have a number of our reviews planned out, including but not limited to the characters below:

Solid Snake – Metal Gear
Meryl – Metal Gear
Johnny Suzaki – Metal Gear
Mario – Mario Series
Luigi – Mario Series
Wario – Mario Series
Donkey Kong – Mario Series
Link – The Legend of Zelda
Skull Kid – The Legend of Zelda
Sheik – The Legend of Zelda
Ganondorf – The Legend of Zelda
Tingle – The Legend of Zelda
Tracer – Overwatch
D.VA – Overwatch
Widowmaker – Overwatch
Miranda Lawson – Mass Effect
Liara T'Soni – Mass Effect
Uranus – Mass Effect
Juliet Starling – Lollypop Chainsaw
The Bloodborne Game Disc – Bloodborne
Master Chief – Halo
Cortana – Halo
Puker – Dead Space
Poison – Street Fighter
Soldier – Team Fortress 2
Ellie – Borderlands 2
The L Shaped Tetris Block - Tetris

So, with your help and support, let's peak behind the curtain, and get to the bottom of what makes bottoms so important in games.

About the Book

  • A full colour, high quality hardback with printed endpapers.
  • 201 x 254mm format with head and tail bands.
  • 55 original, bespoke illustrations.
  • Approximately 160 pages, and 40,000 words.
  • Tons of amazing and exclusive pledge levels!

*Book designs and cover are for illustrative purposes and may differ to final design.

Laura Kate Dale is a full time video game critic, who currently works as News Editor for Kotaku UK. She's previously worked as UK Editor for Destructiod, started the website Let's Play Video Games, and has done freelance work for IGN, Polygon, Vice, The Guardian, and Rock Paper Shotgun.

This will be Laura's second published book, the first being a serious memoir about growing up at the intersection of being LGBT and living with Autism. She is excited about the prospect of working on something a little more light hearted, and the opportunity to work with a talented artist to bring her words to life.

Laura's career highlights have included reviewing the Slim PS4 revision on camera weeks before it was officially revealed, and getting Tim Schafer to admit at a Bafta event that he really likes cat butts. She also once was flown out to America as a keynote speaker, to give a talk about video game butts. Seriously, she knows her butts.


Zack Flavin is an artist based out of Los Angeles where his focus is visual development and storyboarding for TV and video games. Originally from Northern California, he grew up with two older brothers and every Nintendo system they could get their hands on. Long days were spent marveling at the pixely and polygonal butts before him, often times doodling up worlds of his own imagination filled with butts worth marveling at. 

Mario – The Mario Series

Mario's butt is probably one of the most iconic butts in video games, by sheer virtue of how well known he is as a character. Whether you play games or not, the stout plumber in his blue overalls and red cap is recognised far and wide.

At this point, worldwide knowledge of Mario as a character isn't going anywhere, he's as instantly recognisable as say Mickey Mouse, and he will forever be recognisable regardless of the effort put into him and his games. This level of automatic notoriety is important to note, because from his butt design we can infer that the character of Mario has gotten sloppy and complacent over the years.

Think back to the original Super Mario, Mario's butt was tiny, barely a few pixels across. He jumped, he lept, and you never saw his butt as anything of note. However, as the Mario series has gone on, his butt has ballooned in size. First he got more pixels, then he started packing on the polygons, and at this point Mario is rather known for the flab he carried around top of his legs.

While this additional posterior fat might be useful, its introduction coincided with his ability to stomp down on things below himself buttocks first, he's done very little to tone his butt, or to make interesting mechanical use of it. He's a character who has grown complacent due to the fast growth of his fame, and the way he has treated his butt is exemplary of that. It's the flabby undefined butt of someone who is so famous, he no longer has to make any effort to be noticed.

Luigi – The Mario Series

Luigi, when compared to Mario, has an arse defined by its dexterity. Living consistently in the shadow of his more famous brother, rarely given his own games, Luigi is a character who has to work orders of magnitude harder than his brother to be noticed, and his butt is the focal point that proves this point.

Where Mario can get away with a bland boring butt that is simply flabby enough for ground pounds, Luigi has clearly trained long and hard to make sure his butt is chock full of functional possibilities, making him more viable in a fight than his brother.

If we look at the later entries in the Super Smash Bros. series, from Melee onwards, you can see that Luigi has numerous attacks that make use of his wildly dexterous butt. Perhaps most notably, he has one attack where he launches himself at enemies, butt first. The sheer momentum caused by throwing his butt sideways is enough to carry his whole body off the ground, causing it to collide with enemies and cause them decent amounts of damage.

Read more...

Well, Today's the big day!

Thursday, 11 October 2018

Today has been en emotionally overwhelming day for me already, and I just wanted to drop all you early backers a thank you for helping get this all off to such a good start.

I first had the idea for Things I Learned From Mario's Butt around four years ago, in fact I recently had a FaceBook memory from August 2014 pop up on my feed reminding me about my earliest attempts to make this book a reality…

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