Feel the Hatred: Chargin’ Chuck

[Editor’s note: naia-the-gamer talks about Super Mario World’s all star enemy for her Feel the Hatred blog. Also, it’s naia’s birthday today! Happy birthday! — CTZ]

When I play videogames, I frequently find myself irritated beyond belief over one enemy more than others. My rage for them stems so deep that if I could remove them from the game, I would not feel guilty or feel like I was taking away the challenge to the game.

Some of the Monthly Musings have talked about such creatures that bring my blood to a boil. I’m sure we can all agree that the Medusa heads from Castlevania earn this prestigious title. It got me thinking about other games with creatures that spur such hatred in me, thinking about what I like to call the “Minus One”. We all have our “Minus Ones” in games. I brainstormed to think of one enemy that angered me so much in a game that the very name made me cringe. I present you this little bastard: Chargin’ Chucks.

Chargin’ Chucks are one of the most irritating enemies I’ve encountered not only in a Mario game, but in any videogame. PERIOD. For starters, Chargin’ Chucks are athletes, and therefore jocks. I don’t know about you guys, but I find most jocks are assholes to nerds. This is the first of many offenses the Chargin’ Chuck has on videogame-kind. Their exterior implies that they are bullies; does their behavior reflect it as well? Not only are they bullies, but their behavior is quite unpredictable.

When we first encounter Chargin’ Chuck in Super Mario World, they seem harmless enough. They live up to their name and charge at Mario. To stop them in their tracks, Mario needs to stomp on their heads three times. It is one of the first enemies aside from boss monsters in Mario games that require multiple hits to reach defeat. The Chargin’ Chuck sets a new bar for difficulty amongst enemies in the Mario universe.

As one progresses through Super Mario World, we are lulled into a false sense of security that we have a handle on Chargin’ Chuck’s mannerisms. Unfortunately, Chargin’ Chuck is a smart little punk and learns new skills! Bad guys aren’t supposed to do that! He can throw footballs, baseballs and more, which makes the stage Tubular in the special world hell on Earth. They also jump in place, and in some special cases, split into three separate guys! THREE. How does one prepare for something like that? The player has to constantly be on his toes just to deal with one creature! Koopa Troopas behave similarly in every level; Chargin’ Chucks has many tricks up his sleeve.

Chargin’ Chuck is an asshole. Period. Not in ages have I encountered an enemy who does so many irritating things, take extra damage to kill, and has a jock attitude. I should mention again how horribly frustrating the Tubular stage is thanks to Chargin’ Chuck. It is this enemies crowning moment in general asshatery.

Luckily for us, Chargin’ Chuck hasn’t shown up since. Good Riddance.

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