White-Hot Galaxy

Far away, in the deep recesses of space, tucked inside a glowing layer of supercharged gas within a grand solar nebula, lies White-Hot galaxy. A series of charred and sun-baked planets suspended between two massive alien stars. The boiling lava that covers most of the barren ground is but one of the many challenges Mario must face upon entering this horrid fiery nightmare.

Star 1: Topmaniac’s Binary Pulsar Engine

This first fiendish stage harkens back to a beta level that set to be used in Melty Molten galaxy, but was cut by the development team. From what we could see of the stage’s promotional art, it featured the topmen, and their tyrannical leader top maniac. While it would be impossible to completely recreate this stage, I decided to have a go at it using the resources we have.

The first planet Mario plants his thick brown plumber boots on is none other than an old favorite. The Melty Molten Main planet! However, while the immense volcanic asteroid certainly looks just as it was the last time our hero laid eyes on it, the three angry red topmen that are waiting to greet him show that the objective is going to be a little different this time.

Red electric fences border the planet, and to create the launch star, Mario must knock these two metallic annoyances into the crackling energy. This is a bit difficult however, as the asteroid’s surface is peppered with unbreakable rock pillars from Boulder Bowl that never stops getting in the way.

Once this challenge has been overcome by our hero, a launch star appears in the middle of the planet, just a bit too high off the ground for Mario to jump up and activate it. But don’t worry, as soon as the red topmen are dealt with, a green spring topmen is spawned from a black hole, and helps him gain altitude.
Pretty soon, Mario is rocketing towards the second planet in this level’s sequence, a collection of three floating silver saucer planets hovering above a fiery star planetoid, with a massive volcanic eruption in his wake.

Mario’s unexpected entrance is met by a quintet of surprised and angry red topmen. At the moment, Mario is oblivious to this, but as soon as he collided with the polished steel surface of the first saucer, the small fiery planetoid at the center of this system began to grow and swell.

And as he knocks the robotic pests away and notices both the star’s steady increase in size, and a small glittering star chip, the goal of this segment becomes clear.

Mario must use the sling stars located at the bottom of each spacecraft to rocket around the circular chain, collecting star chips along the way. With each passing second, the sweltering fiery ball of death grows an inch or so, and if he isn’t speedy with his star chip collecting, the star engulfs the collection of spaceships and vaporizes our hero.

Hopefully, Mario will able to accomplish this daunting task without being blasted into Atoms, for if he does manage to make it out alive, the star shrinks and disappears, replaced by a launch star. The saucers’ gravity is turned off the second the pathway out pops into existence, and Mario simply falls into the launch star and is blasted towards the third section.

The third and second-to-last challenge consists of a MASSIVELY enlarged version of the red, multilayered Space Storm satellite planet hovering between two massive Melty Monster Lava Spheres. This is the Topman Binary Pulsar engine. Capable of ripping the entire galaxy to pieces in an instant, this dastardly machine is one that’s in need of stopping.

Our hero lands a few hundred feet above the apocalypse waiting to happen on a small charred saucer sticking out of the surface of one of the lava balls. A scared Luma addresses him, and informs Mario of the dire situation. “Top maniac’s finally lost it!” he says, “ he’s gonna activate the Pulsar engine and blow this place to smithereens!” The camera pans to a glorious view of the deadly satellite. “I can help you get there, but once you land, you’ll only have two minutes to find the power star fueling the thing and wrench it free before this whole Galaxy lights up!” As soon as he’s finished his sentence, the Luma hastily transforms into a launch star, and Mario wastes no time hopping in.

Soon, our hero is soaring through the air towards the gigantic contraption, and after a few minutes of flying, he lands on the enlarged glass outer area. A maze of red electric fences had been placed, as well as Yoshi Star smoke streams here and there to increase the fiery aesthetic. To reach the power star core, Mario must find his way through the crackling labyrinth to the open access hatch leading towards the planet’s interior. Topmen are abundant on both levels. Most of them are of the red variety, but there are a few green ones that can be used to reach one ups and a comet medal.

The lower level is even more intense than the upper level. Battle rock pistons rise unexpectedly out of the ground, threatening to smash Mario against the ceiling, and angry red topmen charge at him amongst the enlarged fire shooters that fire immense balls of death at him from all angles. The objective here is to locate the sling star at the end of this maniacal obstacle course, and use it to descend down to the surface of the core itself.

A hot lava ball littered with deadly magma geysers has replaced the ravenous black hole that lay at the center of this planet last time, and the sling star flings Mario to the only safe place on its burning surface, another charred saucer.

The objective of this final section is to collect the ice flower that floats near by to Mario’s entry point, and ride across the star’s surface towards the glass cage incasing the power star, dodging the fiery columns of flame that try with all their might to sear the pants off him, and trailing a bullet bill capable of smashing the thing in his wake. The angry projectile is shot forth from a launcher positioned near the saucer’s singed edge.

After the glass cage had been smashed open, the Power star is free, and Mario dives in to collect it. However, right as he is about to clasp the prize in his gloves hands, it rockets away into the sky, and smashes through the glass roof.

What? Where has this level’s glowing prize gone? Mario follows its trajectory with his eyes, and finds that this stage’s treasure had descended on a small rusty planetoid just out side the dual stars flanking the satellite. But how is he going to get all the way over there? Without it’s power source, the engine has begun to collapse and overload, Yoshi star explosions erupt out of the fiery ground, and Fleet Glide rubble has begun to fall from the ceiling. Just as the ice power keeping Mario alive begins to dwindle, and the pulsar energy kept balled up inside the core reaches the tipping point, a launch star appears, saving our hero’s hide.

Eager to escape this imploding engine, Mario hurls himself into the launch star, and rockets after the power star, the Binary Pulsar Engine finally exploding into a thousand glittering shards of heat and light.

Our hero lands softly on the last planetoid’s rusty surface, and is immediately noticed by a local blue Gearmo. The timer stops as the friendly robot begins talking. “Thanks to you, our galaxy is saved.” He says, “The Topmen planned to harness the immense energy given of from those two dwarf stars and use it for there own untruthfully evil means, but miscalculated the absorption ratio, and indeed up creating a massive bomb that would have destroyed everything if you hadn’t intervened.” He points a robotic hand at the power star twinkling a few feet away. “If anyone disserves that power star over there, you do.”

There are several other Gearmo on the planet, but the only spout out short passages of autotext as Mario passes, such as “You saved us!” and “That’s a massive kick in the backside for the Topmen!” and “I doubt those robotic fiends will return anytime soon!”

For the most part ignoring there thanks, Mario hops into the air, and grabs the long-awaited power star!

Star get, baby!

Star 2: When Stars Collide

What happens when the hazardous magnetic radiation emitted from the tattered remains of a Binary Pulsar Engine’s inner core begins to attract immense amounts of helium and super-charged plasma? The two gigantic stars the entirety of White-Hot Galaxy is sandwiched between begin to slowly slide towards each other, eventually resulting in not only the destruction of the entire Galaxy, but the creation of a black hole powerful enough to rip apart most of the surrounding galaxies as well. If Mario flubs this one, he may never get to visit Pile-Driver Galaxy or Crystal Creek Galaxy. They’ll be gone for good.

A familiar blue Gearmo can be seen rolling around in distraught circles, and the worried robot addresses Mario as soon as he lands on the first world in this level’s dastardly sequence, once again, the Melty molten main planet.

“Good heavens! It seems as though Crimson B’s going to fall and crush us all!” the Gearmo points feverishly towards the drifting wreckage of the once-magnificent Pulsar Engine. “Unless you can stop those bits and pieces form emitting staggering amounts of electromagnetic radiation any time soon, we’re all doomed!” he then switches his gaze to a young Luma hovering near the opposite side of this volcanic planet. “That Luma looks like a viable candidate for a launch star, no? Why don’t you go and see him?”

“It seems this galaxy can’t go twenty minutes without blowing up or ripping itself apart.” Mario thinks to himself as he dashes across the barren ground, avoiding the many Lil’ cinders that replace the topmen previously found here, and the boiling lava pools scattered about the planet’s rocky surface.

Steering clear of these small-time hazards is no big challenge, and before long, our hero has reached the Luma, and struck up a conversation.

“There’s trouble ahead!” the Luma explains, “the topmen have left a fearful disaster in their wake, and it looks like you’re the only on who prevent the latent radiation from piling up and pulling the massive stars that keep this galaxy in balance into each other!” he sighs, “But to do all this, you’re going to first need a launch star! Wait right here while I… TRANSFOOOOOOORM!!!!”

with that, the Luma then alters its molecular structure to form that of the most useful object in the cosmos. A launch star.

A small bubble of autotext appears above this gateway to the second segment, saying, “Hop in!”

Mario obeys, dives into the launch star’s powerful gravity field, and gives the wii remote a quick shake, hurtling himself through the air and towards the next fiery segment.

This second section is made up of one gigantic Melty Monster lava sphere, riddled with malevolent Magmarghs and enlarged lava geysers.
Mario touches down on a small, charred; rocky planetoid hovering mere feet form the planet’s roiling surface. Mario can’t afford to stick around and smell the churning waves of molten rock however, as a giant Magmarghs blunders into the baked asteroid every few minutes, and must instead grab the cloud flower floating a few feet away from his entry point, and set out across the planet’s liquid surface.

After a few minutes of wandering around the lava ball with the aid of his ever-faithful living clouds, avoiding the towering lava geysers and Magmarghs, Mario starts to wonder what the objective of this segment is.

Luckily for him, this section’s goal becomes clear about five seconds after initial impact, when the first glittering star chip comes in to view. As always, this shining gimmick is the first of the five scattered around this planet, and Mario must use the cloud flower to hover above the lethal lava, and collect the chips, whilst avoiding the many fiery hazards that abide here.

Three of the five star chips require at least 2 clouds to reach, and these are placed in the thickest parts of the Magmargh stampede.

Needless to say, securing these chips is not going to be easy at all.

If Mario does complete this challenge and emerge from it without any major burns of the third degree, the chips assemble themselves into a launch star, which in turn hurls him towards the next planet.

Well, actually, this next section isn’t really a planet at all. It’s more of a gigantic cloud of roasted space debris, mostly made up of blackened meteoroids and small, volcanic hunks of rock originally found surrounding the lava planet in Bowser’s Galaxy Generator.

Our hero touches down on a miniscule, chunk of a long-incinerated planetoid, and immediately glimpses an intricate chain of glittering blue pull stars that stretches across the entire meteor field.

The objective here is to sling Mario about using by grabbing these pull stars with the ever-handy wii remote, all the while working your way towards the center of the meteoric expanse, were lies the launch star.

Easy as this task may look at first glance, this is not at all easy, for this segment is filled with many deadly hazards, such as fiery star planetoids of all sizes that will sear Mario at the touch, small but feisty fireball launchers dead set on roasting him alive, and several spinning circles of fire Mario must carefully pull himself through.

Once Mario begins to approach the launch star, things start to get even more difficult, as no fewer than five massively enlarged fireball rings surround the gimmick. These deadly obstacles are powerful enough to blast Mario out of the pull star’s gravity field; so one touch will mean an untimely death for our hero.

To get though these white-hot spinning rings, Mario must carefully navigate a perilous second group of pull stars that weave in an out of this sweltering inferno. Mario must be quick, for if he stays in one place too long, he will most likely take part in an unfortunate collision with a fireball.

Mario will undoubtedly have a tough time overcoming this one, but if he does, he will quickly dive into the launch star and hurl him self towards the next segment as fast as he can.

This next section is pretty simple. Mario lands on the Melty molten J-shaped planet, and is promptly greeted by a red Gearmo. “We’re nearing the source of all this the radiation.” He says, “You’re almost there!” as soon as Mario walks away, and leaves him in the dust an autotext message appears above the friendly robot’s head saying “Keep Going!”

The objective here is a little different from last time. This time around, there is no bullet bill launcher, and no Lil’ cinders threaten to sear Mario’s pants off, and the goal is instead to knock the ten red topmen who patrol the strange planet’s surface into one of the five rotating circular red electric fences that orbit the world. After the last of these hazards has been dealt with, the Luma encaged at the end of the planet opposite form Mario’s initial landing point is released, and the happy creature transforms into a launch star, leading to the final segment.

And what a segment it is.

A massive glowing green star surrounded by several smaller dwarf stars of the same eerie color floats weightless in the middle of an immense debris field similar to the one featured in this level’s third segment, although this one is made up of mechanical bits and shards of the Binary Pulsar Engine, and not sun-baked asteroids.

Mario soars towards a small saucer hovering on the outskirts of this dangerous radioactive obstacle course, and is once again greeted by a Gearmo, this one a sunny, yellow color. Or at least, that’s what his metallic hide would have looked like, if it weren’t covered in vile black soot and pitted with scorch marks.

“Those Topmen have really done it this time!” he practically screams, “Who knows how much time we’ve got before Crimson A and B collide? If those two heavyweights slam into each other, the entire galaxy’s gonna burn!”

The objective in this small prequel segment is to ground pound a bright red switch set into the center of the saucer, creating a launch star that paves the way towards the real final section.

“Oh, and one more thing!” the Gearmo adds right as Mario is about to dive headfirst into the launch star, “Once you touch down, you’ll only be able to survive the gamma radiation for about 5:00, so there’s no time to smell the roses!”

For the most part ignoring this final statement, Mario shakes the wii remote, and blasts off towards the final segment.

Before he knows it, he’s touched down on a small metallic platform partially submerged in the gigantic star’s radioactive surface.

Mario looks around, and nearly falls off the small artificial island in surprise. None other than the Red Luma had just addressed him! In many ways Rosalina’s must-trusted Luma, and more importantly one that never leaves the starship, this crimson creature is a sight to behold.

“How about all these gamma rays?” he says, “Harmful to humans like you, but us Lumas eat em’ up just like wavelengths of light! Yum!”

Didn’t Mario hear once that ingesting high levels of volatile gamma rays in place of solar energy reverse the polarity of a Luma’s Pseudo- neurons which, in turn causes them to go mad with power? “No,” thinks Mario to himself as he surveys the path ahead with trained eyes, “that would be stupid.”

A path of sinking Melty molten platforms stretches into the distance, and Mario must traverse these with impeccable precision, for if he makes one wrong move and plummets into the churning molten uranium, he won’t bounce off, he’ll be blasted to atoms. If Mario collides with this toxic sludge, the dark matter animation plays, and our hero is wiped from existence.

What makes this section even more challenging is the retextured green Lil’ Cinders that stalk Mario through thick and thin, waiting for the right moment to sear his pants off.

Waiting at the other end of this fearsome gauntlet is a sling star, one that if reached, hurtles Mario towards this segment’s second quarter.

This area has the same goal as the last (get to the sling star at the end or die trying) but Mario must go about it in a completely different way.

This time, he must use the provided cloud flower to hover above the deadly uranium, while carefully dodging towering green lava geysers and golden spiked sentry beams whose outer casing has been retextured in twinkling silver, and whose crackling red beams have been retextured a cool blue.

Don’t be fooled by these improved hazards’ beguiling appearance, as they are just as deadly as their less-appealing cousins.

The sling star is located at the heart of all this action, and it requires quite a bit of skill and aim, but the glowing gimmick is possible to reach, and after a few tries, Mario achieves this, and blats off to the third quarter.

This section is a bit larger than the previous two, as the objective requires a larger area to complete. In order to reach the fourth quarter, Mario must hop on a leaf raft, and steer him self through a miniature labyrinth composed primarily of charred bits and pieces of the Pulsar Engine, while steering clear of this area’s indigenous hazards, such as several tight packs of retextured magma geysers, and one malicious green Magmargh.

Mario is addressed by a confused painta as soon as he lands on the smallish partially submerged metallic platform that marks the start of this mechanical obstacle course. “How the heck did I end up here?” he asks no one in particular, “one minute, I was minding my newly opened leaf-raft business back on Starshine beach, and the next, I’m in the middle of all this glowing green stuff, and that big ol’ Magmargh’s biting my head off!” he sighs. “I need awhile to wrap my head around this… if you need to use my raft, go ahead, I can’t see it doing me any good.”

Mario obeys, and quickly sets about completing the course, eager to reach the sling star at the end.

After this task has been overcome, Mario is hurled onwards toward the final section of this final segment, a large, open area primarily dominated by a large, vertically placed charred half of the pulsar engine’s main fuselage, and the small star planetoid floating above it’s burnt surface. This shrunken ball of super-heated energy has been retextured a malevolent crimson, and the red light given off by it mixes easily with the green glow rising from the planet’s surface, sending stray rays of multicolored radiance flying in all directions.

Mario is mesmerized by this for the few short seconds right after landing, but soon gets his bearings, and the timer that has been pushing our hero through all of this stops as he looks around, and comes face to face with none other than Rosalina! The celestial princess is floating a few feet away from his entry point, and starts a conversation with him as soon as Mario comes into view. “This is terrible!” her usual placid major has been vaporized, replaced by a raw fear and confusion aimed solely at the hovering red star. “The red Luma!” she yells over the immense noise and power spit forth form the crimson star’s churning surface, “This world’s radioactive aura must have triggered his transformation into a dwarf star! But how?” she turns to Mario, and continues. “He’s transcending his mortal form to early! He isn’t ready emotionally, and is still young and weak inside, a mere child!”

And then the crimson star addresses Mario in a deep rumbling voice that shakes the very earth beneath his feet. “What you call weakness is merely a lack of the naïve patience all other members of my pitiful species posses…” the star that is the red Luma pauses for effect, and then resumes talking. “Now that I have eaten the power star found here, and posses Topmaniac’s limitless energy… I can break the confines of this miniscule body and skyrocket to greatness, without having to wait millions of eons for my feeble molecular structure to advance.” Rosalina’s mouth falls open in horror. “Listen to yourself!” she cries, “The gamma rays have corrupted your mind, and your body is bursting with negative energy, but somewhere buried deep within is the Luma I love!” she shifts her desperate town to a pleading one. “Please, let him through, let him look me in the eyes.” The star falls silent for what seems like an eternity to Mario before finally replying. “Lies!” he shouts, “My mind has never been so clear. I can see the whole of creation unfolding before my eyes, glimpse its complex past, and foresee it’s simple future. If attaining this wondrous ability early is what you call corruption, than I wish to be corrupted beyond repair.” And with that the small star begins to smell and glow brightly.

Rosalina gasps. “Oh my gosh…” she says, “I can’t stop him, he’s…”

Before she can finish her sentence, the violent red Luma rockets into the sky, and the transformation animation plays, covering the screen in blinding white radiance.

When the light clears, a full sized red star is floating weightlessly a few miles out in space.

“You have to make him see reason Mario,” Rosalina mutters wistfully, “If he doesn’t cool down and revert to his previous form soon, he’ll burn himself up, and take the galaxy with him!” she shakes her head. “But I suppose before you can work any miracles, you’d going to need a way to get there. Here, I’ll create a launch star for you…”

She does this, and Mario blasts himself towards the red star looming overhead, the green ball of radiation rapidly receding behind him.

Mario touches down on a charred saucer sticking out of the immense star’s surface, and spies his blue Gearmo friend upon landing. Apparently, the friendly android’s ship has been pulled in by the star’s massive gravitational pull. “Things just keep getting weirder and weirder!” the robot shouts, “Crimson A and B have stopped moving towards each other, and that’s great! But now we’ve got this brand new star to worry about! Its gravity is messing everything up!” he points towards the red-hot obstacle course that stretches out before him, and the camera follows his mechanical finger, coming to rest at the encaged power star at the end. “My guess is that that power star over there is to blame for its sudden appearance, and if you can grab it, things will must likely return to normal. Hopefully.”

By now, the objective of this last, last segment has become clear. Mario must lead a bullet bill shot forth from one of the partially submerged towers flanking the saucer through the maze of fiery geysers and vicious Magmarghs, hopping from Melty molten sinking platform to Melty molten sinking platform, trying desperately to avoid burning his outfit.

This doesn’t take very long at all, and before long, the star has been reached and freed by the bullet bill, and right as Mario is about to hurl himself into it, the ending cut scene plays.

The star pulls Mario back towards the starship, were his friends wait, the red star shrinking and exploding in a sudden burst of white-hot energy behind him. Right as the magnificent ball of heat and light is about to collapse in on itself, a bubble of autotext appears above it, stating: “The cracks… they spoke of this, they promised me a rise to eternity! I can’t lose it now! Nooooooooooo!!!”

Mario lands softly next to Lubba, and Rosalina, who is floating nearby, speaks up. “Without a power star to maintain his premature growth cycle, the red Luma has either reverted to his original shape, or…” she trails off, not wanting to reveal the other, more unfortunate possible outcome.

After a few minutes of silence, the red Luma’s chances of surviving the sudden power loss are looking pretty slim, and just as the small crowd gathered at the helm beings to abandon hope, a small glittering red speck can be seen falling towards the starship! Rosalina holds out her arms, and an exhausted red Luma falls heavily into them! “Mama…” he murmurs, and then drifts off to sleep. Rosalina’s eyes are sparkling with tears of joy. “He made it!” she cheers, “My Luma is alive!” as a chorus of applause erupts from the starship’s crew, Lubba turns to Mario and gives him a hearty pat on the shoulder. “I can’t believe it kid.” He says, “once again, you’ve beat all the odds and saved the day!” he nods towards the power star turning slowly on the deck a few feet away. “You deserve that power star more than anyone in the galaxy right now, I’ll bet! Har! har!” he cut scene ends, and Mario rushes towards the long-awaited reward for his efforts.

Star get!

But just what are the cracks? Who teleported the red Luma to that spot? Someone obviously wanted him to transform early. Is that someone also responsible for the Pianta’s strange appearance?

These questions will all be answered soon…

For at the end of the galaxy, on the edge of creation itself, something is waiting for our Mario.

Star 3: Topmaniac's last stand (Coming Soon)

Topmaniac has not been completely vanquished…

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