12 April 2014

Periodic Mario Table

Periodic Mario Table

What does the periodic table of elements have in common with Mario? Nothing, apparently. But what if we try to put in a table the main characters and monsters of the franchise as if they were elements, with hypothetical symbol and "atomic number"? And what if the table had the appearance of the classic 8-bit Mario sprite?

"Periodic Mario Table", my sixth t-shirt design, is the periodic table of elements reimagined as a table of Mario characters organized in the classic original 8-bit Mario sprite shape. Can you recognize all the "elements"?

Final look as seen on Qwertee


Nothing scientific, of course, but this concept proved to be quite a challenge. First of all, the Mario characters are more than a thousand. The sprite has "only" 144 pixels, so I had choose which characters to include and which to omit. How to order them, then? And which colors to choose?

The first problem was to make a selection of what I felt were the most important 144 characters. I created an Excel spreadsheet with all the characters taken from Super Mario Wiki and began filtering them based on my knowledge and preferences. Then I ordered the list by the first time that speficic character first appeared in a game. Then rearranged the order by logic, aesthetic look and common sense: for example I wanted to put the main characters first, then the main antagonists. Another example was ending with the "Z" letter. Once I had the final order, I assigned the number and the symbol to each character.

Please advise me if you notice that a particularly important character has been forgotten!

Once I had the complete table filled, I had to choose the colors. I wanted to print this design on a t-shirt, so I had to limit myself to the average five colors maximum. Initially I used the original first Mario colors, but then I decided to go for a more modern and vivid palette. Here's a comparison of the two versions.

Periodic Mario Table work in progress

Like previous designs, you can download freely the wallpaper here. You can also buy the poster, card or print in various sizes at RedBubble.

Periodic Mario Table poster

This design has been printed on Qwertee on May 18th 2014. This is the initial mockup that I submitted.

Periodic Mario Table t-shirt first mockup