Paper Mario: The Origami King is available now on Nintendo Switch, and it’s a cute, but sometimes punishing adventure in the classic Paper Mario style. It has fourth-wall-breaking humor, challenging boss battle puzzles, and a truly staggering number of Toads.
It also has what appears to be the most blatant NSFW sex joke I’ve ever seen in a Paper Mario game, because one of the collectibles looks so much like a penis that it seems to either be a major gaffe or someone at Nintendo is feeling incredibly emboldened. Just, look at this thing. It’s called a Desert Tower and it appears in the Scorching Sandpaper Desert area of Paper Mario: The Origami King.
Sure, you’re saying, at that angle, and with that fleshy tone, and because Toad heads are so bulbous, it looks kind of like a dong. But in-game, where the tower stands proud and erect thrusting from the purple sands of the Scorching Sandpaper Desert, it looks totally innocent.
But explain this:
You see it, right? The Sex Number. This simply can’t be a coincidence, this phallic Toad trophy just hanging out there in entry No. 69 in the Paper Mario: The Origami King collectibles menu. With that data, even the item description — “Said to be modeled after a legendary king!” — somehow seems suggestive. I already know what one-word comment you’re going to write under this post, because we all know what’s going on here.
The Paper Mario games have always been stuffed with jokes. Some of them veer toward suggestive, like these weighty ellipses in Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door:
And there’s this scene from Paper Mario: Color Splash that is open to all kinds of interpretation (but none of them kid-friendly):
But the Desert Tower collectible entry in The Origami King is such an in-your-face gag, interpreting this as anything but intentional by someone at Nintendo is, well, a little hard to swallow.
For more on Paper Mario: The Origami King, read Polygon’s review.