A new memoir from author Salman Rushdie has revealed that the respected academic has a (until now) secret love of SNES hit Super Mario World.
The Millions reports that at one stage during his ten-year exile on the run from a fatwa, Rushdie took to playing Super Mario World after receiving instruction from his son Zafar.
His wife, Marianne, was not impressed telling Rushdie to “give it up” and “read a book”, though this did not stop the novelist seeing the game all the way through to the end.
“Alone at Hermitage Lane he reached the end of his Super Mario game, defeating the big bad Bowser himself and rescuing the insufferably pink Princess Toadstool,” the book reads. “He was glad Marianne was not there to witness his triumph.”
Furthermore, his time with the game went on to shape some of his later writings, specifically in his two children’s books Luka and the Fire of Life and Harous of the Sea and Stories – the latter even featured a moustachioed water genie called Iff who uses his plumbers wrench to control the follow of the Stream of Stories.
In the former hero Luka is given 999 lives “and has to pass through several levels of increasing difficulty to reach the magic fire”. A life is lost each time Luka is touched by an enemy. He even saves his progress at the end of each “level” buy punching a gold ball that rings like a bell.