After a years-long wait, the official Super Mario Bros. Encyclopedia is available outside of Japan. The 256-page compendium is available in both a $ 40 standard edition as well as an $ 80 limited version with a random, holofoil-trimmed cover in a question mark slipcase. Whichever version you pick, it should be a relatively comprehensive history of the Mario series up to its 30th anniversary in 2015.
While the encyclopedia is bound to present a flattering view of the franchise, it might be worth digging in for the sheer scope of the project. Each character and title receives at least some coverage, and you’ll find tips, an interview with Nintendo’s Takashi Tezuka and descriptions of glitches. In some ways, it’s a strategy guide for players who have to catch up on 30 years’ worth of secrets. You won’t find anything from recent games like Super Mario Odyssey, but this should at least keep you up to speed. And consider this: if nothing else, it’s an apropos coffee table book if you’re an avid gamer.