I'm OK With 419,826th Place In Mario Odyssey's Jump Rope Challenge

Every day, we make decisions about the games we will play and the things we will try to do in them. These days, I’m trying to make choices that are smarter, which I hope is the correct way to classify my decision to only try the jump-rope challenge in Super Mario Odyssey once.

I only reached the Switch game’s jump-rope challenge last weekend, as I returned to Mario Odyssey after several months of neglect. I like the game, but I’ve been busy playing other stuff.

It was a Sunday afternoon. My kids were napping. I’d recently reached the so-called bad ending of Hollow Knight — 35 hours in, 76 per cent completion — and was considering playing more of that (another choice!) but took a break to go back to Mario.

I’d forgotten where I was in Odyssey. Loading it up, Mario was just arriving at New Donk City, the weird urban level where our hero interacts with somewhat normal-looking people. Two of these people hold ends of a jump rope that Mario can jump. I’d heard about this. I’d even read about people cheating their way to the top of the leaderboards.

I walked Mario over to the rope and started jumping.

We jumped and jumped and jumped.

At some point, a power moon popped into the scene. We’d jumped enough to get a prize.

At 41 jumps, Mario tripped. I grabbed the moon and checked the leaderboard: 419,826th place. I shared the honour with several other players, including people named TheKev30 and Wes. I was better than folks named Horroren and KYOBE. That was good enough company for me. I moved on to other challenges in New Donk City.

I know what the game was tempting me to do. I know that there’s another power moon for me if I can make Mario clear 100 jumps. I know that the challenge is tough and that people seek all sorts of glitches to help them accomplish it. (While some have supposedly been patched, the current leaderboard is topped with people whose scores read 99999.)

There’s more fun things to do in this game, I figured. Soon enough, as I was bouncing off awnings, rocketing to the clouds, and playing a variation of a classic Nintendo game upside down, my theory had been confirmed. I’ve advanced through two more kingdoms, and while there are some moons I plan to eventually backtrack to get, the second jump rope reward one won’t be one of them.

The jump-rope challenge is classic video games: It takes a basic interaction and asks players to practise until they can do it exceedingly well. It’s a distillation of the push toward reflex improvement that helps people who repeatedly play the same game to excel at it.

It just isn't for me. I appreciate those who obsess on one game and develop such skills, but I remain a grazer, someone who moves on to the next challenge and the next game. I develop my gaming skills through the exploration of new realms, challenges and adventures, within single games and across a library of them.

I sometimes worry that this means I’m missing out on the pleasures of mastering a game. I seldom know the feeling of having elite skills, because I don’t take the time to hone them. This is, nonetheless, my choice. As a dad, as a person with a full-time job, and as someone who loves playing a lot of games, I just can’t make time to jump a rope in a video game more than once.


    Huh? Did we play the same game?

    The jump rope challenge was stupidly easy to reach 100 jumps. It wasn't until I passed 120 jumps that it started getting more difficult as the rope started to slow down then quickly speed up again. Up until that point, all it does is get slightly faster at regular intervals and it's easy to get into a rhythm, and I reached 100 jumps on my first attempt. There's no need to practice, no need to hone elite skills, it's literally just watching the rope and pushing a button at the right time.

      I'm no slouch, I'm up to 750 power moons without buying more than 1 in each shop. I have breezed through the first 20 hours of Hollow Knight without getting frustrated. But despite this, I too wasn't able to get over 100 jumps. I didn't spend more than 15-20 mins on it in all fairness, but couldn't get over 60 or so. It's not an easy challenge, man. Glad you got it easily enough though. Maybe you're a repetitive-button-pushing savant. ;P

    My thoughts exactly when I played through back in Oct/Nov.

    It is one of three moons that I skipped... that, the similar 100 volleyball challenge, and the extra moon for buying full sets of store items (needing to find every purple coin in a world).

    And this was my GoTY for 2017, so happy to skip those type of rewards. Take solace in being the kind of person who isn't a completionist... there are too many great things out there that you'll die never having experienced.

      As my comment above, I'm genuinely confused why any gamer would find the 100 jump moon difficult, even to the point of actually giving up on it. I got it on my first try with barely any effort, and I didn't even know it existed at the time. I reached the moon at 40 easily, and decided to just keep jumping to see how far I could get, and got the 2nd moon when I reached 100.

      I'm not trying to be facetious or anything, this is genuine confusion.

        I'm genuinely confused why anyone would be genuinely confused by other people finding something difficult, particularly when multiple people have voiced the same opinion.

        I'm also confused why someone would keep telling people they're confused, because it seems obvious to me that even if someone was genuinely confused, they'd realise how much of a tool they'd come across as after the first post and stop.

        Last edited 24/07/18 10:14 pm

        As someone else who is not ashamed to admit I've had problems with this Moon, would you mind filming yourself getting past 100 easily, then posting the link for us to admire your talent?

        You're coming off as a bragger even if that's not your intention. Regardless, I'll leave you with this as it's a valuable lesson for life: We are all different in small but significant ways, that some people like to call "talents". If you found that challenge easy, you may have some sort of ease at keeping mechanical rhythms. But not everybody has it. Most people don't, in fact, but each of them excel at things that you never will. So be glad in your skill and hopefully find some practical applications for it (maybe music?) but never fall in the trap of believing that those who have trouble with this skill are inferior or "bad".

          I never implied he was inferior or "bad". And I'm a drummer but that challenge has nothing to do with keeping a mechanical rhythm, it's no more involved than watching the rope and pressing the button at the right time. I can understand if some people find some things in games difficult even when I find them to be the opposite - maybe they are approaching it with the wrong strategy, maybe that boss has an attack you didn't realise you could avoid, maybe that tricky platforming section requires pinpoint precision, maybe you're underlevelled, maybe there's a powerup that you didn't find, maybe you're using the wrong weapon, maybe there's a part of the puzzle you overlooked, maybe you can't quite nail a long combo string or button sequence. I can understand all of that stuff. But this isn't those things.

          I want to encourage you to try it again and look at it in a fresh light. This challenge is nothing more than simple hand/eye coordination which is a skill *every* gamer has. Yes, even you. Even the article author. Even fatpenguin above. Every gamer has this skill. If you didn't have hand/eye coordination you wouldn't be capable of playing games at all. Just watch the screen, push a button. That's it. You can do it - you just need to get over the mental hurdle of "oh that's too difficult, I need the rhythm of a musician to do this!" - no, no you really don't. Take a step back and consider it properly. Don't get distracted by anything else, don't over complicate the task. Keep your eye on the rope swinging around, and tap the jump button. You may find it easier if you stand on the other side of the rope too, so the rope is swinging from the opposite direction (towards you or away from you). Give it a go!

            You are still doing it. When you say "strategies you haven't considered, etc" you are placing the blame squarely on the person, implying they are unintelligent, lazy or a quitter. However, many times it's just in the way you're wired.

            I've tried many strategies, every person who has managed that challenge seem to have a different one and I've tried them all and some I came up with based on identifying how I was failing. I'm sure that if I kept trying over and over and over and over and over, I would eventually do it. But get this: at that point it was not fun anymore, so why should I keep spending my time in that way?

            You said you got it in the first try without even trying. That means that you didn't need any arcane strategies, deep analyses or relentless training, which entirely proves my point regarding people being born differently. If your own case was of someone who beat that challenge after lots of thought and hard work, you could be someone who encourages people to not give up. But as someone who has a talent for it (i.e. its a "gift", it didn't cost you anything) trying to imply that those without the gift are failing due to faults of their own is incredibly arrogant.

            Probably you don't realise that you are being this way or do it intentionally, but listen to us when we tell you that's how it's coming off.


      It's really not that confusing. I also found it too difficult to bother because I find it difficult to justify wasting my time clicking a button over and over again... I'm not bad at games. In fact, I generally seek out the most difficult games ever made because I like a challenge. But the challenge (for me) has to also be engaging. If it doesn't interest me, I find it difficult to motivate myself. Does that clear it up somewhat?

      For what it's worth: going on the internet and telling people (twice) that you found something SUPER easy that they said they found difficult doesn't do you any favours.

      Honestly, the people who got thousands of jumps confuse me more than the people who couldn't be bothered concentrating on a challenge that involves hitting a button over and over again... The people who got 100,000 jumps must have SERIOUS issues.

      Life is beautiful.
      Put the controller down and go outside.

    I only need the 100 volleyball moon, still haven't got that one yet. Really must do that some day.

      Go into two player mode leave Mario off to the side and just use Cappy. It becomes ridiculously easy to get that way.

      I found that one tough. Had to got with the 2 player 1 controller option to get it myself

      Yeah, that volleyball one stumped me for a while. Took a lot of effort to just get close to 60, but once I got there, I entered some zen state where it felt almost effortless. Shot up to 130-140. Couldn't believe it!

      Yeah me too and was the last moon I needed so I cheesed it. Keep reading if you want to know how.

      Switch to 2-player mode and control Cappy instead of Mario. Cappy is constantly accelerated and quite faster than Mario (also, I think it has a slightly wider hitbox, but that may just be my perception).

        I did the 2 player one and lost it at 99, not even joking. After a bit of a rage, I gave up after that, but I'll go back to it eventually, hate leaving it unfinished.

          The really annoying part is that there's content hidden (not a lot, but still) after the achievement of getting all moons, which is IMHO something they shouldn't put behind arbitrary numeric feats such as the volleyball and rope games. That's why I really didn't feel bad about cheesing them. Everything else I achieved legitimately.

    Both of the 100 moons for Volleyball and jump rope had me stumped for a while. But eventually I got both through perseverance and just being stubborn. Its a matter of learning not to use a full a press for jump rope and finding the rhythm.

    The volleyball moon, I abused the 2 player option in which you use cappy on the second control to just stay under the ball since cappy moves faster

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