Eat Lead: The Return of Matt Hazard
February 26, 2009
The game features many references to various video game series, including a character directly spoofing Mario: Captain Carpenter, who's portrayed as an old friend of Matt, the two having appeared together in Hazz-Matt Cart (see below). He wears blue overalls like Mario and also has a hat with his initial on it, which obviously is a 'C' rather than an 'M'. Under the overall he wears a white t-shirt instead of a red shirt, while his cap is blue rather than red and his gloves are black rather than white. To reflect his carpenter role he also wears a utility belt and a pack of wood bars on his back. His face has been redesigned with the mustache replaced by a white beard and adding an eyepatch, possibly to make him look more like a sea captain. Like Mario he also talks in an italian accent.
Matt has to save him in the warehouse where he used to work and where he's now held prisoneir. Matt finds him trapped in pink mushrooms, a reference to the recurring theme in the Mario series, and after he's freed he hits a floating block with an exclamation mark on it, clearly based on Mario's '?' Blocks and '!' Blocks, making a pipe looking exactly like a Warp Pipe appear, and then enters it to reach his home. He also tells his "Miss" always had a bad feeling about him working there because there are too many barrels, a clear reference to the game Donkey Kong. Oddly, according to Matt, Carpenter's girlfriend is named Karen, which doesn't seem to reference neither Pauline, Peach or any other Mario character.
Additionally one of the fictional games Matt previously appeared in is shown in the game's intro to be Haz-Matt Cart, a parody of Mario Kart and of the habit of popular franchises to make their own kart game, following Mario Kart's success. The cover of the game is shown and features Matt along with Captain Carpenter, both designed in a super-deformed style, this being a child-friendly game. Note that in the cover Carpenter is seen attacking with a hammer, possibly referencing Mario's weapon from Donkey Kong. A 3D model of Matt in his kart is also shown, appearing different than the generic karts in the cover, supposedly being his personal exclusive kart.
Matt Hazard: Blood Bath and Beyond
January 06, 2010
The second Matt Hazard game is an old-style platform side-scrolling shooter and still spoofs many video game series. A level based on Team Fortress 2 also features brick blocks, ! blocks, unbreakable blocks and warp pipes based on those from the Mario series. Like in their original appearance brick blocks can be destroyed by the player, while ! hide extra points in the form of coins and power-ups, and turn into "used blocks" after being hit, acting just like ? blocks from the Mario series. Also like in the Mario series, Warp Pipes spawn enemies, but the player can't enter them. Additionally, the first time these blocks are met they appear in the same formation as the one at the beginning of World 1-1 of Super Mario Bros. Later the level also features a ! block that makes a beanstalk grow after being hit a few times, just like some of the ? blocks do in the Mario series.
Matt Hazard's company D3 doesn't own any right over Nintendo's Mario series, but they only included minor references avoiding any copiright issue.