On the other hand, there's nothing more hardcore than being an omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent deity. From Dust was good and all, but it would have been ever better if you played as Mario and got to order around tribes of little toadstools and goombas as they fought tooth and nail for survival in a harsh, barren world.
Would the all-powerful Mario be merciful to his subjects, or would he rain lightning bolts and fireballs down upon them in his righteous wrath as their overlord? More importantly, would the princess finally lay him if he was a god? Probably not, though she'd still get him to fix her pipes.