Are you by any chance a cowardly plumber? Because he has a brother you might forge a connection with.
Nearly all Nintendo games feel soulless to me.
I think it's something to do with the lack of plots, characterisation and voice work.
If Mario had some sort of character that made me relate even slightly or gave me some reason for doing stuff I would probably like it more. Intellectually I understand that they have a gameplay only philosophy and don't want to distract from that, but emotionally that just bores me.