If graphics beats you down and stops you from playing a game with good gameplay, then you are in for a sad future as a customer in the gaming industry, and might as well quit now.
Games are getting increasingly bigger budgets and as a result better graphics, sounds, complex mechanics... All this requires far more developers... Look alone at, I think it was Halo 3. I think it had 200 or so developers on that team, and that is some YEARS ago.
Only the bigger software houses can make games with the newest graphics, and its a bit of a shame, because the really innovative games that might prove fun - also to you that seems to have a feeling you are replaying the same stuff, might not look at the games might be smaller studios, or individual persons making indiegames and/or mods to existing games.
No harassing, but if that keeps you from playing the game - the graphics, the games you would like in the future can be counted on one hand only, sadly... there aren't many big developer houses, and some of their titles (most it seems, to you.. I don't blame you) are not liked anyway.
With all this bull**** said.. If you liked Mario, have you tried taking a look at Ratchet & Clank and Jak & Daxter and perhaps similar adventure/platform games?