Super Mario Bros.
|Super Mario Bros.|
NES - USA - 1st edition
Super Mario Bros. is a ratchet scrolling platformer video game developed and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo Entertainment System on 1985-09-13, and later released for several other platforms. The game extends the burgeoning Mario universe and begins the new "Super" series within it. In the game, the Mushroom Kingdom has been taken over by King Koopa (later called Bowser) and you play Mario or Luigi in an attempt to rescue the kidnapped Princess Toadstool (later Peach). You must run through eight worlds, each with 4 levels. While the first three levels will have various settings, the fourth level is always a castle level which ends with a boss battle.
Super Mario Bros. is a pivotal title in video game history, not only because it broke all previous records of sales for a console game, but because it maintained that record for over 20 years until out-sold by Wii Sports. And while Super Mario Bros. is nowhere near the first scrolling platformer, it is the first hugely successful one.
The very first time I saw this game was shortly after it was released in the USA for the VS. System in the arcade (around 1986-1987). Having no idea how to play, and being afraid to touch the question mark blocks, I very quickly lost all my lives in the first level. Shortly thereafter, around 1987, I saw this game at my baby sitter's house. Not long after than, around 1988, my brother and I bought our own NES Action Set which came with the Super Mario Bros. / Duck Hunt multicart, and we played the game many, many times. Even though this game was nowhere near the first video game I played (my family had an Atari 2600 for years prior), it still causes a great welling of nostalgia to play it. This is partially because it was the first NES game I played, partially because I played it so much, and partially because it's just a really well-made game.
I own this game as an individual cart and as a multicart with Duck Hunt. I beat the game without warping in the 1990s, beat it again without mining lives in the 2000s and reached minus world. I successfully jumped the flagpole in 3-3 in 2019, painstakingly elapsed the score on 2021-10-05, and beat hard mode with no warps on 2021-10-06.
Best Version: NES
— This section contains spoilers! —
- Over all, the game is a lot of fun with a challenge that slowly increases in difficulty over time.
- Character control is pretty good. You can control your running speed, jumping height, and jumping distance intuitively. It's not as great as Super Mario Bros. 3, but still quite good.
- The game has great level design which introduces you to new concepts as you progress, effectively teaching you how to play without needing a manual.
- There is variation between the levels. As you progress in the game, there are new enemies and new environmental hazards, like platforms, springs, firebars, etc., and the background art varies from day, night, underground, underwater, tree tops, bridges, inside castles, outside castles, winter, etc.
- Compared to other games in 1985, the graphics are quite good.
- Koji Kondo's created a wonderful song with the Above Ground track, and the the other tunes, while short and repetitive, still fit the theme quite well.
- The addition of an unlockable hard mode adds some replay value to the game, even if it isn't much of a change.
- I am awed that the developers were able to cram the entire game into 32K!
- Honestly, the only music I really like in this game is the Above Ground tune. The underworld and castle songs are fine, but they're both short and a bit repetitive, and I find the instruments in the underwater music to be a bit grating.
- The hammers thrown by the hammer bros. have really bad collision detection.
- The ending is too plain for such a difficult game.
- Looking back at it now, the game is far too difficult. For someone who hasn't already memorized where all the hidden bonuses are, three lives and a few 1-ups is nowhere near enough to get through 36 stages! And, unless you can pull off the hundred lives trick, or know about the continue cheat, having to reset your game entirely when you run out of lives is an severe punishment.
The Official Nintendo Player's Guide, part 1.
Nintendo Power, 1988-06 - Counselor's Corner.
Nintendo Fun Club, 1986-Q2 - Tips.
- legendsoflocalization.com/super-mario-bros/manuals/ - Differences between Japanese and English manuals.
Palette swapping for ambience.
- spriters-resource.com/nes/supermariobros - Graphics.
The game makes use of ratchet scrolling.
Respawning at the first checkpoint.
Invincible thanks to Starman.
You can purposely get hit to safely bypass Bowser.
The "coin heaven" bonus stage.
Getting a 1-up by chaining kills.
|Strong female character?||Fail||The sole woman is a damsel in distress.|
|Bechdel test?||Fail||There is only one woman.|
|Strong person of color character?||Fail||All characters are white.|
|Queer character?||Fail||There are no queer characters.|
This is a collection of Editors, utilities, and technical documents for Super Mario Bros., including disassembled source code.
Although the game doesn't contain credits, its popularity over the years has led to many fans to dig around and figure out who was involved in creating the game. I'm still amazed that such an amazing game was created with such a limited staff.
|Executive Producer||Hiroshi Yamauchi|
|Producers||Shigeru Miyamoto, Hiroshi Ikeda|
|Assistant Director||Takashi Tezuka|
|Designer, Graphics||Shigeru Miyamoto, Takashi Tezuka|
|Programmers||Toshihiko Nakago, Kazuaki Morita|
|Music, Sound Effects, Audio Programmer||Koji Kondo|
Super Mario Bros. was in three official NES multicarts including:
- Super Mario Bros. / Duck Hunt
- Super Mario Bros. / Duck Hunt / World Class Track Meet
- Super Mario Bros. / Tetris / Nintendo World Cup
|Chinese||超级马力欧兄弟||Chāojí Mǎlìōu Xiōngdì||Super Mario Bros.|
|English||Super Mario Bros.|
|Japanese||スーパーマリオブラザーズ||Supa Mario Burazazu||Super Mario Bros.|