Recently, on this site, there was a post about the top 5 Mario platform games and it didn’t even mention the original Super Mario Brothers game or even Super Mario Brothers 3.
At first, I was shocked, and then I realized I must be the ‘old guy’ writing for this site.
Well, as the old guy, I feel compelled to talk about some of the classic games that created my (old) generation’s love for Mario.
Let’s get to it!
#5 – Super Mario World
This is the only side-scrolling Mario game mentioned in the aforementioned post. I played this game when it was first released and I remember being completely mesmerized by its amazing graphics. I know that may be hard to understand now, but the contrast and colors of this game compared to earlier titles was a huge upgrade. Gameplay for this one is very smooth and intuitive (once you get the hang of a controller with more than 2 buttons, that is!).
#4 – Super Mario Bros. 2
The gameplay for this much anticipated sequel to the original Super Mario Bros. game actually came from a game called Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic released in Japan. Mario characters—including Mario, Luigi, Princess, and Toad—were cosmetically modified over the game’s original characters and released to the American market. Which makes this a rather unique title in the Mario universe, including some very interesting villains, like Mouser (a giant mouse that throws bombs) and Birdo (a pink bird that spits eggs you have to jump on, pick up and throw back at it). This is a true classic.
#3 -Super Mario Land
Super Mario Land was released for the GameBoy in 1989. I played this game A LOT. You have to imagine trying to play a Mario side-scrolling game on a tiny, yellow screen, with fast-moving Easter Island heads you can barely see whizzing towards you. As far as Mario games go, it’s unique, including a level where Mario is in a submarine that shoots enemies and a final boss that is an alien in a space ship you fight in a Gradius-style level.
#2 – Super Mario Bros.
The original! I played this game a lot too and it was basically my introduction to video games. From there, the obsession began. It’s a fun game with really incredible gameplay for its time. In it, Mario jumps on goombas, bashes blocks with his head and eats mushrooms to grow bigger. It’s the classic that started the Mario franchise that is still producing games today.
#1 – Super Mario Bros. 3
For me, this will always be the penultimate Mario game. It has everything. Excellent gameplay. Multiple worlds and alternate paths through the game. Lots of clever enemies. Unique powerups. And all the classic characters. It’s a challenging game and one that consumed countless hours of my childhood. Nothing beats Super Mario Bros. 3.