Pacing the Cage

All about old-school video games. Reviews, lists and more.

Retro Game Review: Super Mario Bros.

Posted by ptcgaming on May 30, 2009

It's amazing how well this game has stood up to the test of time. (Screenshot from Wikipedia)

It's amazing how well this game has stood up to the test of time. (Screenshot from Wikipedia)

Platform: Nintendo Entertainment System
Released: 1986 (in North America)
Developer: Nintendo EAD

Background: For more than 20 years, “Super Mario Bros.” has stood up against the test of time as a pioneer of platform gaming. Although it wasn’t the first platforming game, the sequel to 1983’s “Mario Bros.” catapaulted the genre’s popularity. This side-scroller set the precedent for Mario games to come, eventually evolving from 2D to 3D in the 1990s. In the meantime, Mario’s adventures against Bowser and his band of bad guys spanned the likes of not only the NES, but also the Super NES and Game Boy systems. Though other games, even on the NES itself, eventually surpassed SMB’s graphics and simplistic gameplay, the original remains a classic still enjoyed today. If you own a Wii, it’s definitely worth the $5 download.

Graphics: 3/5
I remember the very first time I set my eyes on this game back in the 1980s. I was still a gamer of the classic Atari age and had never seen a game quite as complex. The NES brought top-notch graphics (for the time) to the home console market, and this was eye-candy for gamers. This game’s visuals surprisingly held up well throughout the NES’ lifespan. This game was greatly detailed for its time.

Sound: 3/5
Aside from the several sound effects throughout Mario and Luigi’s adventure, there are five man songs that play during the game. And when the timer falls below 100, the tempo picks up. The main theme is still popular, so much I know people who have it in their list of cell phone ring tones.

Controls: 4/5
Like I said earlier, I was an Atari gamer until this time. So the concept of a D-pad and two face buttons was quite complex to me. But this dynamic (at the time) control scheme was an awesome discovery. Even today, the NES’ now-simplistic controls make this game easy to enjoy.

Gameplay: 4/5
I’d like to say this game is difficult for me, but it really isn’t. I’ve completed the first quest and others that follow on several occasions. But this game is still fun, and the fact this one can be quickly completed makes it ideal for those times when I only have a small window for gaming. Gameplay is simple: run right, jump on enemies, jump on the flag. Yet somehow it’s still fun.

Overall: 3.5/5
Anyone who has ever played SMB knows why this game’s a classic and why it has stood up for so many years. With its simplistic gameplay but perfect level of difficulty for the casual gamer, SMB remains a staple in the classic gaming world.


2 Responses to “Retro Game Review: Super Mario Bros.”

  1. LOVE your site, will visit again 🙂 Submitted this post to Google News Reader.

  2. ptcgaming said

    Thanks. Be sure to spread the word about the site.

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