Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Happy Birthday Super Mario!

It's the 25th Anniversary of Super Mario Brothers, the biggest-selling and most popular game franchise of all time. Hard to believe it all began 25 years ago. Though Mario had already appeared in Mario Brothers (without the Super prefix) and the Donkey Kong games, it wasn't until 1985 that the Super Mario franchise kicked off in earnest with its now world-famous character, innovative gameplay and one of the most catchy theme tunes of all time.

Created by Shigeru Miyamoto, the creative megabrain behind many of Nintendo's most successful games franchises including the Legend of Zelda, Kirby and Metroid series, Super Mario Brothers went on to become the then biggest selling game of all time.

By bundling the game with the NES, Super Mario also helped shift enormous amounts of the console in the US and Europe, whilst other companies, most noteably Atari, were still reeling from the video game crash. There then followed a string of sequels and spin-offs such as Super Mario Brothers 3 for the NES, widely regarded as one of the greatest games of all time.

Thoughout the late 80s and early 90s Nintendo would face tough competition from Sega. Throughout these "console wars" Mario remained Nintendo's greatest asset. Although Sega had a number of classic arcade games to their credit they could never come up with a Mario-beater, but that didn't stop them trying. Wonder Boy, Alex Kidd and the Mickey Mouse series (and many more I've now since forgotten) all tried to emulate Super Mario's success, but Sega had to wait until the 1991 release of Sonic the Hedgehog before they found a truely worthy contender to Mario's crown.

Sonic, with its crisp graphics and blisteringly fast, highly-addictive gameplay, finally allowed Sega to outsell Nintendo consoles, something which it had not been able to do since the release of Super Mario Brothers in 1985. Predictably enough Nintendo retalliated with its number one weapon, bringing Mario back in the excellent Super Mario World, a title which helped do for the 16 bit Super Nintendo, or SNES, what it had done for the NES in '85.

As the years went by new Nintendo consoles arrived on the scene and more Mario games were released from Super Mario 64, the first 3D Mario adventure on the N64, right up to the whirling, spinning phosphorescent insanity of the Super Mario Galaxy games for the Wii.

But it is still the original, with its catchy little 8 bit tune, cute, colourful but ultimately primitive graphics and simplistic but addictive gameplay, which still manages to weave that timeless sense of magic and childish innocence for which Super Mario is famous.

Even after a quarter century, in an age of high powered game PCs and consoles, Super Mario Brothers continues to delight young and old alike. It is now available to play online or in emulator form so now Dad's who grew up playing the game as kids get to pass on to their children those indespensible life's lessons such as the location of Warp Zones, the infinite life cheat on the turtle pyramid at the end of World 3-1 and, most important of all, to always remember that some days you stomp the turtles and some days the turtles stomp you.

And, yeah, for those who think I'm being a sentimental old fart give it a go. Like I said you can play the original Super Mario Brothers online, identical to the NES original, just be prepared not to get any work done for at least the next couple of weeks.

Warp Zones - you never do forget their locations.

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3 comments:

magento themes said...

We know that, The biggest-selling and most popular game. Though Mario had already appeared in Mario Brothers and without the Super prefix. It is world-famous character more than the Donkey Kong games. It is innovative game play and one of the most catchy theme tunes of all over time.

Magento Themes said...

It is really surprising because I didn't know it before. Most of the people believe to remember some big character's profiles.

buy vpn said...

I am still an avid fan and player of the super mario games