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Super Mario Brothers 1 - The Most Iconic Game of All Time

Updated on June 20, 2016
Jan Michael Ong profile image

Jan enjoys writing about sports and television shows, video games and personal finance.

Who is Mario?

Mario was originally known as Jumpman and had many legendary battles with the behemoth known as Donkey Kong. Originally he was a carpenter. Later on, they decided to change him into an Italian plumber who lived in New York.

Mario has appeared as a guest character in a few Nintendo entertainment System (NES) games such as Tennis and Punch-out. He has gone on to star in multiple games for each new console iteration that Nintendo made. He has become the company mascot in the same way Sonic is Sega’s mascot.

Super Mario Brothers 1 Japanese Commercial

Super Mario Brothers US Box Art

Box art for the US version of Super Mario Brothers.
Box art for the US version of Super Mario Brothers. | Source

Super Mario Brothers Japanese Box Art

Box art for the Japanese version of Super Mario Brothers.
Box art for the Japanese version of Super Mario Brothers. | Source

Concept of the Game

The concept of the game is fairly simple. You need to get to the flagpole at the end of the stage before the allotted time expires. In doing so you need to avoid getting hit by enemies or falling into pits. In the last stage in each world, your goal is to defeat the Bowser impostor by either activating the drawbridge switch and plunging him into the lava or burning him with fireballs.

The game has eight worlds and has four stages per world. The game progressively gets more difficult as it progresses. At the end of each world is a bout with an impostor Bowser in a lava filled stage. After vanquishing the fake Bowser, you rescue a toad retainer. Only when you defeat the real Bowser is when you would finally rescue Princess Toadstool.

The enemies can mostly be beaten by stomping on them, burning them with fireballs or by running through them if you have the star of invincibility. The fire bars and lava bubbles are impervious to attacks however.

The Story

The Koopas are turtles that have ties to the dark arts. They use their magic to turn the Mushroom Kingdom’s citizenry into rocks, bricks and horsetail plants. With this powerful sorcery, they easily conquer the kingdom. Princess toadstool has the ability to break the spell and restore her people but she is promptly kidnapped by Bowser, King of the Koopas. Mario and Luigi then set out to vanquish Bowser, save the princess and restore the Mushroom Kingdom back to its former glory.

Super Mario Bros 1 Menu Screen

Super Mario Brothers 1 Level 1-1

Items

Power-ups found throughout the game.
Power-ups found throughout the game. | Source

Mario's Transformations

Mario has several forms in the game from a brick bashing Super Mario to a fireball wielding Fire Mario.
Mario has several forms in the game from a brick bashing Super Mario to a fireball wielding Fire Mario. | Source

Minor Enemies

King Koopa has a vast army looking to thwart Mario on his efforts to rescue Princess Toadstool.
King Koopa has a vast army looking to thwart Mario on his efforts to rescue Princess Toadstool. | Source

Bowser Koopa

There will be seven Bowser impostors that you will face before you face the real deal on the eight castle.
There will be seven Bowser impostors that you will face before you face the real deal on the eight castle. | Source

Tips and Tricks

Warp Zones – Warp zones allows you to skip multiple world and easily advance in the game. In world 1-2, you can easily go to worlds 2, 3 and 4. In world 4-2 you can easily go to worlds 6, 7 and 8.

100 Coins – Getting 100 coins nets you an extra life. Coins are the most abundant power-up in the game so you can easily gain lives by simply collecting them.

1-UP Mushrooms – The orange and green mushrooms may not look very tasty but getting one yields an extra life.

Do the 1-UP Trick – There are several locations in the game where you can corner a Koopa Troopa, Koopa Paratroopa or Buzzy Beetle and repeatedly jump over its shell to net you multiple 1-UPs.

Warp Zones

100 Coins

The 1-UP Mushroom

Do the 1-UP Stomp

The Verdict

Super Mario Brothers 1 was an iconic game that helped revive the video games industry that suffered a tremendous crash in 1983 due to the release of many substandard games. It was innovative for its time as it included many elements that were innovative for its time such as power-ups, warp zones, expansive side scrolling stages, catchy in game music and never before seen level designs.

Much of what Super Mario Brothers has introduced has become a standard for later Mario games and later video games. The game still holds influence today. Mario has become a video game and pop culture icon and Mario’s music tracks are known worldwide. This game was truly ahead of its time and changed the video game landscape forever.

The Final Battle with Bowser

This is it! The final battle with Bowser!
This is it! The final battle with Bowser! | Source

© 2016 Jan Michael Ong

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