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Super Mario Bros.

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Super Mario Bros.
Super Mario Bros. box.png
North American packaging artwork
Developer(s) Nintendo R&D4
Publisher(s) Nintendo
Director(s) Shigeru Miyamoto
Producer(s) Shigeru Miyamoto
Designer(s) Shigeru Miyamoto
Takashi Tezuka
Programmer(s) Toshihiko Nakago
Kazuaki Morita
Composer(s) Koji Kondo
Series Super Mario
Genre(s) Platformer
Mode(s) Single-player, multiplayer

Super Mario Bros.[a] is a platform video game developed and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo Entertainment System home console. Released as a successor to the 1983 game Mario Bros., Super Mario Bros. was released in Japan and North America in 1985, and in Europe and Australia two years later. Ports of the game were later developed for other systems including the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, the Game Boy Color and the Game Boy Advance, and the original version of the game has been rereleased for the Wii, 3DS, and Wii U as part of the Virtual Console line of retro video game releases. In Super Mario Bros., the player controls Mario and his brother, Luigi, as they travel through the Mushroom Kingdom in order to rescue Princess Toadstool from the antagonist, Bowser. The game features 2D side-scrolling gameplay, and has the player traverse the Mushroom Kingdom by running and jumping through 8 worlds of levels, while defeating enemies and collecting coins and distinct power-ups which aid Mario on his quest, including the Super Mushroom, the Fire Flower and the Starman.

Initially intended as a farewell to the Famicom in Japan before the release of the Famicom Disk System, Super Mario Bros. was designed by Shigeru Miyamoto and Takashi Tezuka, and began development as a shooting game before the team decided to instead make it a side-scrolling platformer, and choosing to feature Mario, Nintendo's mascot who had previously featured in Donkey Kong and Mario Bros., as the playable main character. The game's music was composed by Koji Kondo.

Super Mario Bros. experienced immense commercial success and has received critical acclaim, with many crediting it alongside the NES as one of the key factors in reviving the video game industry after it had experienced a market crash in 1983. The game's mid-1980s release served to further popularize the side-scrolling subgenre of the already popular platform video game genre of the early 1980s. It was the best-selling game of all time for a single platform for over three decades until it was surpassed in the late 2000s by Nintendo's Wii Sports, selling over 40 million units and becoming one of the defining titles of the NES. The commercial success of Super Mario Bros. prompted the creation of two direct sequels both for the NES, and ultimately led to the creation of an expansive franchise, spawning a successful video game series consisting of several sequels and spin-off titles, as well as an animated television series, an anime film, and a full-length feature film. Alongside Mario himself, the game has become a prominent figure of American popular culture.


Screenshot of Super Mario Bros. where Mario adventures throughout the Mushroom Kingdom, revealing an invincibility star and shooting fireballs after having picked up a Fire Flower.

In Super Mario Bros., the player takes on the role of the main protagonist of the series, Mario. Mario's younger brother, Luigi, is only playable by the second player in the game's multiplayer mode and assumes the same plot role and functionality as Mario. The objective is to race through the Mushroom Kingdom, survive the main antagonist Bowser's forces, and save Princess Toadstool.[6]:7 The player moves from the left side of the screen to the right side in order to reach the flag pole at the end of each level.

The game world has coins scattered around it for Mario to collect, and special bricks marked with a question mark (?), which when hit from below by Mario, may reveal more coins or a special item. Other "secret", often invisible, bricks may contain more coins or rare items. If the player gains a red and yellow Super Mushroom, Mario grows to double his size and can take one extra hit from most enemies and obstacles, in addition to being able to break bricks above him.[6]:12 Players are given a certain number of lives, and may gain additional lives by picking up green and orange 1-Up mushrooms, collecting 100 coins, defeating several enemies in a row with a Koopa shell, or bouncing on enemies successively without touching the ground. Mario loses a life if he takes damage while small, falls in a bottomless pit, or runs out of time. The game ends when all lives are lost.

Mario's primary attack is jumping on top of enemies, though many enemies have differing responses to this. For example, a Goomba will flatten and be defeated,[6]:12 while a Koopa Troopa will temporarily retract into its shell, allowing Mario to use it as a projectile.[6]:11 These shells may be deflected off a wall to destroy other enemies, though they can also bounce back against Mario, which will hurt or kill him.[6]:19 Another attack, for enemies standing overhead, is to jump up and hit beneath the brick that the enemy is standing on. Another is the Fire Flower; when picked up, this item changes the color of Super Mario's outfit and allows him to throw fireballs, or only upgrades Mario to Super Mario if he has not already. A less common item is the Starman, which often appears when Mario hits certain concealed or otherwise invisible blocks. This item makes Mario temporarily invincible to most hazards and capable of defeating enemies on contact.[6]:10

The game consists of eight worlds with four sub-levels called "stages" in each world.[6]:7 The final stage of each world takes place in a castle where Bowser or one of his decoys are fought. The game also includes some stages taking place underwater, which contain different enemies. In addition, there are bonuses and secret areas in the game. Most secret areas contain more coins for Mario to collect, but some contain "warp pipes" that allow Mario to advance to later worlds in the game, skipping over earlier ones.


Super Mario Bros. takes place in the fantasy setting of the Mushroom Kingdom. The game begins when a tribe of turtle-like creatures known as the Koopa Troopas invade the kingdom and uses the magic of its king, Bowser, to turn its inhabitants into inanimate objects such as bricks. Bowser and his army also kidnap Princess Toadstool, the princess of the Mushroom Kingdom and the only one with the ability to reverse Bowser's spell. After hearing the news, Mario sets out to save the princess and free the kingdom from Bowser.[6]:2 After traveling through various parts of the kingdom and fighting Bowser's forces along the way, Mario reaches Bowser's final stronghold, where he is able to defeat him by striking an axe on the bridge suspended over lava he is standing on, breaking the bridge, defeating Bowser, allowing the princess to be freed and saving the Mushroom Kingdom.[7]


Super Mario Bros., the successor to the 1983 arcade title Mario Bros., was designed by Shigeru Miyamoto and Takashi Tezuka, both of whom belonged to Nintendo's former Entertainment Analysis and Development division at the time.[8][9][10] Though not originally using any particular character, the very deliberate creative process of what would become their next game was motivated by their technical knowledge from previous games like Excitebike and Kung Fu, by a desire to give the ROM cartridge format "a final exclamation point" in light of the forthcoming Famicom Disk System which was expected to become the dominant new game delivery medium, and by continuing their legacy of "athletic games" with a character running and jumping with many obstacles. Miyamoto explained, "We felt strongly about how we were the first to come up with that genre, and it was a goal of ours to keep pushing it."[11] Development was aimed at simplicity, in order to have a new game available for the end-of-year shopping season.[12]

According to Tezuka, the prototype initially was not a side-scrolling game, and the player controlled a 16 by 32 pixel square. Tezuka only suggested the use of Mario after seeing the sales figures of Mario Bros., which was still selling well throughout the previous year since its release.[13] The prototype was based around a shooting mechanic with very different controls.[14] The sky-based bonus stages are a remnant of a level design where Mario jumped onto a cloud and fired at enemies.[11][15] They changed the game's focus to jumping action and they thus remapped the A button from shooting to jumping. After releasing Mario Bros., the team had reflected that it had been an illogical gameplay decision for Mario to be hurt by stomping upon the walking turtles, so they decided any future Mario game would "definitely have it so that you could jump on turtles all you want."[11]

The development of Super Mario Bros. is an early example of specialization in the video game industry, made possible and necessary by the capabilities of the Famicom. Miyamoto designed the game world and led a team of seven programmers and artists who turned his ideas into code, sprites, music and sound effects.[16]

The team based the level design around a small Mario, intending to later make his size bigger in the final version. Then they decided it would be fun to let Mario change his size via a power-up. The early level design was focused on teaching players that mushrooms were distinct from Goombas and would be beneficial to them, so in the first level of the game, the first mushroom is difficult to avoid if it is released.[17] The use of mushrooms to change size was influenced by common Japanese folktales in which people wander into forests and eat magical mushrooms; this also resulted in the game world being named the "Mushroom Kingdom". Miyamoto said the shell-kicking 1-up trick was designed and carefully tested, but "people turned out to be a lot better at pulling the trick off for ages on end than we thought".[11]

World 1-1

During the third generation of video game consoles, tutorials that explain the mechanics of the game were rare, and instead, players had to learn how a video game worked by being guided by level design. The opening sections of Nintendo Entertainment System games such as Metroid, The Legend of Zelda, and Super Mario Bros. are all designed in such a way that players are forced to explore the mechanics of the game to be able to advance. Super Mario Bros. is the first side-scrolling video game featuring Mario, and one of the first video games directed and designed by Shigeru Miyamoto. Rather than confront the newly oriented player with obstacles, the first level of Super Mario Bros. lays down the variety of in-game hazards by means of repetition, iteration, and escalation.[18]

In an interview with Eurogamer, Miyamoto explained that he created "World 1-1" to contain everything a player needs to "gradually and naturally understand what they’re doing", so that they can quickly understand how the game works. According to Miyamoto, once the player understands the mechanics of the game, the player will be able to play more freely and it becomes "their game."[19][20]

Minus World

The "Minus World" (also referred to as "World Negative One") is the name given to an unbeatable glitch level present in the original release of Super Mario Bros. World 1-2 contains a hidden warp zone, with warp pipes that transport the player to worlds 2, 3, and 4, accessed by running over a wall near the exit. If the player is able to exploit a bug that allows Mario to pass through bricks, the player can enter the warp zone by passing through the wall and the pipe to World 2-1 and 4-1 may instead transport the player to a stage labeled "World -1". This stage's map is identical to worlds 2-2 and 7-2 and upon entering the warp pipe at the end, the player is taken back to the start of the level, thus trapping the player in the level until all lives have been lost. Although the level name is shown as " -1" with a leading space on the heads-up display, it is actually World 36-1, with the tile for 36 being shown as a blank space.[21]

The Minus World bug in the Japanese Famicom Disk System version of the game behaves differently and creates multiple, completable stages. "World -1" is an underwater version of World 1-3 with an alternate color palette, and contains sprites of Princess Toadstool, Bowser, and Hammer Bros. "World -2" is an identical copy of World 7-3, and "World -3" is a copy of World 4-4, also with an alternate color palette. After completing these levels, the player returns to the title screen as if the game were completed.[22][23] There are actually hundreds of glitch levels beyond the Minus World, and can be accessed in a multitude of ways.[24][25]


Nintendo sound designer Koji Kondo wrote the six-song musical score for Super Mario Bros., as well as designing all of the game's sound effects.[26][27] At the time he was composing, video game music was mostly meant to attract attention, not necessarily to enhance or conform to the game. Kondo's work on Super Mario Bros. was one of the major forces in the shift towards music becoming an integral and participatory part of video games.[28]

Kondo had two specific goals for his music: "to convey an unambiguous sonic image of the game world", and "to enhance the emotional and physical experience of the gamer".[28] The music of Super Mario Bros. is coordinated with the onscreen animations of the various sprites, which was one way he created a sense of greater immersion. He wasn't the first to do this, for example, Space Invaders has a simple song that gets faster and faster as the aliens speed up, eliciting a sense of stress and impending doom that matches the increasing challenge of the game.[29] However, he took the idea further than that, saying that, "the guiding question which decides whether to accept or reject his own (and, more recently, others’) musical tracks is: do the game and music fit one another?"[30]

This shift in ideals and results was, in part, born of a method of design that was unusual at the time: instead of being hired later in the process to add music to a nearly finished game, Kondo was there almost from the beginning, working in tandem with the rest of the team. As he said, "the [Super Mario Bros.] music is inspired by the game controls, and its purpose is to heighten the feeling of how the game controls".[31] Before composition began, a prototype was presented to Kondo for the game so that he could get an idea of Mario's general environment. Kondo wrote the score with the help of small pianos for an appropriate melody of this scene. After the development of the game showed progress, he realized that his music did not quite fit the pace of the game, so he changed it a bit by increasing the tempo.[32] The music was further adjusted based on the expectations of Nintendo's play-testers.[33]

Alternate versions

As one of Nintendo's most popular games, Super Mario Bros. has been re-released and remade numerous times, ranging from an arcade version released soon after the original NES release, to the game being available for download on the Virtual Console for the Wii, Nintendo 3DS, and Wii U.


Super Mario Bros. was ported several times in the years following its original release on the Famicom/NES. A side-scrolling platform game entitled Super Mario Bros. was released as part of the Game & Watch range of handheld LCD game systems by Nintendo.[34] The Game & Watch Super Mario Bros. is an entirely new game, featuring none of the stages from the Famicom/NES original. In Japan, Super Mario Bros. was released for the Disk System, Nintendo's proprietary floppy disk drive for the Famicom.[35] This version also had multiple Minus World levels[23] and featured on its packaging an artwork drawn by Miyamoto himself.[36] It was also released for the North American NES with other games on the same cartridge (Super Mario Bros.-Duck Hunt and Super Mario Bros.-Duck Hunt-World Class Track Meet).

Vs. Super Mario Bros.

Vs. Super Mario Bros. is an arcade adaptation of the original version of Super Mario Bros. This game is one of several made for Nintendo's NES-based arcade cabinet, the Nintendo Vs. Unisystem (and its variant, Nintendo Vs. Dualsystem). Some stages are different; the early stages have small differences like the omission of 1-up mushrooms and other hidden items, narrower platforms and more dangerous enemies, but later stages are changed entirely. These changes have a net effect of making Vs. Super Mario Bros. more difficult than the original Super Mario Bros. Many of these changed stages reappeared in the 1986 game, Super Mario Bros. 2.[37] The game was featured in an official contest during the 1986 ACME convention in Chicago.[38] An emulated version for the Nintendo Switch was released via the Arcade Archives collection on December 22, 2017.[39][40]

All Night Nippon Super Mario Bros.

All Night Nippon Super Mario Bros. is a licensed ROM hack of Super Mario Bros. with graphics based upon the popular Japanese radio show All Night Nippon. The game, which was only released in Japan for the Famicom Disk System (and in turn is extremely rare),[41] was a special promotional version that was given away by the show in December 1986. The creators altered the sprites of the enemies, mushroom retainers, and other characters to look like famous Japanese music idols, recording artists, and DJs as well as other people related to All-Night Nippon. They also used the same slightly upgraded graphics and physics that Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels used. It was published by Fuji TV, the same company that later published the game Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic (which was later modified into the Super Mario Bros. 2 that was released outside Japan).[42]

Super Mario Bros. Special

Super Mario Bros. Special was a game released only in Japan by Hudson Soft for the NEC PC-8801[43] and Sharp X1 computers in Q2 1986. Although it has similar controls and graphics, there are new level layouts and the game scrolls in a different manner than the original game (differing based on the computer). In addition, many new enemies are included, including enemies from Mario Bros. and Donkey Kong.[37]

Super Mario All-Stars

In 1993,[44] Nintendo released an enhanced Super NES compilation titled Super Mario All-Stars. It includes remakes of all of the Super Mario Bros. games released for the Nintendo Entertainment System and Famicom. The version of Super Mario Bros. included in the compilation has improved graphics and sound to match the SNES's 16-bit capabilities, as well as minor alterations in some collision mechanics. Another new feature introduced in this game is the ability for the player to switch to Luigi after the end of the stage, unlike in the original Super Mario Bros. where the second player could only play after Mario died. The new version also included a save game feature. Several glitches from the original NES release were also fixed.[45] This version has also been released for the Wii under a re-packaged, special 25th anniversary compilation known as Super Mario All-Stars: 25th-Anniversary Edition.

Super Mario Bros. Deluxe

Super Mario Bros. Deluxe cartridge for the Game Boy Color.

Super Mario Bros. Deluxe, sometimes referred to as Super Mario Bros. DX, was released on the Game Boy Color in 1999 in North America and Europe[46] and in 2000 in Japan. Based on the original Super Mario Bros., it features an overworld level map, simultaneous multiplayer, a Challenge mode in which the player finds hidden objects and achieves a certain score in addition to normally completing the level, and eight additional worlds based on the main worlds of the Japanese 1986 game Super Mario Bros. 2. It is compatible with the Game Boy Printer. Compared to Super Mario Bros., the game features a few minor visual upgrades such as water and lava now being animated rather than static, and a smaller screen due to the lower resolution of the Game Boy Color. Players can alternate between Mario and Luigi by pressing select on the map screen.[47]

IGN's Craig Harris gave it a perfect score, praising it as a perfect translation of the NES game. He hoped that it would be the example for other NES games to follow when being ported to the Game Boy Color.[48] GameSpot gave the game a 9.9, hailing it as the "killer app" for the Game Boy Color and praising the controls and the visuals (it was also the highest rated game in the series, later surpassed by Super Mario Galaxy 2 which holds a perfect 10).[49] Both gave it their Editors' Choice Award.[50][51] Allgame's Colin Williamson praised the porting of the game as well as the extras, noting the only flaw of the game being that sometimes the camera goes with Mario as he jumps up.[52] Nintendo World Report's Jon Lindemann, in 2009, called it their "(Likely) 1999 NWR Handheld Game of the Year," calling the quality of its porting and offerings undeniable.[53] Nintendo Life gave it a perfect score, noting that it retains the qualities of the original game and the extras.[54] St. Petersburg Times′ Robb Guido commented that in this form, Super Mario Bros. "never looked better."[55] The Lakeland Ledger′s Nick S. agreed, praising the visuals and the controls.[56] In 2004, a Game Boy Advance port of Super Mario Bros. (part of the Classic NES Series) was released, which had none of the extras or unlockables available in Super Mario Bros. Deluxe. Of that version, IGN noted that the version did not "offer nearly as much as what was already given on the Game Boy Color" and gave it an 8.0 out of 10.[57] Super Mario Bros. Deluxe ranked third in the best-selling handheld game charts in the U.S. between June 6 and 12, 1999[58] and sold over 2.8 million copies in the U.S.[59] It was included on Singapore Airlines flights in 2006.[60] Lindermann noted Deluxe as a notable handheld release in 1999.[61]

It was released on the Nintendo 3DS Virtual Console in 2014. In Japan, users who registered a Nintendo Network ID on their Nintendo 3DS system between December 10, 2013 and January 10, 2014 received a free download code, with emails with download codes being sent out starting January 27, 2014.[62] In Europe and Australia, users who registered a Nintendo Network ID on their Nintendo 3DS system between December 10, 2013 and January 31, 2014 received a free download code, with emails with download codes being sent out from February 13 to 28, 2014.[63][64] It was released for purchase on the Nintendo 3DS eShop in Europe on February 27, 2014,[65] in Australia on February 28, 2014,[66] and in North America on December 25, 2014.[67]

Super Luigi Bros.

Super Luigi Bros. is a remake of Super Mario Bros. included in NES Remix 2, featuring Luigi and mirrored to scroll from right to left. The only playable character in the game is Luigi, with the same performance attributes he has in the 1986 Japan release of Super Mario Bros. 2. If the two-player mode is played then both players play as Luigi. The game is based on a mission in NES Remix, featuring Luigi in a mirrored version of World 1-2.[68][69]

Emulated ports

In early 2003, Nintendo re-released the game on the Game Boy Advance in Japan as part of their Famicom Minis collection and in the U.S. as part of the NES Series. Unlike previous re-releases, this version is emulated, identical to the original. Super Mario Bros. is one of the best-selling of these re-releases; according to the NPD Group (which tracks game sales in North America), this re-released version of Super Mario Bros. is the best-selling Game Boy Advance game from June 2004 to December 2004.[70] In 2005, Nintendo released this game again for the GBA as part of its 20th Anniversary with a special edition, which sold approximately 876,000 units.[71]

Super Mario Bros. is one of the 19 NES games included in the GameCube game Animal Crossing. The only known way to unlock Super Mario Bros. in most versions is by use of a game modification device such as a Game Shark or Action Replay, though it was distributed as a Famitsu prize to owners of Doubutsu no Mori+.[72]

Super Mario Bros. has been released on each version of Nintendo's Virtual Console service for classic video games. The game was released on December 2, 2006 in Japan, December 25, 2006 in North America and January 5, 2007 in PAL regions for Wii's Virtual Console. As with the Game Boy Advance release, it is an emulation of the original game, so nothing is changed from the original NES release.[73][74] Super Mario Bros. is also one of the trial games available in the "Masterpieces" section in Super Smash Bros. Brawl.[75] Super Mario Bros. was released on the Nintendo 3DS in September 2011 for members of Nintendo's 3DS Ambassador Program, and a general release came through in Japan on January 5, 2012, in North America on February 16, 2012 and in Europe on March 1, 2012. The game was released for the Wii U Virtual Console in Japan on June 5, 2012, followed by Europe on September 12, 2012, and in North America on September 19, 2012.[76]

Personal computers

In 2013, an open-source HTML5 conversion of the game, entitled Full Screen Mario, was released. The browser version features a level editor and the option to play on a randomly generated map. The website gained nearly 2.7 million unique visitors before the game was taken down, in response to a DMCA takedown notice sent to the creator from Nintendo.[77]


Review scores
Publication Score
AllGame NES: 5/5 stars[78]
GameSpot Wii VC: 8.3/10[79]

Super Mario Bros. was immensely successful, and helped to further popularize the side-scrolling subgenre of the already popular platform video game.[80] Altogether, excluding ports and rereleases, the original NES version of the game has sold 40.24 million copies, making it the best-selling video game in the Mario series and one of the best-selling video games of all time.[81] The game was the all-time best-selling game for over 20 years until its lifetime sales were ultimately surpassed by Wii Sports.[82] In a poll held by IGN in 2005, the game was ranked number one in the website's list of the 100 greatest video games of all-time.[83]

When it was first released, Super Mario Bros. only received one English written review from Computer Entertainer / Video Game Update; video game magazines were not common at the time, as the video game crash of 1983 had rendered the industry nearly obsolete. The magazine wrote that the game was worthy of "a spot in the hall of fame reserved for truly addictive action games", praising its "cute and comical" graphics and its lively music. It stated that the title was a must-have for the system, and considered its greatest strength to be its depth of play.[84]

Retrospective critical analysis of the game has been extremely positive. Nintendo Power listed it as the fourth best Nintendo Entertainment System video game, describing it as the game that started the modern era of video games as well as "Shigeru Miyamoto's masterpiece".[85] The game ranked first on Electronic Gaming Monthly′s "Greatest 200 Games of Their Time" list[86] and was named in IGN's top 100 games of all-time list twice (in 2005 and 2007).[87] ScrewAttack declared it the second-best Mario game of all time.[88] In 2009, Game Informer put Super Mario Bros. in second place on their list of "The Top 200 Games of All Time," behind The Legend of Zelda, saying that it "remains a monument to brilliant design and fun gameplay".[89] The Game Informer staff also ranked it the second best in their 2001 list of the top 100 games ever made.[90] In 2012, G4 ranked Super Mario Bros. first of the "Top 100 Video Games of All Time", citing its revolutionary gameplay as well as its role in helping recover the NA gaming industry from the Video Game Crash of 1983.[91] In 2014, IGN ranked Super Mario Bros. as the best Nintendo game in their "Top 125 Nintendo Games of All Time" list, saying that "this is the most important Nintendo game ever made".[92]:9

Several critics have praised the game for its precise controls, which allow the player to control how high and far Mario or Luigi jumps, and how fast he runs.[73] AllGame gave Super Mario Bros. a five-star rating, stating that "[T]he sense of excitement, wonder and – most of all – enjoyment felt upon first playing this masterpiece of videogame can't barely be put into words. And while its sequels have far surpassed it in terms of length, graphics, sound and other aspects, Super Mario Bros., like any classic – whether of a cinematic or musical nature – has withstood the test of time, continuing to be fun and playable" and that any gamer "needs to play this game at least once, if not simply for a history lesson".[78] Reviewing the Virtual Console Release of the game, IGN called it "an absolute must for any gamer's Virtual Console collection."[93]

The Game Boy Advance port of Super Mario Bros holds an aggregate score of 84 on Metacritic.[94] Many critics compared the port to previous ports of the game such as Super Mario Deluxe and Super Mario All-Stars, noting its comparative lack of brand new content to separate it from the original version of the game. Jeremy Parish of called the game "The most fun you'll ever have while being robbed blind," ultimately giving the game a score of 80% and praising its larger-scaling screen compared to Deluxe while greatly criticizing its lack of new features.[95] IGN's Craig Harris labeled the game as a "must-have," but also mused "just don't expect much more than the original NES game repackaged on a tiny GBA cart."[96] GameSpot gave the port a 6.8 out of 10, generally praising the gameplay but musing that the port's graphical and technical differences from the original version of the game "prevent this reissue from being as super as the original game."[97]


The success of Super Mario Bros. led to the development of many successors in the Super Mario series of video games, which in turn form the core of the greater Mario franchise. Two of these sequels, Super Mario Bros. 2 and Super Mario Bros. 3, were direct sequels to the game and were released for the NES, experiencing similar levels of commercial success. A different sequel, also titled Super Mario Bros. 2, was released for the Famicom Disk System in 1986 exclusively in Japan, and was later released elsewhere as a part of Super Mario All-Stars under the name Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels. The gameplay concepts and elements established in Super Mario Bros. are prevalent in nearly every Super Mario game. The series consists of over 15 entries; at least one Super Mario game has been released on nearly every Nintendo console to date. Super Mario 64, an entry in the series and the first to take place in a three-dimensional environment, is widely considered one of the greatest games ever made, and is largely credited with revolutionizing the platforming genre of video games and its step from 2D to 3D. The most recent release is Super Mario Odyssey, released in 2017 for the Nintendo Switch. The series is one of the best-selling, with over 310 million copies of games sold worldwide as of September 2015.[98] In 2010, Nintendo released special red variants of the Wii and Nintendo DSi XL consoles in re-packaged, Mario-themed limited edition bundles as part of the 25th anniversary of the game's original release.[99]

The game's success helped to push Mario as an American cultural icon; in 1990, a study taken in North America suggested that more children in the United States were familiar with Mario than they were with Mickey Mouse, another popular media character.[100] The game's musical score composed by Koji Kondo, particularly the game's "overworld" theme, has also become a prevalent aspect of popular culture, with the latter theme being featured in nearly every single Super Mario game.[101] Alongside the NES platform as a whole, Super Mario Bros. is often credited for having resurrected the video game industry after it had experienced a market crash in 1983.[83]

Super Mario Bros. and its sequels inspired various projects in media; the 1986 anime film Super Mario Bros.: The Great Mission to Rescue Princess Peach! is acknowledged as one of the first feature-length films to be based directly off of a video game.[102] A live-action film based on the game was released theatrically in 1993, starring Bob Hoskins and John Leguizamo as Mario and Luigi, respectively. An American animated television series titled The Super Mario Bros. Super Show! ran from 1989 to 1990, starring professional wrestler Lou Albano as Mario and Danny Wells as Luigi.

In the United States Supreme Court case Brown v. Entertainment Merchants Association, the Electronic Frontier Foundation submitted an amicus brief citing social research that declared Super Mario Bros to be a violent video game. It was compared to Mighty Mouse and Road Runner, cartoons that depict a similar form of violence with little negative reaction from the public.[103][104]

In 2015, game designer Josh Millard released Ennuigi, a metafictional fangame with commentary on the original game which relates to Luigi's inability to come to terms with the game's overall lack of narrative.[105][106][107][108]


  1. ^ Super Mario Bros. (Japanese: スーパーマリオブラザーズ, Hepburn: Sūpā Mario Burazāzu)


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