Tag Archives: mario

Super Smash Bros. Review

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Super Smash Bros. Review

Remember that awesome Super Smash Bros. TV commercial where Mario trips Yoshi? That moment alone was enough to convince me to try this game. So, the next time I was at the video rental store, I just had to grab Super Smash Bros. I took the game home, plopped it into my Nintendo 64, and got lost in one of the most fun, and addictive games I’ve ever played – keep in mind, I haven’t discovered my love for Tetris yet. That same month, I ventured out and purchased a copy for my collection.

supersmashbros_ss1As a concept, putting a bunch of Nintendo’s marquee mascots in a brawling environment is pure brilliance; however, there isn’t much of a story to support this crossover. The only reason you are given actually happens before the title screen appears. Master Hand picks two characters from a kid’s toy bin, creates a battle arena, and then makes them fight. Eight of Nintendo’s most famous characters star in this game: Mario, Pikachu, Link, Yoshi, Donkey Kong, Samus, Fox, and Kirby.

Not only does the appeal for a game like Super Smash Bros. originate from its use of Nintendo characters, but also in its simplicity. It’s definitely not a traditional fighter by any means; Nintendo and Hal stripped Super Smash Bros. down to just two major attack buttons. Also, instead of giving characters a health meter, the objective is to damage you opponent until they are weak enough to be launched from the stage.

The A button is used for standard attacks, and can be matched with any direction to create a basic attack. The B button, however, is used for special attacks, of which each character has three unique moves. You can perform special attacks by pressing B, B+Up, and B+Down. Of course, these special moves are largely based on moves and power-ups from the characters’ respective games. However, there are still smash attacks, grab attacks, and air attacks at your disposal.

Smash attacks are activated by literally “smashing” the analog stick in any direction, in combination with the A button. These moves are devastating and serve as a means to smash your opponent out of the arena; grabbing and throwing your opponent can also be useful for launching them into orbit. Of course, there are also air attacks, grabbing the ledge, and dodging techniques, but I won’t be covering every nuance in this review.

supersmashbros_ss3Super Smash Bros. is definitely a dream title for Nintendo fans, because it is fan service at its finest. Speaking of fan service, there are stages based on the Mushroom Kingdom, Donkey Kong Country, Dream Land, Hyrule, etc. These stages all have unique obstacles, and playing on them all is part of the Super Smash Bros. experience. Super Smash Bros. supports up to four players, so the stages can feel crowded, and mayhem usually ensues. Adding to the mayhem are item drops, featuring a variety of items from major Nintendo franchises. Pick up a Super Star and gain invincibility, grab a Bob-omb and launch it before it explodes in your hands, or throw a Poké Ball to summon one of many Pokémon programmed into the game. It’s fast and chaotic, which ultimately spells fun for everyone.

There aren’t many modes in Super Smash Bros., though this is something that is remedied in future iterations. The main mode is simply called the 1P Game, which is an arcade style tournament that challenges you to beat every character, including Master Hand. VS Mode is where the four player mayhem begins. You can choose your rules in this mode, which can be either stock or timed matches, or team variations of those same rules. This is largely considered the main draw for Super Smash Bros., and I have to agree. Countless nights were spent enjoying this game, alongside GoldenEye 007, of course.

It’s hard to criticize a game’s graphics from 1999, but Super Smash Bros. holds up quite well thanks to intelligent design. With that being said, the characters are noticeably blocky, and there are a few instances of cardboard cutouts, which looked weird then, and even weirder now. Sound wise, Super Smash Bros. knocks it out of the park by bringing popular theme songs from each respective franchise.


5/5 D-Pads: Super Smash Bros. isn’t just a great game, it’s a masterpiece. It has a fun 1-player arcade mode, and an absolutely brilliant VS Mode that supports four players. Super Smash Bros. also has extreme replay value, mostly because of its VS Mode, but there is a small list of unlockables, including four awesome Nintendo characters. If you have a Nintendo 64, you owe it to yourself to add this game to your collection, if only for weekend drinking sessions.

Scribblenauts Unlimited Mario and Link Trailers

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Mario Bros. Review (NES)

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Mario Bros. on the NES is a port of the classic 1983 arcade game of the same name. It has become quite familiar to the majority of Nintendo fans, in fact, if you’ve ever played Super Mario Bros. 3 – or any game from the Super Mario Advance series – then the possibility that you’ve played Mario Bros. is great. Like many, my first time experiencing the game was on the Super Mario Bros. 3 cartridge, which served primarily as a distraction from the main game.

Mario Bros. is exactly how I remember it, basic gameplay mechanics built around a simple plot, if you could even call it that. Mario and Luigi are called upon to exterminate creatures that have been terrorizing New York. These creatures are coming from the sewers, and because the Mario brothers are plumbers, it’s up to them to crawl down the pipes and solve the problem.

Mario Bros. is structured like a lot of early arcade games with the action taking place during phases. Each phase has the same physical setup with three levels of platforms and four pipes present. The main objectives in Mario Bros. are defeating every enemy during a phase and going for the high score. The game is endless so you will be playing until you lose your last life. There is also a Game B and Two Player mode if you need the extra challenge.

Enemies appear from the upper pipes and continue traveling until they reach the bottom. At this point, enemies will enter the bottom pipes and star from the beginning. Amongst those enemies are Shellcreepers, Sidesteppers, and Fighter Flies. To defeat the, you have to jump and hit them from below to flip them over. Once they have been flipped, you must run into them to kick them off the board. Some enemies (Sidesteppers) have to be hit more than once before they become vulnerable. If you do not reach an enemy after it becomes vulnerable, they will change color and become a little faster.

You control Mario with the D-Pad and Jump with A (or 2 on the VC) which seems easy, though Mario’s movement can tricky. Mario will slide a tiny bit after you stop moving which can cause some unwanted scenarios. The jumping can actually be compared to Popo’s jump from Ice Climber. It has a heavy feel and you must be moving forward to jump forward, you can’t adjust your direction otherwise.

Mario Bros. is deceptive, it seems easy but actually becomes challenging quite early. New enemies and obstacles begin to appear when you get to later phases. Hazards you can expect to encounter are fireballs, icicles, and Slipices that will freeze platforms making them slippery. These hazards can make navigating the board quite tricky, especially if an enemy is blocking the only escape route. There is a POW block located on the bottom that can flip over enemies and destroy hazards if you need some help. Also, the board itself wraps around meaning you can leave one side of the screen and appear from the other. Using the POW block and every trick you’ve learned is essential for survival.

Getting a high score is the ultimate goal in Mario Bros. and can be achieved in a few ways. Defeating consecutive enemies will add more points to your total, as well as collecting the coins they produce after being defeated. There are also bonus phases in which you try to collect all the coins scattered about the board. Learning how to get the most out of each phase is fun, and the gameplay in general is old school arcade at its best.

Mario Bros. isn’t visually impressive, but it doesn’t really need to be. Gameplay is done well enough to warrant a few repetitive sprites. There isn’t much in the audio department either with just a few small jingles and generic sound effects.

3 out of 5 D-Pads

3/5 D-Pads: Mario Bros. stands up surprisingly well today with simple and addictive arcade gameplay. I initially wrote off the game when I was younger, but some recent play time has changed my mind. Its retro audio and visuals are nostalgic, but not all that impressive; though, the gameplay more than makes up for those minor flaws. Mario Bros. comes recommended for those that want to learn more about Mario and Luigi’s past, or those that want a new arcade game to master.


Scribblenauts Unlimited to Feature Nintendo Characters

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Warner Bros. Interactive has dropped some very interesting news today regarding the upcoming Scribblenauts Unlimited for Wii U. Today they have announced that Super Mario Bros. and The Legend of Zelda characters will be featured in the newest Scribblenauts game. WB Interactive also mentions that there will items from both universes (including Mushrooms) that will behave similarly to their respective games. Nintendo characters can’t be altered with adjectives though, so no Vampire Gorons.

Confirmed Nintendo characters for Scribblenauts Unlimited:

  • Mario
  • Luigi
  • Princess Peach
  • Yoshi
  • Link
  • Zelda
  • Epona
  • Goron

Does this make you want to buy Scribbblenauts Unlimited? I’m sure it will go a long way to convince some people, but Scribblenauts has built a not too shabby audience of its own over the past few years. Regardless, these special cameos from Nintendo characters will definitely be a nice bonus.


Celebrate the Month of Mario with Discounted Mario Games!

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New Super Mario Bros. 2 doesn’t launch until August 19, but that isn’t stopping Nintendo from celebrating early! In the weeks leading up to the release of New Super Mario Bros. 2, Nintendo will be discounting FOUR great Mario games on the Nintendo eShop.

Each week a retro Mario game will be discounted on the Nintendo eShop. In fact, there’s already one title on sale now! I recommend checking out all four games if you can, but definitely the Game Boy titles if you haven’t played them yet. Below you can find the dates, games, and their discounted price. Read more

Super Mario Bros. 2 Review

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Super Mario Bros. 2 is definitely the oddball in the Mario series. Most gamers know the origins of Super Mario Bros. 2, but just in case some of you don’t, here’s a short history lesson. Doki Doki Panic, a Japanese platformer game, is actually the template for Super Mario Bros. 2. The original Super Mario Bros. sequel was deemed too hard for the North American audience, so instead, Nintendo placed Mario and friends in this easier Doki Doki Panic game thinking nobody would ever know. There you have it, the short version of why Super Mario Bros. 2 is different. Does this make it a bad Super Mario game? Not at all, and for a long time, myself and others didn’t know any better. However, we could certainly feel a difference. Read more

Super Mario World Review

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Super Mario World was bundled with the Super Nintendo during its North American launch. It was a highly anticipated game at the time as the three previous Super Mario Bros. videogames set the bar pretty high. Super Mario World takes what worked best in the previous three Super Mario games, tweaked them a little, and added new gameplay mechanics to sweeten the pie. It is a game most known for its addition of everybody’s favourite dinosaur, Yoshi. Yoshi adds a bunch of new gameplay elements not previously seen in the franchise. Read more

Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins Review

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Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins was released in North America during 1992 and is the follow-up to Super Mario Land. It is a very important game in the Mario franchise as it not only introduces new concepts to the series, but also marks the debut of Wario. Wario plays the antagonist role for his debut by stealing Mario’s castle and seals it shut with six golden coins. He then scatters these coins across six zones, and as you may have guessed, it is up to Mario to find each coin and break the seal. Read more

Super Mario Land Review

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Super Mario Land is the first portable Mario adventure to be released for the Game Boy and a launch title in North America. Gamers were amazed that a full scale Super Mario experience could be had on a handheld system. Nintendo really nailed the core Mario formula and even added some unique elements to keep fans guessing. Read more