Friday, May 11, 2012

Top 50 Video Games: Number 12

Platform: SNES
Absurdly Specific Genre: It's a mario game. You eat shrooms, you save princesses.
Difficulty: 5 (though it ratchets to ridiculous levels if you do some of those Star Road levels)
Beaten: Yes, many many times

The NES Mario games are absolute classics, but this is the game that crystallized what a Super Mario game was all about. The already excellent controls were tightened even further, the powerups were expanded, and he got a sidekick (other than Luigi, of course).

There's really very little else to say. This was the last game of the proper 2D era, to be followed by the nostalgia-goggled Mario 64. It's always ended up feeling vastly underrated, though that's probably not the case.

All I really know is that when Linds and I picked up an SNES when we first started going out, this was the game we picked up first. Its replay value may as well be infinite.

Plus, it has giant Bullet Bills. This game is awesome.

Other Games in the Super Mario Brothers Series:

As a quick programming note, I'll this list's policy on multiple games from the same series. Over most of the list, I've decided against it. I don't really want seven Final Fantasy games on here, as it's a lot more interesting to talk about different games. For the top 15, though, I'm making exceptions to that rule. I figure if it's good enough to love that much, it's good enough to be talked about, redundancy be damned. So, for the top 15, there'll be a few games from the same series. This is a weird rule I've made up but... deal with it.

I suppose I'll probably talk about the SMB games that didn't make the list when the next game pops up on the list.


  1. It's weird...I've beaten this game 146 times just as I have several Mario games, and I love this one enough to put it near the top, but for whatever reason I don't remember a whole lot of it. I remember moments - like the self-scrolling level that takes place underground with that rising and falling block (I don't know better how to explain it, so hopefully you know what I mean) - but I can't remember the endgame, the makeup of the final boss, anything. I can't even tell you for sure that it's Bowser, though I assume it is.

    And, yeah, Super Mario 64 doesn't hold up at all. I actually thought it aged extremely quickly, and even at the time, though the 3D world was interesting, the camera rendered it nearly unplayable at times.

  2. I agree with literally everything about this post. What makes SMW great for me is that it distilled everything that made a 2D Mario game great and went crazy with it.

    64 was a very noble failure in terms of gameplay. I love what they were trying to do, and there are certainly parts that live up to it, but overall, it's really tough to push through due mostly to the camera. Glad they fixed that in later games.

  3. I have started SMW at least a dozen times and never finished it. I don't know if as I've aged I've just become less enamored with platformers, or what. There's certainly nothing wrong with this game that I can tell. But it just doesn't grab me. Of course, now I'm sounding like I'm reviewing a Survivor entry.