Super Mario Bros.
Original Release Date: 1985
Super Mario Bros has cemented itself as one of the most important and influential video games of all time. It, along with the NES, revitalized the market and set the stage for the industry we know today. Its importance as a piece of gaming history cannot be understated. But how well does it hold up as an actual game?
In terms of the graphics and sound design, the game definitely shows its age, lacking the more detailed graphics that can be found in later NES games. The music remains quite catchy and engaging even by today’s standards, though the story and characters aren’t particularly memorable.
But of course, no one plays a Mario game for the story, and where this game really shines is in the gameplay. The controls are smooth and intuitive, and it’s easy to see why this game set the standard for almost all platformers to come. The level design is also very good, and while the aesthetic of the levels can get rather repetitive, it does a good job of having a gradually increasing difficulty curve that is challenging, but never unfair. The game does have a live system that unfortunately will send the player back to the very start if they run out, but fortunately there are shortcuts that mitigate this problem.
Between the smooth gameplay, catchy music, alternate routes, and hidden secrets, this game has a lot of replayability and entertainment value. It may show its age in certain areas, but it is still nonetheless a good game that absolutely should be looked at by anyone interested in gaming’s history or gaming in general.
How well it holds up 3/4
Overall quality 8/10
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