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Super Mario Brothers NES Review

23/08/2009 Family Returning Gamer Review
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Super Mario Brothers NES

Super Mario Brothers



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Super Mario Brothers, whether in its original arcade or home console form, set the standard for platforming games. Returning to gaming many years later, I still miss those simpler more innocent days, and the magic of discovering a new pipe, coin or beanstalk.

The world's most famous game theme tune instantly brings me back to my childhood and my introduction to the greatest video game character of all time. Don't know what I'm talking about, it's the theme from Super Mario Brothers.

For some this may be simply a by gone game, but for me it's something that as a child I simply could not get enough of. I spent many hours in front of that glimmering arcade game of happiNESs, where my older brother first showed me how to play a video game and where the addiction first took hold.

Maybe you would have owned this game on the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) and I also owned it but in the arcade was where I first found this great experience. As a child I never questioned why a plumber in bright red overalls would go to a mushroom kingdom. I just played the game and giggled with excitement every time I discovered an invincibility star, or a fire flower. The game was simple yet difficult and it took me a long while to complete it even with my brother's help.

I came to associate Mario with family holidays.

It was a magical time too. I only played the game when I was on holiday with my parents and brothers, so I came to associate Mario with family holidays. This may well be why I became such an avid follower of the diminutive Italian plumber.

Owning it on the NES was also a brilliant thing as I now had the arcade game in my home. And this was not like other arcade conversions that fell short of the coin-op version. Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles being the prime example as the home version was a slug paced slowed down of the arcade classic. Mario however was a pixel to pixel, beautifully crafted adaption that looked every bit as good as it did at the arcade.

As with any breakthrough experience, Super Mario Brothers soon paved the way for many sequels - both good and the bad.

The moment that most stayed with me though was when you finally completed the game and Bowser falls for the last time and you finally rescued the princess. I never grew bored of it. I played the game many times from start to finish and loved every koopa squashing moment.

Mario, like Nintendo themselves, was about innovation, exploration and pure simple platforming fun.

You see, back in the early 90's there were two kinds of gamers. There were Mario lovers like me, and there were Sonic the Hedgehog lovers. I enjoyed Sonic but it never held a torch to any Mario game. Each character mirrored the values of the companies that made them. Mario, like Nintendo themselves, was about innovation, exploration and pure simple platforming fun. Sonic was built for speed, fury and high impact however. His games focused on reaction time and impressive visuals - as was true for Sega themselves/

But for me, Mario defined what it was to enjoy video games to me. Everything I played would get matched up to it. In my eyes nothing Mario related could ever be bad. But having said that, something was just around the corner that would shake my faith in the plumber and his pals. But that, as they say, is another story.

Written by Sinan Kubba

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Sinan Kubba writes the Returning Gamer column.

"As an 80s kid I was obsessed with gaming. But university, stress and life relegated my hobby to the backseat. After years in the wilderness, I'm back into video games. I don't just want to play games that remind of a happy youth though. I'm just as excited about games that take things forward, experiences that re-ignite that curiosity and fascination I had years ago."

Here are the games I've been playing recently:

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