By Matthew Estes
It’s hard to imagine that there is any other fictional character more recognizable to the world’s cultural consciousness than Mario. It all started with this game, the Nintendo Entertainment System classic Super Mario Bros.
Put simply, this game introduced the world to everything it knows about modern video gaming. The objective is simply: control Mario, avoid the obstacles, get to the end of the level, and move on to the next one. The influence of this game for the entire video game industry cannot be overstated. While modern games continue to expand and improve in scale and graphics, this title remains at the core of everything we know of video gaming.
Everything about this game is memorable. I’ll bet no matter how long ago you played this game, you still remember the first seven notes of the first stage’s music. Here, let me help:
duh duh duh duh duh dum duh. The sound effects are catchy. The graphics are bright. The controls are simple. Everyone knows the story is to rescue the princess.
To be honest, it’s very difficult to levy any criticism at a game that defined a genre. You could say that it’s too hard, but that was the nature of almost all games from that time period. You could say the story was too simple, but that is missing the point of the game.
This is the best selling (non-bundled) video game of all time, selling over 40 million copies. If you still have it, go break out the old NES and play Super Mario Bros. Perhaps you still know the first few levels by memory. Or, if you don’t have an NES, the are many other ways to play it. It’s available on the Wii Virtual Console and the 3DS shop.