Mario marks 25 years
How time flies when you’re playing video games. Amazingly today marks 25 years since Mario first appeared on our games screens in Super Mario Bros for the NES in 1985. Although officially he appeared in the 1981 release of Donkey Kong, the 1985 hit was his first game as lead character alongside his greener brother Luigi.
Since then Mario has maintained his place at the forefront of Nintendo and the gaming world, here we track just some of his major achievements over the past 25 years.
1985 Super Mario Bros – NES
The original and possibly the best? I still remember playing it to this day (for my sins). The introduction of the most famous brothers in gaming and the levels which would still be used as a base some 25 years later. Do you remember the original green pipes? The mushrooms? The flowers? All future classics and think, this was all before even Tetris was released!
1989 Super Mario Land – Gameboy
I really can’t believe that the gameboy (and handheld gaming) was around some 20 years ago. It’s crazy! On the Gameboy’s release into the wild, who else would be there other than Mario? A terrible conversion, terrible graphics but still a cult among posh kids everywhere!!
1991 Super Mario World – SNES
As we follow Mario through the years we come to the introduction of the SNES in 1991 and of course another reincarnation of Mario (now onto the seventh game). The aim was to save the dinosaur land from Bowser, which introduced Mario to his life long friendly dinosaur, Yoshi who appeared for the very first time. To date Super Mario Wold has sold over 20 million copies worldwide.
1993 Super Mario Kart – SNES
In my opinion this, the introduction of Mario Kart is what has kept Mario alive for so long. After the release of this series Mario was no longer the target audience of kids but now became a cult classic with all ages, including today’s adults. With various power up and specials and the introduction to the Wii some 15 years later Super Mario Kart is, and will remain a cult classic for years to come.
1996 Super Mario 64 – N64
I considered not adding this, I don’t know why but I was never sold on it. For me the N64 was all about Golden-Eye but amazingly Super Mario 64 still sold 11 million copies and continues to be a hit on the Nintendo DS after being re-released in 2004. It was the first move to bring Mario into 3D which added a complete new dimension to gameplay in general and in-particular the Mario series.
2007 Super Mario Galaxy – Wii
The first visit of Mario to the Wii, his third in 3D and some would argue one the best video games of all time. Use the Wii wand to control Mario as he goes on his quest to save the Princess from the ever present baddy that is Bowser. With the Wii’s unique controller this really did take Mario to a new level.
2008 Mario Kart Wii – Wii
Bringing Mario into the mainstream time and time again, I would be surprised if there is a Wii home anywhere which doesn’t own Mario Kart and the steering wheel! Changing the face of Mario, gaming and pushing the boundaries yet again. Play your friends, play any random in the world. It really is up to you!
What’s next for Mario?
Mario has now appeared in over 200 games and 10’s of various consoles. He will always be the number one video game star out-lasting his arch enemy Sonic by some way. I would be very surprised if we didn’t see him in official games on your iPhone and iPad in the near future as well as social games on Facebook and the like. It just seems to logical step for such a cult hero.
Have we missed some of Mario’s best bits? What do you think? Let us know below.