Review by Psycho Penguin

"The King of all Compliations! Long live Nintendo!"

There have been many compliations released, especially recently (like Activision Classics for PSX, for example). Most of them have been pretty good, although a few have been a little dissapointing, to say the least. (Ninja Gaiden Trilogy) How does Super Mario All Stars fare as a compliation and a game? Well, let me just say that this has to be without a shadow of a doubt the coolest and best compliation I have ever played in my entire 16-year old life. The three classic NES games are included on it, with improved graphics and sound. And if that isn't enough, it also includes the japanese mario bros. 2 (lost levels)!!! What a deal!! If you are any sort of video gamer you owe it to yourself to get this great and incredibly fun compliation

Graphics (9.2/10)
The graphics are improved a lot over the original NES versions. The graphics are the same in terms of level and
enemy design but they are much more colorful and overall look a lot nicer. The game's graphics are definetly cool, I especially like the dungeon designs of the original Super Mario Bros for this game, they look so much cooler than thye did on the original NES version. Overall, the graphics in Super Mario All Stars are fantastic!

Music/Sound (9.8/10)
Again, the classic music from the NES games are played, but they sound so much better. They are orchestrated in a different way but the tunes remain the same. Overall, the music and sound effects in Super Mario All Stars are fantastic!

Gameplay/Control (9.6/10)
Classic Mario gameplay all the way with a few new innovations. For those of you living under a rock the past 15 or so years, I will basically describe the four games on here. The original super mario bros. is a side scrolling, very linear game. Basically after beating a stage 1-1 you go onto 1-2. There are 32 stages. Mario Bros 2 is so different than the first its scary. The game was originally called Doku Doku Panic in Japan. Super Mario Bros 3 is my personal favorite of the bunch, it is very non linear due to the world maps you use to go from stage to satge. There are loads of secrets and mini games. Japansese Super Mario Bros 2 (called Lost Levels) plays like a more challenging version of the original Super Mario Bros. Now onto the few innovations. You can save your game to battery pack so you can start of in a certain world instead of having to start over every time. That helps a lot.

Replay Value (Very High)
Great replay value.

Overall (9.9/10)
This game combines some of the best NES games ever with improved graphics and sound, and the additon of the REAL Super Mario Brothers 2 makes it worth a purchase.

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Individual Game Reviews
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Super Mario Bros. 1,2, and Lost Levels coming soon

Super Mario Bros. 3

Super Mario Bros. 3 is one of the top selling games of all time, and after playing it for a few minutes you will figure out why: it is a fun game with lots of levels, tons of secrets, a good challenge level, and plenty of unique worlds and stages that could keep you playing for hours, just to see whats going to happen next. This is the best game in the Mario series, much better than the previous two games in the series (which were also great!).

Story (4.8/10)
You get to save the princess from King Bowser yet again!!! But this time she gives you a letter and a special gift
after you beat a boss and advance to the next world, which keeps the storyline progressing quite nicely. The Mario series has never been known for its storyline, though, so let's move on.

Graphics (9.3/10)
Wow, how the graphics have improved since the first game. The first Mario had decent graphics, but the backgrounds weren't great and the coin boxes and blocks looked weird. This game has much better graphics, the backgrounds are very colorful, there's a great info box on the bottom that looks nice. The character designs are a lot better than the first game.
Overall great graphics, especially for a NES game.

Music/Sound (9.4/10)
The music that is here is great, but I wouldve liked to see more classic tunes from the first game. But the music in the game is great, no complaints here. The sound effects are also great, and there are a lot of classic and instantly recognizable sound effects, from the sounds of the fireballs and star powers to the classic sound that occurs when you die. Overall, I love the music and sound effects in Super Mario Brothers 3!

Control (9.8/10)
The Mario series has always been known for its quality control system, and this game is no exception. Considering the wide amount of things you can do, and only two buttons available, the control is wonderful and totally easy to get
into. Overall, the control is fantastic.

Gameplay (9.8/10)
Side scrolling action, and tons of fun. There are eight worlds, which range from the Grassy lands of world one, to the deserts of world two, to a giant land in world four, and finally Bowser's World in world eight. There are plenty of
unique stages, including some where you are in the sky and have to climb up these moving blocks, to get from place to place. It's great. The variety of the different stages is wonderful and makes the game a blast to play.

There are also several mini games you can play. One is a matching card game where you have to flip over two matching cards. It becomes a game of memory. You get the prize on the cards when you match them, which range from a star all the way to a 1-up. Another one is a game where you have to line up a picture, one line at a time. If you line up the three lines and get a picture, you get the prize (mushroom-2 up, flower 3-up, star 5-up). Great minigames.

Also after beating a stage you get a special bonus, in which you can get a mushroom, flower, or star. After getting three of these, if you get three of the same you get the 2-up, 3-up, or 5-up. Its cool and entertaining because there are ways to guarantee what kind of card that you're going to get.

Another cool thing about the game is that you can win flowers, stars, etc. in the overworld map at things called mushroom houses. You can then use one of these items at your benefit for the upcoming stages. And the variety of things you can get in this game is great. You can get a frog suit (used for swimming), flower (used for shooting fireballs), hammer suit (used for throwing hammers), and leaf (used for flying). The variety of things in this game is great.

Finally, this game has a lot of secrets. In every world except for the last, there is a stage in which you collect all the coins, you can get a special white mushroom house which can give you either a P-Wing or Anchor, two of the rarest items in the game. A P-Wing gives you unlimited flying power, and an Anchor prevents an Airship from moving around the overworld. Another big secret are Warp Whistles, which can be used to go to Warp Zones. There are three total whistles in the game, although you only need two to get to world eight (use one, then use the other one while youre in the warp zone).

The final secret is hard to do, but it is possible. You can turn the wandering Hammer Brothers into a coin ship. As you can tell, this is a pretty big game with lots of stuff to do.

Challenge (Medium)
The game is very big, and difficult to beat if you dont cheat and use the warp whistles (just kidding, its not considered cheating.) Even seasoned Mario players will have a good, challenging time playing through this game.

Replay Value (High)
With so much secrets, this game is very replayable.

Fun Factor (9.7/10)
This game is the gem of the Mario series, and as the Mario series enters the next generation, it appears that it will remain it for a long time.

Buy this Game?
Yes.

If you own a NES, you must own this game. No questions asked. The Mario series is one of the best series out there, and this is the best game in the series. Buy it. Buy it. Buy it. Thank you.


Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 05/28/00, Updated 07/16/01


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