Review by Phediuk

"WOW, this is the 23rd identical version of this game! But IS IT STILL FRESH?"

Among other things, the Super Mario series is known for its vague references to hallucinogenic drugs, as upon picking up a 'Magic Mushroom', our stoned little friend imagines that he is growing to twice his normal size. While doing this, he gives out a high-pitched and slightly creepy laugh, such as 'WA-HAA!', 'YA-HOO!', or 'MAMA MIA, I'M-A GONNA WIN-A!'

Whenenver our fat hero picks up a 'Fire Flower', he flashes a rainbow of different colors, or so his eyes can see...and on top of that, upon acquiring a 'Super Star', he imagines that he is an invincible kamikaze and rams into any nearby 'Goombas' or 'Piranha Plants.' Interesting, no? But Mario Bros. is the game BEFORE Mario's drug addiction, a prequel of sorts. In this game, he must rid the sewers of various assortments of enemies, such as 'Shellcreepers', 'Crabs', and 'Fighter Flies.' Meh...okay, make that three assortments of enemies.

This game was good in 1983. The fact is, Mario Bros. is now a 20-year old game, and at least two dozen versions of it have been made. This makes for one of the most stale games I have ever played. Honestly, if I had a choice between this game and a piece of rotten, wormy, fungus-growing apple that would probably give me various sorts of diseases, I'd go with the apple. And I don't even LIKE apples. But enough rambling.

The formula is classic arcade style; survive as long as you can, as you have but three lives to play with. Get through all 255 stages! Rid the sewer of evil! Be cool! Stay in school! f00!

So, that's the main formula. But what can our plumber pal do? He can move...and jump, in a surprisingly idiotic fashion. Jumping is an ancient video game ability, so you shouldn't be surprised. But jumping is the whole point of the game! You must hit whatever badass is above you from below, by bumping up the floor...BY JUMPING! COOL! Okay, not really, but...whatever baddie you hit will be flipped over, at which point you can JUMP (another use! Awright!) up to their platform and KICK (Another ability! Well, it's done automatically, actually...) it off the playing screen! Repeat three trillion times! C'mon, make it snappy! We all know how much you love this stuff!

Here's what I bet Nintendo said in their corporate offices about this game's concept...

Marketer: Hey guys, you know what kids just LOVE to do these days?

Designer: I dunno, what?

Marketer: JUMP! C'mon, it's the latest fad! Do the JUUUUUMP! La-la-la-la!

Designer: BRILLIANT! Let's make a game out of it! Make sure it's as jumpy as can possibly be!

Artist: I'll draw some pictures of that Mario guy jumping! I'll make a Luigi guy to jump with him!

Designer: BRILLIANT!

Marketer: I'll start making a TV commerical, with up-close shots of the jumping sprites! Make sure to get some costumes, so some actors can jump all over the screen!

Designer: I LOVE IT!
*****

After JUMPING and KICKING all the enemies in the single-screened level, you go on to the next level, in which you JUMP and KICK even more enemies! There are two hundred and fifty-five levels! Good luck! Although, really, the game only gets so difficult before the same level repeats over and over again, so it in reality becomes very simple and immeasurably monotonous. That's all there is to it. My description is not an exaggeration in any way. Just jump and kick, jump and kick, jump and kick, jump....woah, kinda hypnotic, ain't it?

On the controls end of the stick, Mario Bros. is a perfect 10 out of 10. A to jump. D-pad to move. Start to pause. Could it get any more simple? (Err, and the cliche answer to that question is, ''No.'')

Graphics...well...Black serves as the background. Not uncommon for first-generation NES games. Mario looks like a kangaroo wearing a turtleneck. Not uncommon for first-generation NES games. All of the enemies look like Power Rangers rejects. Not uncommon for first-generation NES games. Mario has a-err-friendly brother who looks equally as horrendous as he does. Once again, not uncommon for first-generation NES games.

So the graphics are pretty average.

But the sound....

...
...

squeakysqueakysqueakysqueakyAAAAAAAAAARGH!!! NEVER play with the sound on in this game. Mario has rain-soaked sneakers that squeak every time he takes a step. All of the enemies make awful screeching noises. The music, when present, is the epitome of vomit. Please...don't make me suffer...

Here's a summary for all the lazy bastards who don't read the whole review:

MAGIC MUSHROOMS GOOD:

-It's five bucks
-It's portable

THE COPS BUST YOU AND TAKE YOUR MAGIC MUSHROOMS BAD:

-Everything else

Meh...despite being a downright awful and ancient game, you might as well pick it up, because it's only five smackers. I really don't know what else to say...you must play this game, I can't describe how bad it is. Oh, wait, you already have. Multiple times. Nevermind, then.


Reviewer's Score: 2/10 | Originally Posted: 01/12/03, Updated 01/12/03


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