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Super Mario Bros.

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Super Mario Bros. (スーパーマリオブラザーズ Sūpā Mario Burazāzu) is a platform Video game developed by Nintendo in late 1985 and published for the Nintendo Entertainment System as a sequel to the 1983 game Mario Bros.. In Super Mario Bros., the titular character, Mario, seeks to rescue Princess Toadstool (later renamed Princess Peach) of the Mushroom Kingdom from Bowser, king of the Koopas. Mario's younger brother, Luigi, is playable by the second player in the game's multiplayer mode, and assumes the same plot role as Mario.

The game was succeeded by a direct sequel in Japan and a revision of Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic (that introduces other characters from the Mario series) elsewhere in the world. In both cases, the games are titled Super Mario Bros. 2, causing both games to be rereleased in different countries with different titles. There also have been many "alternate" versions of the game, such as All Night Nippon Super Mario Bros., which featured personalities from the Japanese radio show of the same name. The success of Super Mario Bros. has caused it to be ported to almost every one of Nintendo's major gaming consoles, as well as the NEC PC-8801 in the form of Super Mario Bros. Special.


The player takes on the role of Mario, a moustached man wearing red overalls over a brown shirt, or, in the case of a second player, Luigi, Mario's younger brother, a similar man wearing white overalls over a green shirt. The object is to race through the Mushroom Kingdom, evade or eliminate Bowser's forces and save Princess Toadstool. Mario or Luigi can be hurt if either touches an enemy. If he takes a hit as regular Mario, falls down a pit (regardless of status), or the time clock runs out, he loses a life and starts again. The point where Mario or Luigi continues from after losing a life depends on how far he ran through the level before dying: either from the very beginning or at an invisible "checkpoint" partway through the level. There are no checkpoints in castles or in World 8, the final world.

The Mario brothers' primary attack is simply jumping on top of ("stomping") their enemies, which kills the mushroom traitors, known as Goombas, and sends the turtle soldiers, known as Koopa Troopas, into their shells. Mario and Luigi can then kick these shells into other enemies, who will be defeated as a result. Conversely, kicked shells can bounce back off walls or other vertical obstructions and hit Mario or Luigi, injuring the player. Some enemies cannot be defeated by stomping; these enemies can only be defeated by turtle shell or fireball as stomping them will hurt the Mario Bros. The player can also defeat enemies by jumping to strike brick boxes from underneath, causing foes standing on it to be thrown off. Jumping on enough enemies in succession or kicking a shell into enough enemies in succession (combos) results in double points earned with each enemy defeated, eventually earning Mario or Luigi a 1-up (an extra life). Mario and Luigi can also obtain 1-ups through finding 1-up mushrooms or by collecting 100 coins.

Aiding the Mario Brothers in their quest are several powers. If Mario or Luigi collect a mushroom, they will become Super Mario or Super Luigi, thus able to take two hits before losing a life. Collecting a Fire Flower changes the player into Fire Mario or Fire Luigi, granting the ability to throw fireballs; however, the maximum tolerance for hits remains two (a hit taken while Fiery reduces the player to small Mario or Luigi). Mario or Luigi can also collect a Starman and become invincible for a limited amount of time. The Starman looks like a star with eyes, and starts bouncing around and flashing when found. Invincible Mario or Luigi is impervious to the touch of enemy characters and most obstacles, and he can simply run into enemies to defeat them. He still dies, however, if he falls in a pit or lava, or if time runs out.

The game consists of eight worlds with four levels in each world. Though each world is different, the second level of each world is always underground or underwater; and the fourth level is always a fortress or castle (the former rule was broken in the direct sequel, the latter was not). At the end of each castle level, Mario or Luigi fights Bowser, however if one of the brothers throws five fireballs at Bowser, it is revealed that he is actually a different enemy in disguise. In the later worlds (worlds 6 to 8), Bowser throws hammers as well as occasional jets of fire breath. Bowser may be defeated in one of two ways: either by touching the axe at the edge of the bridge (thereby dropping him into the lava) or, as Fire Mario or Luigi, throwing fireballs at him to defeat him directly. The latter is the only way to receive points for the Koopa King's defeat. At the end of each world except the last, Mario or Luigi is greeted with the words "Thank you Mario! But our princess is in another castle!" spoken by a Mushroom Retainer.

After winning the game, the player is given the option to start the game again in 'Hard' Mode, where all Goombas are replaced by Buzzy Bettles (Koopa Troopa-like enemies who cannot be killed by fireballs) and all enemies' walking speed is increased. In addition, the elevator-style lifts are about 60% their original size throughout. There are also an increased number of hazards in the earlier worlds. For example, in World 1-3 random Bullet Bills fly across the screen, a danger that normally only appears in certain later levels, such as World 5-3.

Players may get to the beginning of any world with a relatively small amount of effort by using hidden Warp zones in a number of levels.


Kōji Kondō wrote the musical score for Super Mario Bros. There are five main themes used in the original game. The Tempo of the music increases when the timer reaches 99.

The Minus World[edit]

The Minus World is a Glitch in Super Mario Bros. By passing through a solid wall near the World 1-2 exit, it is possible to travel to "World -1", also known as the "Minus World" or "World Negative One". This stage is identical to Worlds 2-2 and 7-2, but on entering the warp pipe at the end, the player is taken back to the start of the level. The same glitch in the Japanese Famicom Disk System is considerably different and has three levels. World " -1" is a glitched world 1-3 that is underwater and contains Bowser, Hammer Bros. and multiple copies of Princess Toadstool. World " -2" is an identical copy of World 7-3. World " -3" is a copy of 3-4, but with flying Bloopers, no Bowser and water instead of lava. After completing these, the player is returned to the title screen as if he or she completed the game.

Although the world is shown as " -1" (note the leading space) on the HUD, it is actually world 36; the game is not programmed to use 2-digit numbers, instead displaying tile #36, which is a blank space. This is because the warp zone pipes lead to world 36 before the player has scrolled far enough to activate them, so that no number appears above them.

Alternate versions[edit]

Super Mario Bros. Special[edit]


Super Mario Bros. Special was a game released only in Japan by Hudson Soft for the NEC PC-8801 and Sharp X1 computers in 1986. Although it has similar gameplay and graphics, the game has new level layouts and scrolls in a different manner than the original game (differing based on the computer). In addition, many new enemies are included, including enemies from Mario Bros. and Donkey Kong plus the Hudson Soft Bee (which gives continues).

On the NEC version, the game goes at a faster speed, meaning that the timer drains faster. The Sharp X1 version has a speed that is much closer to the original game. Neither version features Luigi or a two-player mode.

Super Mario Bros. Deluxe[edit]

Main Article: Super Mario Bros. Deluxe