Mario games are arguably some of the greatest video games ever made. Nintendo‘s official mascot and main character, Mario has appeared in over 200 games since he was first created. And most of them have been terrific action-adventure games. As difficult as it may seem, I have developed a list of the greatest Mario games ever created.
Of course, this list plays a big card on nostalgia and all those older games, for some reason (maybe well deserved), managed to rank higher than recent games. Don’t get me wrong – I am not saying that the more recent Mario games are not worth it… but I do feel that the older ones were much better and more fun.
So, without further ado, let’s check out the top 10 greatest Mario games even made!
10) Mario Tennis (N64)
I remember playing this for hours on the weekends way back when. And that’s because the game was extremely addictive! The physics were superb for the time, and the different shot possibilities (lob, smash, power smash, etc) were seemingly endless. The control system also allowed players of all experience levels to adjust and become familiar with the game’s mechanics.
9) Dr. Mario 64 (N64)
As a huge fan of the puzzle genre of games, I really enjoy playing this game. Dr. Mario includes several, unique single-player modes on it, including a story mode, classic mode, and a score attack mode (my personal favorite). If you like puzzle games and Nintendo, go ahead and play any of the Dr. Mario games
8) Mario Bros (Arcade/NES)
This was actually an arcade game that Nintendo made in 1983. It was played mostly in Japanese arcades at the time, although it was also available in North America for several consoles (it was even ported to the Atari 7800). The concept is simple: kill all the enemies that come out by kicking them and/or using the giant “POW” block to flip them over.
7) Super Mario Bros 3 (NES)
One of the highest selling games ever released for the NES, SMB3 introduced the overworld map and some awesome powerups like the super mushroom and fireflower. Also had a terrific multiplayer.
6) Super Mario World (SNES)
Released in the November 1990, Super Mario World introduced several new elements to the game. For the first time in the series, the player now gets an over-world map and a level playfield to help him/her navigate through the game. Yoshi the dinosaur was also in this game as was Mario‘s cape. The game also included several new power-ups that enhanced the abilities of the individual characters. It’s no wonder that the game received critical acclaim and left behind a long legacy of games and even its own animated series.
5) Super Smash Bros Brawl (Wii)
I must say that when Super Smash Bros Melee (Gamecube) was released in late 2001, I really didn’t expect the series to improve a whole lot. But, then of course, Brawl came out in 2008 and really took me by surprise. The game’s new adventure mode, ability to play as Sonic the Hedgehog, and the incredible multi-player mode make this game extraordinarily memorable.
4) Mario Kart: Double Dash!! (Gamecube) and Mario 64 (N64)
I like playing just about all of the Mario Kart games, but the Gamecube version was especially fun and the graphics were absolutely incredible. The game also had a terrific multiplayer mode, and the mini-games in battle mode were so addicting! Mario 64 also had terrific game-play and was one of the best free-roam Mario games that I have ever played.
3) Super Mario Galaxy (Wii)
Before the release of Super Mario Galaxy 2, the original Super Mario Galaxy included the most powerups and transformations of any 3D Mario game. Nintendo Power voted it as the best game for the Wii in 2008, and it is currently the 2nd highest-rated game of all time on the Top Ten Reviews website. It was also named the number one Wii game by IGN.
2) Super Mario Sunshine (Gamecube)
Mario Sunshine is the most enjoyable 3D Mario game that I have ever played. The game features ten primary locations, and Mario now has a water-backpack accessory to help him complete missions. Referred to simply as the “FLUDD”, the Flash Liquidizing Ultra Dousing Device allows you to fly and even dissolve obstacles when you’re riding Yoshi. This game has sold 5.5 million copies worldwide, and was the tenth best selling game of 2002 in the United States. It is my all-time favorite Gamecube game.
1) Super Mario Bros (NES)
The game that, many say, saved the video game industry in the mid-1980s ushered in and certainly popularized the side-scrolling era of video games. It allowed players to interact in ways no one would have imagined in the early-to-mid 1980s. Throw fireballs, go down pipes, hit coin blocks, climb vines, bounce on trampolines, and do a whole bunch of other stuff to get to the final castle and defeat Bowser. And do it all simplistically using nothing but the basics: A and B buttons and the D-pad. This is my all-time favorite video game and I am sure I am not the only one who can say that.