Super Mario Bros. 3

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North American box art.

Super Mario Bros. 3 is an action platformer developed and published by Nintendo for the NES on 1988-10-23, and later emulated on several other platforms. The game is the third Super Mario Bros. title and continues the growing Mario universe. In the game, Princess Peach has once again been kidnapped by Bowser, but this time his eight children will help prevent Mario from rescuing her.

My brother bought this game from a friend of his shortly after it came out in the States (mid-1990, I believe). I remember seeing the box cover and being very excited to play the game. When we finally got it home and played it, I was blown away at how good it was. The game is both a technical marvel and very well designed. I pored over the manual, reading all about the new enemies, suits, and fixated on the "new weapon" of world 8. This game has since become one of my favorites and I view it as one of the best video games ever made.

In a sort of anachronism, I played Super Mario Bros. 3 before I played Super Mario Bros. 2, and before I saw the movie, The Wizard.


I own this game for the NES and have beaten the game and every level within it.


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10 10 9 9 10

Best Version: 96%

— This section contains spoilers! —


  • The game has fantastic cartoon art style with each stage having its own unique theme and feel.
  • The levels are nicely designed and have a huge amount of variety. Some stages use a traditional platformer style, some require good jumping skills, others are maze-like, some demand really good player control, etc.
  • There are dozens of enemies, many of which are very interesting both from their look and movement patterns.
  • Koji Kondo composed another wonderful soundtrack.
  • There are all sorts of hidden aspects of the game to discover like white mushroom houses, treasure ships, hidden parts of the map, and so forth.
  • The various minigames, Toad house, spade black, N spade block, etc. add more fun to the game.
  • The Mario Bros. style multiplayer minigames add a competitive element to the game.
  • The manual is very well made.
  • The entire game fits into a mere 393,000 bytes! That is an insane level of coding efficiency!


  • Some of the power-up prizes you get in your menu are pretty useless. The airship anchor is usually useless because you will have already cleared most of the levels in order to get to it, the music box prevents you from getting the prizes of the Hammer Bros., the star is so short-lived and most levels begin easy so it's rarely helpful, and Jugem's Cloud often results in you having to beat the level you skipped anyway when you next die.
  • As a miniboss, Boom Boom is often too similar and too easy to defeat.
  • Although there is some variety among Bowser's children, they too are a bit too similar for my taste.


  • Nothing.


Box Art






Role Staff
Executive Producer Hiroshi Yamauchi
Producer Shigeru Miyamoto
Director, Game Designer Shigeru Miyamoto, Takashi Tezuka
Assistant Director Hideki Konno
Main Programmer Toshihiko Nakago
Programmers Kazuaki Morita, Toshio Iwawaki, Shigehiro Kasamatsu
Level Designers Takashi Tezuka, Katsuya Eguchi, Hideki Konno, Kensuke Tanabe
Character Designers Takashi Tezuka, Hideki Konno, Hiroyuki Kimura
Music Composer, Sound Effects Koji Kondo


Language Native Transliteration Translation
English Super Mario Bros. 3
Japanese スーパーマリオブラザーズ3 Supa Mario Burazazu 3 Super Mario Bros. 3


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