Mario Games is an iconic game series for players of all ages because of its entertaining and interactive adventures with a variety of engaging levels.

About Mario Games

Mario Games are without a doubt the most recognizable in terms of video games as a whole. The mustachioed plumber has been a part of our lives for more than 35 years, and his games have made people of all ages smile.

Since its initial release in 1985, the Super Mario series has changed over time. The series has grown to include wonderful 3D platforming experiences in addition to some games where you design your own levels. Classic 2D platformers are also included in the series. Looking back at each Mario game in chronological order is entertaining to see how the hero became the most known character in the gaming industry.

In the world of video games, Mario is one of the most recognizable brands. It is so significant that Illumination released its own blockbuster animated film on it in 2023. When looking at all of the Mario games in chronological order, it becomes clear how many of the titles have changed over time and contributed to the tremendous growth of this series. Many of the various elements that were first introduced in each of the mainline Mario Games have since evolved into series mainstays, whether they've made a return in a main game or played a significant role in a spin-off. This includes certain items that the hero uses or characters who immediately become iconic upon their initial appearance. Let us give you a brief trip down memory lane from the founding days of Nintendo—the creator of Mario and the most impactful Mario games in the series!


Nintendo—How It All Started

The Founding Days

The story of Nintendo, one of the world’s most recognized video game companies, begins in 1889. Founded by Fusajiro Yamauchi, the company originally specialized in creating Japanese playing cards, with handmade hanafuda playing cards in particular. For decades, the company grew significantly as hanafuda remained one of the most popular means of entertainment in Japan. However, afterwards, Hiroshi Yamauchi, the great-grandson of Fusajiro, took over the company and realized the limitations of the playing card business during his trip to the United States: The United States Playing Card Company, which was the world’s largest company in its business back then, was reduced to using a small office. With the revenue from selling cards in collaboration with Disney, Hiroshi was determined to set foot in more lucrative businesses.

A Switch to the Toy Market

As Nintendo experimented in other areas of business, only toymaking wasn’t deemed a failure. Despite that, in the 1960s, Nintendo struggled to compete in the Japanese toy market, which was small at the time and had already been dominated by other companies. Fortunately, Nintendo found a new niche, which is the market for electronic toys. Developed by Gunpei Yokoi, the company released many toys, such as the Love Tester.

Age of Video Games

From 1972 onwards, Nintendo’s main focus shifted to video game consoles. During the early 1980s, Yokoi led the Nintendo video game division to create arcade games that still have a lasting impression to this day, including Donkey Kong, which was designed by Shigeru Miyamoto. In addition, the home game market soon became the main focus of development, and in 1983, the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) was released in Japan to extreme commercial success. The video game console was later released to the international market in 1985, following the video game crash of 1983. During this era, Super Mario Bros., Metroid, and The Legend of Zelda were launched to much critical acclaim, further solidifying the position of Nintendo in the video game industry.

Since then, Nintendo has released countless excellent games and other consoles. The company’s strong suit lies in the market for handheld consoles such as the Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS, and Nintendo Switch. Other factors contributing to its success are the iconic game characters like Mario, Kirby, Link, and so much more!

One of The Most Famous And Successful Video Games Of All Time

The Super Mario Bros. titles, which debuted on the venerable Nintendo Entertainment System, are some of the most well-known and lucrative video games of all time. Since the initial games sold over 60 million copies, Mario has become more well-known among American kids than Mickey Mouse was during the 1990s. The more ambitious and sophisticated Super Mario World games, including gorgeous pixel art and a navigable map that allows for several paths through the narrative, were released in 1990 with the launch of the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) gaming system. Super Mario Kart and Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars were two of the best Mario spin-offs available on the SNES.

The History Of Mario Games

The Beginning of an Excellent Game Series

Originating from the creative genius of legendary game designer Shigeru Miyamoto, the Mario Games series made its debut in 1981 with the release of the arcade classic Donkey Kong. This groundbreaking game introduced players to a mustached hero named Mario, who embarked on a daring quest to save his beloved Princess Peach from the clutches of the villainous Donkey Kong. The immense popularity of Donkey Kong paved the way for the creation of an entire universe centered around Mario and his adventures. The character, originally known as Jumpman, was created on a tiny 16x16 pixel grid; therefore, the moustache and dungarees were necessary to make his face and arms visible. The Mario appearance was not an aesthetic choice but a result of graphical constraints.

Donkey Kong established the platforming game genre's foundations—ladders, platforms, and jumping—when Miyamoto released it in 1982, and he started developing a sequel in 1983. He altered the title character's name to Mario in honor of Mario Segale, the landlord of Nintendo of America in New York. The titular character and his nearly identical sibling, Luigi, were shown in the arcade game Mario Bros. purging the Manhattan sewer system of invading turtles. Mario appeared on the ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64, Atari 2600, and, of course, the Nintendo Entertainment System, despite the fact that the action was quite straightforward. The accidental Italian plumber became a huge issue all of a sudden.

Super Mario Bros. Series

Mario was the main character of the Super Mario Bros. series, which ran from 1985 to the start of the 1990s and took place in the Mushroom Kingdom, a vibrant fantasy world that Mario had created for himself outside of the sewers. Super Mario Bros. featured scrolling stages that changed as Mario ran from left to right, as opposed to Mario Bros.'s single-screen levels. It also featured a supporting cast that included Princess Peach, the goomba-like Goomba enemies, the reptilian Koopa Troopers, and Mario's arch-enemy Bowser (who was originally known as King Koopa).

Super Mario 64

Super Mario 64 was released by Nintendo for the Nintendo 64 in 1996. The character was released from his 2D side-scrolling and given full reign to run (and jump) in this first Mario game featuring real-time-produced 3D visuals. Miyamoto created a novel and simple method of three-dimensional character control with the console's analogue stick controller, ushering in a new era of platforming adventures like Crash Bandicoot, Spyro the Dragon, and Jak & Daxter. Every new Nintendo system and handheld device got a Super Mario series after this. Super Mario Galaxy was released for the Wii, Super Mario Sunshine for the GameCube, and Super Mario Land for the Game Boy. Each game in the series featured lovable characters who ran, jumped, and explored through vividly mysterious, secret-filled landscapes.

Mario Games Throughout the Years

While countless Mario games have been made available to the public, below are the games that mark important milestones in shaping Mario into the hero we know and love today.

1981 and 1982 – Donkey Kong games

During his first appearances, Mario wasn’t known as "Mario." Instead, his name was "Jumpman," and his role was to rescue the damsel-in-distress from the titular character of the games. Most of his appearance in this game was kept in the final design, including the mustache, red hat, and blue overalls.

1983 – Mario Bros.

In this arcade game, Mario finally made his debut along with his brother Luigi, and together, they went on an epic adventure across the Mushroom Kingdom.

1992 – Mario is Missing!

As the title suggests, in this educational SNES game, Mario is nowhere to be found, and it is up to his brother Luigi to find him. 

1995 – Mario’s Tennis

With this game, Mario gets to take a break from adventuring and participate in thrilling tennis matches instead! This Virtual Boy game also marks the first of the sports-related Mario games in general.

1996 – Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars

In this SNES game, Mario embarks on an adventure along with allies and former enemies in order to stop a new enemy, the Smithy Gang. This game was designed by Square, a video game developer well-known for their RPG games such as the Final Fantasy series.

2003 – Mario Kart: Double Dash

This is a unique Mario Kart game in which two characters can be on a kart, and they can be switched at any time during the race.

2011 – Super Mario 3D Land

As the fastest-selling handheld game in the Mario franchise, this game is a combination of traditional 2D and 3D platformers.

2020 – Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit

In this Switch game, players get to take part in exciting kart races, but the racetrack is set in real life using augmented reality (AR)!

In the present day, Mario games continue to capture the hearts of countless gamers, young and old alike. The series is a testament to creativity combined with elements of nostalgia, and it will surely be here to stay for years to come!

The Best Mario Game To Get Started With

The simplest way to get into Mario is to get a Nintendo Switch console and a copy of Super Mario Odyssey, the newest and finest Mario game. Everything you need to know about the franchise and its conventions is explained in this gorgeous, astute, and enjoyable game.

You may play the multiplayer Mario Games Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury and New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe with your loved ones. Super Mario Maker 2, which enables you to make your own 2D Super Mario games, may be of interest to those who enjoyed playing Mario Games in two dimensions in the 1980s or 1990s.