Super Mario Bros., She-Ra turn 25
Did you remember to give Princess Toadstool a birthday card today?Super Mario Bros. - the Nintendo classic that for years was the best-selling video game of all time - turns 25 years old today, although the plumbing twosome of Mario and Luigi still don't look a day over 30.
The game was released in Japan on Sept. 13, 1985, and the US version followed about a month later. The old-school NES block-buster (pun intended) was the gold standard of side-scrolling jumping-based video games that dominated the home game consoles of the '80s and early '90s, and in the process sucked up the hours of many an adolescent and teenager.
Young gamers of today may look at the 8-bit graphics of this classic and chuckle, but the simple-yet-challenging gameplay (NES controllers only had two action buttons and a 4-axis directional pad) is something many current games lack, and makes Super Mario Bros. an enjoyable classic to still play today.
Super Mario Bros. wasn't the birth of Mario himself (he famously debuted in another classic, Donkey Kong, and paired with his brother in the much-less ballyhooed Mario Bros. arcade game.) But Super Mario Bros. was such a hit at the time that it spawned a TV show (starring Captain Lou Albano in the title role), a big-budget live-action movie (starring Bob Hoskins as Mario and Dennis Hopper as the evil King Koopa), and dozens of video game sequels and spin-offs.
Want to relive your childhood? You can play a Web-optimized version of the game here.
While we're on the topic of sending birthday wishes to '80s children icons, Mattel is reminding us that She-Ra - the female counterpart to He-Man, and someone who Xena the Warrior Princess likely owes a great deal of credit - also turns 25 this month.
The first volume of the cartoon's DVD series is set to be released this month to commemorate the anniversary. (Correction: Mattel is rolling out a new action figure; Classic Media is handling the DVD release.)
(Super Mario Bros. screenshots courtesy Nintendo; She-Ra image courtesy Classic Media.)