Mario Bros. is a 1983 platform game developed for arcades by Nintendo. Atari 2600 version was released in the same year.
Mario Bros. gameplay
Mario Bros. features two plumbers, Mario and Luigi, having to investigate the sewers of New York after strange creatures have been appearing down there. The objective of the game is to defeat all of the enemies in each phase. The mechanics of Mario Bros. involve only running and jumping. Unlike future Mario games, players cannot jump on enemies and squash them, unless they were already turned on their back. Each phase is a series of platforms with pipes at each corner of the screen, along with an object called a “POW” block in the center. Phases use wraparound, meaning that enemies and players that go off to one side will reappear on the opposite side. The game continues until the player loses all lives.
The player gains points by defeating multiple enemies consecutively and can participate in a bonus round to gain more points. Enemies are defeated by kicking them over once they have been flipped on their back. This is accomplished by hitting the platform the enemy is on directly beneath them. If the player allows too much time to pass after doing this (about six seconds), the enemy will flip itself back over, changing in color and increasing speed. Each phase has a certain number of enemies, with the final enemy immediately changing color and increasing to maximum speed. Hitting a flipped enemy from underneath causes it to right itself and start moving again, but it does not change speed or color.
There are four enemies which emerge from the pipes:
- the Shellcreeper;
- the Sidestepper, which requires two hits to flip over;
- the Fighter Fly, which moves by jumping and can only be flipped when it is touching a platform;
- the Slipice which turns platforms into slippery ice.
When bumped from below, the Slipice disappears immediately instead of flipping over and does not count toward the total number that must be defeated to complete a phase. All iced platforms return to normal at the start of each new phase.
A fifth enemy, fireballs, fly around the screen instead of sticking to platforms. They come in two variants, red and green. The green ones are faster, but disappear after a short period of time, while the red ones bounce about and don’t disappear until they are hit from below. Later in the game, icicles form under the platforms and at times on the top of the pipes and fall loose.
The “POW” block flips all enemies touching a platform or the floor when a player hits it from below. It can be used three times before it disappears. Bonus rounds give the players a chance to score extra points by collecting coins within a time limit. The “POW” block fills itself at the start of each bonus round.
(source: Wikipedia / Mario Bros.)