I'm pretty sure that almost anyone who would consider themself a gamer of any sort had played the original Super Mario Bros. at least once in their life. Extrapolating from that, anyone who would consider themself a gamer worth their salt had also played a whole slew of other Nintendo1 games during their childhood; Mega Man, Zelda, Contra, and Castlevania, among others. What if I told you that you can play Super Mario Bros. using characters from the aforementioned series?
This simple but awesome game runs on Flash, and you can get it from the official website, supermariobroscrossover.com. First and foremost, you get to pick your poison:
Deliciously delightful decisions, Batman!
That's right, people. Choose from Mega Man, Samus (Metroid), Bill (Contra), Simon (Castlevania), Link (Zelda) and Ryu (Ninja Gaiden)! Mario (Super Mario Bros.) doesn't count because, seriously, why the heck would you want to play him when you get to do so much more awesome with someone else?
My first test run for this review uses Mega Man. You can do everything that Mega Man could in his games, i.e. charge and shoot, slide, etc. Unfortunately, high jumps are unheard of in Mega Man, so you'll need Rush to lend you a hand.
With Rush Coil, our little friend can actually jump higher than Mario himself.
The levels in the game were modified a little though, in order to make it possible for characters such as the Blue Bomber to overcome tough obstacles. For example, the end-of-stage flagpoles.
Mega Man in Flame Man garb (after you pick up a Fire Flower).
Next to Mega Man, my other favourite character to play in SMBC is Bill
Just so you know, the music changes according to the character you pick, too. Do you remember the Contra music? It's positively mansome.
And since he has rapid fire, shooting on one of those "?" blocks with multiple coins yields the following result:
That's not all, folks. The fun really begins when you pick up a Fire Flower. Remember the spread-fire gun from Contra? It makes an appearance, with delightfully devastating results.
Illegal in 13 states.
For a greater challenge (read: not as fun), you have the option of using Samus Aran from the Metroid series. You start off naked though.
I never played any of the Metroid games, actually.
Samus jumps as high as Mario, fire bullets like Mega Man (but weaker), and she can plant bombs while rolling like a ball (in my opinion, one of the most useless abilities for this game). Once you pick up Mushrooms or Flowers5, Samus suits up, increasing the damage of her shots (still weaker than Mega Man's charged shots) and her bombs. Yawn.
It's tough being Bowser when everyone you meet has a projectile attack.
Up next is Ryu Hayabusa of Ninja Gaiden fame. His special abilities include throwing shurikens, slashing enemies with his sword and, of course, the staple in every ninja's arsenal, wall-climbing.
Joke: What do you call a ninja who's afraid of Goomba mushrooms?
Unfortunately, there are so many vertical surfaces in Super Mario Bros. that the ability doesn't translate well from Ninja Gaiden. You'll find yourself wall-climbing at the most inopportune of times, e.g. when trying to avoid a flying Koopa Troopa. On the plus side, avoiding death by bottomless pit is much easier when you can grab onto a ledge.
Moving on, I perused everyone's favourite Hyrulian resident, Link. Firstly, he is a high jumper just like Mario, but he has a projectile attack, too... which merely stuns enemies. You can quite safely say that Link got the short end of the stick in this game, and by that I mean that he has a really short
Link's downward thrust looks awfully wrong.
In this case, you can't even use the common phrase "It's not the size that matters, it's the way you use it"; why bother with a downward thrust that takes several hits to kill a Goomba instead of just stomping on it for a one-hit-kill? I guess that's what they call balancing the game, but Link really can't compare to any of the other characters in SMBC. Heck, even Mario's better; at least he can run, and his projectiles kill in one hit.
Finally, we arrive at Simon Belmont from the Castlevania series. I played very little Castlevania in my time, but I know that his weapons (a whip and throwing axes) definitely work much better in his original game than in Mario. The axe is especially unwieldy as it has a fixed trajectory, resulting in Simon missing his throws all the time. Thankfully, he makes up for it by having the ability to double jump, which is pretty fun by itself.
Mario can only dream of getting this high, even while on mushrooms (see what I did there?).
With that I end my free videogame review of Super Mario Bros. Crossover. Even though some of the characters you may choose feel like fish out of water in the Mushroom Kingdom, it's still extremely fun to go back and play the original Mario classic every once in a while, just for the nostalgic kick. May you find great amusement in this little gem!
1 - I'm pretty sure most of you played your old-school Nintendo games on Micro Geniuses2; back then barely anybody owned an actual NES. If any of you actually owned an Atari of any sort, I salute you.
2 - The cool thing about Micro Genius was that they continued innovating (or pirating) way into the late 90s. By then, you could play SNES titles on your Micro Genius, but the machines being sold still looked the same from 10 years earlier! Nowadays, they just look like really ugly Playstations3.
3 - I don't know who buys any of these these days. They cost upwards of RM100 for the machine and cartridges are around RM50. Don't forget that everything can be found online, too.
4 - Definition: Awesome in an extremely manly way. Someone should add this to dictionaries.
5 - The Mario brothers are heavy users of magic mushrooms and flowers, plus they cause reckless destruction while searching for coins. My guess is that they're both drug junkies.