Super Mario has been rolling out great games year after year and fans just cannot seem to get enough of him. Even other characters, Luigi, Princess Peach, and Daisy, have their own fanbase.
Mario, the iconic plumber, has appeared in several settings. Be it a Kart race or a building game, Mario manages to deliver quality games (at least, the devs try to deliver the best).
Over years, there have been dozens of Mario games along with the spin-offs and crossovers. So, we decided to look through each of the mainline Super Mario games and rank them!
Top 10 Super Mario Games Ever
Let’s leave the spin-offs and extensions out of the list (that’s another story for another day). We have taken into account only the mainline Mario games. The ranking is based on popularity, theme, and general public opinion.
10. Super Mario 3D Land
You can say that Super Mario 3D Land was the bridge between 2D and 3D Mario games. As the series was bidding adieu to the 2D world, Mario 3D Land made the departure smooth. The previous entries had long landscapes. But Mario 3D Land broke these landscapes into smaller playfields best suited for handheld devices.
9. New Super Mario Bros
This might not be a favorite with everybody but New Super Mario Bros was the game that introduced the multiplayer feature. Up to four players could accomplish the chaotic missions in this game. This is one of the best Mario games that you can enjoy with your family and friends on a TV.
8. Super Mario Galaxy 2
Just like its predecessor, Galaxy 2 too, was a hit. In fact, there have been debates in the community about which one is finer. But here’s the thing – Galaxy 2 is definitely more fine-tuned, but it cannot beat the novelty of the first one.
Mario Galaxy 2 takes the original Galaxy entry to a whole new level. Any Mario fan would point out that the creators have taken more creative liberty here.
7. Super Mario Bros
This was the game that started it all. The 1985 game kicked off a long saga of successful arcade games that Mario reigned for a good two decades. This is the game that saved the gaming industry from the brink of collapse.
The 2D game had the ‘run, jump, die’ mechanics and the game was about survival. However, the simplicity combined with fluid controls is something that the subsequent games borrowed. Mario Bros is the one of best-selling Mario games and several players revisit it for sheer nostalgia. This title too has aged well.
6. Super Mario Bros 3
Super Mario Bros 3 was kind of a turning point for all the next Mario titles. The game introduced many mechanics and elements that stayed. For instance, the maps and exploration aspects introduced in this game were carried forward.
Mario broke free of the ‘run, jump, die’ cycle and the subsequent games started feeling more wholesome. Secrets, explorable regions, and much more were added to the game.
5. Super Mario Maker 2
For Switch users, Super Mario Maker 2 is an absolutely necessary luxury. The 2D game is literally everything that you’d possibly want in a Mario game. It’s a Mario game with everything extra. You have extra enemies, modes, power-ups, and whatnot.
After its release, the game got frequent updates. This means Mario Maker 2 has evolved into a giant toy box that it was at the release.
4. Super Mario 64
Playing Super Mario with the N64 controller in a 3D world was a game-changer. In fact, you can categorize the Mario games in the pre-64 and post-64 eras. The 3D gameplay set the course for future games with similar mechanics.
Even today, Super Mario 64 enjoys a dedicated fan base. It has a lot of levels and seems to be as refined as the 3D games of today. Needless to say that the game has aged well.
3. Super Mario World
The 1991 Mario game was set in a 2D environment and served as a revisit for its preceding games. Some of the previous Mario games were difficult and Super Mario World compensated them with its ease. The harder levels were locked for the most hardcore players.
It might not be the “perfect” Mario game. However, this game enabled Mario to spin jump, throw stuff up, and even store items for later use. Yoshi and Mario meet each other for the first time in this game. And lastly, the desert and snow levels gave us the first glimpse into “exploring” regions in Mario.
2. Super Mario Galaxy
With Mario Galaxy, the devs dared to venture beyond the tested waters and give classic Mario games a galactic makeover. The 2007 title was absolutely grandiose and carefully crafted. The red-capped plumber could move up, down, around the planets, and even spin.
This was also the game that introduced us to the Star Pointer and many cool moves. Mario Galaxy was such a success that the devs decided to create a sequel.
P.S. You cannot call yourself a Mario fan if you haven’t played this one.
1. Super Mario: Odyssey
The 2017 Super Mario game managed to steal all the attention with its vibrant animations. Everything about Odyssey feels freshly-baked and just-out-of-the-oven. The plumber takes you on a world trip with the beloved cast.
In this game, you can possess the enemies and NPCs with Mario’s cap. The gameplay is exciting and there’s not one boring moment with it. This is a must-have game for Switch users.
Honestly, most of the Mario games are enjoyable. The games that couldn’t make it to the list are exciting too. In fact, any game starring Mario can hardly be bad.
For 2022, the sequel to Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battles is up for release. The crossover is titled ‘Mario + Rabbids Sparks of Hope’ and has a 2022 release window.
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