Super Mario Bros. 3 Review

by | NES

Welcome, fellow gamers! Today, we’re going to dive deep into the magical world of Super Mario Bros 3, one of the most iconic and beloved original games in the history of video gaming. Released in 1988 for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES), this 8-bit game has left a lasting impact on the gaming industry and continues to be a favorite among gamers, both old and new. So, without further ado, let’s jump into our Super Mario Bros. 3 review–the mesmerizing world of Mario and Luigi, where items and power-ups await!


Level Design

The brilliance of Super Mario Bros 3 lies in its diverse and inventive level design. There are eight unique worlds, each with its own theme and challenges, from the sandy dunes of Desert Land to the freezing glaciers of Ice Land. Remember Ice Land? What player doesn’t hate ice worlds? Slipping and sliding around all over the place, talk about agony!

Each level offers a unique challenge, pushing players to think outside the box and adapt their strategies. The secret areas, hidden shortcuts, and bonus levels add an extra layer of depth and excitement, encouraging exploration and rewarding curiosity.


Super Mario Bros 3 introduces a variety of power-ups that enhance Mario and Luigi’s abilities. From the classic Super Mushroom and Fire Flower to the innovative Tanooki Suit and Frog Suit, these power-ups allow players to approach levels in different ways, opening up new possibilities and strategies. And who can forget Racoon Mario? With his raccoon ears and tail, Mario gains the ability to fly, adding a new dimension to the gameplay. The thrill of discovering new items and using them to overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles is a core part of the game’s charm.

Super Mario Bros. 3 NES box art

Enemies and Bosses

A diverse cast of difficult enemies awaits players in Super Mario Bros 3. From classic Goombas and Koopa Troopas to the new Chain Chomps and Boomerang Bros, each enemy has its own unique behaviors and patterns, requiring players to adapt and strategize. The Hammer Suit lets Mario throw hammers at enemies, providing a powerful new weapon in his arsenal. The boss battles against the Koopalings, each with their unique abilities, providing a challenging and satisfying climax to each world.

Graphics and Sound


The visual design of Super Mario Bros 3 is a significant step up from its predecessors, including Super Mario Bros. 2. The game features bright, colorful graphics, bringing Princess Toadstool’s Mushroom Kingdom to life. Each world is visually distinct, with unique backgrounds, tile sets, and enemy sprites, immersing gamers in the game’s rich universe.

Music and Sound Effects

The soundtrack of Super Mario Bros 3 is as iconic as its gameplay. From the catchy overworld themes to the exhilarating boss battle music, the game’s tunes are memorable and engaging. The sound effects, too, add a sense of charm and whimsy to the game, with each power-up, jump, and enemy interaction accompanied by satisfying and delightful sounds.

Controls and Mechanics

Movement and Physics

Super Mario Bros 3 boasts tight and responsive controls that make navigating the game’s levels an absolute joy. Of course, they were tight enough when playing on the original NES controller. The movement and physics are finely tuned, allowing for precise jumps and fluid character motion. Mario and Luigi’s ability to fly with the raccoon tail and Tanooki suits adds a new dimension to the gameplay, encouraging players to take to the skies and explore the levels from a whole new perspective.

Mechanics and Interactions

The game introduces various new mechanics that elevate the platforming experience. From the ability to pick up and throw objects to sliding down slopes and taking out enemies, Super Mario Bros 3 provides players with an arsenal of moves to experiment with. The game also features interactive environments, such as climbable vines and P-Switches, which transform coins into blocks and vice versa. Additionally, players can discover special items, like the rare whistle that allows for fast travel between worlds. These mechanics keep the gameplay fresh and engaging throughout the entire game.


One of the most significant aspects of Super Mario Bros 3 is its immense replayability. With numerous secret levels, alternate paths, and hidden power-ups, the game offers countless hours of fun for those who want to explore every nook and cranny of the Mushroom Kingdom. Tons of secrets are waiting to be discovered, and each playthrough can reveal something new. Plus, just reliving the fun of the late 80s when childhood was simpler. 

The addition of the two-player mode adds a competitive element, allowing friends to race through levels, battle in the iconic Mario Bros. mini-games, and even engage in card games for extra lives.

Legacy and Impact

Influence on Future Titles

Super Mario Bros 3 has left a lasting impression on the world of video games, influencing countless games that followed. Its innovative level design, memorable power-ups like Racoon Mario, and charming presentation have become staples of the platforming genre. Titles like Super Mario World, New Super Mario Bros., and even non-Mario games have taken inspiration from this groundbreaking game, cementing its status as a timeless classic.

Remakes and Re-releases

The game’s popularity has led to several remakes and re-releases, allowing new generations of gamers to experience the magic of Super Mario Bros 3. From the Super Mario All-Stars compilation on the Super Nintendo to the more recent Nintendo Switch Online availability, this beloved game continues to captivate and entertain players around the world.

Super Mario Bros 3 is a masterpiece of game design that has stood the test of time. Its captivating gameplay, charming visuals, unforgettable soundtrack, and tons of secrets make it a must-play for any gaming enthusiast. With its basic power-ups and advanced abilities, it strikes the perfect balance between challenge and fun. Some may even argue that it’s the perfect video game. It sure was a hell of an experience back in the 80s. Whether you’re a seasoned veteran or a newcomer to the world of Mario, this game is guaranteed to provide endless hours of enjoyment and wonder. So, go ahead and give it a perfect score, because it truly deserves it!


1. What console was Super Mario Bros 3 originally released on?

Super Mario Bros 3 was originally released on the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) in 1988.

2. How many worlds are there in Super Mario Bros 3?

There are eight distinct worlds in Super Mario Bros 3, each with its own theme and challenges.

3. Can you play as Luigi in Super Mario Bros 3?

Yes, you can play as Luigi in the two-player mode, where you can take turns with a friend to complete levels or compete against each other in the Mario Bros. mini-games.

4. What are some of the unique power-ups introduced in Super Mario Bros 3?

Some of the unique power-ups in the game include the Tanooki Suit, Frog Suit, Hammer Suit, and the iconic Racoon Mario.

5. Has Super Mario Bros 3 been re-released on modern consoles?

Yes, Super Mario Bros 3 has been re-released on various consoles, including the Super Nintendo, Game Boy Advance, and most recently, the Nintendo Switch through the Nintendo Switch Online service.

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