Obscure/Forgotten Mario Games pt.1

Originally posted August 4, 2012 on Screwattack.

With over 200 games in the plumbers library there’s going to be some that have been overlooked.

This is being separated into three parts because I found 37 Mario games + 13 more for a new fourth part I made for Skirmish Frogs, that I considered obscure and or forgotten and consider if they’re worth playing. This part is going to have 13 games while the other two parts will have 12-13 games each. Videos showcasing gameplay can be found be clicking the game titles. Not all games have gameplay videos however.

Donkey Kong Jr. Math – NES 1985

In the only Education series game released for the NES launch you play as Donkey Kong  Jr. who needs to solve mathematical questions. When you answer the question you will receive points. The numbers and symbols are on vines which you need to climb like in DK Jr. If you have a friend who would play this game with you, Donkey Kong Jr. Math has a 2 player game, although I can’t imagine how long either you or them would want to play this.

Is it worth playing? No!

Mario Bros. Special – NEC PC-6001 mkII/SharpX1 1984

A redone version of Mario Bros. for many Japanese computers like the FM-7 and SharpX1 developed by Hudson Soft,this game has newer graphics, sound, and the objective is to get to the exit at the top of the stage rather than defeating all the enemies on screen.

Is it worth playing? Maybe. Yes, if you enjoyed playing the original Mario Bros.

Punch Ball Mario Bros. – NEC PC-6001 mkII/SharpX1 1984

Like Mario Bros. Special, Punch Ball is very similar to Mario Bros. In this game you have Punch Balls that you can throw at enemies to stun them as another way to defeat them. The level design is also slightly different in this game.

Is it worth playing? Maybe.

Donkey Kong Circus – Game & Watch 1984

This game was part of the Panorama Game & Watch games. In DK Circus you play as Donkey Kong as you dodge flames while balancing on a barrel and juggling pineapples. Donkey Kong Circus was one of the few Game & Watch games to have color; Gunpei Yokoi had the idea to move the background around the characters instead of visa-versa. This game could be considered the prequel to Donkey Kong since Mario is mistreating his pet by having him balance and juggle while throwing fire at him.

Is this game worth playing? Maybe.

Super Mario Bros. Special – NEC PC 8801/SharpX1 1986

Yet another Mario game developed by Hudson Soft, this game has original levels, but has no screen scrolling. Also the running and jumping is a little different in this game. To make things even more challenging the timer runs much faster than the original NES game. The technology of the PC 8801 is slightly less to the NES so graphics and sound are a little different. Luigi and the 2 player mode aren’t in this game either.

Is it worth playing? Maybe.

VS. Super Mario Bros .– Arcade 1986

This two player arcade version of the classic Super Mario Bros. has newer level designs that will make later parts of the game more difficult. Also the farthest you can get using warp zones in this game is world 6.

Is this game worth playing? Yes!

All Night Nippon Super Mario Bros. – Famicom Disk System 1986

This is an officially licensed hack of Super Mario Bros. that features members of the Japanese radio program All Night Nippon. This game replaced the toads and some of the enemies with Japanese celebrities. Nippon Super Mario Bros. was released in a raffle and was published by Fuji TV.

Is it worth playing? Yes…but it’s very rare, so you know, it may be simpler to play it via emulator.

Alleyway – Game Boy 1989

Although not technically a Mario game, every fourth round you go to a bonus level which has many Mario characters like Mario, Koopa Troopas, Goombas, and Bowser. The game itself it just Breakout/Arkanoid.

Is it worth playing? Maybe. If you’re a fan of Breakout or Arkanoid, I’d give the game a try.

Yoshi’s Safari – SNES 1993

This was one of the very few games to use Nintendo’s Super Scope. In Yoshi’s Safari you have to save the king and prince of Jewelry Land from Bowser and the Koopalings. Unlike his previous adventures, Mario uses the Super Scope to blow up the Koopa invaders. This game is a little like an FPS with its perspective but it also has platforming sections.

Is it worth playing? Yes! But you’ll need to have a Super Scope and an older TV.

Wario’s Woods – NES/SNES 1994

This puzzle game is similar to Tetris, but with a fun twist. You’re not controlling where objects fall, instead you pick up the objects and move them around to clear sections. You play as Toad who needs to stop Wario from taking over the Mushroom Kingdom Woods. Wario’s Woods offers many different game modes like: Round Game, Time Race, VS, Lesson, and Option. Round Game is the story mode where you fight bosses and confront Wario after every tenth round until you face him in round 99. This games VS mode is similar to the one found in Dr. Mario and Wario’s Woods has battery back-up to save your progress. I recently learned that the PAL version of this game has different music than the North America and Japan versions of the game; It sounds pretty good.

Is it worth playing? Yes! I personally prefer the NES version over the SNES version from a control and significance standpoint, but the SNES version has more content.

Undake 30 Same Game – Super Famicom/Satellaview 1995

Click matching icons that are next to each other to make them disappear. You can undo moves as many times as you want and once the entire game board is clear, the game ends. You can play a game similar to this called Pair-a-Gone in Super Mario 64 DS.

Is it worth playing? No!

Excitebike: Bun Bun Mario Battle Stadiums – Satellaview 1997

This is a remake of the NES game Excitebike mixed with Mario Kart where the bikers are replaced by Mario Characters. Their existed four different versions of this game; each adding a new character like Mario, Luigi, Peach, Toad, Wario, and Yoshi. The characters have voices that were used in Mario Kart 64 which came out a year earlier.

Is it worth playing? Yes! Due to its release, you’ll be having to either emulate it or find a repro cart to play it.

Dr. Mario 64 – Nintendo 64 2001

Like previous versions, Dr. Mario tosses Megavitamins into a jar full of viruses, but now you have six different games modes: Classic, Story, VS COM, Flash, Marathon, and Score Attack. In story mode you can play as either Dr. Mario or Wario. Each character’s story differs a bit, mainly the endings. This game features many enemies fromWario Land 3 and the game’s graphics remind me of Yoshi’s Story.

Is this game worth playing? Yes!

So that concludes part 1. I wanted to test out the WordPress post format again since it has been a while since I used it and I wanted to start post something on Skirmish Frogs since I have yet to do so. Later parts will be up later, so stay tuned if you’re interested in seeing more. Thanks for reading and feel free to leave a comment.

Series Navigation<< Obscure/Forgotten Mario Games pt.4- FinaleObscure/Forgotten Mario Games pt.2 >>
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About MegaSilverX1

Fan of video games, Screwattack g1, Mega Man & Dragon Quest dork, Virtual Boy fan, previous contributor for 1MoreCastle, and shy person.


  1. That Excitebike title looks neat!

  2. Wow, I actually haven’t heard of a few of these, I’m impressed, good post!

    • Thanks 🙂

      • Yeah, I want to echo that — I had heard of the Hudson titles, the Satellaview game, All Night Nippon, etc… but PUNCH BALL MARIO BROS?! I wanna try it!

        Kudos for reaching out to titles like Alleyway, too, that obviously have Mario connections even while they’re not explicitly a Mario title themselves. This is a great series. I like it.

  3. Ball Mario is interesting. I watched some game play and I find it funny how Mario just drops the ball in the direction of the turtles (are they Koopas yet?). I expected a forceful PUNCH (or throw) but instead it looks he drops the ball by accident.

  4. Huh. I thought the Vs. games were a 1:1 copy of NES carts, hooked up to the Vs. machines. 😀

  5. Pingback: Obscure/Forgotten Mario Games pt.2 | Skirmish Frogs

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