Hall of Fame Inductee Super Mario Bros. Original Release: 1986 (NES) Designers: Shigeru Miyamoto, Takashi Tezuka Developed by: Nintendo Published by: Nintendo
Even if we don’t care about Super Mario Bros. twenty-five years after its release, the game is notable for at least one very important reason: it saved the video game industry after it imploded from the crash of 1983. The NES was a hard sell to retailers when it was launched in 1985. Too many garbage games from horrible game consoles had turned people off of video games. When Nintendo tried to break into the market, it was like entering a wasteland. However, Super Mario Bros. changed all that. The game looked and sounded better than anything else available on the home market; it was easy to pick up and play, and it was incredibly fun. Mario singlehandedly saved the video game industry and, even though the game is over a quarter-century old, it still stands up incredibly well today.
Video Game Review Donkey Kong Arcade 1981 Developer: Nintendo Publisher: Nintendo
The original arcade Donkey Kong has become one of the most famous games in the world. It stars two of Nintendo’s world famous mascots and has been the focal point of films like The King of Kong. Behind all the nostalgia and popularity lies an entertaining game. Although it’s not as in-depth an experience as later Mario or Donkey Kong titles would become, the original Donkey Kong is a game that manages to hold its own. While it was never worth the price of what a full price game is today, it was, and still is an easy way to lose a lot of quarters.
Video Game Review The Legend of Zelda Nintendo Entertainment System 1987 Developer: Nintendo Publisher: Nintendo
While most think that Grand Theft Auto created the sandbox style of gaming, a strong argument could be made for The Legend of Zelda inventing the genre. Shigeru Miyamoto’s pet project about a boy exploring a world to get all the pieces of the Triforce and save the princess was one of the most innovative titles for its time. Even years after its release it’s still interesting and feels fresh. Perhaps Nintendo had no idea what they were about to unleash on North America in 1987 but it definitely changed how people looked at the way games can be played. It also helped that it was really good.