Since today was the 25th anniversary of Super Mario Bros. original Japanese release, I busted out my NES to celebrate and tried to run through the game the way I always do: No warps, whole thing, front to back! Then, I felt strongly as though I wanted to report on the experience.
I was a little rusty off the hop but got back into the old rhythms soon enough. First man lost was to a flying fish in 2-3, but rather than killing the momentum early I kept a good pace afterward and built up a few extra lives.
World 5 then proceeded to clean me out. Momentum was dangerously low, lives were being lost to very silly mistakes. Somehow I persevered and with a healthy amount of luck I ran the entirety of World 6 on one life.
World 7 granted me one extra man due to coin collecting, which I lost by the final castle anyway. 7-4 is a little notorious to me because it’s one of those areas that you need to run through in the correct pattern or be doomed to repeat forever. Of course I could not remember the second area’s pattern. I tried a few things unsuccessfully, and when the timer hit 99 and the music picked up pace I panicked and started running more or less at random.
Somehow, almost upsettingly, this worked and I barged right on through. I have no idea what I did right but I quickly finished off the world.
So, 8-1 and one life left! Also, I’m tiny mario! Would I sally forth, carried onward by unbelievable luck? Nope! The last Mario was used up about thirty seconds into the level, and that was that.
Happy Mario’s Birthday, everybody!