Super Mario Bros: Deluxe. Nintendo R&D2 (1999) Gameboy Color


Did you ever play the original Super Mario Bros and think this game is way too advanced? Did you ever play it and think this screen isn’t cramped enough? 


Being a remake of the original Super Mario Bros game you can guess what to do here. Press right and jump on or over things, you see it is a platformer, and the granddaddy of them all.

You’ll be thinking why review it, surely it can’t be different enough for me to waste yours and my time committing more text to the internet? Well good sir, you’d be right. But indulge me anyway.


The key difference here is that Super Mario Deluxe is simply not very good and the reason for this is the screen has been compressed to fit on a Gameboy Color sized screen. The problem with a smaller screen size actually makes a lot of the game unplayable. I know each level fairly well in Super Mario Bros and can speed run it in about 8 minutes, but truth be told I struggle to get passed World 4-2 unless I really edge along slowly which defeats the joy of the original.

Urgh, dat cropping

You simply can’t see things; and take World 4-1 as an example, Lakitu is off-screen and you need to manually scroll the screen upwards to view him when you’re on the ground. You do this by pressing up or down on the Dpad to scroll up or down but this interrupts the flow of the game, so again you’re taking things too slowly which makes the gameplay ponderous.

Urrrgh, DAT cropping!


Credit where it is due, Nintendo didn’t just release the same game all over again.

First up is “Challenges” this is a collector’s dull wet dream as these challenges are “find 5 special coins on each level in one life”. It isn’t bad, and I like the feature and it would be great in a proper version of the game, the problem again comes down to the fact Deluxe is unplayable.

The one original feature is some Ghost Races vs Boo. These are new levels, and you simply try and beat Boo. There are some switches and different colour blocks, and if you hit a switch it’ll open alternative paths. These races however fall down on the same issue the rest of Deluxe fails at, and that is the screen is fucking tiny and therefore you can’t see shit.


It’s Mario… Peach ran off with her new boyfriend and a jealous Itallian plumber goes to try and kidnap her to win her affections.Image borrowed from JagoDibuja


One of the great things about 2D Marios is there was a sense of speed, in this remake that is all lost and makes Deluxe a far inferior game

Ultimately Deluxe feels stripped bare and while there are extra features there isn’t a reason to visit this version of the game now that OG Super Mario Bros is available on almost every Nintendo product nowadays.

Pros: the music? Some unlockables like Lost Levels

Cons: it’s very much a poor imitation


Back in the Day:

Nobody seems to have bothered reviewing Deluxe.

I'm awesome. I write about videogames occasionally but spend most time painting and playing Warhammer in varying formats.

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Posted in Gameboy Color
4 comments on “Super Mario Bros: Deluxe. Nintendo R&D2 (1999) Gameboy Color
  1. Kariyanine says:

    I’ve never played Deluxe, I suppose I’ve never really had a need to being as I had SMB on my NES and by the time I got a GBA, I already had a ton of other options to play SMB on so I skipped it. I wonder though did you struggle the same way with visual perception in the Super Mario Land titles (if you’ve played them)?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Super Mario Land 1 was tiny, so it managed speed by having Mario being like 5 pixels tall.

      Mario Land 2 and 3 were slower games and focussed on a different gameplay style.

      Shrinking Bros 1 down to 1/3 of screen is just awkward. You can’t see pitfalls and just doesn’t really work.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. dreager1 says:

    That definitely sounds pretty rough. It’s still Mario so that would probably carry it a bit for me, but no reason to play this over the original

    Liked by 1 person

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