Super Marioland (Gameboy)

Once upon a time, there was a peaceful world called Sarasaland. In this world there were 4 kingdoms named Birabuto, Muda, Easton and Chai. One day, the skies of Sarasaland were suddenly covered by a huge cloud. From a crack in this cloud, the unknown space monster Tatanga emerged to try to conquer Sarasaland. Tatanga hypnotized the people of all the kingdoms so that he could control them in any way he liked. In this way he took over Sarasaland.

Now, he wants to marry Princess Daisy of Sarasaland and make her his queen.

Although released on the smaller monochrome portable brother to the NES, Super Mario Land is immediately recognisable as a Mario game. The merry tune is what hits you first after you press the start button, and once you make your first jump, any doubt you may have had that the Mario experience could not have been delivered on the Gameboy quickly fades away.

To be clear, any Super Mario fan will be able to list quite a few differences since the game targets a different sector of gamers on the move rather than the couch-sitters. The importance here is that the Gameboy with its limited hardware can have its own Mario game. The major downside, in fact, is that the game is quite short and leaves you wanting more.

Super Mario Land introduces the kingdom of Sarasaland, which obviously has a princess named Daisy who is abducted by the main villain Tatanga at the start of the game. So Mario has to travel to the end of this land, hopping his way on various platforms and enemies. In contrast with the other Mario games, here there are also a couple of shooter levels.

One other thing you might notice is that Sarasaland is similar to the locations back here on Earth, travelling to deserts with pyramid backdrops, underwater levels, tropical islands and oriental gardens. And the music ties in with each world’s theme, constantly accompanying you right till the fantastic score during the end-game credits.

Historically, this game has paved the way for platform gaming on the go. Some of its mechanics were experimental and not repeated again in the Mario games that have followed since. However, the bottom line is that Super Mario Land is a little pearl which is surely worth the few hours of your time to complete and put on your trophy case.


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