Dr. Mario (game)

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Dr. Mario
DrMarioBox.jpg
NES box art.
DrMarioGBCover.jpg
Game Boy box art.
Developer(s) Nintendo R&D 1
Publisher(s) Nintendo
Platform(s) Famicom/NES, Game Boy, Arcade, Game Boy Advance, Satellaview, SNES/Super Famicom, Virtual Console (Nintendo 3DS, Wii U)
Release date NES/Famicom
Japan July 27, 1990
USA October, 1990
Europe June 27, 1991
Australia June 27, 1991
Nintendo Vs. System
Japan 1990
USA 1990
Australia 1990
Europe 1990
Nintendo PlayChoice-10
Japan 1990
USA 1990
Europe 1990
Australia 1990
Game Boy
Japan July 27, 1990
USA December, 1990
Europe April 30, 1991
Satellaview
Japan March 30, 1997
Super Famicom (NP)
Japan January 6, 1998[1]
Game Boy (NP)
Japan March 1, 2000
Game Boy Advance
Japan May 21, 2004
USA October 25, 2004
Europe January 7, 2005
Virtual Console (3DS)
Japan July 27, 2011
Europe March 22, 2012
Australia March 22, 2012
USA October 4, 2012
Virtual Console (Wii U)
Europe February 13, 2014
Australia February 14, 2014
Japan February 26, 2014
USA March 27, 2014
Genre Puzzle
Rating(s)
ESRB:ESRB E.svg - Everyone
PEGI:PEGI 3.svg - Three years and older
CERO:CERO A.png - All ages
ACB:ACB G.svg - General
Mode(s) 1-2 players
Media
Arcade:
Built-in
NES:
Media NES icon.png Cartridge
SNES:
Media SNES.png Cartridge
Media DL icon.svg Satellaview soundlink
Wii U:
Media DL icon.svg Digital download
Game Boy:
Media GB icon.png Cartridge
Game Boy Advance:
Media GBA icon.png Cartridge
Nintendo 3DS:
Media DL icon.svg Digital download
Input
NES:
Wii U:
Game Boy:
Game Boy Advance:
Nintendo 3DS:

Dr. Mario is an arcade-style puzzle video game created by Nintendo, and was released for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) and Game Boy in 1990. The gameplay is very similar to that of Tetris, although in Dr. Mario the object is to line up pills to destroy viruses.

Gameplay[edit]

Title Screen

All Dr. Mario games feature a large grid as the main game interface. This grid (in the shape of a large pill bottle) starts out partially filled with three types of viruses, Chill (blue), Fever (red), and Weird (yellow). The main objective of the game is to clear the grid of the viruses. This objective can be fulfilled with the help of multi-colored pills called Megavitamins. These pills are two-blocks wide and come in the same color as the viruses. Usually, they are sectioned off into two random colors, but occasionally contain only one random color. These pills are guided down the grid by the Player's +Control Pad. They can be rotated by the A Button. To eliminate a virus, four blocks of a color (pill or virus) must be piled up. The stack will then disappear. If a virus was contained in the stack, the virus will be eliminated as well.

If the stacks of pills or viruses reach the top of the grid, the player receives a Game Over.

Characters[edit]

Game modes[edit]

1-Player Game[edit]

Single player mode.

When a 1-Player game is started, the player can choose one of 20 levels (21 if counted level 0). The number of viruses is equal to the number of the level x4 plus 4. (For instance, if the player chose Level 5, the number of viruses would be 24.) The speed of the pills as they fall can also be selected: low, medium or high. As the game level progresses, though, the speed will gradually increase. If Level 20 is beaten, the playing field will still contain the same amount of viruses, although the level number will continue to increase.

2-Player Game[edit]

2-Player mode in action.

A 2-Player Vs. game mode is also available for selection. In this mode, two players battle to either clear their grid first, or cause their opponent to get a Game Over. The Level and Speed options are chosen independently by each player before the game begins.

During a two-player battle, whenever a row or column is cleared with one Megavitamin, a corresponding number (two, three, or the maximum, four) of randomized pill halves drops on to the opponent's grid. The player who is given the pill halves must wait for the random colors to drop onto their screen before they can drop a Megavitamin.

For the Game Boy version, a Game Link cable is required to play the 2-player Vs. game mode.

Reception[edit]

The Game Boy version of the game was placed 45th in the 100th issue of Nintendo Power's "100 best Nintendo games of all time" in 1997.[2] The NES version placed 69th in the 200th Issue of GameInformer's "Top 200 Games of All Times". The game placed 51st in IGN's Top 100 NES Games list[3].

Reviews for the game were generally positive , although there has been some criticism from parents about the medicine in a children's game. GameRankings gave the game 69.25%, while review aggregator Metacritic gave it a 66 out of 100 based on 10 reviews.
ACE, however, was more negative. Critics from ACE gave the Game Boy version 510/1000, criticizing the repetitive gameplay and uninspired graphics. They also stated that the game "reeks of plagarism", stating that it was worse than the original games it was modeled after.

Remakes and ports[edit]

Vs. Dr. Mario[edit]

The game was later released on the Nintendo Vs. System under the name Vs. Dr. Mario. This version drops the Slow mode and features a less generous scoring system. In the NES version, the first virus killed by a vitamin yields 200 points (on Normal mode), the second 400, the third 800, the fourth 1600. So each virus is worth twice as much as the last. In the Vs. version, the first virus is worth 200, then 400, then 600, then 800. So a virus is worth only 200 points more, and not twice as many points, as the previous virus.

Satellaview[edit]

A slightly altered version of Dr. Mario known as Dr. Mario BS Version 「Dr.マリオBS版」 was broadcast for the Satellaview system between March 1997 and June 2000. It has the same graphics and music that was used in the remake from Tetris & Dr. Mario which was not released in Japan. It should also be mentioned that the complete game is still in the ROM, just locked out.[4]

List of re-releases and Ports[edit]

Microgame[edit]

WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgame$! featured a Microgame version of Dr. Mario. There is also an unlockable mini game version entitled Dr. Wario.

Staff[edit]

Main article: List of Dr. Mario staff

External Links[edit]

http://www.ninsheetm.us/browse/series/SuperMario

References[edit]

  1. ^ Date info of Dr. Mario (NP) from TMK, retrieved 11/26/2012
  2. ^ http://www.gamekult.com/communaute/forum/voirmessage.html?foid=13000909, retrieved 5-31-2009
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ TCRF - Tetris & Dr. Mario#BS and NP Dr. Mario