Dr. Mario Online Rx

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"Virus Buster" redirects here. For the microgame from WarioWare: Get It Together!, see Virus Buster (microgame).
Dr. Mario Online Rx
Dr. mario online rx.jpg
Developer Arika
Nintendo SPD Group No. 2
Publisher Nintendo
Platform(s) Wii
Release date Japan March 25, 2008
Europe May 20, 2008
Australia May 20, 2008
USA May 26, 2008
Genre Puzzle
ESRB:E - Everyone
PEGI:3 - Three years and older
CERO:A - All ages
ACB:G - General
Mode(s) Single-player, 1-4 players simultaneous, multiplayer online
Digital download

Dr. Mario Online Rx (stylized as DR.MARIO online ℞ in the logo), known as Dr. Mario & Germ Buster in Europe and Australia, is the first WiiWare video game of the puzzle genre to be released for the Wii by Nintendo and the fourth main installment in the Dr. Mario series. The title features both traditional Dr. Mario gameplay in addition to Virus Buster, a mini-game from Brain Age 2: More Training in Minutes a Day! and Brain Age: Concentration Training. Germ Buster has been modified for motion-sensing control rather than stylus control.

The title cost 1,000 Wii Points to download in all regions.

Due to the closure of the Wii Shop Channel on January 30, 2019, Dr. Mario Online Rx is no longer available to purchase.


In both modes, the traditional goal of the Dr. Mario series carried over into this title. Players maneuver Capsules tossed into a glass jar in order to destroy the Viruses. In order for a virus to be destroyed, it must be connected with at least one capsule in a row or column of the same color, so that they form a column or row of at least four. Unlike previous entries, this is the first Dr. Mario game in which the score is not carried over to the next level, meaning that the score resets to zero whenever the player chooses to continue to the next level.

Dr. Mario[edit]

In this mode, the game plays similarly to the previous Dr. Mario games, where capsules are controlled by moving it left, right, or downwards, or even rotating it, using the buttons on the controller. In single player, Dr. Mario or the player's Miis tosses viruses into the glass jar. In multiplayer, the player's Mii in the save file represents the first player, while the second local player can select a Mii of their choice. For online battles, each player is represented by the Mii of their save file. In contrast to previous Dr. Mario games, the next three capsules are previewed, compared to previous games where only one capsule is in preview.

There are three modes in Dr. Mario:

  • Classic: In this mode, the player is tasked to eliminate all the viruses from their jar. The amount of viruses in the jar is dependent on the Level, in which it is 4 viruses at level 0 and an extra 4 viruses per extra level, so for example, 84 viruses will appear at the start of level 20. The amount of starting viruses maxes out at 96 viruses. In 2 player mode, the player can disrupt their opponent by clearing multiple lines in a single move, thereby sending multiple half-capsules (up to four of them) to the opponent based on the amount of lines cleared and the colors cleared in this process. After finishing level 5, 10, 15, or 20, a cutscene will be played, which is different between the Speed setting.
  • Vs. CPU: In this mode, the player can battle against a CPU player. Unlike 2-player Classic mode, the Speed cannot be adjusted for the CPU player, as the selection is replaced with the CPU Level, where it can be chosen between Easy, Normal, and Hard.
  • Flash: In this mode, each player is tasked to eliminate three specific viruses (one of each color) in the jar, indicated by them being lighter in color compared to the other viruses and blinking with white lights.

The music available in this mode is between Fever, Chill, Cough, and Sneeze, a random selection between the aforementioned four themes which can change in between levels, or to disable the music altogether.


In addition to the single-player mode, Dr. Mario features local and online multiplayer. The title took advantage of Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection for online matches between friends around the world. Players could download the multiplayer demo from a friend who owns the game, enabling players to compete when only one owns the title. Despite region encoding of the Wii, the multiplayer demo may be sent to a Wii system of a different region.

Virus Buster[edit]

In this mode, each player is required to eliminate all viruses from the jar. Unlike Dr. Mario, this mode can only be played with the Wii Remote. Up to four players can participate in this mode. In this mode, the interface is represented by multiple Miis fighting off a horde of viruses, where if the player(s) are performing well, the viruses will be pushed back, but if they are at a disadvantage, the Miis are the ones being pushed back. The difficulty determines not only how soon more capsules are added to the stage at once (up to three of them), but also the time it takes for each set of capsules to be added. Unlike the Dr. Mario mode, the preview only shows one next set of capsules, as opposed to three capsules.

Each player can grab a capsule by pointing to it, in order to move it (left, right, or down) or rotate it. There are some difference in which the capsules can be controlled, compared to the traditional Dr. Mario gameplay:

  • The amount of capsules that drop into the jar is increased the longer the game is played.
  • New capsules can be added even though the existing capsules have not landed yet. This is most evident at higher difficulties.
  • Half-capsules can be moved around if they are falling, especially after being broken due to making a capsule match with the other half.
  • Capsule pieces can be dragged so that they fit into gaps if there is room for them, even though there is something in between the capsule and the open space.
  • Capsules being controlled will not push down falling capsules.

Depending on the level, the starting amount of viruses are as follows:

Level Viruses Level Viruses Level Viruses Level Viruses Level Viruses
0 2 1 3 2 4 3 5 4 7
5 9 6 11 7 13 8 15 9 17
10 19 11 21 12 23 13 25 14 27
15 29 16 31 17 33 18 35 19 37
20 39 21 41 22 43 23 45 24+ 47

The music available in this mode is between a different variant of Fever or Chill, a random selection between the aforementioned two themes which can change in between levels, or to disable the music altogether.


Dr. Mario[edit]

  • +Control Pad / Nunchuk Control Stick / Classic Controller Left Stick / Control Stick / +Control Pad (left/right): Move capsule
  • +Control Pad / Nunchuk Control Stick / Classic Controller Left Stick / Control Stick / +Control Pad (down): Drop capsule
  • +Control Pad / Nunchuk Control Stick / Classic Controller Left Stick / Control Stick / +Control Pad (up): Quick drop capsule (requires enabling Quick Drop in options to do so)
  • Two Button / Nunchuk Z Button / Classic Controller a Button / A Button: Confirm selection in menu / Rotate capsule clockwise
  • One Button / Nunchuk C Button / Classic Controller b Button / B Button: Cancel selection in menu / Rotate capsule counterclockwise
  • Plus Button / START/PAUSE Button: Pause

Virus Buster[edit]

This mode is controlled using only the Wii Remote.

  • Wii Remote (pointer): Select capsule
  • Wii Remote + A Button: Rotate selected capsule clockwise
  • Wii Remote + B Button: Rotate selected capsule counterclockwise
  • Wii Remote + A Button / B Button (hold): Grab selected capsule
  • Wii Remote (move) + A Button / B Button (hold): Move the selected capsule
  • Plus Button: Pause

Wii Shop Channel description[edit]

The doctor is in! Mario takes a break from his adventuring ways and once again dons his stethoscope for a new generation of germ-battling mayhem. In addition to the classic mode of using vitamins to exterminate viruses, you'll find two battle modes and an online multiplayer mode where you can hone your skills against players from around the world. Feel like challenging a friend who doesn't have Dr. Mario Online Rx? Then the WiiWare-exclusive Friend Battle Demo is just what the doctor ordered. Or maybe you'd like some help taking on those nasty Viruses? Try out Virus Buster, where four players can simultaneously move capsules simply by pointing at them with a Wii Remote controller. Any way you look at it, Dr. Mario Online Rx is a prescription for fun that everyone can enjoy!



Release Reviewer, Publication Score Comment
Wii Sammy Barker, Nintendo Life 7/10 "Dr. Mario looks great, sounds great and plays great, just like the original did 18 years ago, and the inclusion of online multiplayer adds value. Newcomers to the series will be thrilled, but puzzle veterans may be a little disappointed. Dr. Mario was and still is a very, very good puzzle game and that fact remains unchanged here. If you're a fan of Tetris or puzzle games in general then you will be delighted with this game. If you already own a copy of Dr. Mario on NES, Game Boy, SNES or N64 then think twice before picking this up unless online multiplayer really floats your boat."
Wii Dan Whitehead, Eurogamer 7/10 "It's certainly a decent enough block-dropping puzzler, even if most people probably would've preferred Tetris. Or a Virtual Console release for the SNES Dr Mario and Tetris compilation. Either way, 1000 Points feels a bit steep."
Compiler Platform / Score
Metacritic 72
GameRankings 72.95%


Audio.svg Disc Channel
File infoMedia:Dr. Mario Online Rx Banner.mp3
Audio.svg Title
File infoMedia:DMOR Title.oga
Audio.svg Select
File infoMedia:DMOR Select.oga
Audio.svg Fever
File infoMedia:DMOR Fever.oga
Audio.svg Chill
File infoMedia:DMOR Chill.oga
Audio.svg Cough
File infoMedia:DMOR Cough.oga
Audio.svg Sneeze
File infoMedia:DMOR Sneeze.oga
Audio.svg Stage Clear (1-19)
File infoMedia:DMOR Stage Clear 1-19.oga
Audio.svg Stage Clear (20+)
File infoMedia:DMOR Stage Clear 20+.oga
Audio.svg Lose
File infoMedia:DMOR Lose.oga
Audio.svg VS Victory
File infoMedia:DMOR VS Victory.oga
Audio.svg Virus Buster - Fever
File infoMedia:DMOR Virus Buster Fever.oga
Audio.svg Virus Buster - Fever (Danger)
File infoMedia:DMOR Virus Buster Fever Danger.oga
Audio.svg Virus Buster - Chill
File infoMedia:DMOR Virus Buster Chill.oga
Audio.svg Virus Buster - Chill (Danger)
File infoMedia:DMOR Virus Buster Chill Danger.oga
Audio.svg Congratulations
File infoMedia:DMOR Congratulations.oga
Audio.svg Credits
File infoMedia:DMOR Credits.oga
Help:MediaHaving trouble playing?


Main article: List of Dr. Mario Online Rx staff

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese Dr.Mario&細菌撲滅
Dokutā Mario ando Saikin Bokumetsu
Dr. Mario & Bacteria Extermination

Italian Dr. Mario & Sterminavirus
Dr. Mario & Virus-buster


  • Virus Buster in its original form was designed to help players relax instead of training their brains in Brain Age 2. It even includes relaxing arrangements of the classic Dr. Mario music.
  • In the Virus Buster game, if the player presses A Button while their cursor is on a Mii while in game, it will say something such as, "Good luck, Dr. Mario!" or "The more bitter the medicine, the better!" Sometimes, the Miis will tell the player information concerning the actual gameplay, such as how many minutes have passed and how many capsules they've thrown. If the player presses A Button while their cursor is on a Virus, it smiles to the front.

External links[edit]