Nintendo 64x64

1/64

1996

Super Mario 64

"The most sublime platformer and yet considered Nintendo / Mario's peak; Mario games never really replicating that unparalleled innovation again. Free-roaming worlds to explore truly gave the gamer control over the game's destiny. A perfect control system and camera demonstrated the console's capabilities from its release, setting the bar ultra-high. The sheer scale of locations, collectables, secrets made this incomparable to anything at the time."

10/10 - Steven Smith 64

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User Reviews (43)

"I still remember when I first saw the game at a toy store when I was a kid. Seeing Mario being able to take off, just by jumping three times, and then you were free to roam an open world full of magic. I would fly around every fly cap level all the time and still do whenever I play it! It is simply a masterpiece!"

10/10 - MIDP 64

"I think it's worth noting that with the introduction of high quality midi sound effects and music, the Mushroom Kingdom was brought one step closer to being the living, breathing environment that Miyamoto and friends had always imagined. Playing the game in surround sound is nothing short of surreal. I remember sneaking up to a sleeping Piranha Plant always being such a sensory experience."

10/10 - bahooney 64

"The first game I encountered for the Nintendo 64 (not the first I owned). For Mario's big leap into 3D, it was everything I could have hoped for. Large worlds, intense action and complex challenges awaited. All set to very memorable music. Finally collecting all 120 Power Stars despite a worn controller is one of my proudest achievements. It truly was an unforgettable experience."

10/10 - TwilightV 64

"One of the greatest, most effective and ambitious launch titles for any console, and a landmark for gaming. It brings a tightly controlled sense of freedom and fun to the table that remains unrivalled by many modern gaming experiences. Only under modern scrutiny does a flawed camera system and a lackluster final third become apparent, but the good far outweighs the bad here. Essential."

8/10 - Sammycrow 64

"The late 90s were to gaming what the late 60s were to music. Super Mario 64 is the zenith of that innovative period in gaming history. It is hard to imagine how a single video game could have that kind of impact again. To continue the analogy, the entry into 3D gaming was akin to guitars going electric. However, the most important ingredient was charm."

10/10 - Franklin 64

"As a revolutionary title, Super Mario 64 defined 3D Mario games and set the standard for even some future Nintendo games! While others may find it impossible to look past the not-so-aged-well graphics, true Nintendo fans see quality level design, hear a great soundtrack, and experience an amazing Mario adventure. It's hard not to appreciate all Mario 64 did for the Mario platforming genre and Nintendo."

9/10 - DBPirate 64

"While “Super Mario 64” isn’t the best game to be released on the N64, I can easily agree that it’s a classic! For being one of Mario’s first 3D games, the controls worked perfectly and this game shows a 2D to 3D transition can work. Music, fantastic as well! Still a blast to play today and a game that should be in your collection!"

8/10 - RadioShadow 64

"This game had more bits than any console game that came before it. It was a game so good that people were willing to invest in a console with a library of only 3 games just to play it. It still pains Sonic fans to see how superior Mario's transition into 3D was. It has aged but was close to perfection in its day."

8/10 - Nintenjoe64 64

"It' s hard to express how much I loved this game so much so like a certain other game I bought it's remake years later. The worlds were amazing, the controls were perfect, and the music everything was just again perfect! Like many nintendo fans this one dominated my childhood and it's easy to see why. If you find this buy it! Trust me."

10/10 - traceman 64

"This game alone proved to me that 3D platformers could actually work and be fun. It was a candy store for any Mario fan with all the level themes from previous games realized in glorious 3D. I actually prefer this game over all the 2D offerings, and consider it in the top 5 games of all time. It was polished, varied and extremely fun."

10/10 - TRON 64

"The moment I accidentally jumped off the bridge of Peach's castle and didn't die, was when I understood games would never be the same anymore. While everyone else was experimenting, Nintendo gave us the standard of the future. The revolution this game brought is undeniable, it became a genre tself. It worked great, it looked great, the controls were tight, and it was fun."

10/10 - Twilight_Crow 64

"Super Mario 64 represents more an experience than a video game for those old enough to have began gaming life in the 16-bit era. 3D landscapes oozing with magical charm, a host of aerodynamic controls, sublime camera work and a lush rippling painting concept. Wow. As a transition from 2D to 3D, this is an utterly mind-blowing design. An unforgettable benchmark and creative masterpiece."

10/10 - YoshiTails 64

"Super Mario 64 is one of the greatest N64 titles, bringing Mario to a new generation and a whole new dimension. Though the controls are clunky by today's standards, this game's camera control, gameplay, and levels were revolutionary. Frustrating but addicting, it was, and is, easy to sink hours into the game looking for stars. I still haven't gotten all the stars... one day..."

10/10 - ZBomber 64

"Super Mario 64. I have such fond memories of this game. To me, it will always be the best Mario game ever created. Exploring various environnement in 3D, as a kid, was a magical experience. Controls, the world design, the music is still very good even to today's standards. Even today, in my opinion, it aged pretty well. Many people still enjoy this masterpiece."

10/10 - Lebon14 64

"I like Banjo Kazooie much more because of the humor and personality, but it could not have been made without Mario 64. It was a very good adaptation from a sidescroller series (unlike DK64), without losing much in the progress. It felt exactly like a Mario title, complete with good controls. And it set the benchmark for future free-roaming platformers. Not that easy either"

6/10 - Henmii 64

"More than just one of the Best Mario Platformers out there.It's one of the best platformers ever made. Brilliant level design, Great controls, and Great Power-Ups are just some of the things that make Mario's N64 Endeavor so amazing. And as recent studies show, MARIO 64 MAKES YOU MORE INTELLIGENT!!! So parents cant say video games make you stupid! How cool is that guys?"

9/10 - Whydoievenbother 64

"The thing about Mario 64 is that you CANNOT dislike it. It's got a charming art style, the levels are creative, it's got an amazing hub world, and not only did it bring Mario to the third dimension, but it revolutionized 3D gaming. My only problem is the music gets old after a while, but it's still a good game. If you haven't, play it."

10/10 - NintendoFan64 64

"An amazing game for its time, even though certain other games during this game's time did things better than this game. The graphics for this game were good, although today that's not the case. The gameplay was great, the exploration was amazing, the music was awesome, and the game was a bit challenging at times, but still easy. This game is just simply amazing."

9/10 - Yellowtails 64

"I remember the first time I ever loaded up my Nintendo 64 with the Super Mario 64 cartridge in, the excitement was overwhelming. As soon as Mario's face loaded up on my screen and I could pull at it and make Mario "look all funny" I knew I was in for something special. Once Mario jumped out of that pipe I was blown away!"

10/10 - Aussiephoenix83 64

"Breathtaking, the only word I can use to describe the first time I saw that portly red plumber take his first jump into the 3D realm. The graphics may be a bit dated by now, but the environments always manage to put a smile on my face. The music here is nothing short of outstanding too and it never ceases to suck me in."

10/10 - MrArcade 64

"The masterpiece called Super Mario 64 isn't a game; it's pure magic in cartridge form. From the moment I booted up the game until I saw Yoshi on the castle roof, I realized that I was playing something special. No other Mario game before (and in my opinion after) made me feel like that I wasn't just playing as Mario, but that I WAS Mario."

10/10 - Knux 64

"I remember riding my bike to a local game shop that had a n64 and Mario before it was released in the states. It blew my mind just wandering around outside the castle and jumping in water. Then actually playing the game brought it to another level! Easily top 10 games of all time. Not best Mario though that award goes to smb3. Word."

10/10 - TheBigHamlin 64

"The simple step into a breathtaking world of three-dimensional gaming would be acceptable enough, but Nintendo took it one step further by establishing many core ideas of the series. Combining new and expansive worlds, many hidden stars and a unique gameplay style for the time, Nintendo blew us away and inspired the masses. Today, few experiences can replicate the innovation it brought to games."

10/10 - ValiantPixel 64

"Mario 64 is a game that couldn't possibly come from anyone other than Nintendo, the game has such high standards that there are a lot of recent games that look so boring and dull in comparison. Mario 64 shows what games are supposed to be. Fun, great gameplay and a brilliant soundtrack. If you've never played Mario 64 before then start playing it now."

10/10 - thebigN 64

"In Super Mario 64, you traverse many worlds to collect Super Stars, which open up more areas to explore. The levels are great, the controls are smooth, and there's a lot of freedom compared to other Mario games. The game was also a technological marvel, as there was nothing else like it at the time. It's my favorite 3D Mario game, and an all-time classic."

9/10 - PurinPuff 64

"For everything it achieved at the time of release; stunning 3D graphics, revolutionary 3D controls, brilliant level design, a fully realised 3D game world... I give it 10/10. By today's standards the graphics are very basic but still bold and colourful. The controls still feel really nice. The camera has some obvious issues. Still great but not ming boggling. I give it 8/10. Overall..."

9/10 - Kirk 64

"No other game will likely feel as innovative to me as this game. It had surprises around every corner. With Mario Galaxy however, I realized that some of the groundwork Mario 64 built for Ocarina came at the expense of some of the fundamental appeal of the 2D Mario games. If I had to choose, I'd pick Galaxy's rapid bursts of linear straightforward fun."

9/10 - VGScrapbook 64

"While Super Mario 64's levels aren't as huge as they seemed to be back in the 90's, it's still a blast to play trough them. Transferring 2D game to 3D world has never since been done as well. Nintendo currently has a void of these kind of games. It's time to give a break for those linear levels and make something like SM64 again."

10/10 - Luffymcduck 64

"Super Mario 64 changed what I thought gaming could be. I have never been wowed the same way that I was in 1996 when, for the first time, I laid my eyes upon Peach's Castle and was given the freedom to explore a truly 3D environment. With this one game, Miyamoto showed all other developers what video games in 3D should be. It was embodied innovation."

10/10 - bizcuthammer 64

"Today's gamers will never be able to truly appreciate the joy of stepping into your first 3D world and having it be the magical one of the Mushroom Kingdom. The jump from 2D to this could not have been done better. An amazing world to explore, and one still fun reliving to this day. SM64 should be required play for any Nintendo fan. Masterpiece."

10/10 - XCWarrior 64

"Super Mario 64 is my favorite game of all time with its levels, music,secrets and the awesome gameplay and replay value! Its something that I will never forget what a platform game can be if it were in 3D and Super Mario 64 does that perfectly! A true Master piece for the N64. Even the remake is well done and even better! Get N! "

10/10 - Socar 64

"As a modern game, it struggles against games with superior audiovisuals and gameplay. It was very innovative. This is down to the era - at the time, how to make a 3D platform was a tough question. Nintendo showed that it could be done in absolutely sterling fashion, thus, it was innovative, even revolutionary. But that means no game will match its innovation again, ever."

8/10 - Terry93D 64

"My review is filled with nostalgic memories, with the N64 being the first console I ever owned. I remember booting it up the first time, and instantly grabbing ahold of me with it's whimsical 3D environments, tight navigational control afforded by the new analogue stick, and one of the most memorable soundtracks in gaming. This is without a doubt one of gaming's finest achievements."

10/10 - Lunapplebloom 64

"I love the open world nature of it. You can pick and choose, not only stars, but the route to get them. It allowed for great replayability and is probably the reason that people can play it time and time again. Minor camera issues aside (it is after all a problem inherent in the genre), Mario 64 is pretty much a perfect Mario game."

10/10 - SyntheticPerson 64

"Nintendo has managed to set the bar way too high with this one. From the tight, responsive controls to the well-made camera, the cheerful music, the eye-popping graphics, the big, colorful, living scenery, the timeless, fantastic gameplay and of course the vast amount of unique objectives, this game has it all. In fact, Super Mario 64 can only be described with the word "Masterpiece"."

10/10 - Truner 64

"The first game I bought for N64. I remember feeling as though I should crane my neck to peer into the tv. The mushroom kingdom truly came alive for the first time in this game. I climbed to the top of the mountain in babomb fields often to fly as Mario! Swinging Bowser by his tail in a 3d environment was so incredibly satisfying."

10/10 - Shworange 64

"I remember first playing this and it completely blowing my mind. I had this massive new world to explore at my fingertips. Amazing. The soundtrack still hasn't been beaten to this day and brings back the happiest memories every time I hear one of its gorgeous tracks. I remember exploring each level at great depth and just being completely sucked in by the game."

10/10 - dinosauryoshi 64

"Super Mario 64 is a masterpiece. One of the first games I ever played, it's audiovisual aesthetics and great sense of agency wonder me even to this day. I know all the levels like the tops of my feet; they are that memorable. Everyone who wants to make games should play this. Simply put, Super Mario 64 is living proof that good games last."

10/10 - Soopaman 64

"This game does a lot. What it does, it does in truly amazing ways. The graphics and level design are great, but the gameplay makes this game what it is- Super Mario 64. Now, I won't say it's perfect. *cough* Wet Dry World *cough* However, it is a masterpiece. Oh yeah, how could I forget the glitches? Don't worry, only make the game better."

10/10 - Petraplexity 64

"On my 6th Birthday I got a Nintendo 64 and I was overwhelmed. Super Mario 64 was unlike anything I had ever seen before. It was love at first sight and the sheer joy of controlling Mario was instant. Nintendo had not only invented the 3D platformer as we know it, but perfected it on their first try. A timeless classic that I love to (64) bits!"

10/10 - Squashy 64

"SM64 was the first, and only, time that I saw ordinary members of the non-gaming public stop in their tracks to watch a videogame running on a demo podeyes would widen and jaws drop, giving way to broad grins. From Charles Martinet's voice to controlling Mario's wild acrobatics, no other game has encapsulated fun in quite the same way. A work of genius."

10/10 - FritzFrapp 64

"This game is almost as legendary as the plumber himself. Super Mario 64 delivers a concentrated and near perfect stream of game and level design the likes of which are hard to match - even in the present day! It's fun yet challenging structure helps it appeal to both Mario newcomers and veterans alike, and every moment is a joy to behold. A wonderful Masterpiece."

10/10 - GreenGaming 64

"What can be said that hasn't been said already? This game's a masterpiece, a fine piece of work that can easily be hailed as classic. I am not the sort who plans on having children, but if I were, this is the game they would be shown to remind them that video games are not just toys, but an art form, pure and simple."

10/10 - SurferClock 64

Comments (19)

ValiantPixel

I can't wait to read the rest of the responses

Donutman

N64 was by far my fav gaming console period. Countless sleepless nights in high school and college playing smash, bond, perfect dark, turok 2, omg I can continue. Most of these games are still better today then most AAA games. I have a feeling that I'll end up buying anther off eBay once a few more off these articles bring out more nostalgia.

Shworange

This is a pretty cool idea. Can't wait to see the next games that pop up.

Knux

Awesome idea! I would love to see more stuff like this!

SyntheticPerson

Super Mario 64 remains my favourite game of the series. I love the open world nature of it. You can pick and choose, not only stars, but the route in which to gain the stars. It allowed for great replayability and is probably the reason that people can play it time and time again. Minor camera issues aside (it is after all a problem inherent in the genre), Mario 64 is pretty much a perfect Mario game.

NintendoFan64

Now to just wait until the next game. But seriously, either you like Mario 64, or you get shot. That's basically it's quality in a nutshell.

dinosauryoshi

Awesome idea. I'm looking forward to the next 63 games!

MrArcade

This is great, really enjoyed writing my review.

zool

I understand that the castle has been renovated and is full of new paintings.

Will someone tell Nintendo.

Socar

I hope Star Fox 64 gets in the list cause that game too was revolutionary for its time!

Aussiephoenix83

This is a great idea! Love sharing my thoughts about Mario 64 in 64 words exactly!!

Sherman

Thank you for this, guys. This is gonna be great. One of the best things I've seen here in Nintendolife.

sketchturner

No system's games could ever surpass the fond memories I have with the N64.

VGScrapbook

I agree that this feature is a brilliant idea. It's fun to read concise thoughts on a game as well as a fun challenge to write my own feelings about each game. It would be cool to have some sort of barometer on what each score signifies. I personally like to use a scale where 5/10 represents 'average, nothing special, but not too painful to play'. I bet my scores will be lower than the average.

Yellowtails

Super Mario 64 was a great game for its time and still fun to play today.

ErrantEmbers

Having recently replayed Super Mario 64 for the 4th or 5th time, I can safely say it is a timeless classic that is still one of the best and most innovative games ever created. It truly stands the test of time and is every bit as great today as it was 18 years ago. 10/10

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