Mario Bros. [No. TMA1-UP]

The Arcade Video Game by Nintendo Co., Ltd.

Mario Bros. [No. TMA1-UP] screenshot


Emulated in MAME ! Coin-Operated Arcade Video Game

Mario Bros. © 1983 Nintendo.

Mario Bros. is a superb, single-screen platform game in which the legendary "Mario Bros.", Mario and Luigi, must try to rid each level of a number of pests that have infested the waterworks : Shellcreepers (turtles), Sidesteppers (crabs that need to be hit twice) and Fighterflies (flies that can only be attacked when they touch a platform).

Players can jump upwards to hit the platform above them, which will 'flip' any enemies on the above platform onto their backs. The prone enemies can then be kicked into the water to remove them. A 'POW' button also appears on a number of screen; this can be 'butted' by a player, causing all on-screen enemies to flip onto their backs; as well as destroying any enemy fireballs that may be around. Each POW can only be used a maximum of three times.

As well as the game's enemies, players are also hampered by the huge amount of inertia that comes into play when controlling Mario or Luigi. This is due to the low degree of traction that exists between the Mario brothers and the platforms. On later phases, ice appears on the platforms reducing the amount of traction even further. As the game progresses, water droplets hang below the platforms and freeze into deadly icicles, which will eventually break off and fall.


Mario Bros. [No. TMA1-UP] the  Arcade Video Game
Click to enlarge
(members only)
Game No. TMA1-UP

Main CPU : Zilog Z80 (@ 3.072 Mhz)
Sound CPU : I8039 (@ 730 Khz)
Sound Chips : DAC

Players : 2
Control : 2-way joystick (LEFT, RIGHT)
Buttons : 1 (JUMP)


Mario Bros. was released in March 1983 in Japan.

Shigeru Miyamoto was inspired to make "Mario Bros." a two-player game after seeing Williams' 1982 platform game, "Joust". This would in turn lead to the creation of Mario's brother, Luigi.

Mario Bros. was the first platform game designed entirely around its eponymous hero, Mario, and his brother, Luigi. Although the plumber had, of course, been featured in the first two games in the legendary "Donkey Kong" series, the game's simple-yet-involving gameplay only hinted at the greatness that was to follow for both Mario and Nintendo itself.

The Mario character would soon become Nintendo's mascot; and while the plumber's arcade outings would be few and far between, Mario would prove to be at the cornerstone of the massive critical and commercial success Nintendo would subsequently enjoy. The "Mario Bros." arcade game also saw the introduction of Mario's brother Luigi, named after a pizzeria that was situated near the then-new Washington headquarters of Nintendo of America, called "Mario and Luigi's".

Despite being released at the time of the infamous videogame industry collapse of 1983, when smaller arcade companies, such as Centuri (U.S. manufacturer of titles such as "Gyruss", "Pleiades", "Phoenix" and "Time Pilot"), simply went out of business, and even industry giants such as Atari, Konami and Taito, saw a drastic reduction in arcade revenue, Mario Bros. was a huge success and would provide a firm foundation for Nintendo to make a move into the home console market for which they are now known.

The musical introduction at the beginning of the game is the first movement of Mozart's "Eine Kleine Nachtmusik".

A variation of the game was featured in the NES/Famicom title "Super Mario Bros. 3" as the two-player Battle Mode, accessed when both brothers occupy the same spot on the world map.

An updated version of the game was featured in all four volumes of "Super Mario Advance" for the Game Boy Advance, under the title "Mario Bros. Classic".

The stage layout for Mario Bros. is used as an unlockable stage in "Super Smash Bros. Brawl" for the Nintendo Wii.

Default high score table :
1ST 012000 AKI
2ND 009000 CHI
3RD 008000 SEI
4TH 005400 NAO
5TH 003200 IYO

Perry Rodgers holds the official record for this game with 3,481,550 points.

A Mario Bros. units appears in the 1986 movie 'Over the Top'.

On December 9, 2003, the Hollywood Wax Museum announced the first ever video game character to ever be put to wax : Mario.

Known bootleg/hack releases :
"Pest Place"


The Japanese version features an extra life every 30,000 points, compared with only one free life per game in the English version.

The Japanese version features three all-Shellcreeper phases before the first Bonus Phase, instead of two. In the English version, you have to kick off three Shellcreepers in Phase 1, and six in Phase 2. In the Japanese version, you have to take care of three Shellcreepers in Phase 1, four in Phase 2, and six in Phase 3.


Scoring in this game is relatively simple. It is based on how many critters you knock off the ledges :
Shellcreeper : 800 points
Sidestepper : 800 points
Fighterfly : 800 points

Knocking over an enemy : 10 points

The above scores are for knocking only one critter off the ledge. If you knock off two in a row, you get 1,600 points. Three nets you 2,400 points while knocking four or more off in a row garners you 3,200 points.

You also get points for things other than the above :
Slipice : 500 points
Coin : 800 points
Red Fireball : 1,000 points
Blue Fireball : 200 points

In addition to getting points for the above, you also can get points during the Bonus Phases :
1) You get 800 points x the number of coins you gather.
2) If you get all ten coins, you get 5,000 points in the first Bonus Phase and 8,000 points for each Bonus Phase thereafter.


• When you start a game, you will be in the middle almost under the POW button. Your job is to go after the critters entering from the upper left or right pipe. Learn how to jump not only up, but also sideways. The platforms don't have a lot of room for jumping straight up. You need to learn how to jump sideways so you can quickly make it to the next platform. This is both for running and standing still.

• Know how each of the critters moves and what their behavior is. You can use this knowledge to your advantage. For example, an easy way to take care of Sidesteppers is as follows (assume that critter is moving left. Do the opposite of what is stated below if the critter is moving right) :
1) When they are just to the right of Mario or Luigi, jump up and hit the platform. This will make the Sidestepper mad and it will move left again.
2) Right when it passes over, hit it again. This will launch it up and make it drop to the next platform for easy pickings.

• As often as possible, try to kill critters in groups. Any critter killed is worth 800 points (plus the 800 point bonus coin). If you kill two critters in a short time (approx 1 second), the first is still only worth 800, but the second critter is worth 1,600 points, not just 800. For three critters, the points are 800-1,600-2,400. For four critters, the points are 800-1,600-2,400-3,200. The point value for a killed critter is never more than 3,200. So if you were to kill 5 at once, the fourth and fifth critters would both be worth 3,200.

• Also remember that unlike the fireballs, the critters can wrap around the screen. So if one disappears off the left edge, be prepared for it to reappear on the right edge.

• Use the POW button conservatively. You only get three uses before it disappears, so plan those uses wisely. The best time to use the POW is when a lot of critters are on the screen at one time. In addition, make sure they are close to the bottom when you flip them over or you may not have time to knock them off the upper platforms. The POW button is fully restored at the start of the second and subsequent Bonus Phases.

• After you flip a critter over, you have about five seconds to knock it off the platform. If you fail to do this, it will change color and speed up.

• If the last critter in a phase is a Shellcreeper or a Sidestepper, it will automatically go to its fastest pace; if it is a Fighterfly, it will continue at its current pace.

• Learn how the critters move. If they bump into each other, a coin, or Slipice, they will reverse direction. You can work this to your advantage by trapping some critters between two flipped over critters. Again, be quick or they will recover and be faster.

• Coins can be collected by either grabbing them or by hitting them from under the platform they are traveling on.

• Things such as the Fighterfly, Red Fireball, and Green Fireball must be hit when they are in contact with the platform. This can make these things a challenge especially when there are other things harassing you.

• Speaking of the fireballs, some players hunt them for extra points. There are some things to keep in mind :
1) The more times you knock off the Red Fireball, the faster it gets.
2) You can escape off either edge to escape the fireballs. They cannot wrap around the screen.
3) As you get into the later phases, the Green Fireballs appear much quicker so you must be ready to get out of their way.
4) Only one Green Fireball will be active at a time, however, when one ends the other can immediately begin.

• If you get killed, you will be placed on a platform above the first gap. You have ten seconds of invincibility before the platform disappears and puts you in the thick of things. Plan your re-entry carefully.

• The Bonus Phases appear at Phase 3, Phase 8, and every 7 phases thereafter (for the Japanese version, add 1 to the phase number), and are pretty easy once you get a pattern down. In the first Bonus Phase, you will have 20 seconds to get the ten bonus coins. However, in later Bonus Phases, you will only have 15 seconds.

• The later phases become challenging because not only do you have critters to deal with, but after the second Bonus Phase, Slipice will appear in search of a location to plant itself and freeze a platform. Until it manages to completely freeze the platform, the brothers may interrupt it and punch it from underneath. The platform will only remain frozen if Slipice has been given enough time to do its work. After the third Bonus Phase, Icicles begin to form on the underside of the highest platform and the pipes that sit above it. They will fall down from the upper platform and pipes to add to the hazards you already have to deal with. Using the POW button will knock them down before they do any damage.

• When you are playing a two-player game, both Mario and Luigi are on the screen at the same time. (In a one-player game, Mario is on his own.) It is up to the players as to whether they wish to cooperate or turn it into a death match.


1. Mario Bros. [No. TMA1-UP] (1983)
2. Super Mario Bros. [Model HVC-SM] (1985, Famicom)
3. Super Mario Bros. 2 [Model FMC-SMB] (1986, Famicom)
4. Super Mario Bros. 3 [Model HVC-UM] (1988, Famicom)
5. Super Mario Land [Model DMG-MLA] (1989, Game Boy)
6. Super Mario World - Super Mario Bros. 4 [Model SHVC-MW] (1991, Super Famicom)
7. Super Mario Land 2 - 6-tsu no Kinka [Model DMG-L6J] (1992,Game Boy)
8. Wario Land - Super Mario Land 3 [Model DMG-WJA] (1993, Game Boy)
9. Super Mario - Yossy Island [Model SHVC-YI] (1995, Super Famicom)
10. Super Mario 64 (1997, Nintendo 64)
11. Super Mario Sunshine (2002, Gamecube)
12. Yoshi's Island DS (2006, DS)
13. New Super Mario Bros. (2006, DS)
14. Super Mario Galaxy (2007, Wii)
15. New Super Mario Bros. Wii [Model RVL-SMNJ-JPN] (2009, Wii)
16. Super Mario Galaxy 2 (2010, Wii)
17. Super Mario 3D Land (2011, 3DS)
18. New Super Mario Bros. 2 (2012, DS)
19. New Super Mario Bros. U (2012, Wii U)
20. New Super Luigi U (2013, Wii U)
21. Super Mario 3D World (2013, Wii U)


Designed & programmed by : Shigeru Miyamoto
Music by : Hirokazu Tanaka
Produced by : Gunpei Yokoi


NOTE: For ports released in North America, please see the North American version entry; "Mario Bros. [No. TMA1-UP-US]".


Nintendo Famicom japan (sept.9, 1983) "Mario Bros. [Model HVC-MA]"
Nintendo NES europe (sept.1, 1986) "Mario Bros. [Model NES-MA]"
Nintendo NES europe (1993) "Mario Bros. [Classic Series] [Model NES-MC-NOE]"


NEC PC-8801 japan (1984) "Mario Bros. Special"
NEC PC-8801 japan (1984) "Punch Ball Mario Bros" : featuring small balls of colors red or green that Mario and Luigi can kick into the enemies to stun them instead of hitting them from below.
Commodore C64 europe (1984)
Commodore C64 europe (1987)
Amstrad CPC europe (1987)
Sinclair ZX Spectrum europe (1987)

Game's ROM.
Game's picture.
F.A.Q. by Kevin Butler A.K.A. War Doc

Page last modified on January 10, 2015