The Story of Super Mario All Stars: Special Edition! A Gaming History Retrospective DocumentaryNovember 15, 2022
The Story of Super Mario All Stars: Special Edition! A Gaming History Retrospective Documentary
In 1993, Nintendo took its greatest hits and made them even better.
GTV 123 “The Story of Super Mario All Stars” Season 7 Episode 1
Some games never go out of style, Case in point. Nintendo’s first entries in the Super Mario Bros. series. These games are well past the 30 year mark, and yet people still love them just as much as they did on the day these games came out. As great as this set is, their legacy still stands thanks in part to a clever strategy by Nintendo. It was all done in a way that seems like a foregone conclusion these days, but way back when was unheard of, and actually quite genius.
It’s a tale as old as time. Your favorite video games get old. New ones come out, and those favorites of yesteryear fade away. This generational change has been happening for decades now. Over time, this changing of the tides has solidified into a precise schedule: every 5-6 years for Nintendo, and 8-10 years for everyone else! While it is a standard practice these days, back in the Early 90s, things weren’t as orderly as they are now.
As the 1990s began, Nintendo had 3 product lines! The 8-bit Family Computer, the portable GameBoy and the 16-bit Super Famicom.
Generational shifts had happened before. In Japan, Sega, and Epoch before then, simply axed the older machine, and made a clean break for the next generation. Nintendo did opposite and kept the 8-bit line alive, alongside 16-bit. For while, this worked well, as fans began to migrate. Eventually, hardware sales, software sales, and software titles of the Super Famicom surpassed the older Family Computer. As the Super Famicom came to West as the Super NES, the same pattern followed. The NES was phased out, newer games came much less frequently. The older titles would fall out of print. While newer games were promoted.
During this changeover, new fans were coming along for the ride. A younger generation was coming up and entering gaming at 16-bit level.
That weird generational gap left Nintendo in a pinch! One on hand you had a new set of fans, who may have heard of Mario’s previous adventures, but without the older NES had no means to play them! Then you had all the old-timers who had nothing new to play! And if they wanted to take a trip through the “Groove Yard of Forgotten Hits” you had to dig out that old machine! And deal with old, outdated, 8-bit graphics!
In 1993, Nintendo finally answered everyone’s prayers with a special compilation. Something new and exciting. Something that, at the time, had never been done before. Nintendo took their past Super Mario Bros. games, remastered them for the 16-bit era, and sold them in one package. Super Mario Collection! Known in the West as Super Mario All-Stars.
Now everyone could enjoy all of Mario’s greatest hits, with improved graphics, sound, controls and other niceties that weren’t possible on 8-bit!