For over two decades, Super Mario Bros. was the best-selling video game of all time, before being outsold by Wii Sports in 2009. Excluding Game Boy Advance and Virtual Console sales, the game has sold 40.241 million copies worldwide. It was largely responsible for the initial success of the Nintendo Entertainment System, as well as ending the two-year slump of console game sales in the United States after the video game crash of 1983. As one of Shigeru Miyamoto and Takashi Tezuka's most influential early successes, it has inspired many clones, sequels, and spin-offs. Its theme music by Koji Kondo is recognized worldwide, even by those who have not played the game, and has been considered a representation for video game music in general.
Ah, what a long, strange trip down the ol' warp pipe it's been, amirite? Say -- did I ever tell you about how I convinced my brother that swimming into one of the pits on the first water level was a secret warp zone? He tried to choke me out with the controller cord!
Worthwhile skip-aroundable video of the history of Mario games after the jump.
Thanks to Shriibot and REFUKIn, who don't celebrate anniversaries because they're convinced they were invented by Hallmark just to sell more cards. I believe it.