I will incriminate myself here, albeit mildly, in saying that I first played Dr. Mario via an emulator. Shock! I’m one of 20 people who have used an emulator. Shame on me.
I have a reason or excuse Your Honour: I was living overseas, couldn’t understand the lingo and at that time, my wife wouldn’t let me get a console (plus I wouldn’t have been able to comprehend at that time anyway). So, rather than pack up my collection of games and machines with the wrong power supply, I played an online emulator and Dr. Mario was one of them.
Dr. Mario is if Tetris and Columns had a baby and the midwife was an Italian plumber named Mario, who is an expert in mushrooms. Perhaps not the best environment to raise a child but this baby flourished into a beautiful human being.. er.. I mean game. Dr. Mario is a great game – I still love it. But it’s a little deceiving: Mario isn’t a qualified doctor. But he’s better than Yoshi.
Your body, specifically yours and nobody (geddit – ‘body’) else’s is made up of cells, tissue and biscuits. In that wonderful body of yours are bacteria, germs – baddies. Now before you try to get a GP appointment and look in every orifice in the meantime, this is normal – it’s what makes you, and I (mostly), a human bean. But sometimes these baddies get a bit big for their boots and multiply and make you feel a bit off. This is called getting sick. See, while Mario isn’t a real doctor, I have educated you and I haven’t even taken a single medical class. Amazing.
To make you feel better, you take medicine, the milk from a dandelion, read poetry written by a duck or see a doctor. But you don’t need any of that as Mario, rather, Dr. Mario will help you. Just bung some medicine at the germs and that will kill them off. He’ll just keep throwing pills your way and when inside, just match up the colour pills with the colour of the germ. Match a block of 4 and the germ will die. That’s why he’s now a doctor.
This simple premise, like Tetris, Columns and even Puyo-Puyo is awesome. It’s incredibly addictive and arguably the best NES soundtrack aside from Super Mario Bros. I could happily listen to it for a long time, but don’t expect it to be on my Spotify playlist. The longest time I’ve played it would be an hour or two – based on a planned ‘5 minute game’. It’s a little like YouTube: you have the good intention of a timed session but get wrapped up in the moment. Thankfully, there are no cat videos in Dr. Mario.
At some stage, I’m going to write a top something list of favourite games. It won’t help you make a purchasing decision as NES Online as it is included in your membership, nor will I persuade you to my way of thinking – these are just my opinions and waffle to get it out my system and perhaps entertain you for 2 or 3 minutes of your life.
If I were to write a list on top NES games however, I would have to include this as one of my favourites. Top 10 – maybe even top 3? Saying that maybe I will start making some lists. It will keep me out of mischief, and maybe – just maybe, keeping busy will prevent me from getting any illnesses where I have to ask Dr. <ahem> Mario for his help.