Tired of punching question blocks? Feeling sick after eating one too many mushrooms? The Super Mario franchise has been around for decades, so long that Mario’s not even a plumber anymore. However, while it’s probably time for Princess Peach to invest in some proper castle security, the games are still as exciting to play as they’ve always been. Just when you think the mustachioed Italian can do no more, he starts overtaking the bodies of his enemies in what’s either a revolutionary or profoundly disturbing new twist. While the franchise continues to be amazing, though, there are some games like Super Mario that are well worth checking out.
Games Like Super Mario
At heart, Super Mario is a platformer that’s not afraid to play outside of the lines. That’s exactly what these games do. Whether they’ve reinvented themselves over time or messed around with the platformer formula, there’s a lot of exciting (and tough) levels waiting ahead of you. Your thumbs are going to be sore after you try out these games like Super Mario.
Mario was already celebrating a decade of games before Crash Bandicoot came along. No platformer series has expanded and evolved like Super Mario as much as Crash Bandicoot, though. The franchise went from 2D and 3D platform style levels to more open world structures and even racing games. Where have we seen that before? Crash is now as beloved a character as Mario, which is why his original games have been remastered on new generation consoles. If you like making your way through fun but sometimes challenging levels, you’ll love playing Crash Bandicoot.
We’re still waiting for developers to announce they’re giving Croc the remake treatment. If you’re looking for a game with the nostalgia of some of the older Super Mario titles, look no further than this running, jumping crocodile. The 3D structure is reminiscent of some of Mario’s newer games, especially with the variety in level design. Croc also includes the platforming features that make Super Mario so addictive. You go through the levels finding collectibles which, when achieved, unlock new worlds and levels. It’s a completionists dream, and makes the Croc games similar to New Super Mario Bros. Wii, 3D World, and other modern titles.
What other hero can save the world without any arms? Rayman is the man when it comes to fighting his way to victory. Although the early games have a slightly darker tone, the new era of Rayman is a lot more welcoming to people of all ages. If you like Super Mario, you’ll like Rayman Origins and Legends. Not only because they’re goofy, but also because they aren’t a walk in a park. If you’ve ever tried to 100% complete a 2D Mario game, you’ll know there are some tough levels hidden beneath the surface. It’s the same with Rayman, so prepare to feel the rage.
Donkey Kong Country
He may have been Mario’s original nemesis, but Donkey Kong has found success in his own right. No longer an antagonist, Donkey Kong becomes a hero in his series of games that continue to be released today. You have the option to play with a friend in the Donkey Kong Series, although cooperation is a bit more essential than it is in Super Mario. This is not the game to play if you enjoy throwing your friends into pits. However, Donkey Kong Country is excellent if you love the Mario universe but want to test your platforming skills a little more. You’ll feel proud of yourself after making it to the end, trust us.
Mario’s ability to take over his enemies in Super Mario Odyssey might seem like a fresh new idea, but it’s something other franchises have played around with before. We’re looking at Kirby here. This pink ball of cuteness might seem innocent on the surface, but he’s not afraid to eat you if you get in his way. Kirby can suck in enemies and absorb their powers, which makes fighting the bad guys much easier. The animated world of the Kirby games is similar to Super Mario too, although we’d much rather face a Waddle Dee over a Goomba any day.
It can take you several months to make your way through all the games in the Super Mario franchise, and that’s without even completing them 100%. Luckily, if you’re still desperate for more afterward, we’ve got the best games like Super Mario to keep you going for a few extra months. The outside world can wait until you’ve become a platforming pro.