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Super Mario Brothers is Getting Harder

Huh, this is sort of interesting. Apparently Nintendo has been making games easier in part because it finds people can no longer beat the 1st level to the original Super Mario Brothers. From Nintendo PresidentĀ Satoru Iwata:

It may come as a shock to some of you that most gamers today can not finish the original Super Mario Brothers game on the Famicom. We have conducted this test over the past few years to see how difficult we should make our games and have found that the number of people unable to finish the first level is steadily increasing. This year, around 90 percent of the test participants were unable to complete the first level of Super Mario Brothers. We did not assist them in any way except by providing the exact same instruction manual we used back then. Many of them did not read it and the few that did stopped after the first page which did not cover any of the game mechanics.

UPDATE (7/7/13): As Rafi points out in the comments, it looks like this is satirical. One of the other stories on the site isĀ CHILDREN WHO PICK A SIDE IN CONSOLE WARS ARE 90 PERCENT MORE LIKELY TO JOIN A GANG. Sorry about that.

July 4, 2013 // This post is about: , , ,


  • Laurent Raufaste says:

    Interesting or depressing ?

  • Barbara says:

    Wow, that’s sad and scary. If it wasn’t for Super Mario, I’d never have gone back to school to study education. When I couldn’t figure out how you got from level to level (while remaining thoroughly engaged), I needed to know why school wasn’t capturing your imagination in the same way. Now kids aren’t even trying? So they’re dumbing down the game? Someone should tell the Nintendo folk that that strategy has proven disastrous for schools!

  • Elenor says:

    I wonder if the operative issue here is the fact that they had to read the directions. As someone who hates to read directions, I sympathize. Perhaps in the “old days” only one person read the directions and then taught their friends the rules … It is very hard for me to believe that gamers are at a lower level of game playing than they used to be. Something else is going on – and Nintendo’s conclusion is incorrect.

  • rafi says:

    i bought this too when i saw it linked from o’reilly. but the site that ran the story is actually satirical. all the stories on it are jokes – though some not very obvious ones.

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