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In this Tetris-style game, you play as Dr. Mario, who must drop differently coloured pills onto viruses to remove them from the bottle. Each pill is split into two, with each side being of one of three different colours, red, blue or yellow. Align three pills of the same colour to a virus of the corresponding colour (or any combination of pills and viruses totaling four or more) and it will be removed from the bottle, along with the aligned pills. The level is cleared when there are no viruses left, and the game is over when the pills reach the top and Dr. Mario can't drop any more pills.

Included in the game is the normal mode, a time trial, and a two player battle mode to see who can remove the most viruses.


Dr. Mario NES Title screen
Dr. Mario NES A tougher level
Dr. Mario NES Depending on the level and speed setting a different creature will fly by
Dr. Mario NES Setting up a game

Promo Images

Dr. Mario Magazine Advertisement
Dr. Mario Screenshot
Dr. Mario Screenshot
Dr. Mario Screenshot

Alternate Titles

  • "Virus" -- Working title
  • "ドクターマリオ" -- Japanese spelling
  • "닥터 마리오" -- Korean spelling (Hangul)

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Tetris leveled up! Pixelspeech (1006) 3.75 Stars3.75 Stars3.75 Stars3.75 Stars3.75 Stars
Best mindless entertainment game since Tetris. Multimedia Mike (19999) 3.5 Stars3.5 Stars3.5 Stars3.5 Stars3.5 Stars
A classic puzzle game which still remains enjoyable today Jon Collins (28) 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars

Critic Reviews

Nintendojo 2003 10 out of 10 100
Ultimate Nintendo: Guide to the NES Library 2016 4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars 90
Nintendo Magasinet (Sweden) Jun, 1991 4.5 out of 5 90
The Game Hoard Sep 19, 2018 6 out of 7 86
VideoGame May, 1991 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 80
Game Freaks 365 2005 7.6 out of 10 76
neXGam 2002 6.8 out of 10 68
The Video Game Critic Aug 21, 2010 B- 67
Play Time Jun, 1991 65 out of 100 65 Nov, 2011 C 50


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1001 Video Games

Dr. Mario appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.


  • Game Informer
    • August 2001 (Issue #100) - #76 in the "Top 100 Games of All Time" poll

Related Web Sites

Kartanym (12768) added Dr. Mario (NES) on Oct 14, 2002
Other platforms contributed by Michael Cassidy (21222), Kam1Kaz3NL77 (172700), Kartanym (12768) and gamewarrior (5083)