Join our Discord to chat with fellow friendly gamers and our knowledgeable contributors!

Not an American user?


Bowser is back, and along with the Bowser kids, he's out to spoil Mario's day once again.

This time, along with nabbing the Princess, the Bowser crew have also taken the magic wands from the Kings of each land and turned them into creatures. It's up to Mario and Luigi to get back the magic wands, defeat Bowser, and save the Princess all before the day is done.

Old and new power-ups abound in each level for the Mario Brothers, including the return of the Super Mushroom and Fire Flower, plus the new power-ups including the frog suit, the warp flute, and the most important of all, the leaf, which allows the player to fly and attack enemies with your tail.


Super Mario Bros. 3 NES Red kappa on top of the structure
Super Mario Bros. 3 NES Starting the game
Super Mario Bros. 3 NES Spitting plant
Super Mario Bros. 3 NES Chain chomp

Promo Images

Super Mario Bros. 3 Screenshot
Super Mario Bros. 3 Screenshot
Super Mario Bros. 3 Screenshot
Super Mario Bros. 3 Screenshot

Alternate Titles

  • "Super Mario Brothers 3" -- Alternate spelling
  • "SMB 3" -- Informal title
  • "スーパーマリオブラザーズ3" -- Japanese spelling

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

The ultimate Mario adventure for the NES Katakis | カタキス (41931) 4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars4.8 Stars
I remember the original commercial for this game... STU2 (72) 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars
Simply Flawless 10/10! Alex Mills (3) 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars
A must-have for all fans of Mario! Dark Cloud (35) unrated
The closest to perfection ever darthlobos1182 (9) 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars
A masterpiece among Mario's. MegaMegaMan (2285) 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars
My favorite platformer on the NES Asinine (1006) 4.6 Stars4.6 Stars4.6 Stars4.6 Stars4.6 Stars
Best NES Game Ever!! CaptainN (26) 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars

Critic Reviews

NES Archives Mar 13, 2008 A+ 100
Retroage Mar 31, 2013 10 out of 10 100
Ultimate Nintendo: Guide to the NES Library 2016 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100
HonestGamers (Staff reviews only) Jun 02, 2008 10 out of 10 100
Nintendo Land 2003 97 out of 100 97
Game Freaks 365 2006 9.5 out of 10 95 Dec, 2008 9.2 out of 10 92 (GAF) Apr 28, 2003 9 out of 10 90
Digital Press - Classic Video Games Sep 27, 2005 9 out of 10 90
Nintendo Magasinet (Sweden) Aug, 1991 4.5 out of 5 90


Topic # Posts Last Post
No battery save, how did anyone finish this game? 6 Adzuken (854)
Nov 04, 2015


1001 Video Games

The NES version of Super Mario Bros. 3 appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.


On the map screen, the treasure ship icon features a symbol on its sail. The symbol is the Japanese word "takara", which means "treasure".

References to the game

In the movie "The Wizard", which is about a seven year old in a videogame competition, Super Mario Bros 3 was featured as a "brand new game" which none of the contestants had gotten a chance to play before.


During the game, Mario can find a Warp Whistle, which will take him to a new area of the game. When using the Whistle, the tune played is the exact melody used from the Whistle in The Legend of Zelda.


The game sold nearly 30 million copies worldwide.


As of 2010, the fastest run through the the game is under eleven minutes (0:10:48 as conventional speedrun and 0:10:25 tool-assisted).

Version differences

The Koopa Kids were only named in the North American and European versions. The Japanese version completely omits giving them names.

At some point, Nintendo re-released Super Mario Bros. 3 with a couple of text changes:
  • If you picked up a copy close to its release date, you may have noticed that Toad ends his N-Spade game instructions with "Miss twice and your out!", which is incorrect, as "your" should have been "you're". However, you also may have noticed that there was no more room in the text box to include an apostrophe. In the new version, Toad says "You can only miss twice!" instead of "Miss twice and your out!". Instead of resizing the text box so they could include an apostrophe, they just rewrote the last sentence using the same amount of characters.
  • Another change was to Princess Toadstool's letter to Mario after beating World 2. Instead of "Kuribo's shoe," she now says "Goomba's shoe." Kuribo is the Japanese name for Goomba.
  • As for the credits, the level names were changed to less-creative titles in the new version. Basically, all the names were changed to "Something Land". The changed names are in parenthesis: Grass Land (Grass Land), Desert Hill (Desert Land), Ocean Side (Water Land), Big Island (Giant Land), The Sky (Sky Land), Iced Land (Ice Land), Pipe Maze (Pipe Land), Castle of Koopa (Dark Land).


  • Electronic Gaming Monthly
    • December 1989 (Issue 5) - Most Eagerly Anticipated Game (that wasn't released) (NES version)
    • December 1989 (Issue 5) - Game of the Year (Forecasting the 1990 Award Winners) (tied with The Revenge of Shinobi)
    • February 2006 (Issue #200) - #14 on the "Greatest Games of Their Time" list
  • Game Informer
    • August 2001 (Issue #100) - #8 in the "Top 100 Games of All Time" poll
  • Retro Gamer
    • October 2004 (Issue #9) – #36 Best Game Of All Time (Readers' Vote)
    • Issue #37 - #3 in the "Top 25 Platformers of All Time" poll
Information also contributed by Big John WV, CaptainCanuck, Guy Chapman, MegaMegaMan, PCGamer77, Ryan Hopson, Torgospizza and WildKard

Related Web Sites

  • Howard & Nester do Super Mario Bros. 3 (A regular feature in Nintendo Power magazine, Howard & Nester was a comic strip about two game whizzes who would one-up each other, while disclosing hints and tips, in the settings of various recently-released games for the NES platform. In the May/June 1990 two-page installment, they explore the pros and cons of pursuing the second Warp Whistle instead of proceeding in the castle.)
  • OC ReMix Game Profile (Fan remixes of music from Super Mario Bros. 3.)
  • Super Mario Bros. 3 Trivia (10 question quiz to test fans' knowledge about Super Mario Bros. 3.)
  • TMK | Super Mario Bros. 3 (The Mushroom Kingdom's information page.)
  • Video review of Super Mario Bros. 3 (WARNING: Language) (The Angry Video Game Nerd, James Rolfe, reviews Super Mario Bros. 3 on NES and talks about the motion picture The Wizard.)
Kartanym (12738) added Super Mario Bros. 3 (NES) on Sep 27, 2002
Other platforms contributed by Michael Cassidy (21142), Kam1Kaz3NL77 (345324) and gamewarrior (5048)