Should Super Mario Land 1 and 2 get a remake?

Because while the game was impressive back in the days when even having a Mario game playable on a handheld was a feat in itself, the game has really aged poorly in the years since.

For one thing, the graphics and music just don’t stack up at all compared to any other Mario game ever made.  They’re tiny, somewhat poor quality and repetitive, and could be improved so much if they were made as detailed as the ones in Mushroom Kingdom Fusion or the various fan made Super Mario Land remakes:

Additionally, imagine if the music was remixed in the style of the Super Smash Bros Brawl Ruins theme.  Surely that would be fantastic, right?

It’d also be nice if the remake used Super Mario Bros 3/Super Mario World/New Super Mario Bros physics and gameplay mechanics rather than the primitive ones found in the original title. Because frankly, the original Mario Land physics just plain suck nowadays.  They just feel far too floaty and like Mario is running on ice, and I’ve always been worried about Mario literally flying into the abyss at random every time I’ve played the original game.

But if they were redone so the game handled more like a modern Mario game (perhaps with some of the new moves and abilities from current titles) then the game would just be far more fun to play and a better introduction to the title for the current generation.

The content could be significantly overhauled too.  The bosses for example rather badly suck in the original Super Mario Land, with the first three literally just being reskinned versions of Super Mario Bros 1’s Bowser.  I mean, what is King Totomesu other than a cat version of Bowser?  All he does is jump up and down and shoot fire, with his main weakness being a switch behind him. Dragonzamasu is basically just Bowser as an underwater sea horse dragon and Hiyoihoi is just a version of Bowser that only throw hammers and doesn’t breathe fire.  All these bosses should get entirely seperate attack patterns that involve them physically trying to attack Mario and Mario having to either jump on them a few times or throw enemies or bombs at them.  As for Biokinton, maybe he should be scrapped altogether.  What’s the point of a cloud with eyes that shoots pigeons anyway?

Additionally, the game should be made much longer too.  A new level in each world would do wonders for making the game last longer (having four levels per world as is standard in Mario games rather than just three like in the original Game Boy game).  An overworld map with secret exits and levels to find would be nice too, especially as it would give players an actual incentive to replay levels they’ve already beaten.

But more importantly, they should up the length of the game to about eight or nine worlds. For an example of how it could work, I think the fan game Super Daisy Land might be worth taking some ideas from.  It’s most definitely not a good fan game, but all the additional content it adds and things like Tatanga getting a true final form complete with giant attack robot would certainly make people interested in Super Mario Land again.  Have a look:

Because the current 12 levels is far, far too little for a modern Mario game.  The ideal Super Mario Land remake would at least up this total to about 30, and maybe even have the game being a full 70+ levels long.  There should be a vast overworld map to traverse complete with towers and fortresses midway through each world.  There should be ghost houses every now and then, which were completely absent in the original.

Mini bosses should be fought every now and then and be entirely new to the game.  Maybe they’d be like Tatanga’s commanders from another fan game I’ve watched playthroughs of every recently:

And considering he’s everyone’s favourite Mario villain, Bowser and his troops could be involved somehow too.  Perhaps it turns out Bowser is helping Tatanga conquer Sarasara Land and from world 5 onwards you have to battle against him, the Koopalings, Kamek, Bowser Jr and all of the Koopa Troop again.  Heck, how about having Kamek power up Tatanga’s soldiers for their boss rematches?  King Totomesu and co would be quite interesting to fight after Kamek used his dark magic on them.

But that’s not all.  I think it’d be even better if Super Mario Land 2 was also remade and included on the same cart/disc.  Not only would it be more consistent to remake both games in the same graphics style, but the sequel has a few things that could be improved as well.

Again, the graphics and music could be upgraded significantly.  These music remixes show exactly what the Super Mario Land 2’s music could sound like on a more modern system:

And the clips at about 1:50 into this Midas Machine trailer show exactly what Super Mario Land 2 could look like in a modern Mario style:

Just like in a remake of the first game, some content could be added and changed as well.  The bosses could be made a bit more exciting to fight with new and improved attack patterns, new levels could be added to certain zones like the Space Zone and the Mario Zone and the finale at Wario’s Castle could be changed from merely a single long level to a world of levels set inside Mario’s hijacked castle.

Add to this a few plot twists and things along the way, and this remake of both Super Mario Land 1 and 2 could literally be one of the best 2D Mario games in years.  When you then consider how many people bought the original games on the 3DS eShop and all those who liked Super Mario 3D Land, a Super Mario Land 1 and 2 remake could be a fantastic new 3DS title if Nintendo made it.


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8 years ago

In my tiredness, I thought I read “Super Mario Land 1 and 2 get a remake!” and I got all excited. But then I actually focused, found that it was a question, and got all sad. Personally, I think they should, but for no real reason other than I would like to see it refreshed with today’s technology. Although the first game could be beaten in like, a half an hour, I find it to be a rather enjoyable pick-up-and-play type of game. The music in it was also really, really good. As for the second game, it’s not terribly… Read more »

Miguel Delgado
Miguel Delgado
6 years ago
Reply to  Valamanj
Miguel Delgado
Miguel Delgado
6 years ago

Hey! Im making my own remake of SML in 2,5D (3d modeling but 2d classic gameplay) You can see some news here: