Top 15 Original Nintendo Games of All Time

The following is my opinion of the 15 Best Original Nintendo Games.  I would love to hear what you think in the comments section!

1. Super Mario Brothers 3

Super Mario Brothers 3

Sure, the princess could hover in Super Mario Brothers 2 but flying was introduced in this Super Mario Brothers!  In fact, it introduced a ton of new suits.  A shoe suit, frog suit, a raccoon suit, etc.

Who could forget accidentally resetting the NES by bumping it?  Whole days work down the drain.  It was worth it though.  Super Mario Brothers 3 is the best out of the first 3.

  • Classic action game
  • Save the Mushroom Kingdom from Bower’s Koopa Kids
  • Run, jump, and smash your way to victory
  • Lots of hidden treasure and power-ups
  • For 1 or 2 players
  • Release Date: October 23, 1988

2. The Legend of Zelda

The Legend of Zelda

The classic game that started the whole series!  Just looking at the gold cover one knew that this game was going to be awesome.

What was your reward for conquering the game?  Going through a second time with the map being all mixed around!

  • The original title of the classic adventure series
  • Help Link save Princess Zelda
  • Explore the world of Hyrule and interact with its inhabitants
  • Many power-ups and items to discover
  • For one player
  • Release Date: November 21, 1986

3. Metroid


It’s you against the evil Mother Brain in the thrilling battle of Metroid!  You’re inside the fortress planet Zebes. The planet of endless secret passageways where the Metroid are multiplying.

Left alone the Metroid are harmless. But in the wrong hands, they could destroy the galaxy. It’s up to you to prevent the Mother Brain that controls Zebes from using the Metroid for evil purposes.

But that won’t be easy. You’ll have to use your spacesuit to absorb valuable energy for your search to gain the use of power items like the Ice Beam, Wave Beam, High Jump Boots and Varia. If you survive, it will be you and your acquired powers against the Mother Brain.

  • Classic adventure game
  • Defeat the Mother Brain and her minions
  • Acquire high-tech gadgets to help you fight
  • 2-D scrolling action
  • For 1 or 2 players
  • Release Date: August 6, 1986

4. Castlevania 3: Dracula’s Curse

Castlevania 3 Dracula’s Curse

This was the best Castlevania out of the 3 for the NES.  It wasn’t nearly as difficult as Castlevania 2 (which I conquered, thank you very much).

“Nintendo Power listed it as the ninth best Nintendo Entertainment System video game, praising it for its strong improvements over previous entries in the series” (wikipedia).

Release Date: September 1, 1990

5. Final Fantasy

Final Fantasy

Do you remember when Final Fantasy was simple and fun?  Yeah, neither do we.  This is the one that started it all.

  • Classic fantasy RPG
  • Save the world from darkness
  • Direct a party of four characters in the fight against evil
  • Simple, compelling gameplay
  • For one player
  • Release Date: December 18, 1987

6. StarTropics


Nintendo developed Star Tropics for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). Mike Jones goes to visit his uncle, Dr. Jones, on C-Island, only to find that he is missing when he gets to the island.

Your task is to save your uncle! This adventure is far too grand for anyone island to contain! Star Tropics is a top-down, action-adventure, similar to the Legend of Zelda.

  • Release Date December 1, 1990

7. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

This is one of the games that I remember wasting the summer away with.  I couldn’t seem to get up early enough for school but it was no problem to get up at 7 am, just so I could get my butt kicked in the Technodrome.

Release Date: 1989

8. Maniac Mansion

Maniac Mansion

The main character, Dave Miller, follows a mad scientist into a mansion in the hopes of saving his girlfriend.

Maniac Mansion was one of the first games to have multiple different possible endings upon completion, as well as one of the first games to give hints in cutscenes.

Release Date: October 1987

9. Mike Tyson’s Punch Out!!

Mike Tyson’s Punch out!!

Quick Mac! Order a subscription to Nintendo Power!   How is that supposed to help, you ask.  Um, it was just Nintendo’s way of brainwashing children.

  • Classic boxing game
  • Fight against thirteen different opponents
  • Three levels of difficulty
  • Knock out Mike Tyson to win the championship
  • For one player
  • Release Date: June 1, 1987

10. Contra


All you need to know about the NES game Contra: up up down down left right left right B A Start.

  • Release Date: September 1987

11. Super Mario Brothers 2

Super Mario Bros 2

Hey males, remember when you wanted to be a princess?  I do!  Why would one choose another character?  Princess Peach could hover!  Wake up, Mario!!

  • Release Date: October 1988

12. Double Dragon

Double Dragon

Double Dragon is the story of Billy and Jimmy Lee, twin brothers who learned to fight on the cold, tough streets of the city.

Their expert knowledge of the martial arts combined with their street smarts has made them both formidable fighting machines.

But now Billy is faced with his greatest challenge. Marian has been kidnapped by the Black Warriors, the savage street gang of the mysterious Shadow Boss!

It was also one of the only games that allowed us to beat the crap out of street fighting women (I wouldn’t recommend doing this).

  • Release Date: 1988

 13. Wrestlemania


Whatcha gonna do brother!?  When I smash my 8-bit controller all over you!

  • Release Date: January 1, 1988 (why after Christmas?)

14. Zelda II: The Adventure of Link

Zelda II The Adventure of Link

I received this for my birthday in July and by November I had it conquered.  If you are afraid of your shadow, then I recommend not playing this game!

  • Side-scrolling action game featuring Nintendo superstar Link
  • Save Hyrule from the minions of Ganon
  • Jump and slash your way through enemies
  • Simple control system
  • For one player
  • Release Date: January 14, 1987

15. What did I miss?

So there you have it.  I covered 14 awesome Nintendo games.  What should have made the list?

Tell me number 15 in the comments.

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