Best NES Games of the 1980s including Super Mario Bros. 3

The 1980s was an epic year for gaming enthusiasts, especially those that were playing on a Nintendo NES system. 

The Nintendo Entertainment System, which is more commonly known as the NES, arguably paved the way for gaming to boom, as it helped to revitalise gaming as a whole. 

There is no doubt that the 1980s saw this system boom, as it provided players with a number of groundbreaking titles, with many of them still considered to be amongst the best to have ever been created. Here are just some of those titles that can potentially fall under the lofty tag of being amongst the best to have ever existed: 


The Legend of Zelda 

The Legend of Zelda is certainly a game that has continued to go from strength to strength with each release, despite having started way back in 1986. 

One reason as to why the game proved popular with gamers at the time was due to its innovative features and the fact that they were able to create a huge world that was fully explorable and provided a number of distinctive environments that could be experienced. 

No-one had ever experienced anything like it at the time, with many arcade games having been played with one screen, however The Legend of Zelda would provide something completely different and get everyone hooked; just as it continues to do so today with newer releases. 


The Goonies 

Released in 1986, movie fans of The Goonies would be able to take on the action and adventure available in game form as Konami brought it to the NES. 

Admittedly, not as much of the game was to do with the actual movie, however there were certainly a number of elements from the film that could be experienced. Mikey was used as the main character of the game, with players having to guide him through six stages – which included the Fratelli’s hideout – as they looked to clear each stage by getting bombs from enemies to use on the doors to free his friends or acquire one of the three keys needed. Many of the enemies from the film make an appearance, as well, including One-Eyed Willie. 

The Goonies became a huge hit with kids of that generation, as many of them had dreamt that they would have been able to go on a similar adventure. It has been so popular over time, that there is a slot game available to those who play online casino games, whilst there has been plenty of merchandise to purchase with The Goonies name and brand. 


Super Mario Bros. 3 

When thinking of a game character that has been created by Nintendo, the Super Mario Bros are certainly going to be one of the first to be thought of! Released in 1989, Super Mario Bros. 3 was the third instalment of this classic game featuring everyone’s favourite Italian plumber and one that is still a favourite with many despite being 30 years old. 

The game featured some rather straightforward, but challenging gameplay, as well as elegant designs. There is an argument that without this particular title, Nintendo would not have been successful as they have been, whilst the whole gaming industry benefited massively from it. The tag of “greatest videogame to have ever been made” may get thrown around often, but when it comes to this one, it would be hard to find one more deserving. 



Metroid is arguably – alongside Super Mario Bros. 3 – one of the best games to have been made available on the NES in the 1980s and was perhaps ahead of its time when it was released in 1986. 

Samus Aran was a female bounty hunter who was made the main protagonist of this game; something many games have since failed to follow as they have used a male figure. Metroid is a shooter, platformer and adventure game all rolled into one, as Samus would go on to fight the villainous Space Pirates as she tries to protect the Galactic Federation and avenge the death of her parents. 

The game requires players to use their problem-solving skills, as well as utilise fast reflexes, sharp vision and patience. It also provided a gameplay environment that had never been seen on an NES at the time, whilst many other games have since subsequently taken inspiration from it. 


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