September 4, 2016
The Bowser Shrine is now happily in affiliation with SMB3.com! It's an excellent fansite dedicated entirely to Super Mario Bros. 3 for the original NES! The site has a great breakdown of all the enemies, bosses, items, suits, and worlds that exist in the game, as well as all the references and media surrouding the game. It's a great trip down memory lane for sure. Super Mario Bros 3. was one of the highest selling video games of all time for a great many years. It also holds a special place in my heart, as it was the game that really defined Bowser as a character looks-wise!
A great example is if you were to check out the website's Instructions section. In a vast improvement from the previous true Super Mario Brothers game (SMB), the instruction manual was in color, and had official artist drawings of each of the characters. For example, here is what Bowser looked like in the original Super Mario Bros. instruction manual compared to how he appeared in the Super Mario Bros. 3 instruction manual:
Talk about a clear night-and-day difference! The original SMB instruction booklet was basically just a black-and-white copy of Bowser's 8-bit in-game sprite, and only had profile view of him. The artist's rendition in the Super Mario Bros. 3 manual had Bowser facing directly at the viewer, so that it was easier to visualize what Bowser looked like in 3 dimensions.
Also, Bowser's in-game sprite in Super Mario Bros. 3 was significantly improved over his last sighting in the original Super Mario Bros. This was impressive, because it was done on the same platform as the previous game, but perhaps the developers were more familiar with the hardware and squeezing the most they could out of it:
On top of all this, the game was notoriously hard! You were lucky if you were even able to get to Bowser in the game, to see him in all his final glory! Bowser himself was also quite hard to defeat, as you had to outsmart him rather than outmuscle him. This was the moment where Bowser introduced his "Bowser Bomb" attack (Down + B in Super Smash Brothers), which was a King Koopa-sized ground pound able to pulverize blocks!
Man, all this talk about the game has me suddenly wanting to play it!
• 1 link to SMB3.com added to the Links section under "Mario Universe Fansites"