Dr. Mario | Yokoi Corner

Dr. Mario is one of those puzzle games that I thought would be more interesting than it is. Let me back up a bit. When this game first came out, I didn’t know it was a puzzle game.

I’m talking about the NES version of the game. When I was little, I didn’t have Nintendo Power and just went off what my friends rented or what games other kids owned. I first heard about Dr. Mario when I was at a friend’s house.

For some reason, I thought it would be like the Super Mario games. So, seeing something like a puzzle game was a little weird for me. I didn’t know how to play it, my friend kind of knew how to play it, and I don’t remember much beyond that.

When I got older, I tried this game again. It plays a little like Tetris 2, which isn’t a great game. Both games are a little strange. Dr. Mario is the better game, but I would rather play something else.

The Game Boy version is basically the same as the other versions, just in black and white. I think it works well as a handheld game. I would still rather play Tetris, though.

TLDR: If you don’t have Tetris, Dr. Mario is a good option.


I was interested to find out more about this game! I don’t hear a lot about Dr. Mario’s development. Granted, I hadn’t looked into it until recently, but I was very interested to see what I could find.

Dr. Mario was released in 1990 on the NES and the Game Boy. Later, it would be released on the SNES, Game Boy Advance, and the Wii. It also had an arcade presence through the Nintendo VS. System and the PlayChoice-10.

I wish there had been an arcade near me when I was a kid. I would have liked to have seen these machines, especially the PlayChoice-10. It was a very cool concept! You could play an NES game for a limited time on an arcade machine.

There were also releases on the N64 and the DSI. These were Dr. Mario 64 and Dr. Mario Express (A Little bit of… Dr. Mario in PAL regions). The latest game I could find is Dr. Mario: Miracle Cure on the 3DS. There is a chance that I missed something.

This was an excellent way for Nintendo to get Mario into another game. It reminds me of when Sega would throw Sonic into games. Overall, Nintendo did a better job of getting Mario into games.


The game plays a lot like Tetris and other puzzle games. You have different colored pills coming down from the top of the screen. You need to line up the colors with the different germs on the playfield.

There are three colors in the game. Black, White, and Grey. You need to get three of any color lined up with the germ of the same color. This can be vertical or horizontal. It might be diagonal, but I didn’t check for that.

I’ll get more into this when I talk about the graphics, but it can be hard to tell the difference between the white and grey pills.

You can re-orient the pills to take out the germs better. This is where another problem comes up. It can be a little annoying trying to take out some of the germs. You might find yourself waiting for the right colors to show up.

There isn’t a goal to this game. You’re just trying for a high score. It works well for the Game Boy, and I think it’s fun to play. It does have some problems, though.     


I played this on a Game Boy Pocket. This meant I was playing it with a pretty good black and white screen. The problem comes when you try to distinguish between the white and grey pills.

The germs are easy to tell the difference, but the pills can be tricky. The grey and white pills looked very similar to me. It might have been the contrast on my screen, but I shouldn’t have to worry about it.

It’s the only problem I have with the game. This is something that I think could have been fixed. Instead of having a grey pill, they could have had a striped pill. This would have made it a little harder to get the germs to line up with the pill.

Playing this on the Super Game Boy would have fixed all of this. You just needed one more color. The game works fine, it looks good, but the color pallet of the Game Boy made it a little frustrating at times.


Being a pick-up and play style of game, it has a lot of replayability. Because your only goal is to make it as far as you can, it makes the game easy to get into. These two things work together to make this a game that is easy to return to.

It’s like playing Tetris or any other puzzle game. You can play this game for a bit, put it down, and then return to it at any point.

Dr. Mario is one of those games that works everywhere. You can play it on a console, a handheld, or a plug-and-play console. You can compete against yourself or another person. It’s one of the more replayable games on the Game Boy.


There are a lot of alternatives to Dr. Mario. Here is a shortlist of some of the games that I think are fun to play and could be swapped out with Dr. Mario.

  • Tetris
  • Tetris 2
  • Yoshi’s Cookie
  • Yoshi
  • Kwirk
  • Shanghai
  • Qix
  • Pokemon Puzzle Challenge
  • Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo
  • Kirby’s Star Stacker



  • It’s an easy game to play
  • There is a decent amount of challenge that ramps slowly
  • You can play for as long as you want
  • It’s been ported to just about everything


  • On the Game Boy, it can be hard to tell the color of some pills
  • There is no story
  • You don’t have a lot of modes of play on this version


Dr. Mario is one of those games that I like to play now and then. It’s not the best game on the Game Boy, and there are other puzzle games that I enjoy more. It is an easy game to get into, and I think it works well on a handheld.

If you haven’t had a chance to try Dr. Mario and if you like games like Tetris, then this is a great one for you to try out.

Published by Paul Werkema

Hi! I'm here to share my hobbies with all of you. I love video games and books, so I write about the books that cover video games or are novels about video games.

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