Super Mario Galaxy 2 is out this week, and it's ruddy brilliant. But how did the world's most famous plumber get to this point? Find out with our Super Mario timeline.
Donkey Kong (Arcade, 1981)
This is where it all began for our moustachioed hero. But wait, in Donkey Kong, Mario's not even Mario. He's Jump Man! And he's not even a plumber. He's a carpenter! Crazy, but true.
Super Mario Bros. (NES, 1987)
It wasn't until Mario hit the NES that the Italian plumber became a household name. And his fame was well deserved. It was platforming perfection across the eight worlds of the Mushroom Kingdom.
Super Mario Land (Game Boy, 1990)
Mario's Game Boy debut saw him battling a mysterious alien called Tatanga in Sarasaland. Why? To rescue Princess Daisy, of course. Who'd have guessed?
Super Mario Bros. 3 (NES, 1991)
Remember the "Super Leaf" power up? It was the greatest innovation gaming had ever seen because it made Mario fly. Oh, and remember the game's appearance on the Fred Savage film The Wizard? Say it with me: "I love the Power Glove! It's so bad!"
Super Mario World (SNES, 1992)
Super Mario World launched the Super Nintendo and the hearts and minds of gamers across the world into the upper stratosphere with its stunning platforming and spectacular graphics. This time Mario and Luigi were fighting the evil Bowser in Dinosaur Land. And where there are dinosaurs, there's Yoshi!
Super Mario Kart (SNES, 1993)
When Mario swapped platforming for kart racing, his fans shrugged their shoulders. But once they got their hands on the power-up fuelled multiplayer mayhem, there was no turning back.
Super Mario 64 (Nintendo 64, 1997)
Mario's jump into the heady world of 3D is one of the most important moments in gaming. Everyone remembers their first jump through one of the magical paintings in Princess Peach's Castle, and that moment when you finally grabbed the 120 stars that opened up the cannon that would blast you to the roof, and Yoshi's secret hiding place. Beautiful.
Super Smash Bros. (Nintendo 64, 1999)
Fresh from his triumphant turn as a kart racer, Mario dirtied his fists in a fighting game. Cue four-player carnage and countless playable characters.
Paper Mario (Nintendo 64, 2001)
The versatile plumber's best known for his platforming skills, but he's been in more than his fair share of role-playing games down the years. Paper Mario had all the hallmarks of traditional Japanese RPGs: turn-based battles and hit points included, all garnished in the trademark Nintendo happy sauce.
Super Mario Sunshine (GameCube, 2002)
As the first 3D Mario platformer since Mario 64, Sunshine had a lot to live up to. While the odd F.L.U.D.D. jetpack wasn't applauded by everyone, the new water-based gameplay proved Nintendo still had plenty of ideas up its sleeve.
Mario Kart DS (Nintendo DS, 2005)
Mario Kart, but on the DS. What was great, and still is great, about this game is how easy it is to play with friends. All you need is one copy of the game and four consoles and away you go. Perfect for long haul journeys.
New Super Mario Bros. (DS, 2006)
Mario's roots are in 2D platforming, and New Super Mario Bros. sprays Miracle Grow all over them. Notable power-ups include the Blue Koopa Shell, the hilarious (and often game-breaking) Mega Mushroom, and its polar opposite, the Mini-Mushroom.
Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time (DS, 2006)
Another role-playing Mario game, this time on the DS. The adventures of the Brothers Mario have spawned some of the best games around, and Partners in Time is one of them.
Super Mario Galaxy (Wii, 2007)
Mario in space. What more needs to be said. Super Mario Galaxy ripped up the 3D plaforming rule book to deliver some of the most creative game design in video game history. Widely regarded as one of the best games ever.
Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games (Wii, 2007)
Back in the Nineties, in playgrounds across the world, you were Mario OR Sonic. Back then, the thought of Mario and Sonic starring in the same game would have sent shivers down your spine. How times change.
New Super Mario Bros. Wii (Wii, 2009)
For the first time ever, four people could play Super Mario Bros. at the same time. The result was chaotic fun.
Super Mario Galaxy 2 (Wii, 2010)
Nintendo finally decided it was OK to make a sequel to one of its 3D Mario platformers, and we're glad it did. Galaxy 2 is the Wii's best game - staggeringly, even better than the already awesome original. And you can ride Yoshi.
Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games - (Wii, 2011)
Mario and Sonic team up again in SEGA's tie-in with the massively hyped London Olympic Games. While the actual event isn't taking place until Summer 2012, gamers can enjoy all the fun and excitement in virtual form in the cold winter months.
Super Mario 3D Land - (3DS, 2011)
The 3DS finally got its killer app in the shape of Super Mario 3D Land, the first game that really showed what 3D adds to the gaming experience. While 3D Land is a little easy early on, it gets tough in the latter stages.
Mario Kart 7 - (3DS, 2011)
With the addition of gliders and underwater karts, Mario Kart 7 is perhaps the best game in the Mario Kart series. It also offers the best online multiplayer we've ever played in a Nintendo title.
Mario Party 9 - (Wii, 2012)
We're not sure how this happened, but Mario Party 9 breathed new life into the horribly stagnated series. Putting all the players into one kart that trundled around the board was a stroke of genius, making the whole experience more fun for everyone.
New Super Mario Bros. 2 - (3DS, 2012)
Let's be straight here. New Super Mario Bros. 2 on 3DS was a bit of a letdown for us. Don't get us wrong, it's still a perfectly competent and enjoyable platformer, but it feels so familiar. Yes, we will keep buying these games, but please Nintendo, give us something a bit different next time.