5 people made the original Super Mario Bros. - all of them were still at Nintendo to ship Wonder 38 years later

Super Mario Bros. Wonder
(Image credit: Nintendo)

The original Super Mario Bros. on NES was made by a team of five people, and it seems every single one of them is still at Nintendo and was credited on Super Mario Bros. Wonder.

Back in the NES days, video games were small enough to be developed by absolutely tiny teams. Super Mario Bros., released in Japan in 1983, was made by just five people: director Shigeru Miyamoto, assistant director Takashi Tezuka, programmers Toshihiko Nakago and Kazuaki Morita, and musician Koji Kondo.

In an incredible feat of game industry continuity, all five of them are still credited on Super Mario Bros. Wonder. Miyamoto served as supervisor, with Tezuka as producer, Nakago as a special level design advisor, and Kondo as sound director. Morita, meanwhile, is in the special thanks section. With four of the five original devs serving in major supervisory roles 38 years later, this might just be the most incredible piece of developer continuity in gaming history.

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"The people who are making Mario have been doing it in an unbroken streak since most of the creative leadership at other companies today were kids," as Bungie's Max Nichols notes on Twitter. Nichols' tweets put this bit of trivia on my radar, and since then the full Wonder credits have been published on MobyGames, confirming the full roles of all five of those original devs.

Of course, Wonder was made by a much larger team than just those original developers, including some less familiar names in key roles. Most notable is director Shiro Mouri, who despite being at Nintendo for over 25 years, only recently graduated to lead a full, original game of his own. He'd previously served as programming director on New Super Mario Bros. U and main director on the Switch port of that same game.

The game industry is notoriously volatile, and even among Japanese studios it's extremely uncommon to see legendary game designers continue to work on the series they made famous after this many years. As you can see in our Super Mario Bros. Wonder review, it seems those old names haven't lost their touch, either.

There's a reason the best Mario games have stood the test of time better than most of their contemporaries.

Dustin Bailey
Staff Writer

Dustin Bailey joined the GamesRadar team as a Staff Writer in May 2022, and is currently based in Missouri. He's been covering games (with occasional dalliances in the worlds of anime and pro wrestling) since 2015, first as a freelancer, then as a news writer at PCGamesN for nearly five years. His love for games was sparked somewhere between Metal Gear Solid 2 and Knights of the Old Republic, and these days you can usually find him splitting his entertainment time between retro gaming, the latest big action-adventure title, or a long haul in American Truck Simulator.