Nintendo has a variety of game series and stars. The Mario, Donkey Kong, Metroid and Zelda games are among the series that have millions of fans. These are a few of their more famous console stars.


Mario is Nintendo's Mickey Mouse. The plucky Italian plumber, first sketched by Miyamoto, has remained Nintendo's mascot since the 1980s, when the first Super Mario Bros title emerged on home consoles. However, that was not Mario's first title as the arcade Mario Bros predated it. Mario also starred in the first Donkey Kong game in which the plumber jumped Donkey's barrels.

Since those early titles few game stars have had a comparable impact to Nintendo's mascot. The platform series has set a number of console game records. Mario has starred in a variety of platform games on both Nintendo's 2D and 3D home consoles. Mario 64 was the first of the franchise's 3-D platform games that have been further expanded with titles such as Super Mario Galaxy, which has an intergalactic setting. In most of the games the plumber has to rescue Prince Peach.

Mario Galaxy 2Credit: Image from Nintendo website.

Beyond the platform series there have also been a variety of Mario spin-offs. Games such as Super Mario Kart, a go-kart racing game, is among them. That's one of the few Mario games that also has an arcade title. There are also a number of sport titles such as Mario Golf, Mario Tennis and GC Super Mario Strikers.

Mario was also the first console game star to star in a film. The Super Mario Bros film was the first based on a game series. However, the film was something of a box office flop.


Link stars in the Legend of Zelda series. Link is an adventurer equipped with a sword, and a variety of other items such as boomerang, bow-and-arrow, bombs etc, who explores Hyrule. In the Kingdom of Hyrule, which is the usual setting for the games, Link usually has to collect Triforce segments to rescue Princess Zelda.

Legend of Zelda

The Legend of Zelda series has had many titles. Zelda's first game emerged on the NES, and alongside Mario Nintendo has expanded the series on most of its consoles. Ocarina of Time was the first to move into the third dimension on the N64. The Zelda series, like Mario, has celebrated a 25th anniversary.

Donkey Kong

Donkey Kong was one of Nintendo's first stars that starred in the Donkey Kong arcade game. That was one of the first Nintendo titles that had any notable impact and the first to include Mario. In the 1980s, similar Donkey Kong sequels followed.

Donkey Kong Country

But it was not until Donkey Kong Country arrived on the Super NES, during the '90s, that the guerrilla emerged as one of Nintendo's most famous stars. Donkey Kong Country was a 3-D rendered 2D platform game. It revitalized the Donkey Kong series, and has since been followed by a number of sequels such as Donkey Kong Country Returns, which is comparable to the New Super Mario Bros titles.


Samus is the star of Nintendo's Metroid series. That is a sci-fiction franchise in which the female bounty hunter is sent on various Galactic Federation missions to hunt down Space Pirates and Metroids. In all the games Samus is kitted out with an armored Varia Suit that provides the bounty hunter with a variety of arsenal ranging from beams to missiles. Samus was the first female game star in the original Metroid on the NES.

The Metroid series has had regular additions on Nintendo consoles. Metroid Prime was the first addition to the series to switch to 3-D, on the GameCube, and that began another Metroid trilogy. With eleven titles to date the Metroid series has remained among Nintendo's largest and has millions of fans.

Nintendo's stars are among the most famous. Yoshi, Diddy Kong and Kirby are a few of the others that have starred in some exciting game titles. Beyond the games they have also been included in films, comics and animated cartoons.

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