Dr. Mario 64 (2001)

by Christopher
5 minutes read


Dr. Mario 64: A Prescription for Puzzle-Solving Fun

Released in 2001 for the Nintendo 64, Dr. Mario 64 is a puzzle game that combines the classic gameplay of Tetris with the medical expertise of Dr. Mario. The game tasks players with clearing a playing field of viruses by matching colored capsules to create horizontal or vertical lines of three or more.


Dr. Mario 64 retains the core gameplay of its predecessors, but adds a number of new features and enhancements. The game introduces a new 3D playfield, allowing players to rotate and zoom the camera to get a better view of the action. Additionally, the game introduces a new “Fever” mode, which increases the speed and difficulty of the game.

Players control Dr. Mario as he drops colored capsules into a playing field filled with viruses. The capsules come in four different colors: red, yellow, blue, and green. Viruses also come in four different colors, and players must match the color of the capsule to the color of the virus in order to eliminate it.

Capsules can be dropped in one of two ways: either by pressing the A button to drop a single capsule, or by holding down the A button to create a stack of capsules. Stacks can be rotated by pressing the B button, and can be dropped by pressing the A button again.

The goal of the game is to clear the playing field of all viruses. This can be done by creating horizontal or vertical lines of three or more capsules of the same color. When a line is cleared, the viruses above it will fall down. If a virus reaches the bottom of the playing field, the game is over.


Dr. Mario 64 features a variety of different modes, including:

  • Standard Mode: The classic Dr. Mario gameplay, where players must clear a playing field of viruses.
  • Fever Mode: A more challenging mode where the speed and difficulty of the game is increased.
  • Puzzle Mode: A collection of over 100 puzzles that must be solved within a certain number of moves.
  • Versus Mode: A competitive mode where two players can compete against each other to see who can clear the playing field of viruses the fastest.


In addition to Dr. Mario, Dr. Mario 64 also features a number of other playable characters, including:

  • Wario: Dr. Mario’s arch-rival, who is playable in Versus Mode.
  • Luigi: Dr. Mario’s younger brother, who is also playable in Versus Mode.
  • Princess Peach: The princess of the Mushroom Kingdom, who is playable in Puzzle Mode.
  • Toad: A loyal servant of Princess Peach, who is also playable in Puzzle Mode.


Dr. Mario 64 was a critical and commercial success, selling over 10 million copies worldwide. The game was praised for its addictive gameplay, charming graphics, and catchy music. It was also nominated for several awards, including Game of the Year at the 2001 Golden Joystick Awards.


Dr. Mario 64 is considered to be one of the best puzzle games ever made. It has been praised for its simple yet addictive gameplay, and for its innovative use of 3D graphics. The game has also been credited with helping to popularize the puzzle genre on consoles.

Dr. Mario 64 has been followed by several sequels and spin-offs, including Dr. Mario & Panel de Pon (2001), Dr. Mario Online Rx (2008), and Dr. Mario World (2019). The game has also been re-released on several different platforms, including the Wii Virtual Console, the Nintendo 3DS eShop, and the Nintendo Switch Online service.


Dr. Mario 64 is a classic puzzle game that is still enjoyed by gamers today. The game’s simple yet addictive gameplay, charming graphics, and catchy music make it a great choice for gamers of all ages.

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