[[caption-width-right:350: So if Mario's [[WalkOnWater walking on water]], does that mean he's [[Music/TheBeatles bigger than Jesus]]? [[note]] His apparent ability to tri-locate can mean any number of things.[[/note]]]]
->''Welcome, and enter the center\\
Of my Super Mario adventure\\
My girl is trapped on the other side of town\\
So I'm movin' in leaps and bounds\\
Folks around my way think I'm strange\\
But there's a villain to blame\\
Even my ma, she thinks I'm crazy\\
But I've got to rescue Daisy (let's go!)''
-->-- The opening lyrics to [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A2nF92mu8X0 the song based on this game,]] performed by '''Ambassadors of Funk'''

In his first adventure for the GameBoy, [[Franchise/SuperMarioBros Mario]] travels through Sarasaland to rescue Princess Daisy from the invader Tatanga. The sprites in this {{platformer}} are very small, due to the Game Boy's small screen, which supports only four shades of gray.

Unlike most installments of the franchise, ''Super Mario Land'' was directed not by Creator/ShigeruMiyamoto but rather by Creator/GunpeiYokoi, the man who designed the Game Boy itself, and developed by Nintendo R&D1, the team who were responsible for all ''Franchise/{{Metroid}}'' games from the [[VideoGame/{{Metroid 1}} original]] to ''[[VideoGame/MetroidZeroMission Zero Mission]]'' except for the ''VideoGame/MetroidPrime'' sub-series (''VideoGame/MetroidOtherM'' also had a different developer, but was released after ''Zero Mission''). The sequel, ''VideoGame/SuperMarioLand2SixGoldenCoins'', had larger sprites and marked the debut of Mario's EvilCounterpart, Wario.

Other differences from ''VideoGame/SuperMarioBros.'':
* Mario's [[JumpPhysics jump physics]] are noticably different from the main games; for instance, when Mario jumps diagonally, you can't control how it moves (although you can when it jumps straight up) and he maintains no momentum.
* Instead of fireballs, the flower powerup gives Mario the ability to throw "superballs", {{weaponized ball}}s which bounce off their targets at 90-degree angles. Difficult to use effectively outdoors, but they can be fun when there's a ceiling. It did have the perk of collecting any coins it hit.
* The game has two automatically scrolling areas. In the first, Mario pilots a submarine, the "Marine Pop"; in the second, he flies an airplane, the "Sky Pop". These are {{Unexpected Shmup Level}}s.
* Koopa shells cannot be kicked, and are in fact bombs that explode after a few seconds of being stopped.
* Instead of the usual eight worlds, the game has only four, with three levels to a world for a total of 12 levels, and no warp zones.
* The [[RecurringRiff otherwise common]] melodies known in the ''Mario'' series are not present.

Along with ''VideoGame/{{Tetris}}'', it was one of the original launch titles for the system.

Please note that ''VideoGame/SuperMario3DLand,'' which was released for [[UsefulNotes/Nintendo3DS a later handheld console]], has '''nothing''' to do with this game (or series, for that matter).
!!This game contains examples of:
* AlienAbduction: [[CaptainObvious Tatanga kidnaps Daisy.]]
%%* AlienInvasion
* AllDesertsHaveCacti: World 1-1 in the first game.
* AncientAstronauts: InvokedTrope, given that Sarasaland is made up of four areas with connections to alien or myths of paranormal phenomenon (AncientEgypt, TheBermudaTriangle, [[EenieMeenieMinyMoai Easter Island]], and China).
* {{Antepiece}}: The game has great level design involving interesting yet accessible setpieces. One tool it'll use is to build up to a complicated setpiece with an "antepiece". In this image [[http://postimg.org/image/8tqti9u0h/]] you can see the third boss on the far right, who tries to crush Mario by throwing bouncing stones. On the far left, a positioned a little before you will encounter him, you can see one of those bouncing stones. That anticipatory stone presents no real danger, because it only bounces beneath the question boxes, which you can jump onto. The purpose of the stone is to warn you about what is ahead and maybe give you the opportunity to practice dodging and jumping on them in an enclosed environment.
* BigBad: Tatanga.
* BlindIdiotTranslation: The English manual is more or less a direct translation of the Japanese, with enemy names transliterated rather than being [[DubNameChange renamed in localization]], as is the norm for this series. Even when a localization convention exists, it is ignored: thus, Piranha Plants go by "Pakkun Flower" (their Japanese name) in this game, and enemies that are obviously intended to be subspecies of normal ''Mario'' enemies (i.e. ''Gira'' for ''Kira'' or Bullet Bill, or ''Nokobon''[[note]]Which can also be read as "Nokobomb".[[/note]] for ''Nokonoko'' or Koopa Troopa) wind up with names that are completely incomprehensible to English-speaking fans. Granted, none of this comes up in the game itself, but the manual ''is'' meant to be a companion piece to the game.
** The names of the game's locations suffered as well, albeit slightly less so as the puns on real world locations (Muda Kingdom for Ber''muda'', Easton Kingdom for ''East''er Island, Chai Kingdom for ''China'') are mostly still comprehensible in translation. The exception is world one, Birabuto Kingdom, which was ''completely misread'' from the original Japanese by virtue of the translator confusing a [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dakuten handakuten for a dakuten]]. The intended name is ''Piraputo'' kingdom, a portmanteau of "pyramid" (''piramido'') and "Egypt" (''Ejiputo''). "Piraputo" or even "Pyrypt" would have been acceptable translations, but "Birabuto" is completely wrong.
** The 2011 Virtual Console rerelease fixed some of this by renaming some of the common enemies, like "Goombo" (Chibibo[[note]]A cross between "chibi", and Kuribo, Goomba's Japanese name.[[/note]]) and "Bullet Biff" (Gira).
* BonusLevel: In true Super Mario fashion. Interestingly, some bonus levels have SpikesOfDoom, making for a rare chance to actually ''die in a bonus level.''
* ChineseVampire: Pionpi, a [[GoddamnedBats goddamned enemy]] in World 4-1.
* CopyAndPasteEnvironments: Even more so than SMB. Hey, didn't I pass by an area like this just now? It's deja vu all over again.
* DamselInDistress: Princess Daisy.
* DolledUpInstallment: Like ''VideoGame/SuperMarioBros2'', it was not originally a Mario game early in development. That is why it is about aliens invading Egypt, Bermuda, China, and Easter Island.
* EenieMeenieMinyMoai: World 3, the Easter Island-themed Easton Kingdom.
* ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin: The UsefulNotes/Nintendo3DS UsefulNotes/VirtualConsole rerelease modified the translation of enemy names, with one being an example: Bombshell Koopas. When stomped on, their shells explode without Mario getting a chance to kick them.
* FantasyCounterpartCulture: In contrast to the usual ''Franchise/SuperMarioBros'' settings, every level is directly inspired by a real-world setting. Birabuto is based on AncientEgypt, Muda is based on Bermuda, Easton is based on Easter Island, and Chai is based on highland China.
* FanVid: [[WebVideo/TheAdventuresOfDuaneAndBrandO Action Adventure World]] has come out with [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lmwtykJj47Y a fun one]].
* FourElementEnsemble: The variety of locations gives the game an exotic feel that most Mario games don't have. Each of the kingdoms, and the bosses associated with them, can also be associated with one of the classical elements. The Fire kingdom of Birabuto is based on the deserts of Egypt and ruled by the fire-breathing King Totomesu; the Water kingdom of Muda is a series of tropical islands and an underwater stage ruled by the seahorse Dragonzamasu; the Earth kingdom of Easton is a mountainous place filled with rocklike Ganchans and ruled by the Ganchan-throwing Hiyoihoi; and the Air kingdom of Chai is a series of highlands and a flying stage ruled by the mysterious Blokinton, who hides within a large cloud and attacks by hurling flying Chickens at Mario.
* GiantSpider: World 3-2 and 3-3 will greet you to these guys.
* GratuitousJapanese: Most of the monster names are still in Japanese. Until the UsefulNotes/Nintendo3DS UsefulNotes/VirtualConsole release translated the variants of recurring Mario enemies, this applied to even [[MascotMook the Goombas]], which were originally called Chibibo worldwide (and retranslated as Goombo).
** Averted in the European version of its Virtual Console release, where the enemies still retain their Japanese names.
* HitboxDissonance: Small Mario is a bit taller than a block yet he's still able to go through a tiny gap between two blocks with his head clipping through the upper block. ([[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N5q5KZvsSho here]] at 0:40)
* HyperDestructiveBouncingBall: The Superball power Mario gets from flowers is this instead of the usual fireballs.
* JumpPhysics: Mario's jump physics in this game are rather odd; for instance, when Mario jumps diagonally, you can't control how it moves (although you can when it jumps straight up) and he maintains no momentum.
* KingKoopaCopy: Tatanga the [[MarsNeedsWomen extra-terrestrial]] is another Mario BigBad who takes inspiration from the series' main antagonist. However, his "Bowser expy" side was mostly used in the ''ComicBook/GameBoy'' comics.
* KungFuProofMook: The Pionpi of the Chai Kingdom cannot be defeated by GoombaStomp, but only with a Super Ball. It's nearly impossible to tell how from the game itself, but these guys are actually based off of the ''Jiangshi'', or Chinese vampire-zombies.
* LevelsTakeFlight: Level 4-3, which has you flying around in the [[CoolPlane Sky Pop]].
* LoadBearingBoss: Tatanga's whole palace goes down after his defeat.
* MadeOfExplodium: Tatanga's Palace when Tatanga is defeated, the entire airborne structure explodes for no apparent reason...
** Also the Bombshell Koopas when they've been stomped.
* TheManBehindTheMan: The sequel reveals that [[spoiler:Tatanga is an underling of Wario's. While he may or may not have been hired to create a diversion in this game, he still reappears in the sequel guarding one of the Golden Coins for Wario]].
* NoPronunciationGuide: This being a Game Boy game from 1989, there are of course, no voices. As a result, a number of people wouldn't know that "Muda Kingdom" isn't supposed be pronounced "Mooda", but rather, "Myuda" (as in "Bermuda").
* OddballInTheSeries: The game plays like a traditional Mario platformer, but throws out all sense of familiarity after that, as spoofed in this Brawl in the Family [[http://brawlinthefamily.keenspot.com/comic/341-smlisweird/ comic]]. And yes: to say that the game stands out as weird in a series starring [[WhatDoYouMeanItWasntMadeOnDrugs an Italian plumber who eats magical mushrooms and flings fireballs at turtle monsters]] is certainly a mouthful, but it's true.
* OutsideContextProblem: Tatanga.
* ProjectilePocketing: The Superball PowerUp. Throwing balls at coins will collect them instantaneously. Very handy in certain coin-filled bonus rooms.
* PublicDomainSoundtrack: Swaps out the traditional Starman invincibility music with the Can-Can, and game-over music with "Rock-a-bye Baby".
* RatchetScrolling: Like the original ''Super Mario Bros.'', the game does not allow you to backtrack in a level.
* RegionalRiff: That's how Chai Kingdom theme starts.
* SoftReset: As with most Game Boy games, you can reset to the title screen by pressing select, start, B, and A at the same time.
* SpikesOfDoom: Very prevalent in World 3 and even in a few ''warp pipe bonus stages!''
* SuperDrowningSkills: Mario sinks like a rock if he falls into water (mostly because it's a {{Bottomless Pit|s}}).
* SuspiciouslySimilarSubstitute:
** Princess Daisy is so similar to Princess Peach/Toadstool that for over a decade, many people thought that she ''was'' Princess Toadstool, and that "Daisy" was just her nickname. In the Nintendo 64 era, she became a distinct PaletteSwap for Princess Toadstool, and later games have given her a Southern accent and more of an ActionGirl personality.
** The Bombshell Koopas are exploding clones of Koopa Troopas.
** The Goombo enemy is based on the Goomba
** The Bullet Biff enemy is basically a miniature Bullet Bill.
* UnderTheSea: In World 2-3, Mario rides around in the Marine Pop and shoots down enemies and objects underwater.
* UnexpectedShmupLevel: Worlds 2-3 and 4-3.
* UniqueEnemy: Immediately before the final boss room, you see coming out of the pipes...human fists?
* {{Wutai}}: Worlds 4-1 and 4-2.
* YourPrincessIsInAnotherCastle: This is Mario, and the game was hyped as the "true" sequel to ''Super Mario Bros.'' However, [[spoiler:instead of rescuing a new citizen of Sarasaland after each boss, the false princesses were monsters in disguise]].