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FAQ/Strategy Guide by BSulpher

Version: 1.1 | Updated: 08/10/2009

Nintendo World Championship 1990 FAQ
Copyright Nintendo 1985/1987/1990
Copyright Square 1987/1990
Written By Brian P. Sulpher
E-mail: briansulpher@hotmail.com
Version 1.1
Dates Written: February 16th to February 18th, 2008

I dedicate this to the NES fans out there, as this one is part of the NES
FAQ completion Project of 2004-2008, courtesy of the FAQ Contributor Board. 
We honour the most truly awesome and great system... the Nintendo 
Entertainment System!  Never mind about Atari, Commodore 64, Colecovision, 
Sega Master System, Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Sega Genesis, or 
any of the newer systems, we all know that the good old NES is where true 
gaming is at!

Also, for Cougar, Howler, and Koonce.  I miss you, and I hope you are living
it up in the afterlife as you did in this world.  You will always be in my 
memories, and you will never be forgotten.

Version 1.0

-Submitted guide on February 18th, 2008

Version 1.1

-Submitted guide on August 9th, 2009
-Made a small correction (thanks to Andrew Schultz)

-----------------------------Table Of Contents------------------------------

1) Introduction
2) Setting Up
3) Super Mario Brothers
4) Rad Racer
5) Tetris
6) Scoring
7) Final Word


1) The Nintendo World Championship 1990... what a heady day that would have
   been... had I been able to compete.  Instead, I got to sit at home and
   read about it in Nintendo Power, helpless to demonstrate my mad, crazy 
   skills at Super Mario brothers and Tetris (Rad Racer and I... well we 
   were never good friends and we shall leave it at that).  What made the
   Nintendo World Championship 1990 so fantastic was that some of the carts
   used for the competition were awarded as prizes.  Grey carts were handed 
   out to the NWC semi-finalists (90 in all) while 26 Gold carts were handed
   out to the NWC finalists and some to the winners of a Nintendo Power

   This means that only 116 carts are officially in circulation for the 
   public, so of course almost no one has access to this beauty through
   natural means.  However, a ROM does exist, so anyone with half a brain
   can find a file, meaning they too can enjoy this unique and rather fun 
   competition cart.  This FAQ exists for those who are seeking out this fun
   piece of nostalgia, looking to perfect their strategies and to run the
   score up as high as they possibly can.

   For those of you reading this who have the thousands of dollars to shell 
   out for this intriguing piece of video game awesomeness, good for you but
   I am insanely jealous you have one of the few remaining copies.

-------------------------------Setting Up-----------------------------------

2) This section will deal with setting up the Dipswitches for play on the
   emulator Nestopia.

                      | The Official Competition |

The official settings used for the actual Nintendo World Championship 1990
was a time limit of 6 minutes and 21 seconds.  This is the setting most 
people will then play by, looking to outscore the finalists of the 
competition back when it occurred.

                         | Nestopia Dipswitches |

Since the vast majority of you will be playing a ROM, a recommend using 
Nestopia, as it is not only the best NES emulator out there, but it also has
a very easy to use interface for the Dipswitches.

Load up your Nintendo World Championship 1990 ROM, which will bring up the 
Nintendo World Championship 1990 opening screen (can not miss it, look for a
HUGE blue triangle).  This is where the Dipswitches must be set, so follow
these steps:

  i) Click on the Machine menu.

 ii) Click on the External menu.

iii) Click on the Dipswitches menu.

 iv) There are two options to change here: Time and Show Time.

     Time.....: The time will be set at a default of 5 minutes, but it can 
                be raised as far up as 9 minutes and 42 seconds.  Although 
                the setting lacks the true 6 minutes and 21 seconds setting
                of the Nintendo World Championship 1990, the 6 minutes and 
                30 seconds is close enough for making comparisons to the 
                champions of the day.

     Show Time: The default setting is to YES, which will show the run down 
                of time as you take on this challenge cart.  The only other 
                option is to choose NO, which will hide the time run down, 
                making it impossible to milk the clock for every last point.
                In the Nintendo World Championship 1990, the players may 
                have been able to see the timer or maybe not, but the crowd 
                would have likely counted down for them, so the YES option 
                is likely fine for trying to duplicate the atmospheric 
                conditions of the battle arena.

To implement any of the changes that you have made to the Dipswitches,
perform the following steps:

   i) Click the Machine menu.

  ii) Click the Reset menu.

 iii) Click the Soft Reset menu.

With the screen back to the large blue triangle introduction once more, 
simply press START on Controller II to start the competition!

--------------------------Super Mario Brothers------------------------------

3) This section will examine the Super Mario Brothers portion of the 
   challenge cart, covering Controls & Techniques, Goal, and Strategies.

                        | Controls & Techniques |

                             ~~~~ Basic ~~~~

D-Pad...: LEFT and RIGHT will move Mario in the corresponding directions.  
          DOWN will cause Mario to duck if he has a Power-Up, and UP has no
          apparent use.

SELECT..: No apparent use.

START...: No apparent use.

B Button: By holding this down, Mario will run.  If Mario Has Fire Flower
          Power, Mario will throw fireballs with every pressing of the B
          Button (max of two on the screen at a time).

A Button: This Button will allow Mario to leap onto enemies and go over 
          gaps.  This is also how Mario takes a stroke underwater.

                           ~~~~ Advanced ~~~~

Coming Up Short......: This is a way to not lose as much time due to a 
                       Piranha Plant in your way.  What this requires is 
                       for Mario to jump onto the edge of the pipe that the
                       Piranha Plant is coming out of.  This will allow 
                       Mario to either jump over the plant in the way, or 
                       let it move down before he continues forward.

Crouching Slide......: This is useful for getting underneath/getting through
                       areas that are meant for Regular Mario.  By doing 
                       this, Mario can gain access to Power-Ups, Gold Coins,
                       etc. that he normally could not get to.  It is also 
                       useful in a few places for saving Mario some time in 
                       progressing through the level.

Lip Jumping..........: This combines the first part of Coming Up Short 
                       (landing on the left edge of the pipe), with a jump 
                       immediately so Mario will clear the Piranha Plant. 
                       The main problem with this one is that it requires 
                       you to jump the exact instance you land on the pipe,
                       or you will get hit by the Piranha Plant.

Piranha Plant Jumping: Piranha Plants have some hit detection problems that 
                       can be taken advantage of by an aggressive player.  
                       When running at a pipe, and a plant comes out, you 
                       normally stop to let it go back down into the plant.
                       However, you can actually jump through part of the 
                       Plant to keep your momentum going.  With a bit of 
                       practice, this can become an extremely useful and 
                       easy move to do.

Small Gap Running....: This is pretty simple, but it is quite useful in many
                       places in the game.  Whenever a gap is one block 
                       wide, Mario can run right over them without falling 
                       through (this is most useful in World 8).  Hold the 
                       B Button as you move forward, and you will run right 
                       over the gaps, but keep in mind that you can not jump
                       when over a gap.

Wrap Around Jump.....: This is a move used to get Mario to jump around a 
                       ledge directly above his position to land on the same
                       ledge.  The easiest way to do this is to stand on the
                       lip of a block that is below the end of the platform 
                       you are trying to jump to, and then jump up.  Mario 
                       will get displaced a little by the platform above, 
                       and when that happens, just hold the direction to the
                       platform to land on it.

                                 | Goal |

The goal of this segment of the challenge gaming is to locate 50 Coins.  
Once the fiftieth Coin is snagged, the celebration tune for finishing Bowser
off in a Castle will play, and the game will then switch over to Rad Racer.

                              | Strategies |

There are two main strategies that people like to pursue on this game:

    * Grab 50 Coins as fast as humanly possible, moving onto the next game

    * Get to World 3-1 as fast as possible, using the turtles on the ending
      staircase to leech a ton of points.

Although the second option sounds like a fantastic idea for getting a ton of
points, due to how the Scoring in this challenge carts works (see the 
Scoring section for further details), it is best to pursue option one for
going for the best score possible.

The following steps will finish off Super Mario in around 1:20 (it can be
done faster than this with this strategy), noting that the running Coin 
total will be listed in the brackets after each step:

   i) Go and leap the first Goomba, hitting the Power-Up from the left
      ? Block while collecting a Coin from the right ? Block. [one]

  ii) Leap across the pipes and skip the Goombas, going down the fourth pipe
      in the set to enter a Bonus Room, collecting all the Coins before
      exiting. [twenty-one]

 iii) Ignore the Goombas and go up the stairs, taking a running leap to hit 
      the higher portions of the flag pole. [twenty-one]

  iv) Run towards the Goombas, hitting a ? Block and falling to land on one
      or both enemies. [twenty-two]

   v) Run and leap over the bricks ahead, bypassing the Coin Block and 
      Goomba. [twenty-two]

  vi) Stomp on a Koopa Troopa and kick the shell to the right, running after
      it, using a Crouching Slide to pass through the small opening ahead,
      punching two Bricks to collect the Coins resting above. [twenty-four]

 vii) Run right and leap up towards the ledge where the two Goombas are 
      walking down from (take the hit and shrink to Regular Mario), taking
      a running leap up the high ledge to get the six Coins located there.

viii) Jump down and leap the Goombas, going down the first pipe into a bonus
      room, grabbing the 17 Coins. [forty-seven]

  ix) Even if you are a few short of the recommended number of Coins, use 
      the Coin Block right beside the exit pipe, punching away like mad to
      get the fiftieth Coin! [fifty]

   Note that this may not be the fastest way to get all the way to 50 Coins,
   but it is quite reliable and does not require a lot of insane techniques
   that can fail easily.  With some practice it can be easily cut down to 
   the 1:11-1:15 range for time spent, making it an ideal way to get into 
   the next game challenge.

--------------------------------Rad Racer-----------------------------------

4) This section will examine the Rad Racer portion of the challenge cart, 
   covering Controls, Goal, and Strategies.

                               | Controls |

LEFT/RIGHT: Steers your car in the corresponding directions.

UP........: When held, it will increase the speed of your vehicle slightly,
            but the penalty for this is a less responsive turning ability.
            Use it sparingly, remembering to take it off the moment you
            see a curve coming up in the road.

SELECT....: No apparent use.

START.....: No apparent use.

B Button..: Causes your car to slam the brakes.

A Button..: The Gas Pedal is your friend, so keep your finger on this 

                                 | Goal |

Simply put, you just need to finish off 3 Segments of the first race course
from Rad Racer.  The time will not tick down on this race, so just race to 
the end to slam on the brakes, moving on to play Tetris Type A.

                              | Strategies |

Since the only way to get points here is to drive, there is no split on how
to leech points (like in Super Mario Brothers).  Instead, study the 
following directions to get a feel for the course, memorizing the order of 
the turns to get yourself an advantage in positioning yourself ahead of 
where the signposts appear tot ell you about the upcoming curves:

                           ~~~~ Segment One ~~~~

A long straightaway to start here, leading into a long turn leading to the
left.  This is followed up by a shorter straightaway that turns left, then
turns right, and then finally turns left once more to pass through the 
first Checkpoint.

                           ~~~~ Segment Two ~~~~

A long straightaway greets you to start, which leads into a left curve.  
This turns into a small straightaway that will again lead into a left turn,
which then has a really long straightaway.  Now the road leads left for a
short span, followed by a quick turn right that will lead through the

                          ~~~~ Segment Three ~~~~

The almost customary long straightaway to start here, leading into a really
long and swift turning path leading to the right.  This will abruptly end as
the road suddenly starts leading left in a vicious corner, which is then
followed up by a long straightaway leading to the Checkpoint.

A few tips for driving well and efficiently:

    * Use the turbo boost to get up to the top speed of 255 MPH, but stop
      using it until your speed drops.  If it is on and you are turning, it
      is very tough to make the corner with the turbo boost applied.

    * Use the brakes on corners when the turn is sliding away on you and 
      when it appears collision with another vehicle is imminent.  By doing
      this it lessens the likelihood of hitting the shoulder or being tossed
      violently to the side by a vehicle respectively.  If wither of these
      events occur, it is very easy to smack a roadside obstacle, costing
      precious time.

    * As an add-on to the above point, tap the brake only as opposed to 
      hitting it with full vigor.  It costs far less speed to tap the brake 
      three times (with some speed up in between) as opposed to hitting the 
      brake with one long press.

    * Be sure to watch the opposing vehicles as you drive along, as they 
      like to lane hop.  Be ready to switch lanes as you catch up to them, 
      and try to not get bumped off the road.

   Once the third checkpoint is passed through, the beautiful car will 
   proceed to abuse the braking system and the tires of the car, moving you 
   on to the final challenge of the competition cart!


5) This section will examine the Tetris portion of the challenge cart, 
   covering Controls, Goal, Rule Change, and Strategies.

                               | Controls |

D-Pad   : LEFT and RIGHT move the pieces in the corresponding direction.  
          Holding DOWN will cause the piece in play to fall directly

SELECT  : No apparent use.

START   : No apparent use.

B Button: Turns piece in play counter-clockwise.

A Button: Turns piece in play clockwise.

                                 | Goal |

At the end of the line now, your goal is to simply survive for as long as
possible while playing Tetris Type A while trying to run the score up as
high as humanly possible.  Getting a great score on Tetris is crucial, as
you should be spending the majority of your gaming time on this particular
game due to how the Scoring works (see the Scoring section for more 

                              | Rule Change |

The only rule change that has occurred is that to reach a new level you
only need 5 lines instead of the typical 10 for the regular Tetris game.
This means that the levels will advance very quickly, so be ready for faster
speeds sooner than a typical game.

                              | Strategies |

                        ~~~~ Block Information ~~~~

Make sure you are familiar with the blocks before you begin, as the ability
to manipulate the blocks quickly is key for getting huge scores:

Square Block.....: This piece is the only one that when rotated, will not 
                   change it's look.  Try to use these to fill wide gaps in
                   your stack.

Tall Block.......: This piece is the only one that can trigger a Tetris.  
                   Try to use these to fill narrow and deep holes in your 

"T" Block........: This piece should be used to even out your ragged tops of
                   your stack.

"Z" Block........: These can be a real pain to use, but they also fill holes
                   for you.

"S" Block........: These can be a real pain to use, but they also fill holes
                   for you.

"L" Block........: These are useful for filling two block deep holes, and 
                   they are also good for building the stack up evenly.

Reverse "L" Block: These are useful for filling two block deep holes, and 
                   they are also good for building the stack up evenly.

                       ~~~~ Scoring Information ~~~~

The scoring patterns of the game is also good to understand, as it displays
why Tetrises are so important to constantly obtain as you progress in the 

  ___________ ______________ ______________ ______________ ______________
 |   Level   |    Single    |    Double    |    Triple    |    Tetris    |
 |     00    |       40     |      100     |      300     |     1200     |
 |     01    |       80     |      200     |      600     |     2400     |
 |     02    |      120     |      300     |      900     |     3600     |
 |     03    |      160     |      400     |     1200     |     4800     |
 |     04    |      200     |      500     |     1500     |     6000     |
 |     05    |      240     |      600     |     1800     |     7200     |
 |     06    |      280     |      700     |     2100     |     8400     |
 |     07    |      320     |      800     |     2400     |     9600     |
 |     08    |      360     |      900     |     2700     |    10800     |
 |     09    |      400     |     1000     |     3000     |    12000     |

     * What this means is that for each level you go up in number, your line
       value increases.  Singles increase in increments of 40 points per 
       level, Doubles increase in increments of 100 points per level, 
       Triples increase in increments of 300 points per level, and Tetrises
       increase in increments of 1200 points per level.

     * If you hold DOWN to drop a piece faster than normal, you will receive
       a small amount of points for doing so (higher up you start dropping 
       the block, the higher the amount of points gained from the action).

What this all means for you is that going for Tetrises is the most important
thing, as your levels (and thus speed of the blocks) pile up quickly.  Since
these two things increase so quickly, you will not be able to nickel and 
dime for points using Single and Doubles, but rather you need to pile up 
Tetrises in a hurry.

However, as the time begins to really dwindle, you will need to start taking
what you can, so with less than 20 seconds or so, start taking any line 
clear you can, with the last few seconds being made up of straight drop 
blocks to gain the precious points that they yield.


6) This section will examine how the totals score of your three gaming 
   attempts are tabulated.

             ____________________ ____________ _______________
            |        Game        | Multiplier | Overall Score |
            |Super Mario Brothers|    X  1    | Game #1 Score |
            |      Rad Racer     |    X 10    | Game #2 Score |
            |       Tetris       |    X 25    | Game #3 Score |
            |                    |            |  Total Score  |

Although I mentioned it previously, it is extremely important to get to 
Tetris with as much time remaining as possible, as the multiplier is just
too huge to ignore.  Even if you can run an impressive Super Mario Brothers
score in 6 minutes and 21 seconds, it will not be enough to overcome the
massive scoring potential that Tetris represents.

--------------------------------Final Word----------------------------------

7) As is the usual, this walkthrough is copyright property of Brian P. 
   Sulpher, 2008.  The only website, group, person, etc. to have access to
   post it is www.gamefaqs.com, www.ign.com, www.retronintendo.com, and 
   www.honestgamers.com.  You must ask for permission before posting this, 
   as doing so without consent is a violation of international copyright 

   If you liked it, hated it, have anything to add, then please E-mail me at
   briansulpher@hotmail.com.  You can also contact me through MSN messenger
   through the same E-mail address.

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