Mega Mash, a pixel art-driven game by Nitrome, isn't just your average browser-based time-killer — it's a clever mashup of nostalgia and innovation. The basic premise is that you're playing an 8-bit cartridge with seven games on it, but the games start bleeding together due to the cartridge's advanced age. One minute, you're playing Carrot Story (a Mario-esque platformer) and the next you're piloting a Gradius-like spacecraft in Xolstar 3. It even includes Tetris and Breakout-styled games, so it's not pure action.
While this is certainly not the first 8-bit mashup game running in Flash, Mega Mash quickly presents some interesting level design. The "divisions" between each game are clearly marked, so you can (and must) move fluidly between multiple different game styles to advance. Different game styles are not sandboxed, but rather bleed over from one to the other; firing lasers in Xolstar 3 may help you clear away immovable bricks in Carrot Story. If it sounds a little confusing, it is — it takes a few minutes to get oriented, but after that, it's a fun kind of confusion. To find out if this game is worth your down time, just click the source link — Mega Mash is available to play now.