[[quoteright:300:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/MarioStrikersCharged_8087.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:300:The EU box art for ''Mario Strikers Charged''.]]

''Mario Strikers'' is a series of [[TheBeautifulGame football/soccer]] games developed by Next Level Games, consisting of two titles - ''Super Mario Strikers'' ([[NintendoGameCube GCN]], 2005), and ''Mario Strikers Charged'' ({{Wii}}, 2007). Often viewed as the DarkerAndEdgier part of the [[Franchise/SuperMarioBros Mario franchise]] - partially due to their more "rough" art style and [[{{Stripperiffic}} skimpier clothing]] - both games were nonetheless well received by critics and fans, although ''Mario Strikers Charged'' is by far the most popular in the series.

Despite being in the SportsGame genre, the games aren't exactly your typical [[FIFASoccer FIFA]]-style football/soccer game...it's quite common to see characters doing backflips in slow-motion, items being flung everywhere, the ball becoming encased in an egg or metallic koopa shell, characters being [[ShockAndAwe electrocuted by an electric fence]] and...headbutting. Matches can be held at some stadiums with [[ShockAndAwe bolts of lightning casually electrocuting the players]], [[PlayingWithFire fireballs burning them]] or [[SmashingHallwayTrapsOfDoom Thwomps crushing them]]. Indeed, ''Magazine/NintendoPower'''s review of the games described them to be less of a soccer game and more of a soccer-themed obstacle course. Gaining points is still your priority, but so is being flashy while you do it.

As part of the Mario franchise, the series has the usual cast of characters like Mario, Luigi, Bowser, Donkey Kong ("DK") and Peach as playable captains, whereas other characters such as Birdo and Toad can be recruited as "sidekicks".

'''''Super Mario Strikers''''' (''Mario Smash Football'' in Europe) brings staple Mario-themed items of varying danger, potency, and size to the playing field, with additional captain-specific items ranging from Mario and Luigi's gargantuan growth, to Peach's camera flash freeze, to DK's GroundShatteringLanding, aptly represented by the disembodied head of your captain. Body-checking enemies into the electric fence is actively encouraged (though doing so recklessly will award enemies a retaliatory item) and captains may perform high-flying Superstrikes that, when timed right and uninterrupted, can guarantee a goal worth two points instead of one.

'''''Mario Strikers Charged''''' retains nearly all of the features introduced in the prequel, but ups the ante by adding skillshots for sidekicks and the new, all-powerful Megastrike for captains. For example, if Koopa charges the ball for long enough, he can release a metallic koopa shell that dazes Kritter, creating a much easier scoring opportunity. For captains, unlike the previous Superstrike, the Megastrike is a new move that fires off 3-6 balls at the opponent's goalie which, depending on how many balls are saved, can score anything between zero and ''six'' goals.

There are four main modes - ''Road to the Striker Cup'' (campaign), ''Domination Mode'' (versus), ''Striker Challenges'' (missions) and ''Wi-Fi''. ''Road to the Striker Cup'' consists of three cups: the Fire Cup, Crystal Cup and Striker Cup, with varying difficulty. Teams are first pitted against each other in a group stage, then the best teams are promoted to a knockout stage, and finally the winning team gets a shot at winning the trophy by playing the current champion in a best of 3 matches. ''Domination Mode'', like normal versus modes, is a customised match between any two teams of your choice. ''Striker Challenges'' consists of 12 different missions (one for each captain) where you and possibly your opponent will be handicapped in some way, and will have to win the game based on certain criteria. ''Wi-Fi'' is simply a match against another human player somewhere across the world, and has a rating system similar to Nintendo's other Wi-Fi modes.

But be warned - this game can be, and will be, NintendoHard. The skill of the later AI difficulty levels (4 and [[PerfectPlayAI 5]]) is near-perfect, and they will pull off some of the most ridiculous shots possible to win a game however they can. The game thankfully avoids FakeDifficulty, but the skill of the AI sometimes beggars belief.

----

!! Mario Strikers contains examples of:

* {{Acrofatic}}: Wario can do backflips. Or more specifically, Wario can backflip kick a ball in mid-air at insane speed into the back of the net.
** He can also do the splits.
* AmericanKirbyIsHardcore: Inverted, the [[http://www.mariowiki.com/File:USCover_MSCF.jpg US boxart lacks murderous diving Bowser]].
* ArmourIsUseless: Averted. The game actually states that since the first game, matches have gotten to the point where the armour is ''required.''
* AssKickingPose: The Home and Away entrances.
** The mega strikes have a brief pose before unleashing hell on the enemy goalie
* BadBoss: Some of the captains take out their frustration on their teammates if the opposing team scores too much. Examples range from Peach throwing a temper tantrum to Bowser ''setting his team on fire!''
* BadassPrincess: Daisy and even ''Peach'' are pretty {{Badass}} when they're out on the field.
* CameraAbuse: Donkey Kong and Waluigi do this.
** Inverted by Peach who abuses her opponents with the cameras
* CharacterClassSystem: There are five separate "classes" for each captain and sidekick - [[FragileSpeedster Playmaker]], [[StoneWall Defensive]], [[JackOfAllStats Balanced]], [[GlassCannon Offensive]] and [[MightyGlacier Power]]. For example, Bowser, a power character, is incredibly slow and poor at passing, but is great at tackling and amazing at shooting. Peach, a playmaker character, is the exact opposite.
** Generally, Playmakers are the [[{{Foil}} foils]] of Power characters, and obviously Offensive characters are the [[{{Foil}} foils]] of Defensive characters (poor speed and tackling but great passing and shooting, and vice versa respectively).
* DarkerAndEdgier: The art style. [[{{Stripperiffic}} The female captains' clothing]]. The male characters' constant angry scowls. Headbutting players into an electric fence. ''Mario Strikers Charged'' is the only game in the Mario franchise to receive a 7+ rating. Sure, it's still not 18+ or even 13+ but hey, this is Mario we're talking about.
** In-series, ''Charged'' for the original game. The latter, while gimmicky, was still a rather straightforward depiction of soccer. ''Charged'', however, took the rules and turned them on their heads so hard it can be pretty ludicrous.
* DeathGlare: Luigi does this [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r3WEsbs2im8&ob=av3e#t=1m26s here]], combined with TwitchyEye.
** Daisy when a goal is scored against her.
** DK's Mega Strike. He appears to be trying to kill the ball with eye-hatred.
* DemotedToExtra: The robots from the first game. One appears as a janitor while the credits roll.
* DifficultySpike: See NintendoHard below.
** On a less extreme note the matches to unlock Bowser Jr and Diddy Kong are a sudden step up from the other matches in that tournament
* ElementalPowers: In ''Charged'', most every Mega Strike is associated with a specific element.
** Mario: ThePowerOfTheSun
** Peach and Diddy Kong: LightEmUp
** Daisy: AnIcePerson
** Yoshi: BlowYouAway
** Waluigi and Petey: GreenThumb, the former likely crossing over with PoisonousPerson due to the thorns and purple color.
** DK: ShockAndAwe
** Bowser: MagmaMan
*** Some of the sidekick skillshots too, such as Dry Bones [[ShockAndAwe electrifying the ball]] or Toad's [[PlayingWithFire fireball shot]]
* ExpressiveMask: Shy Guys have '''very''' expressive masks, rarely seen in the Mario series. It's to the point that one would think the masks were their real faces.
* {{Fartillery}}: Wario.
* FartsOnFire: As an EasterEgg, using Bowser's Fire Storm on Wario's Gas Mask results in this.
* GameBreakingBug: There is a glitch which causes the ball to go through the opponent's goalie if a Boo charges the ball then disappears into his goalie, prompting Boo's goalie to pick the ball up and pass it normally. The other goalie will be unable to block the ball in any capacity. Some online players will opt to score goals solely through this glitch.
* GenreMotif: Each captain has one:
** Mario: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pacLYj6l0so Hard Rock]]
** Luigi: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L9NGkeltj8A Flamenco]]
** Peach: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ox-A7OkuTHk Bubblegum Pop]]
** Daisy: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PaDLunh2z94 Punk Rock]]
** Yoshi: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jOUS3uFYIuE Broadway]]
** Wario: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZM_kxJB12k Polka]]
** Waluigi: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pKPErdLxFW8 Bluegrass]]
** Bowser: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N2M5s7MGjr4 Heavy Metal]]
** Donkey Kong: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z0RWa5r-6oc African drums]]
** Diddy Kong: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4q6OqkTEOGM Bhangra pop]]
** Bowser Jr.: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AHbBvlRrMrc Surf/spy rock]]
** Petey Piranha: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3JGfo4JsnAU Reggae]]
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: Waluigi's crotch chop.
** Should Wario get scored on, one of his animations actually has him ''attempting suicide by Bob-omb''.
* GlowingEyesOfDoom: Many of the captains get these when they do a Mega Strike (Petey is an exception because he has none).
* GratuitousItalian: Luigi does this in the sequel.
* ImprobableAimingSkills: Every shot taken is always on-target; the only thing stopping it from going in is Kritter. Also, some of the skillshots introduced in ''Mario Strikers Charged'' are guaranteed goals when used correctly.
* IncrediblyLamePun: Waluigi's signature power-up causes him to create a tangled, purple wall behind him as he moves. It's called "Wall-Luigi".
* {{Leitmotif}}: Each playable character in ''Charged'' has one.
* LimitBreak: Captains in both games have a special move called a Super Strike in ''Super Mario Strikers'' and a Mega Strike in ''Mario Strikers Charged''.
** The better your opponents do the more pissed off your captains get and the more likely they are to pull out their unique powers
* LeaningOnTheFourthWall: Wario hums along with his theme song during his Home entrance.
* MadeOfIron: everyone involved but special mention goes to Kritter who doesn't let having his hands set on fire stop him from punching out anyone coming into the box.
* MakeMeWannaShout: Bowser Jr.'s Mega Strike and unique power
* MundaneMadeAwesome: The series takes both soccer and Mario and makes it over-the-top DarkerAndEdgier and awesome.
* MusicalNod: Boo's theme is a remixed Merry-Go-Round from VideoGame/SuperMario64.
* MsFanservice: Both Peach and Daisy wear {{Stripperific}} sports bras in this game.
* NintendoHard: In ''Mario Strikers Charged'', just wait until you reach the striker cup. Then wait until you reach the knockout stage. Then attempt Yoshi's, Bowser Jr.'s or Diddy Kong's challenges. Most of the game is actually pretty easy, but the DifficultySpike you have to overcome to reach [[HundredPercentCompletion 100% completion]] is absolutely ''insane.''
* NotCheatingUnlessYouGetCaught: There are no rules about what you can and can't do but if you attack an enemy who doesn't have the ball (launching a skill shot at them doesn't count) their team gets a power up... unless they already have two in which feel free to bash their heads in.
* OpposingSportsTeam: Any AI opponent you face on high difficulties, but special mention goes to the teams you face in the Striker Cup Knockout (Elimination) rounds and Petey Pirahna's team in the final in ''Charged''. They play ''above'' the 5 (megastriker) skill level, at an otherwise unseen 6th level of difficulty.
* PerfectPlayAI: It is truly jaw-dropping to see just how skillful the AI can get, particularly in the final Stiker Cup match against Petey
* PromotedToPlayable: Bowser between games. In the first one, he just popped into the field randomly.
* SceneryPorn: ''Charged'' has some cool-looking stadiums.
** SceneryGorn: It's also pretty much a post-apocalyptic Mushroom Kingdom, where in the grim darkness of the future, there is only football.
* SeriousBusiness: TheBeautifulGame is taken very seriously in the Mushroom Kingdom.
* ShockAndAwe: Every stage is surrounded by an electric fence (bar the training room and thunder island which doesn't have a fence) and Dry Bones skill shot electrifies the ball (and whoever it touches)
* ShoutOut: Bowser imitates [[WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons Mr. Burns]] if he scores.
* UnblockableAttack: Again, some of the skillshots are this when used correctly.
* VictoryPose: Obviously, this is used after characters win a match.
* WhipItGood: Waluigi's Mega Strike.