List of games that have their own pages:
* A villainous one from the beginning of the game: Bowser storms Star Haven, kidnaps the star spirits, and takes the Star Rod, all without any sort of opposition. He then proceeds to use this power to come far closer to actually KILLING Mario than any other instance in the entire series. If it's not entirely clear how much of an accomplishment that is, not even ''the end of the universe'' managed to kill the hero.
* Sometimes you can get rare Lil' Oinks. The Golden ones drop Ultra Shrooms and Silver ones drop Jammin' Jellies. You can combine the items to make the best healing item in the game, the Jelly Ultra.
* Seeing Dry Dry Ruins come out of the ground for the first time.
* Defeating The Master at full power in the first game. The CrowningMusicOfAwesome that accompanies it makes it even better.
* Defeating Tubba Blubba and freeing the Boos.
* If you don't use Watt in the room right before General Guy, Shy Guys will swarm you and slap Mario around.
* Everything about General Guy; he made an awesome, fun boss with great music.
* Kolorado tries to attack Lava Piranha ''while it's on fire''. Granted, the only thing that comes of it is a RumpRoast, but props for actually trying to come to Mario's aid, as that's definitely a step beyond most other Mushroom Kingdom inhabitants!
* Misstar saving the party from the erupting volcano.
* Helping the Sun rise in Flower Fields.
* Peach gets several throughout the game for refusing to stay locked up and trying to help Mario however she can by spying. She can even send him powerful items and badges, and the Sneaky Parasol event makes it better.
* The citizens of the Mushroom Kingdom all wishing for the Princess to be alright as you ascend to the final level. Even the one who just wants to eat Shroom Cake.
* Then there's [[TheDragon Kammy Koopa]] being defeated by [[spoiler: ''Twink'']].
* During the last chapter's first cutscene, the game hands us one. [[spoiler:After [[TheDragon Kammy Koopa]] tells [[BigBad Bowser]] that [[TheHero Mario]] has saved all of the Star Spirits, he ties up Princess Peach and decides to kill Mario himself. Twink of all people jumps in to try and save Peach by attacking the [[EliteMooks Koopatrol]].]] Sure, it doesn't work any better than Kolorado and the Lava Piranha, but again, at least he tries.
* In the not-quite-Final Battle, Bowser has made himself invincible by using the Star Rod, but Mario undoes the invincibility by using the Star Beam, a power granted to him by the Star Spirits he rescued in the game. When Bowser's taken enough damage, he flees. In the ''final'' Final Battle with Bowser, you're on a special energy-booster platform -- the platform's energy boost, combined with the Star Rod, makes [[spoiler:the Star Beam fail to work]]! At this point, Princess Peach (along with just about everybody in the Kingdom) makes a wish for Mario to win, giving just enough power to the Star Spirits to help Mario take down Bowser once and for all.
--> Star Beam has been upgraded! It's now [[spoiler:[[EleventhHourSuperPower Peach Beam]]]]! [[spoiler:[[BringIt Mario can now use Peach Beam]]!]]
* Another villainous one by Kammy: she's very cunning all throughout the game, which includes not trusting Peach's answers when Bowser questions her about Mario's weaknesses and seeing through Peach's clever disguise late in the game. On top of all that, [[spoiler:she subverts a major villain cliche by preparing a secret weapon for Mario's arrival, even saying, "Do you really think we were foolish enough to just sit back and watch as you save the Star Spirits?"]]
* Watt and Lakilester can actually [[spoiler:hurt [=StarRod!Bowser=] for 1 HP. NotSoInvincibleAfterAll?]]