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Video Game: Super Mario Bros. 2

If you're looking for the game titled Super Mario Bros. 2 in Japan, see Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels.

Describe Doki Doki Panic, uh...Super Mario USA, um...Super Mario Bros. 2 here.

After playtesting by Howard Phillips of Nintendo of America, it was decided that Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels just wouldn't work for American gamers, since it was both basically a retread of the first game and just too Nintendo Hard.

Meanwhile, Doki Doki Panic started life as a prototype for Super Mario Bros. 2, but when Nintendo needed to meet a licensing agreement with FujiTV, it was rebranded with Fuji's Yume Koujou ("Dream Factory") characters. Then, when Nintendo of America rejected the Japanese SMB2 and needed a new sequel for the US and European markets in a hurry, they re-rebranded Doki Doki Panic to match the Super Mario Bros. 1 characters and gave the game a few additional nips and tucks.

The result wasn't quite as radical as Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, and for many fans, it's still a beloved part of the series. In addition, the game introduced many of the Mario series' iconic enemies (such as Shy Guys and Bob-ombs) and abilities (such as picking up and carrying items and enemies), and it further developed and differentiated the four main characters (providing Luigi with a taller, lankier appearance, giving Peach her ability to float, and actually codifying Mario as the Jack of All Stats for the first time). It's also, gameplay-wise, Shigeru Miyamoto's favorite Mario game. So hey everyone pretty much came out a winner here.

Eventually, this version was released in Japan as Super Mario USA. So, by changing sprites, Nintendo made three titles out of one, and sold the same game to the Japanese twice.

Super Mario Bros. 2 was later remade with SNES graphics as part of the Super Mario All-Stars Compilation Re-release, and then with further updates as the first of the Super Mario Advance remakes. The concept of Mario, Luigi, Peach and Toad all being playable characters with differing stats and abilities in a Platform Game would resurface in Super Mario 3D World.

Provides examples of:

  • Achilles' Heel: Wart hates vegetables.
  • Action Bomb: This is Bob-omb's debut.
  • All Just a Dream: Doubly subverted! The instruction manual implies that Mario first dreams up Subcon, then sees it for real on a picnic with his friends. But the game's ending explicitly shows that he dreamed it all. But the game's sequel, BS Super Mario USA, implies that the events of the game did happen, and that Mario was actually within a dream world.
  • Always Night: World 5.
  • Animated Adaptation: The Super Mario Bros. Super Show adapts this and Super Mario Bros..
  • Asteroids Monster: Fryguy.
  • Big Bad: Wart.
  • Bigger on the Inside: Certain vases have large insides, including one that has sand, making it's innards much taller than its outer size.
  • Big "NO!": In the Advance version: Triclyde when you hit him the first two times, Wart when you defeat him.
  • Bootstrapped Theme:
    • The Subspace theme is the Super Mario Bros. main overworld theme, minus the recognizable seven-note intro.
    • Also, the title screen theme is a remix of the "underwater" theme from Super Mario Bros.
  • Boss Bonanza: The game has the player facing Birdo (twice, if a certain route is chosen), then the Hawkmouth brought to life and finally Wart in the last level.
  • Bubbly Clouds: World 7.
  • Canon Immigrant: Any monster or object from this game that shows up in another Mario game, considering they're all from DDP. Birdo, Bob-ombs, Pokeys and the Shy Guys? Not Mario characters... at least, not originally.
    • Snifits to a lesser extent.
    • Ninjis appear in the very last corridor of Super Mario World before Bowser, though they become an enemy you can simply stomp on to defeat. They are also seen in the first Paper Mario. While it's dubious as to how "canon" that series is, it's at least always pulling from the more accepted elements of Mario "canon".
    • Pansers, which resemble fire-spitting Piranha Plants, are the first of four Piranha Plant-like fire-spitting enemy seen in the Mario series, even if these particular enemies aren't seen again. (they're the most dangerous of the four, as some of them can walk.)
  • Cartoon Bomb: Mousers throw these and you can occasionally throw them too.
  • Competitive Balance: All of the characters have different jump strengths, pickup animation speeds, and running speed while holding an item (without holding an item, all of them run at the same speed).
  • Cosmetic Award: In the GBA version, there are changes to the title screen when you beat the game, collect all the red coins, and clear Yoshi's Challenge.
  • Cranium Ride: Since this is the one game in the series that lacks the Goomba Stomp, you could do this on most of the Mooks. Several areas required you to do this. note 
  • Darker and Edgier: It has a MUCH higher concentration of Nightmare Fuel than the first game. Phantos especially.
  • The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: The game has a suicide code in case you ever find yourself stuck. Press Up+A+B on controller 2.
  • Directionally Solid Platforms: Quite a few. Surprisingly, sand is an example too.
  • Divergent Character Evolution: Luigi's higher jumping skills conveniently are also introduced here, but this game also gives him his characteristic flutter jump to go with them.
  • The Dog Bites Back: In the ending, after the Subcons are released, their immediate first action is to crowd-surf a bruised Wart off while the Heroes are being heralded and then (implied by the symbols to the right side of the screen shortly after he disappears off-screen) is given an off-screen No-Holds-Barred Beatdown.
  • Dolled-Up Installment: One of the most famous examples.
  • Dream Land: Subcon may or may not really exist. According to BS Super Mario USA, it does.
  • Edible Ammunition: Various vegetables that can be unearthed and thrown.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: The two red dots on the Ninji sprites are depicted in both the game's official artwork and The Super Mario Bros. Super Show as red fangs, but later Ninji portrayals reinterpret those dots as big buttons.
  • Extended Gameplay: In the Advance version, after beating the game you can go through "Yoshi's Challenge", which challenges you to locate two Yoshi eggs in Subspace in each stage. The tough part is that you lose your collected eggs when you die.
  • Flash of Pain: Bosses when damaged.
  • Flip Screen Scrolling: In the vertical areas.
  • Floating Mask: Phantos.
  • Gas Mask Mooks: The bullet-spitting Snifits.
  • Giant Enemy Crab: Clawgrip, the boss of World 5.
  • Giant Mook: In the Advance remake, you can find giant Shy Guys and Ninjis. Picking one up will cause them to drop a heart, effectively turning them into infinite sources of Hit Points.
  • Grievous Harm with a Body: Throwing enemies at other enemies is the main method of attack, along with throwing vegetables (and keys, and bombs, and almost everything else you can get your hands on) at them.
  • Hearts Are Health: In the remakes. In the original game your hit points are Hexagons instead.
  • Hitbox Dissonance: The player characters have life energy, but in order to connect the game to the rest of the series, they shrink when they only have one hit point left. But this does not actually reduce the hitbox.
  • Kaizo Trap: World 7-2 has the Hawkmouth gate attack you when you pick up the crystal ball. Three whacks with the Mushroom Blocks will neutralize it and allow you to proceed afterwards.
    • Fryguy in World 4-3 splits up into smaller fireballs after you hit him a few times, which can catch first time players off guard after being used to bosses being defeated after a few hits.
  • Koosh Bomb: All the explosions look like this, with "BOMB" written in the center.
  • Life Meter: One of the earliest uses of one in a Mario game. The meter initially starts at 2 units, but it can be extended up to 4 (or 5 in the GBA port) units. The extended health doesn't carry over to the next level.
  • Market-Based Title: Super Mario USA in Japan.
  • Meaningful Name: Subconscious.
  • Mercy Invincibility: What happens every time you get hit, along with knockback. However, the invincibility frames still tick down as the screen scrolls vertically, which means it can run out during scrolling and you can get blindsided without anyway to recover.
  • Nightmare Face: Phantos, in contrast to their counterparts from Doki Doki Panic.
  • Oddball in the Series: One of the first video game examples. However, it was well enough received that many of the gameplay elements and enemies were incorporated into following games.
  • Parachute Petticoat: Peach, enabling long jumps.
  • Pint-Sized Powerhouse: Toad is a rather short guy, but he can pick up things with lightning speed, making him the strongest playable character. (But the worst jumper, unfortunately.)
  • Princesses Prefer Pink: The debut of Peach's pink dress in an actual game (she's always had a pink dress in official artwork).
  • Quicksand Sucks: Desert levels have two types; the first takes about 7-10 seconds to completely suck you in and is quite easy to jump out of, the second (sand waterfalls) takes half as long as the first and renders attempting to jump out a hopeless endeavor, though fortunately the first type is typically near it.
  • Recurring Boss:
    • Mouser, who appears at the end of Worlds 1 and 3. In Doki Doki Panic, Mouser also appears as the boss of World 5, but was replaced in this instance by Clawgrip for Super Mario Bros. 2.
    • Triclyde is the boss of World 2 and World 6.
    • In the Game Boy Advance remake, Triclyde's second appearance was replaced with the second Mouser appearance, whose place was taken by the new boss Robirdo, leaving Mouser as the only recurring boss.
  • Recursive Import: This game would come back to Japan under the title "Super Mario USA".
  • Remake Difficulty Drop: The SNES version is a lot easier compared to the NES version due to the fact that you can save. The Game Boy Advance version is even easier due to the floating hearts, random large enemies that drop hearts when you throw them... as well as the fact that you can save. The levels themselves aren't any easier, though.
  • Rouge Angles of Satin: In the end credits, "Hoopster" is misspelled "Hoopstar", "Clawgrip" is spelled "Clawglip", and both "Birdo" and "Ostro" have their names switched around. All of these mistakes are fixed in the GBA remake.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: This was the first game in which Peach was a playable character, and she's quite useful.
  • Schmuck Bait: The Game Grumps illustrate a good example here: sure, you can get all those coins, but if you expect there to be bombs in any of that row of five plants, you're wrong.
  • Scoring Points: Not present until the GBA version, which added in a scoring system similar to that of other Mario games (in which beating several enemies with the same attack earns progressively more points).
  • She's a Man in Japan: The beginning of the bizarre saga of Birdo, though its appearance in this game is actually an aversion.
  • Shifting Sand Land: The second and sixth worlds.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: World 4.
  • Smart Bomb: The old POW Block is back, and now you can carry it around and deploy it at will. And it was in DDP. Shigeru Miyamoto did make DDP, after all.
  • Spikes Of Doom: Here, they make appearances.
  • Suddenly Harmful Harmless Object: At the end of World 7-2, the Hawkmouth, which had up until now been your gateway between levels, now comes to life and attacks you.
  • The Spiny: Porcupo.
  • Spiritual Successor: Averted with New Super Mario Bros. 2 in terms of similar titles.
  • Tennis Boss: Birdo spits eggs that you have to jump on and throw back. Mouser and Clawgrip are also defeated by catching their ammunition and throwing it back.
  • Unique Enemy: There's exactly one red Snifit in the entire game. Not counting the ones on the title screen artwork and in the slot machine bonus game.
  • Unsound Effect: "BOMB!"
  • Warp Zone: There are a few pipes that can warp you ahead a few worlds, but you have to use said pipes in the subspace areas (assuming you threw the potion in the right spots).
  • Weaponized Offspring: Birdo has this trademark move of shooting eggs out of her mouth as projectiles.
  • Wrap Around: A few of the vertical sequences in the game.

Super Mario Bros.: The Lost LevelsUsefulNotes/The 8 -bit Era of Console Video GamesSuper Mario Bros. 3
Super Mario Bros.: The Lost LevelsNintendo Entertainment SystemSuper Mario Bros. 3
Steel EmpireGame Boy AdvanceSuper Mario World
Warp ZoneImageSource/Video GamesAsteroids Monster
Super Mario Bros.Platform GameSuper Mario Bros. 3
Super Mario Bros.: The Lost LevelsFranchise/Super Mario Bros.Super Mario Bros. 3
Super Mario Bros. 1Everyone RatingSuper Mario Bros. 3
Super Mario Bros. 1Video Games of the 1980sSuper Mario Bros. 3

alternative title(s): Super Mario USA; Super Mario Brothers2; Super Mario Bros2; Super Mario USA
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