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Video Game: Super Mario World

It's a bit more exciting! A bit more challenging! A bit more perfect! A bit more colorful! A bit more realistic! A bit more levels! A bit more secrets! A bit more enemies! A bit more friends! A bit more sound! A bit hotter! A bit cooler! A bit weirder! A bit more revolutionary! A bit more Mario! A bit more of what you want! It's 16-Bit, and it's yours only if you get Super Nintendo! Now you're playing with power-SUPER power!
Commercial for Super Mario World

Super Mario World (which has the title Super Mario Bros. 4 in Japan, with Super Mario World as the subtitle) is a 1990 video game produced by Nintendo as a launch title for their 16-bit console, the Super Nintendo. It features their iconic mascot, Mario, taking a vacation alongside his brother Luigi and Princess Peach (then still referred to in America as Princess Toadstool) to the faraway Dinosaur Land. There, as is prone to happen, Princess Toadstool is captured by Bowser and kept in his castle, this time located in the deep underground. Of course, Mario must journey through the entire continent to get to her, beating down Bowser's loyal lackies / children, the seven Koopalings, along the way.

This game is most notable for having introduced the world to Yoshi, Mario's now-famous dinosaur friend and his ability to eat the baddies. The game was followed-up in 1995 with Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island, a prequel starring Yoshi as the player character and featuring Mario as an infant. The game is fondly remembered as one of the biggest highlights of the Super Mario Bros. series, alongside the classic Super Mario Bros. 3. It was also Shigeru Miyamoto's favorite Mario game a couple of years ago, until he changed his mind.

It is also known for dueling with the then-new Sonic the Hedgehog series, erupting in one of the biggest Fandom Rivalries of all time.

A comic adaptation, titled Super Mario Adventures, was published by Nintendo Power in the nineties, though the storyline is mostly original.

The game was later remade for the Game Boy Advance as Super Mario Advance 2.

SMW is also known for its massive and extensive hacking scene. Hacks can range from simple level layouts to entirely new games with custom mechanics and new bosses. ROM hacks with their own pages:

You can also go to SMW Central, the internet's hub for Super Mario World hacks.

The game features its own unique elements, some of which were not caught on by the rest of the series. New Super Mario Bros. U is basically credited for being a remake of the game for Wii U, getting about as close to the original game as any other. It's also been nicknamed New Super Mario World.

Please note that Super Mario 3D World, which was also released for Wii U, has nothing to do with this game, aside from a few characters.


Provides Examples Of:

  • And the Adventure Continues: the GBA version starts with an intro that ends with a Last Note Nightmare, as seen here; however, if you beat the game, the result makes up for it.
  • Animated Adaptation: Super Mario World by DiC, as well as an interactive VHS tape called ''Mario to Yoshi no Bouken Land'' in Japan only.
  • Ash Face: Happens to Mario when he destroys Castle 5.
  • Attract Mode: Featuring Mario running through the "Groovy" course.
  • Autobots, Rock Out!: The final boss music, especially noticeable in its Itadaki Street DS incarnation.
  • Ax-Crazy: Iggy is implied to be this in the English post-defeat narrative.
  • Balloon Belly: Literally, with the balloon power-up.
  • Berserk Button: Knocking the flower off Wiggler's head makes him turn red and more actively chase Mario.
  • Big Bad: Bowser.
  • Big Boo's Haunt: Starting with Donut Plains (World 2), there's at least one ghost house per stage except the twin bridges that connect the Vanilla Dome to the Forest of Illusion.
  • Big Eater: Yoshi can swallow virtually any enemy whole, instantly defeating them.
  • Blackout Basement: The last area of Bowser's castle before the boss has very dim lighting — you can still see enough to navigate, and there's a switch that turns a spotlight on and off.
  • Bragging Rights Reward: Chocolate Island 3 is the only level in its world where you're forced to find the secret exit in order to properly advance — taking the normal exit only unlocks a path that merely loops back to the same level. A similar phenomenon happens in the Forest of Illusion as a whole — you need to find secret exits to unlock the paths out of it. In either case, finding all exits from a level is still required for 100% Completion.
  • Brutal Bonus Level: The Special World, its second stage (Tubular) in particular.
  • Bubbly Clouds: Downplayed with the levels in the Bridges' world. The levels are sky-themed, but there are no clouds you can step in.
  • Canon Immigrant: A few enemies unique to Super Mario Bros. 2 make a reappearance here, including Ninji.note 
  • Cat Smile: The Monty Moles have this.
  • Catching Some Z's: Rip Van Fish likes sleeping that way.
  • Chain Reaction Destruction: One of the castles goes down with that spectacle subtrope.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Early in the game, you are taught how to throw objects upwards. For most of the game, except to hit a few out-of-reach item blocks, this ability goes largely unused. However, the ability is necessary in order to defeat Bowser.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Toad is, for some never-explained reason, not in this game at all, even though he resurfaces in every major Mario game hereafter. This resulted in him being dropped in the Animated Adaptation as well.
  • Color-Coded Multiplayer: The last of the series to make Mario and Luigi look identical save for the Palette Swap. Even its own remakes (Super Mario All-Stars + Super Mario World and Super Mario Advance 2) gave Luigi a unique sprite from Mario.
  • Continuity Nod: The Sunken Ghost Ship level is based on the flying ships present in Super Mario Bros. 3.
  • Cutscene Power to the Max: Mario displays some skills not present in gameplay when he destroys said castles.
  • Damsel in Distress: Princess Toadstool, and the Yoshis.
  • Death Is the Only Option: Dying and respawning at the midpoint is the only way to access the secret exit in this single-level ROM Hack. The puzzle is that the hack starts you with only one life.
  • Dem Bones: The Dry Bones, Boney Beetles, and Bonefish.
  • Dinosaurs Are Dragons: Both Yoshi and the Reznors (triceratops) breathe fire. Rex also resembles a Celtic dragon, and not a Tyrannosaurus rex at all.
  • Divergent Character Evolution: In the original, Mario and Luigi are exactly the same, however the GBA remake altered Luigi's abilities slightly. In addition to the higher flutter jump from Super Mario Bros. 2, Luigi's fireballs bounce much higher than Mario's, and Yoshi can spit any enemy when ridden by Luigi (when on Mario, he immediately swallows most enemies), and when hitting a 10-coin block, all of the coins get spit out on the first hit.
  • Double Jump: If you're riding Yoshi, you can leap off in midair, though Yoshi keeps falling.
  • Down the Drain
  • The Dragon: Larry Koopa.
  • Dramatic Disappearing Display: The Bowser battle in the SNES version. No timer, no score, no extra lives - only the powerup box at the top of the screen remains, and only if it contains a powerup.
    • Played with in the GBA version — it begins with no display just like in the SNES version, but the display drops down from the screen after Bowser appears.
  • Edible Theme Naming: Donut Plains, Soda Lake, Chocolate Island, Vanilla Dome, etc.
  • Egg McGuffin: Yoshi's friends were captured by Bowser's Koopalings in their eggs.
  • Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: Yoshi, Rex, Dino-Rhino, Dino-Torch, and Reznor. Heck, even the islands are in the shape of dinosaurs!
    • This may have been the thinking of the game's creators. The game takes place in "Dinosaur Land".
  • Everything's Better with Spinning: The spin jump and spinning cape swipe. On the subject of enemies, there are also Kamikaze Koopas.
    • Ludwig's death sequence and shell spin attack though the former was shared with Morton and Roy in the game, while the latter was also used as one of Bowser's moves in the Super Smash Bros. series.
  • Extreme Omnivore: Yoshi. He can eat the P-switch or even a key if you let him have these items in his mouth long enough.note 
  • Game Mod: An entire website is devoted to it.
  • The Goomba: Averted with this game's Goombas (later dubbed Galoombas), surprisingly enough. They aren't instantly defeated by a simple jump, only stunned. The Japanese version classifies them as a sub-species of the normal Goomba (called Kuribon as opposed to Kuribo). The weakest enemies in the game are Beach Koopas.
  • Green Hill Zone: Yoshi's Island and Donut Plains.
  • Gretzky Has the Ball: Chargin' Chuck is the poster child.
  • Guide Dang It: Some of the Secret Exits.
  • Healing Checkpoint: If Mario is in his small form when reaching the checkpoint, he will automatically change into Super Mario.
  • Heroic Dolphins: The game features a few levels with Scuba-wearing Dolphins that jump out of the water regularly and can be used as platforms to reach far away areas.
  • Horse of a Different Color: Yoshi.
  • Infinite 1-Ups: Out of many examples, an often overlooked yet clearly intentional one exists in Chocolate Island 5. A coin formation seen early on reads "M x", alluding to the life counter. Right after it lies a green shell that at first glance can be used to score a combo on the eight shells revealable by a P-Switch, but can also be dropped on the nearby small lake for a easy infinite lives trick.
  • Instant 180 Degree Turn: Averted with the Koopas (while they're wearing shells, at least), Yoshi, Iggy, Morton, Ludwig, Roy, and Larry.
  • Iris Out: During the end of the level or warps.
  • Law of 100: Made a little easier by the Fire Flower turning enemies into coins. Eating enemies with Yoshi also counts as a coin.
  • Level Ate: Chocolate Island, true to its name.
  • Level Editor: A fanmade level editor, Lunar Magic can edit levels of Super Mario World ROMs.
  • Lost Forever: If you fail to hit a checkpoint in a castle before beating it, you can't achieve 100% Completion.
  • Lost Woods: The Forest of Illusion. The layout os the paths in the map is so convoluted that the only way to advance in the game is via secret exits.
  • Luminescent Blush: Happens to Mario when Toadstool kisses him at the end of the game.
  • Market-Based Title: The game was released as Super Mario World: Super Mario Bros. 4 in Japan, but eliminated the subtitle elsewhere.
  • Me's a Crowd: Some Chargin' Chucks can split into three identical copies, which all then proceed to attack.
  • Mini-Dungeon: In addition to having Fortresses (first introduced in Super Mario Bros. 3, and in this game housing Reznor as the resident Mini-Boss), the game also introduces Ghost Houses, and both types of levels forbid Yoshi from entering (so Mario and Luigi have to explore them alone). One of the Ghost Houses also has its own mini-boss, Big Boo.
  • Mood Whiplash: The castles and fortresses start off with their ominous level theme, but their boss room has a more fast paced, less ominous "fighting time!" feel to it.
  • Musical Theme Naming: Six of the Koopalings are named Larry Koopa, Ludwig von Koopa, Lemmy Koopa, Roy Koopa, Iggy Koopa, and Wendy O. Koopa. Also, whether it was a decision on the localisation team's part or not, the triceratops boss Bui Bui is renamed Reznor in the US and EU versions.
  • Mutually Exclusive Power Ups: The Cape Feather and Fire Flower.
  • Nerf: The Fire Flower isn't quite as useful this time around. Though it does have the nifty side effect of turning the enemies it does work on into coins.
  • Nintendo Hard: "Tubular" and the rest of the Special World may qualify, as might the later fortresses, but this game is also infamous for the sheer amount (and cruelty) of its custom-made hacks.
  • 100% Completion: Finding all 96 goals is necessary to get the "Autumn" theme in the GBA rerelease, whereas all you had to do was beat the special courses in the SNES original.
  • 1-Up: Just like the original Super Mario games, a green mushroom gives you a 1-Up. There are also moons that give you a 3-Up; between the generous number of 1-Up mushrooms and some instances of Infinite 1-Ups (not to mention the bonus game, which can give you up to eight 1-Ups), it is very easy to cap at 99 lives (or 999 on GBA) before you're even halfway through the game.
  • Platform Hell: The closest the actual game gets is the Special World's "Tubular" level and the reclusive "Valley Fortress". ROM hacks of the game almost elevate it to an art form, the most well known being Kaizo Mario World ("Hacked Mario World"), Super Kusottare World ("Super Asshole World") and Super Mario Tabarnak ("tabarnak" is a Quebecois French expletive roughly equivalent to "fuck!"). One of the most hellish is Item Abuse.
  • Powerup Mount: Yoshi. In addition to being able to eat enemies and get special powers from colored Koopa shells, he also protects Mario from one hit of damage.
  • Prehistoria: Dinosaur Land.
  • Quirky Mini Boss Squad: The Koopalings and, to a lesser extent, the Reznors.
  • Refining Resources: Mooks and items on screen when you pass through the level's end goal transform into coins — get 5 or more mooks on the screen when you do this, and you get 1UPs for each one past the 4th. Holding an inanimate object (Key, P-Switch, Springboard) and crossing the goal transforms it into a power up based on your status and reserve item.
  • Removable Shell: Starting with this game, Koopas are like this. You can tell whether a shell is occupied or not by looking at it.
  • Ring Out Boss: Iggy and Larry are both fought on a teetering platform over lava, and can't be killed directly. You have to knock them off into the lava.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge and Rescue: Bowser kidnaps Toadstool, but instead of heading directly to Bowser's castle to save her, Mario heads all over Dinosaur Land, systematically killing each member of Bowser's extended family one by one...and also incidentally to rescue all of Yoshi's friends, who've been trapped in eggs by the Koopas' magic and are being held by the Koopalings...
    • Averted if you choose to take the most direct route to the front door of Bowser's castle by using the Donut Plains Star Road.
  • Savage Setpiece: Rip Van Fish.
  • Schmuck Bait: In some stages, you'll encounter Fishin' Lakitu, the enemy floating around in a cloud at the top of the screen who is now dangling a 1-Up mushroom at the end of a fishing line. If you grab the item, he'll rain Spinies down on you for the rest of the level.
  • Score Milking: The Good Bad Bug in Forest of Illusion 1 where you stomp on Wigglers with Caped Mario. It was fixed in the GBA port.
  • Second Hour Superpower: The feather power-up is not seen until the first level of Donut Plains (the second world of 7 in the main quest). The power-up itself gives Super a real different meaning.
  • Sequel Difficulty Drop: Aside from several That One Levels, the difficulty is much more manageable than earlier games. The official Strategy Guide points out that once all four Switch Palaces have been activated, SMW is actually easier than Super Mario Bros. 3.
  • Shout-Out: The sound of a Yoshi egg hatching is the same as in Devil World, an early Famicom game designed by Miyamoto and Takashi Tezuka that never saw release in the U.S. until the Wii Virtual Console.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: Some of the subterranean stages.
  • Spike Balls of Doom: In this game, there's an underwater variety (urchins) and a variety spinning on chains.
  • Spinning out of Here: Star Roads spin you.
  • Stalactite Spite: Some of the spikes tend to fall from the ceiling when approached. You can generally spot them from a distance.
  • Stealth Pun: This game introduces an underwater counterpart to Bullet Bill known as Torpedo Ted. Which makes the two enemies Bill and Ted.
  • The Stinger/All There in the Script: The second part of the credits named every single enemy and boss in the game. The very last slide before the credits was Bowser and his family, which lists their names. For the English players, that last bit wasn't really important to note. For Japanese players, however, this was the first time the Koopalings were actually given names.
  • Stock Subtitle: World.
  • Theme And Variations Soundtrack: The overworld, athletic, underground, underwater and castle/fortress themes are, with varying degrees for each, one and the same.
  • Theme Tune Cameo: The Level 1-1 theme from Super Mario Bros.. plays in the Special World, but the player must wait 9 loops.
  • Throw The Mook At Them: The only way to hurt Bowser is to kick the Mecha Koopas he sends out up so they land on his head. Furthermore, you can pick up and throw Goombas, Mechakoopas, Buzzy Beetles and Koopa Troopa shells at any other regular Mook to kill them.
  • Totally Radical: the Special levels are named (in order) Gnarly, Tubular, Way Cool, Awesome, Groovy, Mondo, Outrageous, and Funky.
  • Turtle Power: The Koopas, Koopalings, and Bowser himself.
  • Updated Re-release: Super Mario World: Super Mario Advance 2. Adding voice clips and giving Luigi some unique features like a different sprite set (so he's no longer simply a Palette Swap of Mario), his super jumping powers from Super Mario Bros. 2 and the ability to spit out any enemy to use as an impromptu weapon while riding Yoshi, which makes taking out some hard-to-kill enemies a breeze.
  • Underground Level: Vanilla Dome and Valley of Bowser.
  • Unexpected Gameplay Change: Several of the Special levels had these. The notorious Tubular is partly notorious because it's the only level that requires you to use the P-Balloon. Other offenders are Way Cool (a maze level where you have to hit switches to fix the track a moving platform rides on), Mondo (a level where the water level rises and falls rapidly) and Funky (a level where the time limit provided is too short and you have to eat time-adding berries)
  • Unique Enemy: There's only one Fishin' Boo in the game. There are several enemies including Mega Mole and Torpedo Ted that only appear in only one level apiece, though they can be plentiful in that level.
  • Variable Mix: Yoshi is always accompanied by bongos added to the level music.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: When jumping off Yoshi in mid-air, Mario will kick off Yoshi upwards, even if he and Yoshi are already falling downwards. What this means is that if you are falling down a pit, you can quickly jump off Yoshi, making it to a landing, while your trusty steed valiantly falls to his (presumable) death. Note that one of the secret exits actually requires you to use this tactic (or some very precise flying), as you have to go under the usual exit to get there without dropping into the Bottomless Pit below. (Of course, Yoshi's back the next time you find an egg...) Super Mario Galaxy 2 reveals that Yoshi can return to the egg and teleport to safety when falling, however.
  • Wings Do Nothing: The Rex enemies have wings, but are strictly grounded foes.
  • Where's the Kaboom?: There are small cutscenes showing Mario reducing each castle to rubble after beating their respective bosses. The Forest of Illusion castle starts the same way as the basic cutscene, but then has the bomb fizzle out. When Mario (or Luigi) steps closer to inspect what went wrong, it explodes, leaving them frizzled and covered in soot.
  • Word Sequel: More like a World sequel.

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