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From the video game:

  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Does Mario callously let Yoshi fall into the pit just so he [Mario] could get a higher jump? Or is Yoshi throwing Mario off him, providing a Heroic Sacrifice?
  • Awesome Boss: The final battle against Bowser is sufficiently epic and a big leap from the battles in previous entries.
  • Awesome Music:
  • Contested Sequel: Trying to figure out whether Super Mario World is better than Super Mario Bros. 3 will get you a variety of answers. Fans of 3 cite the more plentiful power ups, slightly smoother controls, higher number of levels (90 versus 73), the addition of Airship levels (absent in World) and a more satisfying narrative. World fans prefer its smoother level of difficulty, longer levels, availability of secret exits, addition of Ghost House levels (obviously not present in 3) and the introduction of Yoshi. Most will admit to enjoying both, however.
  • Demonic Spiders:
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    • Magikoopas - with their ability to cast homing projectiles, appear in inconvenient spots, and respawn - are one of the most dangerous enemies in the game. This is especially evident in ROM Hacks where they are inserted in Auto-Scrolling Levels and block-oriented puzzles.
    • Fishin' Boo. His flame's animation is a bit sloppy meaning it sort of teleports across the screen, meaning it can easily hit you when you wouldn't expect it to. Thankfully, there's only one in the entire game. However, he tends to be used rather frequently in ROM hacks, especially Kaizo hacks.
    • The Charging Chucks Even when you're on Yoshi (who can kill a lot of enemies in one hit) they take several hits. After every hit you're thrown right off of them and into their path as they try to charge you, giving very little time to recover.
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  • Designated Hero: Defied. Early on, Mario was supposed to punch Yoshi on the head to make his tongue go out or to breathe fire. Most of the team agreed that this would make Mario fall squarely in this trope, so they changed it to him simply pointing instead.
  • Designated Monkey: Yoshi, due to the mechanic of Mario dismounting Yoshi to get a Double Jump boost, oftentimes over a bottomless pit. Far from a being Butt-Monkey in canon, Yoshi frequently falls victim to this mechanic in fan art and ROM hacks, which poke fun at the inherent cruelty of it.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • Yoshi, the biggest Breakout Character aside from Luigi. His popularity led to him going from simply being a Powerup Mount to being an entire species and one of the most iconic characters of the entire franchise.
    • Chargin' Chucks, who only appeared in this game and Yoshi's Safari, but eventually proved popular enough to finally make a reappearance in Super Mario 3D World.
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  • Fanfic Fuel: The creation of Lunar Magic in 2000 spawned a lot of unofficial derivative hacks based on Super Mario World.
  • Fandom-Enraging Misconception: This game is Super Mario Bros. 4, so don't ask Nintendo to make one. Got it? Game mods with that name can cause similar reactions, too, unless the mod in question is an intended Mythology Gag to the Japanese name.
  • Funny Moments: Quite a few of the end-of-world cutscenes, but two stand out.
    • For #4 Ludwig's Castle, after Mario presses the plunger, the castle takes off like a rocket, and a confused Mario watches as it soars into the air and impacts in a nearby hillside, which wears a Pointless Band-Aid for the rest of the game.
    • For #5 Roy's Castle, when Mario presses the plunger, the explosives don't go off, so he goes over to inspect them... and they blow up in his face.
  • Game-Breaker:
    • Yoshi himself can be a Game Breaker depending on the situation. In fact, both SMW hackers and Nintendo have acknowledged this by making Mario leave Yoshi whenever he finishes the level.
    • If you have the cape, you can fly over most levels. The same goes for the blue Yoshi, which can fly after eating any Koopa. Even worse, if you have a cape and a blue Yoshi (or any Yoshi and a blue shell), you can fly for a very long time without even having to mash the button. The cape is also one of the few powerups that will kill Dry Bones for good.
    • The brokenness of the Cape extends to slowing down Mario's midair descent even more than either of the flight-oriented suits in Mario 3, making landings a cinch, and its spin attack kills most enemies and blocks most projectile attacks, making Mario near-impervious for any reasonably skilled player.
    • The blue Yoshi is broken to the point that, combined with the cape and a few timed jumps, it absolutely trivializes Tubular.
    • Unlike most following Mario games, you're allowed to keep any items that you have if you quit a previously completed level by pushing Start and then Select. This makes it possible not only to get out of falling into a Bottomless Pit, but to go into a level, get yourself a Yoshi and then load up and extra lives and power-ups, then go back to the map and rinse and repeat. Most subsequent Mario games would redress this by reducing you back to small Mario and stripping you of anything earned in the level other than extra lives when you quit the level.
    • Luigi in Super Mario Advance 2 is far more broken than in any other 2D Mario game. Combine the floatiness of his jumps from Super Mario Bros. 2 with the tighter control and higher jumps in general of this game, and platforming is completely trivialized even without the cape.
    • The spin jump not only lets you destroy certain enemies that require multiple jump attacks to kill (or can only be incapacitated by jumping,) but even allows you to safely bounce off of 90% of the ones that would hurt you if you hit them with a regular jump, with the only tradeoff being a reduced jump height. The move is so powerful that many ROMhacks that go into altering the mechanics of the game end up disabling it entirely.
  • Good Bad Bugs:
    • The Wiggler glitch in Forest of Illusion 1 makes Scoring Points ridiculously easy in the SNES version. Although the points cap is significantly lower, as there's one less digit allocated to the score display.
    • Big Boos, Big Bubbles, and Grinders are invincible to every attack you can throw at them... except for a simple power slide.
    • The final level of the Special World has a gimmick in the form of Green Berries which increase your time by 20 when you eat them. The music speeds up every time it goes under 100. Combine these two things and you get music going outlandishly fast, sometimes dubbed the "Ludicrous Speed glitch".
    • The fact that Mario can still die after crossing the goal posts, not to enemies, but to stage hazards, is a feature the game designers mercifully opted not to use, but readily exploited in customizable ROM Hacks. Until the Iris Out animation finishes, the victory doesn't count.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • Super Mario Western by Hyadain, a lyrical remix of World 1's theme featuring decidedly Gonk and skeevy depictions of Bowser and Marionote , is often used to depict love triangles - love quadrangles if one counts poor Luigi, who's depicted as being a more handsome man than his brother. A variant turns everyone including Bowser into Bishōnen and Peach is even cuter.
    • Throughout the game, Mario performs various methods of destroying castles after defeating the resident Koopaling. This has led to the "Mario's Castle Calamity" meme, wherein Mario tries to demolish a Nigh Invulnerable castle with methods that always blow up in his face.
    • Even if Luigi is the one that defeats one of the Koopalings and destroys a castle, Mario is still the one that gets credit for it in the text. Unsurprisingly, this turns up in "Luigi gets no respect" memes.
    • Yoshi's Butt-Monkey status, usually involving dropping him into a Bottomless Pit as an improvised mid-air jump.
  • Memetic Psychopath: The Video Game Cruelty Potential involving Yoshi makes this game a popular target for giving Mario this status. Many jokes have been made about Mario dropping Yoshi into pits to get a boost (rarely if ever mandatory in game) or how the sprites make him look like he's punching Yoshi in the head to get him to stick out his tongue or shoot fire (while this was the original intention, it was changed in the final product to just Mario pointing as the crew decided that this would make him seem too cruel).
  • Most Annoying Sound:
  • Most Wonderful Sound:
    • Some people like the wonderfully dramatic, musical sting of the keyhole exits.
    • The pronounced stomping sound of jumping on a Chargin' Chuck is so recognizable that it was brought back for their return in Super Mario 3D World.
    • The sound the springs and note blocks make. BREE-E-E-E-E-E!!
    • The "level complete" victory music.
    • The sound of Spin Jump bouncing off of things like Thwomps and Podoboos.
  • Scrappy Mechanic: The special graphics that replace the existing ones when you complete the Special World are entertaining to look at, but the replacement is permanent, which means if you want to keep the original graphics without making a new save file, you have to not complete the Special World. This got fixed in non-Virtual Console rereleases.
  • Snark Bait:
    • In the SNES vs. Mega Drive/Genesis Console Wars, it was this game that received the full force of Sega's bile for being the direct competitor to the Sonic the Hedgehog series, and was constantly lambasted in all Sonic media (sometimes via Lawyer-Friendly Cameo) for being 'slow', 'boring', 'old-fashioned', 'childish', etc. etc.
    • It extended to some of the other systems as well. One commercial for the TurboGrafx-16 starts with "The passive type plays Nintendo" with Super Mario World shown (hilariously, the next part says "The aggressive type plays Sega" with a clip from Sonic the Hedgehog playing).
  • Suspiciously Similar Song:
  • That One Level:
    • Butter Bridge 1 is incredibly hard. It's an Auto-Scrolling Level that starts at the pace of a turtle and gradually accelerates, and you have to jump around a lot more than in other levels because the mushroom platforms, which make up most of the surfaces you can stand on throughout the level, rise and sink like scales. This ratchets the difficulty so far up that it even renders the Blue Yoshi-Cape combo substantially less effective than it usually is.
    • Soda Lake easily takes the cake for being the most difficult underwater level in the game, being the only level with Torpedo Teds, which spawn endlessly, and can move much faster than Mario, at many times spawning 3 or 4 at a time. Just getting to the level is no small feat either, requiring you to either be very good at cape flight or be willing to sacrifice your Yoshi.
    • Sunken Ghost Ship, the final level before the Valley of Bowser. The section with Boos randomly appearing out of nowhere is quite frustrating, even when you realize that if you stay in one place, they can't get you.
    • Special World is full of them.
      • Tubular (course 2) is a notorious example. The entire stage is basically making it across a giant pit with the Power Balloon Power-Up, except you need to actually stop and hit certain blocks to find more balloons, or else you're not gonna make it in time. On top of that, thanks to this, you're basically a One-Hit-Point Wonder, and you have to make it through fairly difficult attack patterns to hit said blocks. (Unless you can pull off the Power Balloon glitch (holding left and right at the same time, which is easy for ROMs but damn near impossible for an SNES D-Pad), which makes the level easy as cake.)
      • Awesome (course 4) is no slouch, either. A run across a slippery ice world with kicker Koopas sending shells at you every step of the way, followed by a platforming sequence over equally slippy narrow platforms with Banzai Bills, infinite flying fish, and finally a jump boost off a flying Koopa to another slippery platform to jump a decent distance to the exit pipe.
      • Outrageous (course 7) is a course that definitely lives up to its name, as Mario must run a relentless gauntlet of Wigglers, Amazing Flyin' Hammer Brothers, Jumping Piranha Plants, Bill Blasters, pipes that require springboards to jump over (said springboards needing to be carried across several screens), and various other hazards.
    • Valley Ghost House contains a shortcut to Larry's Castle that you can access by using a Key. The problem is that you're expected to hit a question block that generates a trail of coins you control with the directional pad, form a "staircase", use a P-Switch to turn the coins into blocks, and then slide through a gap in a wall and onto the ledge where the Key is. The trail of coins is nigh-impossible to use correctly, especially since you might need to dodge ghosts while also generating the coin trail, so your "staircase" might not even line up with the ledge.
    • Valley Fortress is all about skewers. The final section, where you need to hop over lava at the right moment to be able to avoid them is really hard to time, even with a cape. Jump too early, and Mario will run into one, fall and die; jump too late, and Mario will get crushed.
  • Unwinnable by Insanity: YouTuber nathanisbored demonstrates several (mostly very esoteric) ways to trap yourself in Super Mario World levels in his Let's Glitch Super Mario World series. This video contains two of them. His Ghost Ship one demonstrates another.
  • Vindicated by History: While Super Mario World was always a big seller and well-loved, it was largely overshadowed by Sonic the Hedgehog around their release dates since the latter had a much larger marketing push by Sega of America that lobbed endless insults at the game, and many people saw it as just another Mario game. Partly because of this, initial critical reaction to the game was still positive, but the game was criticized for not being as innovative as its predecessors. Nowadays, it's a contender for best game in the series and one of the best games of all time. One of the reasons why is that Super Mario World was the first Mario platformer to heavily incorporate alternate paths that lead to secret levels, creating a great sense of nonlinearity and choice. It took time for players to discover this, however, and the game is now held as arguably the deepest of the 2D Mario games because of it.
  • Woolseyism: The flavor text that appears after Mario defeats a Koopaling was originally uniform and didn't even list the specific Koopaling by name. Their names being mentioned as well as implied character traits (Wendy apparently liking to sing, Ludwig doing symphonies, and Iggy being demented) were added in by the NOA localizers.

From the TV series:

  • Accidental Aesop: From "Gopher Bash", vegetables are good for you in moderation.
  • Accidental Innuendo: "Well, since you ate the whole thing, now you can do the hoe thing!"
  • Anvilicious: Most of the show's aesops are delivered with the subtlety of a sledgehammer. The absolute nadir is the nutrition lesson in "King Scoopa Koopa", which ends with Mario spelling out the aesop directly when he orders the cave people to eat their vegetables.
  • Bizarro Episode: "Fire Sale", which almost looked more like an episode from the previous cartoon. And it's the first episode, too.

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