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Mario's Moves

Mario's moves have been an integral part of his success. Without the ability to move, Mario never would have risen to the level of popularity he currently enjoys. For instance, take this hypothetical example with an NES and a copy of SMB where Mario can't move.

Timmy: Hey, wanna see this new game I got? It's called Super Mario Bros.
Tommy: Sure, lemme see it
Timmy: OK, *pops it in*, Now this is how it starts, that little guy standing there is Mario, doesn't it look cool.
Tommy: Yeah, cool. So what does he do?
Timmy: Quiet, quiet, the best part is coming up.
Tommy: Oh, is this the intro. or something.
Timmy: No, this is the whole game! Look, look, here comes the goomba.
Tommy: Umm, he looks mean. Shouldn't you move out of the way.
Timmy: No, this is what's supposed to happen. *Mario dies*. Wheee, that was great. Then it happens twice more, then you start over! Neat huh!
Tommy: Let's play Duck Hunt.


So as you can see, if Mario couldn't move we'd be playing Duck Hunt 64 right now and the laughing dog would be Nintendo's mascot. It's a good thing Mr. Miyamato decided to make Mario movable. However, even with these moves programmed into the game, some users may not know how to make Mario get away from the evil looking goomba. Again, Mr. Miyamato had the foresight to put very detailed instructions on how to move in the instruction booklet, such as the following:

Walking: To walk forward, hit right on the d-pad

This leaves out a lot of information to the beginning Mario player. "That's all? It works 100% of the time that way? OK, I'll try it." The player then goes into the game, tries to hit forward to walk, and eventually get's into a situation where it doesn't work or causes him to die! For new players like these, expanded instructions need to be written, for example:

Walking: To walk forward, hit right on the d-pad
Walking into an enemy will kill you
Walking into a pit will kill you
If you are in front of a wall, you can not walk forward
If you are in mid-air, you can no walk forward, you can only drift forward
If you are in a frog suit, you will hop forward instead of walking forward

Et cetera. These extra notes (or errata) can clear up confusing situations for beginners. The rest of this article will contain more of these errata for Mario's basic moves

Ducking: To duck, hit down on the D-pad (in SM64 hit the z-button)
You can't duck while jumping
You can't duck while flying
You can't duck while swimming
You can't duck while riding Yoshi
You can't duck while in a frog suit


Jumping: Hit the A button to jump (B button on N64 and SNES)
You can not jump in the middle of another jump
You can not jump if you are directly below a ceiling
Jumping into an enemy from below will cause you to shrink/die
Jumping into a pit will cause you to die
You can't jump underwater, you will swim instead
Jumping with the frog suit causes you to jump higher


Going down a pipe: Hit down when standing in the middle of a pipe to go down it
This doesn't work for pipes that open downward
...or pipes that open sideways
...or those really skinny pipes in SMW
...or many pipes that you just can't go down for some reason
... you know what, just forget it. This move works for like two pipes in all Mario games total
Going down a pipe in a frog suit makes Mario look weird for a second (front view of frog Mario is scary).


Pop quiz
1) Why is Mario's movement important? (Answer: To make sure we never have to see that laughing dog again)
2) When can't you duck? (Answer: Almost always)
3) Why can Mario go down some pipes and not others? (Answer: Lazy programmers)
4) Why does Mario look so ugly going down a pipe in a frog suit? (Answer: Lazy programmers)
5) What does being in a frog suit affect? (Answer: Everything)

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