Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Top Ten Mario Enemies That Need to Make a Comeback

Fresh off the heels of my New Super Mario Bros. 2 review is a special article that will tug at Mario fans' nostalgic heartstrings. After playing several Mario games over the years, I've had a hankering for enemies of yore that haven't been in a mainline Mario game for seemingly ages. Of course, brand-new creatures are always welcome, but sometimes you just want the old tried and true. This article talks about Mario enemies from the portly plumber's past adventures that I would love to see reappear in a mainline game (i.e. a New Super Mario Bros. game or new 3D title, not a spinoff like Mario Kart, Paper Mario, etc.). It was mighty difficult pruning the amount of baddies I had, but I finally settled on ten to create this list. What old haunts from Mario's history will show up on this list?

10) Rex

If Reznor can return after a prolonged hiatus, then so can other dinosaur enemies from Super Mario World. Even though Rex has appeared in the Mario & Luigi franchise and the adorable Super Princess Peach, they have yet to return to a mainline Mario game. Rex was an enemy that when jumped on once, they would squish down to half their size, moving at a faster pace afterward. They required two hits or one spin jump to defeat them. And don't mind the wings - they're just for show. Such an enemy would make an appealing baddie to battle in either a new 2D or new 3D platformer.

9) Flurry

Oh yes. These rat bastards. Always sliding around, chasing and colliding into Mario as he slides across the slippery ice. Thankfully, Mario could catch a ride on one as if he so chose. I would imagine these careless foes that would worry more about harming Mario than their actual personal safety (they would constantly careen over the edge into bottomless pits as they made chase of Mario). They'd be perfect for antagonists in icy levels of the next New Super Mario Bros., but this time Mario would have the power of fire on his side. That would even up the odds quite nice like ice.

8) Sumo Bros.

Not to be confused with the heavy set Hammer Brother, the Sledge Bro, Sumo Bros. made their one and only appearance in Super Mario World. They would stand a top question and other forms of blocks, raise up their leg, and smash it down to the ground. When the foot makes contact, a bolt of electricity shoots down below, hitting the ground, and causing a small, contained fire. They could not be defeated through jumping on their heads, however unprotected they are. Instead, Mario would have to have Star power, throw a shell, or, more dangerously, hit a block they are standing on from below. In three-dimensions they could still stand such a block, but instead of a fire their sumo stomps could produce massive shockwaves to trip up Mario.

7) Super Koopas

It's a bird, it's a plane -- no, it's a Super Koopa! Only appearing in Super Mario World, these anything-but-heroic enemies that had different flight patterns depending on their color. Some divebombed Mario while some darted on the ground before taking off. In some cases, certain Super Koopas would wear a flashing red cape. When Mario jumped on these special Super Koopas, they'd drop a special Cape Feather power-up, giving the plumber an opportunity to don his own cape. If Nintendo ever decided for the much loved cape to return, these foes are a must. Even without the cape, you were always on your toes when a flotilla of Super Koopas came onto the scene.

6) Bully

This enemy is certainly no pushover. In Super Mario 64 the only course of action to defeat Bully and its bigger and badder versions was to push, punch, or kick them off a platform into incineration or a deep freeze. I could see Bully working quite well in a 2D Mario (I mean, it's obvious the foe works in a 3D setting) in a level where there is lots of lava or other deadly liquid, and there are a myriad of Bully enemies all around, trying to push Mario or whoever off into the abyss. A baddie that I would love to battle once more, here's hoping Bully moves out of stealing people's lunch money and back into a Mario game.

5) Mouser

Like a boss because he is a boss, Mouser's not only an explosive fellow, but he's stylish in his shades while doing so. In Super Mario Bros. 2 the goal was to pick up his thrown bombs, timing the throws just right so they blew up while Mouser was close. I can only imagine how such a battle would take place in current times. Like a lot of the cast of villains from Super Mario Bros. 2, Nintendo seems defiant in allowing Mouser another chance to shine. It's a shame as he was one of the better boss battles in memorability in the game, perhaps because he was the first, but still.

4) Shy Guy

We saw Shy Guy represent his clan as an unlockable character in Mario Kart 7. He's also appeared in numerous Mario spinoffs after his tenure in Super Mario Bros. 2 and Yoshi's Island. In the former, they walked like a turtle, but the current form of Shy Guy is a bipedal creature. Who knows what lies beneath that creepy mask? Is it a face that's even creepier than the mask that covers it? Who knows? All I do know is that I'd love to see Shy Guy cause Mario trouble in 3D form -- you know, when he's not attending one of Mario's various parties.

3) Snifit

The last time we saw a Snifit was in Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! in 2010 on the Nintendo DS. They appeared in the Yoshi's Island series of platformers, but their last showing in a traditional mainline Mario game was Super Mario Advance (a mere port of Super Mario Bros. 2). I put Snifits above fan-favorite Shy Guy because Snifits have the better capability of firing shots out of the hole in their masks. Can you imagine this baby in a New Super Mario Bros. game? Forget dodging fireballs from Piranha Plants, a Snifit's shot is like Usain Bolt in comparison. Even in a 3D Mario a Snifit could be an daunting proposition, as they turn and fire on Mario as he madly runs about.

2) Chargin' Chuck

There are numerous foes from Super Mario World that I would love to see make a return in a Mario game, but Chargin' Chuck leads the charge, sprints to the end zone, and scores the touchdown. They were quite rare for a 2D Mario game in the regard that they required Mario or Luigi to jump on their head multiple times to defeat them. They also dabbled in multiple offensive strikes. Sometimes they threw baseballs (oh, the agony of the Special World's Tubular), sometimes they kicked footballs, and sometimes they split up into three and simply lived up to their namesake and charged at their intended target. There's so much that Nintendo could do with these guys, and I'm saddened to see they have been on the disabled list since Super Mario World.

1) Wart 

Proving once and for all that too many vegetables are bad for you, Wart was the final boss of Super Mario Bros. 2. To defeat him, Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, or Toad needed to pick up turnips, radishes, and other healthy treats and chuck them into the mouth of the over-sized frog until he finally croaked. Wart is unlike most characters on this list as I'd just like to see him acknowledged by Nintendo and placed in ANY Mario game, spinoffs included. Put him in the next installment of Mario Kart or add him to the Super Smash Bros. roster, and a whole new legion of fans will worship this ruler.


Putting together a list of just ten was tough! I had the idea of just doing a regular article of fifteen, but no, I couldn't be greedy. Regardless, what did you think of this list? Did your favorites show up? Did you see an enemy that you had completely forgotten about? Feel free to rattle off some of your most liked Mario baddies. Are they so bad to the bone that they are good?

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