Super Mario Bros. Wonder Reveals How Goombas Damage Mario

Thanks to its improved animations, Super Mario Bros. Wonder finally confirms how enemies like Goombas and Koopa Troopas deal damage to Mario and his friends.


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Considering Mario has gone toe-to-toe with the dinosaur-like Bowser dozens of times and always come out on top, it’s always a surprise to see small enemies like Goombas, Spinys, and Koopa Troopas give him any grief at all. For the longest time, Mario has taken damage from these enemies if they do so much as walk into him, but the more in-depth animations found in Super Mario Bros. Wonder reveal that they’ve actually been biting him all along.

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Ever since the first trailer for Super Mario Bros. Wonder, it’s been clear that Nintendo has put a lot more effort into making each character and enemy look more alive than they were in the New Super Mario games. Perhaps the best example of this is the Goombas, which can not only be found sleeping in some of the levels now, but they can also get stuck in holes in the ground and be spotted saying hello to one another. They’re also a lot more violent than ever before.

A Goomba biting Mario in Super Mario Bros. Wonder.

Instead of just grazing Mario’s knee and somehow dealing enough damage to shrink him, Goombas in Super Mario Bros. Wonder can now be seen opening their mouth and actually biting Mario when they run into him, which definitely seems like it’d hurt a lot more than bumping into him with their heads.

This is something that was actually addressed by some of the developers working on Wonder during a recent developer diary. While discussing all of the new details that have been added to characters to help them be more expressive, art director Masanobu Sato said, “We talked about the evolution of hardware earlier—I heard that someone once asked Miyamoto-san why Mario takes damage when he bumps into a Goomba from the side in the original Super Mario Bros. game. Apparently, he answered, ‘It’s because the Goombas bite him’.

Wonder’s director, Shiro Mouri, then goes on to say that, even if that was what was happening since the very beginning, the team finally has the technology to be able to show it off, which is why it’s been added to Super Mario Bros. Wonder. Goombas aren’t the only enemy in the game to do this, either, as the developer diary also revealed that Koopa Troopas are also biting Mario, and that an animation has been added to them as well.

So, for anyone who thought that Mario was simply extra susceptible to being bumped into in the 2D platforming games, we finally have confirmation that he’s a little sturdier than that in Super Mario Bros. Wonder.

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