Super Mario Bros. is a beloved gaming series with dozens of installments. Whether you like racing games, platforming, party games, adventure, etc., there’s a Mario game for you. The popular Italian plumber has many dedicated fans, some of whom just picked up Super Mario Odyssey, and some who have been playing since the original Super Mario Bros. Whether you play on console, with an emulator, or even on your phone, I think we can all agree that Super Mario Bros. games are hard to put down.
What’s more, the Super Mario Bros. series includes many, many hidden secrets and Easter eggs. You could spend hours trying to find them all! And that’s not counting the glitches that players have discovered, some of which enable you to do things you were never supposed to be able to do, or even discover secret worlds. There are also “cheats” or hidden surprises activated by pressing a certain sequence of buttons, hidden objects that could make the difference between winning and losing a boss fight, features that are more useful than you think, and many, many more.
There are hundreds of walkthroughs, let’s plays, and player guides out there detailing the many ways you can find all the secrets of the Super Mario Bros. games. For nostalgic fans and new Mario enthusiasts alike, we’ve compiled 25 tricks from the Super Mario Bros. series that casual fans have no idea about! Some of these will probably bring back some memories for long-time fans, and who knows? You might even learn about some tricks you didn’t know!
25 Super Mario Odyssey: Don’t Miss The Secrets In 2D Areas
Super Mario Odyssey stole fan’s hearts thanks to the richness of the worlds, the beauty of the game, and the variety of the characters and game mechanics. It also featured lots of Easter eggs and throwbacks to older Mario games, including 2D areas where you got to relive your childhood and play as 8-bit Mario once again. These areas almost always included secrets and a hidden power moon, so you have to make sure you go through them very carefully to find everything!
24 Super Mario Bros: All The 1Ups You Could Ask For
There’s a part in World 3-1 of Super Mario Bros that has stairs with two Koopa Troopas. If you get your jumps right, you can use the second Koopa to get infinite 1ups.
What you need to do is wait until the second Koopa stops moving, then jump on it, go back a step, and jump on its shell.
Get this move just right and you’ll keep bouncing up and down on the Koopa shell, getting all the 1ups you could want! Plus, you’ll get a considerable amount of points, too.
23 Super Mario 64: A Source Of 1Ups For The Final Battle
The final battle with Bowser in Super Mario 64 is notoriously difficult. Players have lots of tricks and glitches that’ll allow you to do better in this tough boss fight, but perhaps the easiest trick is locating the hidden 1up. If you rotate the camera, you’ll see it hidden behind the top left pillar as you enter the level. If Bowser gets the best of you and you lose a life, you’ll stand a better chance with this hidden bonus! It just goes to show you should always look around in a game, even in a boss battle.
22 Super Mario Bros: The Secret Warp Zones
Any Super Mario fan is familiar with the concept of warp zones. They’re secret rooms that allow you to navigate between levels in an instant. But do you remember where they are in Super Mario Bros.?
The first warp zone is in world 1-2; at the very end, you’ll need to jump on the second floating platform, use it to jump above the ceiling, then keep walking.
The second warp zone is in level 4-2; next a similar-looking floating platform, you’ll find blue blocks that you can jump under to reach the zone!
21 Super Mario Run: The Midair Stall
For mobile gamers, Super Mario Run was a welcome addition to the series. This super cute Mario game is easy to master and highly addictive. It’s also quite simple, being a mobile game. However, there is a secret trick you can learn and master to get better at the game. To execute the midair stall, touch your screen and swipe to the left while jumping. It’s not as intricate as some of the combos from the older games, but it’s still a nifty trick!
20 Super Mario Sunshine: Don’t Get Dragged Down By The Bubbas
Many players dread water levels. Sure, they’re pretty to look at, but often, it means learning new mechanics and facing new enemies. In Super Mario Sunshine, levels like Gelato Beach frustrated players because of the Bubbas, the red fish that drag Mario down.
However, if you swim with a piece of fruit, the Bubbas will be unable to drag you down under the water.
This little glitch will make dealing with the pesky fish so much easier! This works in any other level where Bubbas are present.
19 Super Mario Bros: Getting The Most Fireworks At The Flagpole
If you played the original Super Mario Bros. way back when, you might remember this trick. When you got to the flagpole at the end of the level, the timer at the top of the screen stops. Time things just right and reach the flagpole when the timer is on a 1, 3, or 6, and you can control the number of fireworks you get! Of course, you want to stop the timer on a 6 to get 6 fireworks, because fireworks are the best.
18 Super Mario Odyssey: Listen For The Power Moons
Super Mario Odyssey had so many power moons to collect, it gets almost overwhelming sometimes. Some are very, very well hidden, and, after spending hundreds of coins getting hints from Toad, you might feel understandably frustrated.
A simple trick for casual players is to simply listen to the moons.
Like many collectibles in games, they make a distinctive sound, enabling you to find them with less difficulty! It may seem obvious, but if it’s something you hadn’t realized yet, this trick will come in handy.
17 Super Mario Bros 2: Warp To World 5
Warp zones are back in Super Mario Bros 2, but they look a bit different than the ones in the first installment of the series. To get into a warp zone, you need two things: a potion, and a jar. Once you’ve used the potion and entered sub-space near the jar, you’ll be able to warp through the jar (or vase) by pressing down on it. To warp to World 5, you’ll need to jump into the waterfall in world 3-1, making sure to stay in the center. There, you’ll find the potion and the jar!
16 Super Mario Odyssey: Enter The Odyssey Through The Tailpipe
Another cool trick in Super Mario Odyssey involves the titular Odyssey, Mario and Cappy’s spaceship. Once the Odyssey has landed in a world, you can go back inside, but no one said you’ve got to use the front door! To save you a lot of jumping, here are the other two ways you can get inside the ship: through the roof, by using a ground pound, and through the tailpipes: one of them is a secret entrance into the ship!
15 Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle: Make Use Of The Tactical Map
Needless to say, people were initially skeptical when Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle was announced. After all, we’re talking about a strategy game involving, on one hand, everyone’s favorite Italian plumber and his team and on the other hand, a bunch of insane cartoon rabbits. The game was actually fairly successful and has many little tricks you can master to be a better strategist. Perhaps the most important is to make use the tactical map, which you can access by pressing X.
14 Super Mario Bros 2: Flying Logs
This is more a strange glitch than a trick, but it’s still fun to try out. In World 1-1 of Super Mario Bros 2, you can make the logs in the waterfall fly. All you need to do is use a POW block! Time your movements carefully once you have the block: you’ll need to throw it and make it hit the ground exactly as a log passes by. The log will then fly, for reasons that are unknown. Odd, but pretty cool!
13 Super Mario 64: The Fastest Way Down The Ice Slide
The slides in Super Mario 64 can be a little frustrating. If you’re not as prone to losing control of your character as I am, however, you can use these shortcuts to go down faster!
For instance, in the ice slide in Cool, Cool Mountain, you’ll see some coins leading off the slide and into a wall.
Follow them for a shortcut and hidden 1ups! Be aware that using the shortcut won’t get you the star if you’re racing the penguin, however.
12 Super Mario 3D Land: Title Screen Easter Egg
Super Mario 3D Land features eight “normal” worlds and several special worlds. Those special worlds can get you access to a special alternate video on the title screen! This trick is easy to execute, but also easy to miss. All you need to do is save and exit while in one of the special worlds I just mentioned, and the next time you load the title screen, you’ll get a slightly different video than the usual intro video. Pretty cool, right?
11 New Super Mario Bros: Secret Challenge Mode
Accessing the Secret Challenge Mode is a bit more complicated than some of the other tricks on this list, but that’s what makes it fun!
To access this secret mode, you’ll need to load a save where you’ve already beaten the final boss. Then, pause the game, and press L,R,L,R,X,X,Y,Y.
Do it right, and a screen prompting you to start playing in Secret Challenge Mode will pop up! And if it proves too hard for you (no shame here), you can untoggle it with the same button sequence.
10 Super Mario Galaxy: Targeted Ground Pound
This cool move is a bit of a secret since it doesn’t appear in the game tutorial. In Super Mario Galaxy, when you’re controlling either Mario or Luigi, you can perform a targeted or homing ground pound. According to the Mario Wiki, “Mario must spin jump while moving and crouch as if he were doing a regular ground pound. However, his body will shoot towards the nearest stompable object.” It’s a very useful attack when you’re fighting enemies or trying to destroy a very specific object!
9 New Super Mario Bros: Spider Jump
With this fun trick, you’ll get to watch Mario jump in a variety of different ways for your entertainment. Useful? Not really. Fun? Absolutely!
In world 1-1 or 4-1, all you need to do is keep jumping from one spider (or goomba) onto the next.
If you manage to do this without hitting the ground, Mario or Luigi will jump differently every time they bounce off an enemy! The jumps include the famous Mario pose where he raises his fist while jumping, for instance.
8 Super Mario Galaxy: Watermelons Everywhere!
Love watermelons? Good news! In Super Mario Galaxy, you can transform all the green coconuts in the game into watermelons. I have to warn you, however, it’s not that easy.
You’ll need to collect the maximum amount of starbits (9,999 starbits) to achieve this trick.
It’s definitely time-consuming, but it’s a fun little detail! This trick is, however, not reversible, so if you really do like the game’s coconuts, you might want to pass on it and give up the watermelons.
7 Super Mario Sunshine: Puddle Slide
In Super Mario Sunshine, there’s an easy way to get Mario to go a bit faster. Simply spray some water in front of you, creating a puddle. Then, head dive into the puddle you just created, and Mario will slide on his belly! It’s very useful when you’re racing to get those coins or to catch up with Shadow Mario. It’s a fairly well-known move, but, for casual fans who aren’t aware of it, it might just make life easier!
6 Super Mario Bros: The Minus World
The Minus World is quite an interesting glitch world in Super Mario Bros. It was removed from remakes of the game, but long-time players might remember the trick to access it. By executing a series of jumps in World 1-2, the player will end up in the Warp Zone. Jump into the tunnel on the left to access the Minus World. It’s actually world 36-1, but the 36 doesn’t show up, making it look like you’re in world -1. Note that the pipe at the end is glitched and will send you back to the beginning of the world.
5 Super Mario Galaxy: Game Over Count
In Super Mario Galaxy, once you get all 120 stars with both Mario and Luigi, you unlock the Grand Finale Galaxy. That’s already pretty nifty, but there’s a secret within this secret!
Get the final star in this galaxy with both characters, and your game over count will appear on your save files.
You’ll be able to see how many times you lost all your lives both with Mario and with Luigi! For gamers who just love stats, it’s a pretty cool trick.
4 Super Mario Odyssey: Jump On The Globe!
There’s even more to the Odyssey from Super Mario Odyssey! The ship is very detailed, and features, among other things, a globe. Jump repeatedly on that globe, and you’ll get a fun Easter egg! You’ll eventually hear a version of the Fossil Falls theme.
And if you jump on the globe while the Odyssey is in the Mushroom Kingdom, you’ll hear a version of Mayor Pauline’s song “Jump Up, Superstar!”.
It just goes to show that should interact with as many things as possible in the game to find its secrets.
3 Super Mario Bros: Run Past The Flagpole
In Super Mario Bros, there’s another fun trick involving the flagpole you find at the end of every level. You can only do this in world 3-3, however.
You’ll need to time your jump just right, and you’ll be able to jump over the flagpole, skipping the end of the level.
After that, well, you can just keep running! This doesn’t achieve anything useful, but it’s still fun to see if you’ll be able to get the tricky jump right.
2 Super Mario Kart: Unlock The Special Cup
This is a cheat or trick that players may not remember or that younger fans may not know about. In Super Mario Kart, if you want to get to the Special Cup without having unlocked it first, there’s an easy way you can do that. You’ll have to select Time Trial or Two Player Match Race. Then, you’ll need to place the cursor on the Mushroom Cup. After that, press L,R,L,R,L,L,R,R,A. If you get the sequence right, you’ll unlock the Special Cup!
1 Super Mario Sunshine: Unlimited Water For The Running Nozzle
In Super Mario Sunshine, you can use the running nozzle without actually using up any water. This trick is a blessing, as constantly having to get more water gets tedious really fast! What you need to do is hold R to charge up, as usual. Don’t let go until you can start running; then jump and let go. Before landing, lightly hold R again to keep running without using up your water. It may sound tricky, but it’s worth it once you get it right!