The Mario franchise has created some of the most iconic and recognizable characters in media. And Princess Peach, Mario's love interest and usual damsel in distress, is no exception. However, despite her helpless reputation, Peach has many skills of her own. Peach's importance extends far beyond the Mario games. She has become an icon of female representation in video games. Moreover, in many games, she has a unique set of kills separate from Mario and the rest of the crew.
Though Peach is often stereotyped as a frequently kidnapped, helpless princess, she has many abilities, and even a deeply developed backstory. This is not always obvious for Peach, however. She spends the majority of a significant number of games held captive by Bowser. The Mario franchise often focuses on its titular character, and Peach is often forgotten for much of the gameplay. Adventure and exploration is a compelling part of most games, and Peach, unfortunately, isn’t always a part of that.
Still, Peach can hold her own. In many Mario games, she has unique abilities as a playable character, and, in her solo game, Super Princess Peach, she even rescues Mario, Luigi, and Toad. In that game, Peach seized the adventure for herself. Though Mario is often presented as the hero, Peach is a hero of her own. There are good reasons why Mario ensures the princess’s safety time and time again. Though it may seem like Mario is the stronger of the two, he can’t simply take Peach’s place. Fans of the princess and even the other Mario characters have known for a long time that Peach is a force to be reckoned with. Though their abilities may not be the same, Peach can use her own powerful abilities, and, unlike Mario, she can do them in a dress.
15Accelerate Faster In Mario Kart
All Mario Kart 64 characters have their own strengths and weaknesses. In the game, Mario is a balanced character that is great for beginners. Alternatively, Peach is a more specialized character. While Mario is a member of the middleweight class, Peach is one of the three lightweight drivers. Unlike other lightweight drivers, however, Peach has much better control over her vehicle and is less prone to spin out. She can also accelerate faster than Mario and many of the other characters. Peach can reach her top speed a second faster than Mario in the N64 game. As any Mario Kart player knows, even a second can change your ranking in the game.
14Make An Appearance In Zelda: Link’s Awakening
Though both Mario and Peach have appeared in Zelda games, Peach was the only Mario character in The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening. Peach appears in a photo labeled Christine. This photo is supposedly of a penpal corresponding with Mr. Write. The incorrect name on the photo is one of the clues that the penpal may not be who they claim. Though she is only a photograph, this is one of Peach’s many Zelda cameos. She also appeared in a painting in Hyrule Castle in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. Mario, Luigi, Yoshi, and Bowser also appear in portraits in this game.
13Daze Male Opponents
While it isn’t a unique feature of the Mario games to daze opponents, in Mario Super Sluggers, Peach has the ability to daze male players and non-gendered characters such as Boo. Using Heart Swing, Peach draws a heart in the air with her bat and hits the ball. The ball is then covered in hearts that stun male player character who try to catch it. This ability does not affect female player characters. The ball can be caught by Magikoopas with the Magical Catch ability, but they still need to be weary of the stunning hearts. Once the ball drops, the ability wears off.
12Provide ACTUAL Support
Mario’s multiple lives have become an iconic feature of his games. Still, even with multiple lives, the challenges in Mario games are often deadly. In Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars, Peach combats this with her healing abilities. Using the powers Therapy and Group Hug, Peach heals her party. Therapy heals one party member while Group Hug, considered one of the most powerful moves in the game, heals the entire party. Both moves can only be used by Princess Peach. Similarly, in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, Peach displays similar healing abilities. After escaping the mind control abilities of the Shadow Queen, Peach is able to heal Mario and his party.
11Quote The Exorcist
Peach and the rest of the Mario crew have been internationally famous since the 1980’s. In Germany, Peach appeared in a Club Nintendo magazine. During one story, Super Mario in Die Nacht des Grauens (Super Mario and the Night of Horror), the demon Abigor possess Peach in a two-part story. Mario discovers that Abigor plans to possess an apartment building owned by Wario and lived in by Mario and Peach. The demon convinces Wario to give him the keys to the apartment building, saying that the possession of Peach is mutually beneficial. Wario agrees, and Mario must defeat Abigor to save Peach. During her possession, Peach quotes a famous line from the exorcist. Giving a more kid-friendly version, Peach tells Mario “your mother scrubs toilets in hell!”
10Unlock Abilities Using Emotions
In Super Princess Peach, Peach relies on emotion to save her friends. If she has enough energy collected in the vibe gauge, she can use a powerful vibe to execute a special ability. Each of these vibes are represented by different colored hearts. Using the vibes joy (yellow), rage (pink), gloom (blue), and calm (green), Peach unlocks an ability associated with that vibe. Unlike Mario, Peach is at her strongest when she allows herself to feel a full range of emotions rather than relying on physical strength or dexterity.
Using joy, Peach can float and create a tornado. Using rage, Peach lights on fire and produces hot air, which can fuel hot air balloons. When she jumps while using this vibe, her landing can stun nearby enemies and activate switches. When Peach activates gloom, she begins to cry. This can grow plants, activate waterwheels, or turn to ice in the cold. She can also run faster while this vibe is active. Her final vibe, calm, is a healing ability that restores her HP until her vibe gauge empties, she is fully healed, or an enemy attacks her.
9Have Her Own Month
August is Princess Peach Month. Actually, it’s technically National Peach Month, but Nintendo declared that, due to the name similarity, it is also Princess Peach Month. In 2014, Nintendo announced on Twitter that the ruler of the Mushroom Kingdom would share the month with the fruit. In the past, other characters have gotten timed observances dedicated to them as well. Nintendo declared that 2013 was the Year of Luigi. As some pointed out, this was related to games featuring Luigi that were put out that same year. Peach wasn’t so lucky, however, and has had only one solo game. Still, the month of August is dedicated all the same.
8Be The Oldest Female Character In Super Smash Bros.
Mario is automatically eliminated from the distinction of being the oldest female character to appear in Super Smash Bros. Peach’s first video game appearance was in September of 1985. The next oldest female character, Zelda, did not appear in a game until early 1986.
Peach was not in the first Super Smash Bros. game. She did, however, appear in Mario’s backstory and one of the levels is Peach’s Castle. She has appeared in Super Smash Bros. Melee, Super Smash Bros. Brawl, and Super Smash Bros. 4. Peach was rumored to be a playable character in the first game, but she was not in the game upon its release. Fans speculated that Peach was not put in the game due to time and budget constraints, but this has never been confirmed by Nintendo.
7Appear In More Video Games Than Any Other Female Character
Peach is a staple of the Mario franchise. Though she has only had one solo game, she has been a playable character in forty games. Including the games where she is a playable character, she has appeared in over sixty games. This has led to her iconic status as one of the most recognizable video game characters. Peach has appeared in most of the Mario games. After the first Mario Party game, she has appeared in all subsequent Mario games. Additionally, she has appeared in NBA Street V3, Nintendogs, Kirby Superstar, and more. Occasionally, she appears under a name other than Princess Peach or Princess Toadstool, but her unique dress and hair are always present in the cameo.
6Have Possible Toad Lineage
Peach’s backstory and familiar relationships are sometimes unclear in the Mario games. In Super Mario Bros., she is depicted as a Toad (and even called Princess Toadstool), though most games show her in the outfit known by most Mario fans. Peach’s father, The Mushroom King, is a human. He is also the only confirmed member of Peach’s family. Peach sometimes refers to elderly Toads as “grandmother” or “grandfather,” but many fans speculate that this is a translation issue from the Japanese versions of the games. Some fans speculate that Toadsworth is Peach’s grandfather, but Nintendo has described him as her steward. Peach’s close relationship with Toadworth is apparently the result of caring for the princess since she was a baby.
Even with other human characters, the relationship is unclear. In some Mario guides, Daisy is listed as Peach’s cousin, but it has not been addressed in the games. Peach’s mysterious family tree has been a source of speculation for fans since her makeover from a Toad into a human. Mario's lineage is more straightforward. He and his brother, Luigi, have both always been human.
5Float In Mid-Air
One of Peach’s best-known abilities is the ability to float in mid-air. First seen in Super Mario Bros. 2, Peach uses the ability to hover in the air, usually above a battle. She can also use this ability to glide back and forth over the ground. Her parasol is usually essential to this feature. The parasol can also be used as a weapon during these moments. In the Super Smash Bros. series, Peach uses her parasol to glide through the air and hit her opponents. Also in this series, she can use her parasol to jump high (but she cannot float using this move). She can also jump then open her parasol to ascend into the air. However, she can only do this four times before becoming helpless.
4Team Up With Her Parasol To Save Her Friends
Peach’s parasol is a powerful tool. Predating Mario’s team up with Cappy to save Peach and Tiara, Peach used her parasol to save Mario, Luigi, and Toad from Bowser in Super Princess Peach. Her parasol, called Perry in the Nintendo DS game, is given to her by Toadsworth. Perry acts as her ally as they adventure through Vibe Island. Perry can also transform into different objects to assist Peach. He can appear as vehicles such as submarines or cable cars, and he can even transform into a laser weapon. Additionally, Perry can help Peach perform special moves like Poundbrella, Slidebrella, and Dashbrella.
3Change Costume Color In Smash Titles
Peach is one of only two characters to change her costume color between Super Smash Bros. games. Samus and Peach change their team-based costume colors between Super Smash Bros. Melee and Super Smash Bros. Brawl. In Super Smash Bros. Melee, Peach wears her pink dress. In Brawl, however, Peach wears a red dress. Mario wears the same color scheme for his team-based outfit in both games.
In addition to this change, Peach also appears with a blue ring on her left hand. The only Mario game where she wears a ring is Mario Sunshine. However, the ring in that game is red and worn on her right hand.
2Earn A Spot In Forbes
In 2007, Forbes announced that Princess Peach was one of the most wealthy fictional characters in media. Forbes estimated her wealth at $1.7 billion. This estimate took into account the worth of the gold coins appearing in the games, the assets of her marriage (and divorce) to Mario, and the wealth of the Mushroom Kingdom. Forbes wrote that after her divorce from Mario, her net worth doubled. The magazine claimed that she used her vast wealth to buy over 600 pink outfits and play competitive games like tennis and go-kart racing. The magazine also speculated on her mental health, stating that friends disclosed that multiple kidnappings have taken a mental toll on the princess. Her abilities and even some of the enemies in the games are a fantasy caused by the trauma.
1Intimidate Bowser With Her Magical Abilities
Peach’s relationship with Bowser is tumultuous, to say the least. He is best known for constantly kidnapping the princess, famously prompting Mario to stop him and save her. However, it seems that Mario isn’t really the person of whom Bowser is afraid. In fact, according to the Super Mario Bros. guide, he has kidnapped Peach to stop her from foiling his plans.
In this game, Bowser transformed the people of the Mushroom Kingdom into rocks and bricks. It explains that Peach (then Princess Toadstool), is the only one who can reverse the spell. Mario is rescuing Peach, but it seems that his motivation to save the princess is for the betterment of the kingdom. In later games, Bowser has a deep infatuation with Peach and kidnaps her so they can be married. In addition to her extreme magical power, Bowser is also attracted to Peach’s far reaching political power, and he hopes that the marriage will help him in his plot to rule the world.
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