Welcome back to Warped Pipes, your source for the latest analyses of decades old Mario games.
This time around I have another obscure one....
Mario & Wario
This Japan-only game is played with a mouse instead of a gamepad and involves guiding Mario, who has been blinded by a bucket dropped on his head, through a series of levels.
I don’t have the means to play this game so I’ll have to go off of the limited information available online. Super Mario Wiki has a translation of the story setup from the manual:
This is Yōsei no Mori. Within the forest’s depths lives a fairy, and those who behold it find happiness, as the tale goes. One day, Mario sought the fabled fairy by coming to the forest. Peach, Yoshi and Luigi were together......or should have been, but alas, Luigi’s visage was unseen. Mario’s group of three had decided to look for lost little Luigi.
Then, the sky was overcome with a suspicious engine’s sound. What was that? It was Wario riding his personal plane, the Bulldog, and he threw a bucket from the sky.
“Here you go!”
Uh oh, the bucket landed right over Mario’s head.
“Uwagh, I can’t see in this thing!”
Watching was the forest’s fairy, Wanda. She somehow wanted to help, but the small fairy did not have the ability to remove the bucket. Thus, Wanda decided to use her magic wand on Mario to send signals, guiding him to Luigi......
The Events of the Game
Following this introduction, the player controls Wanda as she guides the blinded Mario, Peach, and Yoshi through a variety of courses to find Luigi and defeat Wario. Theses courses cover the typical terrain of Mario games, such as grassy plains, underwater, deserts, and volcanic caverns. After each world, a confrontation with Wario occurs. Ultimately, this culminates in the team reaching Wario’s mansion and defeating the brute.
Why Mario sought out the fairy and why Wario attacked him are never fully explained. The simplest explanation is that Mario is naturally curious and Wario is just kind of a jerk who loves to antagonize Mario. It’s difficult to analyze the story more fully without a translation available.
As far as I can tell, this is the first time that fairies have been introduced to the series. In the game, Wanda has the ability to use magic to create helpful objects and remove obstacles and we can assume other fairies have similar abilities.
This is also the first instance in which we see Wario’s home, which is quite expansive.
It’s unclear whether the game takes place in the Mushroom Kingdom or a new land entirely based on the limited information I can find.
According to Super Mario Land 2, Mario and Wario have known each other since childhood, so his presence here doesn’t give us much context in terms of the timeline. The presence of Yoshi means that this game must take place after Super Mario World and the absence of Bowser and the Koopa also implies that it is after the Koopa Wars.
This puts the game solidly in the Post-War Era but we don’t have any information to place it more specifically. For now, I will essentially follow release order and place it after Super Mario Land 2, though leaving Dr. Mario as the last point in the timeline since it feels almost like an entirely different era.
This gives us the timeline below:
In the next article, I’ll be analyzing on of the series’ most iconic enemies in a new segment. After that, we will continue the rise of Wario with Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3!
Click here to view all entries in the Warped Pipes series.
Want to see what else I’m up to? Follow me on Twitter @Jeremy_Whitson.