- Super Mario Bros. Wonder introduces vibrant characters in the Flower Kingdom, including the central character Prince Florian.
- One-off characters like F.L.U.D.D. and Cappy have added unique elements to the Mario franchise but haven’t appeared in subsequent games.
- Goombario from the Paper Mario series stands out as a loyal ally to Mario but has only made a brief appearance in other franchise games.
It has been almost 40 years since Super Mario Bros. was released on the Nintendo Entertainment System, and since then, the franchise has managed to introduce countless waves of memorable characters. Much of the series’ personality comes from the faces that inhabit the Mario universe. Super Mario Bros. Wonder takes place in the Flower Kingdom, which neighbors the well-known Mushroom Kingdom. Most importantly, tons of vibrant characters exist within this new land.
The kingdom is predominantly populated by Poplins, a species that look strikingly similar to the Toads of the Mushroom Kingdom. Talking Flowers also inhabit the land, and audibly speak to the player in English, a rarity for the series. The main new supporting character is the highlight of all new faces introduced in Super Mario Bros. Wonder, however.
The Case for Super Mario Bros. Wonder DLC
While Nintendo hasn’t outright confirmed there to be any DLC in development for Super Mario Bros. Wonder, it would be great if there were.
The Leader Of The Flower Kingdom, Prince Florian
Prince Florian is the central new side character introduced in Super Mario Bros. Wonder and plays a huge role in both the plot and gameplay. The Prince is the teammate of Mario and his friends, helping guide them throughout his Flower Kingdom by applying Super Mario Bros. Wonder‘s new mechanic, badges, on his flower-like crown.
The Prince’s combination of royalty and charm has allowed him to fit seamlessly into the Mario universe. His and Mario’s shared desire to take down Bowser makes the ruler of the Flower Kingdom an easily likable inclusion. Unfortunately, Nintendo tends to completely scrap its one-off characters immediately after introducing them. The Mario series has a long history of unique characters that only appear in the game they debuted in (excluding representation in Super Smash Bros. in the form of Spirits, moves, or Trophies.)
The One-Hit Wonders Of The Mario Universe
Super Mario Sunshine’s Eccentric Inclusion, F.L.U.D.D.
F.L.U.D.D. set a precedent for the Mario universe, acting as an entity that is both an item and a personable character. Debuting on the Nintendo GameCube’s Super Mario Sunshine, the water-filled backpack was invented by Professor E. Gadd, the same man who invented Luigi’s iconic ghost-busting vacuum cleaner in the Luigi’s Mansion series. Although a machine, F.L.U.D.D. has an artificial personality and speaks with Mario throughout their adventures together on Isle Delfino. Despite how pleasantly unusual the character is in the franchise, it hasn’t appeared in any other mainline games since Mario Sunshine. However, F.L.U.D.D. has been fighting alongside Mario in the Super Smash Bros. series since Brawl.
“Power-up complete. Thank you for purchasing this item from Gadd Science, Incorporated. Preparing to register customer information. Scanning and classifying subject data… Subject identified as Mario, resident of the Mushroom Kingdom. Data storage complete. I am FLUDD – a Flash Liquidizer Ultra Dousing Device. I hope to be of assistance.”
The Cap Kingdom’s Cappy
Another part of Mario’s arsenal in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Cappy is also his primary ally in Super Mario Odyssey. He gives the iconic plumber the power to possess enemies and items around him, giving him more abilities than ever present in a mainline game. Cappy is essentially a ghost, or a Bonneter, to be precise. He takes form in the plethora of hats that Mario can wear throughout his journey. Despite a brief cameo in the mobile game Super Mario Run, Cappy did not return to any future franchise titles. However, his return to Mario Wonder would likely have been difficult for developers to implement.
Goomba Village’s Biggest Mario Fan, Goombario
The Paper Mario series is known for its in-depth storytelling. As such, charismatic characters emerge, including the Nintendo 64 game’s Goombario. It’s common knowledge that Mario doesn’t have the best relationship with Goombas, but this is precisely where Goombario stands out.
Mario is one of Goombario’s role models and is fortunate enough to be the first character to accompany him in this game’s adventure. He looks to help out wherever he can, whether it’s through providing information or fighting alongside Mario in battle. Unfortunately, besides a fleeting cameo in Super Paper Mario, Goombario does not appear in other franchise games.
Why Prince Florian Should Return To Future Titles
Prince Florian’s obvious ties to the Mushroom Kingdom are hopefully a sign that the character will return alongside Mario in future games. For starters, he looks very similar to a Wiggler, mainly differing in color and size. Furthermore, his royal subjects, the Poplins, look related to Toads. Their anatomical similarities are likely because the Mushroom and Flower Kingdoms are neighbors, meaning that Prince Florian’s return to upcoming Mario games could very well happen.
Super Mario Bros. Wonder
A return to the franchise’s 2D side-scrolling roots, Super Mario Bros. Wonder is a Nintendo Switch exclusive. Supporting up to four-player co-op and featuring playable characters like Princess Peach and Luigi, Super Mario Bros. Wonder revamps a classic formula with fresh twists, including a mechanic called Wonder Effects that cause stages to come alive.
- October 20, 2023
- Nintendo EPD