Fighter Fly

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Fighter Fly
Artwork of a Fighter Fly
First appearance Mario Bros. (1983)
Latest appearance Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury (2021)

A Fighter Fly (originally spelled Fighterfly), also referred to as a firefly[1] or bee,[2] is a hopping insect that first appeared in the sewers of the original Mario Bros. arcade game. The name Fighter Fly is a pun on the fight-or-flight response.


Mario Bros. series[edit]

Mario Bros.[edit]

Sprite of a Fighterfly from Mario Bros.
Sprite of a Fighter Fly from the NES port of Mario Bros.
A Fighter Fly from Super Mario Bros. 3.
A Fighter Fly in the Super Mario Bros. 3 version of Mario Bros.
GBA Fighter Fly
Fighter Flies as they appear in the original, NES, Super Mario Bros. 3, All-Stars, and Advance versions
Sprite of a Fighterfly from the Atari 2600 port of Mario Bros.
Sprite of a Fighterfly from the Atari 5200 port of Mario Bros.
Fighter Flies as they appear in the Atari 2600 and Atari 5200 versions

In Mario Bros., Fighter Flies are one of the myriad of pests that emerge from pipes to attack Mario and Luigi. They first appear in Phase 6 in international releases and Phase 7 in Japanese versions. After a Fighter Fly emerges, it hops across the floors. As such, Mario has to precisely time his jump when the Fighter Fly is on the ground to flip the creature over. If airborne, a Fighter Fly cannot be flipped over - not even if Mario uses the POW Block. Once flipped over, Mario has to run into the insect to clear it off the stage.

In early iterations of the game, their design features large toothy scowls and shiny eyes, but their design was redone for the multiplayer mode of the Super Mario All-Stars version of Super Mario Bros. 3. Their design in this title has large white eyes with black pupils, while their scowls are replaced with small closed mouths, their heads are a light orange color, and they have noses. This design is further developed in Mario Bros. for Game Boy Advance , which also gives them three colors and speeds depending on how many times they have been flipped over, like the other target enemies have.

Mario Bros. Special[edit]

In Mario Bros. Special, 1984 semi-sequel by Hudson Soft, Fighterflies can only be stunned if it is only a trampoline or conveyor belt that is being bounced on by Mario or Luigi. They first appear in Phase 9.

Punch Ball Mario Bros.[edit]

In Punch Ball Mario Bros., the other sequel by Hudson Soft, Fighterflies can be flipped over by hitting the POW Block while it is on the ground or having a Punch Ball thrown at them. If they recover or become the last target enemy on stage, they will turn green and move faster. They first appear in Phase 6.

Super Mario Bros. Special[edit]

In Super Mario Bros. Special, Fighterflies, named Nakaji, appear in five levels. They are presumably named after Tomohiko Nakajima, one of the three staff members responsible for naming new enemies. He also made the end credits, which is the only place where the name appears. While it is not possible to stomp them, they can be defeated by any other method, including with a Hummer.

Super Mario series[edit]

Super Mario Land[edit]

Official artwork of a Fly from Super Mario Land.
A Fly artwork, from Super Mario Land.

In Super Mario Land, Fighterflies are simply named Flies[3][4] and are seen in the Birabuto Kingdom of Sarasaland. In this game, they hop towards Mario, just like in Mario Bros. Some of them spawn in midair and hop downward when scrolled on-screen instead of appearing simply on the ground. Kumos from the Easton Kingdom attack in the same manner as Flies. They can simply be jumped on or be shot with a Superball to be defeated. Flies award Mario with 400 points when he defeats them. They are only found in World 1-1 and World 1-3 where, in the latter, one poses as Princess Daisy.

Super Mario 3D World / Super Mario 3D World + Bowser's Fury[edit]

Fighter Flies appear in Luigi Bros., an additional game featured in Super Mario 3D World. Like the other enemies in Luigi Bros., Fighter Flies behave in the same way as in Mario Bros., which this game is based on.

Super Mario Maker[edit]

A Mystery Mushroom costume, designed after Fighter Fly, can be unlocked in Super Mario Maker (after the version 1.20 update) by completing the hard version of Gnat Attack. When performing a jump as Fighter Fly, the player can hear the high-pitched noise this enemy made in the original Mario Bros. If the player presses +Control Pad up while playing as Fighter Fly, it will turn into a Freezie, which is a foe that also debuted in Mario Bros.

Super Mario (Kodansha manga)[edit]

In Super Mario Land, Fighter Flies, depicted like giant anthropomorphic flies (with compound eyes and proboscis), are met in Birabuto Kingdom. One attaches itself onto Mekakuribō, who is actually Princess Peach in disguise, making her yell in disgust when the enemy starts slurping with its mouth. Mario quickly defeats it. When Daisy is rescued from King Totomesu, she jumps at Mario and starts to kiss him, only to reveal she was a Fighter Fly in disguise, making Mario gag.

Super Mario-kun[edit]

In Super Mario-kun, Fighter Flies appear in volume 3 alongside other Super Mario Land enemies. One of them is the second enemy to damage Mario, via biting. Later, Mario grabs a Super Star and defeats them alongside the other enemies.

Another Flighter Fly also appears in chapter 9 of volume 9, which takes place in a Mario Bros. styled arena where Mario, Luigi and Yoshi are trapped. It does not play any important role.

Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga / Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser's Minions[edit]

A Fighter Fly fight in Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga
A Fighter Fly fight in Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga

In Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga, they make a reappearance in Stardust Fields, the border between the Mushroom Kingdom and the Beanbean Kingdom. To attack, a Fighter Fly hops towards Mario or Luigi and tries to bump into the plumber. The heroes can jump to avoid the attack.

The Fighter Flies are orange with blue hands and feet, pink antennae, small wings, and have large green squinting eyelids. In Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser's Minions, their feet are pink instead of light blue.

Mario and Luigi also encounter a stronger version of the Fighter Fly, the Super Fly, in the basement of Beanbean Castle.

In the remake's Minion Quest mode, a Fighter Fly makes a cameo as the first audition for Popple's new "Rookie," a position which Birdo ends up receiving.

Mario Power Tennis[edit]

Fighter Flies appear as obstacles on the Mario Classic Court in Mario Power Tennis, in a flat 8-bit model form. Like other enemies, they will walk around on the court, obstructing a player's movements. An unused 3D model for a Fighter Fly can be found in the game's files, heavily based off their design from the Mario Bros. remake in Super Mario All-Stars.

Super Smash Bros. for Wii U[edit]

A trophy of Fighter Flies appears in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Unlike the other Mario Bros. trophies, this trophy uses sprites from the NES version instead of the arcade version.

Other appearances[edit]

Fighterflies are programmable sprites in the Playbox BASIC and Family BASIC accessories for the Family Computer. They make a cameo in the Playbox BASIC's Biorhythm Board. They appear as enemies in shooter mini-games in the Data Recorder's cassette and Family BASIC V3.

Fighter Flies are present in NES Remix as enemies and level objectives in some of the challenges and remixes based on Mario Bros.

Profiles and statistics[edit]

Super Mario Land[edit]

  • Instruction booklet: This blood-sucking fly is always flying around. You can defeat it down by jumping on it.
  • 3DS Virtual Console manual: This creature is always buzzing around. Defeat it by stomping on it from above.

Perfect Ban Mario Character Daijiten[edit]

ファイアフライ (JP) / Fighter Fly (EN)
Image of a Fighter Fly
Original text (Japanese) Translation
出身しゅっしん クリープ族 Place of origin Creep clan
性格せいかく 陽気 Disposition Cheerful
登場とうじょうゲーム ブラザー Game appearances Bros.


They're bouncy and hard to knock down.

An enemy character from the original Mario Bros. It has large wings and always has a toothy grin. Unlike Shellcreepers, he can only be defeated when he is on the floor, because he comes down while bouncing.

Super Mario Land[edit]

フーライ (JP) / Fly (EN)
Image of a Fighter Fly from Super Mario Bros. 3
Original text (Japanese) Translation
種族しゅぞく クリープ族 Tribe Creep clan
性格せいかく おちょうし者 Disposition Person who readily chimes in with others
登場とうじょうゲーム ランド1 Game appearances Land 1


A fly that can't fly high!?

A fly with wings that appears in Mario Land. Although it is a fly, it cannot fly high and jumps slightly. It can be defeated with a superball, but it is easier to defeat it by stepping on it.

Mario & Luigi series[edit]

Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga[edit]

Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga enemy
Fighter Fly
A Fighter Fly from Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga. HP 5 POW 14 (12) Defense 14
Speed 12 Experience 2 Coins 2
Location Stardust Fields Jump Normal Hammer Normal
Hand Normal Fire Critical Thunder Normal
Stat down? 100% Stun? 30% Burn? 60%
Level 3 Role Common, training Item drop Mushroom – 9.68%
Mushroom – 0% (Super Mushroom - 9.68%)
  • Stats in parentheses are from the Japanese version (if they differ from the original American and European stats).
  • Stats in gray are only found in the game's coding and are not available during "normal" gameplay.
  • Official Nintendo Player's Guide: When a Fighter Fly attacks you, it hops once, pauses, then hops again. Jump at the end of the pause.[7]

Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser's Minions[edit]

Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser's Minions enemy
Fighter Fly
A Fighter Fly from Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser's Minions. HP 10 POW 24 DEF 9 SPEED 5 Experience 2
Fire Critical Thunder Normal Jump Normal Hammer Normal Coins 3
Stat down 60% Dizzy 30% Burn 30% Speed down 30% Item drop Mushroom (18%)
None (0%)
Super Mushroom (50%)
Level           2 Location(s) Stardust Fields

Super Smash Bros. for Wii U[edit]

Fighter Fly
Fighter Fly trophy from Super Smash Bros. for Wii U
Category: Series Related
(Applies only to the Wii U version) Appears in:
Arcade Mario Bros. (1983)
GBA Super Mario Advance (06/2001)
(Applies only to the Wii U version) Trophy Box: 6: Mario Bros.
How to unlock:
An enemy from the original Mario Bros. Just as the name implies, they are flies that gracefully move across the stage. They jump to move around, so hit them from below when they land. Unlike other enemies, these pests get faster after recovering from being flipped, rather than when only one is left. Be careful! (American English)
These pests come from the original Mario Bros. The name might make them sound tough, but these guys are actually kind of elegant and graceful. It's best to wait until they're on solid ground, then bop 'em from underneath to flip them over. If they get back up, though, watch out – they'll start gracefully leaping around a bit faster. (British English)



Sprites and models[edit]



Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese ファイターフライ

Fighterfly / Fighter Fly


From「」(hae, "fly") and「丸」(-maru, a suffix for young boys' names that was popular during the days of the samurai and also meaning "round"); an alternate spelling is used for an instance of Bee Fly


Fly (used for Game Boy Advance Mario Bros. including Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga despite using an alternate name in the main game)[11]

Chinese (simplified) 苍蝇[12]

French Mouche de combat
Méchante mouche (GBA)
Fighter Fly (GBA)
Battle Fly
Nasty fly
Fighter Fly
German Fliege
Fieser Flieger (GBA)
Nasty Flyer
Italian Falena
Mosca armata[13][14][15][16][17]
Armed fly
Portuguese Mosca Guerreira
Warrior Fly
Russian Бойцовая муха
Boytsovaya mukha
Fighter Fly

Spanish Mosca
Mosca luchador (GBA)
Fighter fly
Super Mario Land
Language Name Meaning
Japanese フーライ[18]
Mutation of "fly"

Dutch Vlieg[19]
French Fly[20]
German Fly
Italian Fly[21]
Spanish Mosca
Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga
Language Name Meaning
Japanese ハエまる
Based on the name used for Super Mario All-Stars (see above)

Chinese 苍蝇小丸子
Cāngying Xiǎowánzi
From the Japanese name

French Mouchak
Corruption of mouche ("fly")
German Fliegmut
Portmanteau of Fliegen ("to fly") and the male name suffix -mut
Italian Calabrotto
Portmanteau of calabrone ("European hornet") and diminutive suffix -otto
Korean 파리동글
Pari Donggul
Round Fly

Spanish (NOA) Recluta Bzz
Bzz (from his sound) recruit
Spanish (NOE) Recluta Zzz
Zzz (from his sound) recruit


Fighterflies in prototype The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening assets


  1. ^ "There are plenty of cagey critters to conquer -- turtles, crabs and fireflies, to mention a few." – Nintendo (1985). Mario Bros. NES instruction booklet. Nintendo of America (American English). Page 2.
  2. ^ Spring 2001. Nintendo Power Advance V.1. Page 40.
  3. ^ Nintendo (1989). Super Mario Land instruction booklet. Nintendo of America (American English). Page 16.
  4. ^ 1991. Nintendo Game Boy Player's Guide. Nintendo of America (American English). Page 5.
  5. ^ a b Perfect Ban Mario Character Daijiten. Shogakukan (Japanese). Page 178.
  6. ^ 1994. 「パーフェクト版 マリオキャラクター大事典」 (Perfect Ban Mario Character Daijiten). Shogakukan (Japanese). Page 187.
  7. ^ Thomason, Steve. Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga Player's Guide. ISBN 1-930206-43-7. Page 33.
  8. ^ Family BASIC handbook[page number needed]
  9. ^ 「任天堂公式ガイドブック スーパーマリオコレクション」 (Nintendo Kōshiki Guidebook – Super Mario Collection). Shogakukan (Japanese). Page 282.
  10. ^ マリオブラザーズ. Nintendo (Japanese). Retrieved June 5, 2024.
  11. ^ Nintendo (2003). Mario & Luigi RPG instruction booklet. Nintendo (Japanese). Page 37.
  12. ^ 2004. 超级马力欧2 (Chāojí Mǎlìōu Èr) instruction booklet. iQue (Simplified Chinese). Page 46.
  13. ^ Nintendo (2001). Super Mario Advance booklet. Nintendo of Europe (Italian). Page 118.
  14. ^ Nintendo (2002). Super Mario World: Super Mario Advance 2 booklet. Nintendo of Europe (Italian). Page 120.
  15. ^ Nintendo (2002). Yoshi's Island: Super Mario Advance 3 booklet. Nintendo of Europe (Italian). Page 120.
  16. ^ Nintendo (2003). Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3 booklet. Nintendo of Europe (Italian). Page 120.
  17. ^ Nintendo (2003). Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga booklet. Nintendo of Europe (Italian). Page 88.
  18. ^ Nintendo. スーパーマリオランド (Sūpā Mario Rando) instruction booklet. Nintendo (Japanese). Page 19.
  19. ^ Club Nintendo (Netherlands) Classic. Page 7.
  20. ^ Super Mario Land French instruction booklet. Page 16.
  21. ^ Super Mario Land Italian manual. Page 13.
  22. ^ Super Mario Land e-manual. Page 14.
  23. ^ November 15, 2018. Super Mario Bros. Enciclopedia. Magazzini Salani (Italian). ISBN 889367436X. Page 47.
  24. ^ TCRF. Development:The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening (Game Boy)/Early and Unused Graphics. The Cutting Room Floor. Retrieved April 11, 2022.

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