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The Koopalings (Japanese: コクッパ Kokuppa; alternatively クッパ7人衆 Kuppa Shichi Ninshū, "Team of 7 Bowsers"), also known as Bowser's Minions (クッパの手下 Kuppa no Teshita) in Japan and Europe, and in certain North American works as the Koopa Kids, are a seven-member clan of recurring enemies in the Mario franchise, portrayed as siblings who act as leaders of the Koopa Troop under Bowser. Individually, they are named Larry, Morton, Wendy, Iggy, Roy, Lemmy, and Ludwig.
The Koopalings debuted in the 1988 game Super Mario Bros. 3, and later appeared as bosses in various SNES-era Mario games before going on a long hiatus, reappearing once in 2003's Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga, and then being redesigned for 2009's New Super Mario Bros. Wii, which has since been followed by numerous appearances as both bosses in the Super Mario platformers and playable characters in various spinoffs. They have also appeared in various other media, including the cartoon The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3, which featured entirely different names for the characters due to them not having official names at the time of its production phase.
Originally, the Koopalings were depicted as Bowser's children and stated to be his offspring. Eventually, Shigeru Miyamoto affirmed that Nintendo's "current story is that the Koopalings are not Bowser's children" in 2012, leaving Bowser Jr. as his only child.
The Koopalings are listed below in their original order:
Concept and creation
One of the first sketches in which the Koopalings can be seen, result of the collaboration between Yoichi Kotabe and Takashi Tezuka, is associated to Bowser's first redesign, happened before the release of the Family Computer Disk System version of Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels in 1986. The Koopalings were modeled after the design team of Super Mario Bros. 3, and they were all named after famous musicians by the game's North American localizers, since they were not given distinct names in the original Japanese version. In the Japanese version of Super Mario World, only their first names were adopted, dropping the Koopa surname, as was done in many subsequent games (both in English and Japanese). The Koopalings were all given different names in the cartoons, purportedly because Nintendo of America had not released their own names yet, forcing the writers of The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3 to come up with their own names.
The word "Koopaling" itself is likely a combination of the name "Koopa" with the diminutive suffix "-ling", which is often used to denote a younger, smaller or inferior version, which aptly describes their relation to Bowser. Similarly, their original Japanese name, "Kokuppa" is essentially "Little Koopa" (which is what the retainers serving the kings call them) or "Child Koopa", with Koopa being the Japanese name of Bowser. Interestingly, only their Italian name, Bowserotti, actually means Little Bowsers using the Western name of Bowser, with the names in the other languages leaving the Koopa word intact, even when it does not specifically mean Bowser. The English name also evokes such words as "fledgling", "hatchling", "youngling", or even "underling", and may be a mere portmanteau between one of them and "Koopa".
Super Mario series
Super Mario Bros. 3
The first appearance of the seven Koopalings was in Super Mario Bros. 3 where they are the main antagonists of the game, together with Bowser. Here, the Koopalings were ordered by Bowser to use their airships and armies to conquer the various lands of the Mushroom World. Each Koopaling, after attacking a kingdom, stole the ruler's magic wand and transformed that ruler into an animal of some kind (or in the case of Pipe Land's ruler in the NES version, a plant).
Mario and Luigi battle a Koopaling every time they travel through a heavily-guarded airship. The battle against the Koopalings consists mostly of dodging the Koopalings' leaps and magical blasts from their stolen wand. It takes three stomps on the head or nine fireballs in order to defeat a Koopaling. Unlike Bowser, they are immune to hammers. Once defeated, that Koopaling retreats into their shell, flies away and drops their magic wand. After Mario or Luigi picks it up, the airship vanishes and that world's king is restored.
The Koopalings played the same role in Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3, with Morton, Lemmy and Ludwig each given an extra e-Reader level. There is a scene showing Larry attacking Grass Land and turning its king into a Cobrat. In addition, if the player manages to defeat Bowser before defeating the other Koopalings, a cutscene plays when the player arrives at their respective world's castle that shows them ambushing the king, stealing the wand, and then departing shortly before Mario arrived. In the Japanese versions, one Koopaling appears on the key art of several level cards, with the only exceptions being Classic World 1-1 and No Time to Dawdle (both of which feature Mario and Luigi), Treacherous Halls (which features Boom-Boom), Bowser's Last Stand, Bowser's Airship 1, and Bowser's Airship 2 (all three of which feature Bowser himself, for obvious reasons). To a lesser extent, the Koopalings also appeared on some of the level cards descriptions in the English releases of the level cards.
Super Mario World
After traveling through a Koopaling fortress, Mario or Luigi would battle a Koopaling, who would need to be bashed on the head three times, or in Iggy and Larry's case, knocked into the lava to be defeated. Morton, Ludwig, and Roy can also be defeated with a dozen fireballs. After a Koopaling was defeated, a captured Yoshi's Egg would be rescued and the path to a new area would be opened.
Once defeated, Morton, Ludwig, and Roy went spiraling into the background wall (signified by a puff of smoke), while Iggy, Lemmy, Wendy and Larry all fell into the lava. Afterwards, Mario or Luigi would totally destroy their castle in a variety of different ways. The narration suggests their complete demise, though this was inserted in the English translation - the original Japanese text for each castle is uniform for each victory and does not individually refer to their loss. In International versions, each fort and castle can also be challenged again by holding L & R at the rubble.
The Koopalings' in-game sprites differ drastically from their game artworks (likely due to technical restrictions). The Koopalings generally use the palettes intended for Koopa Troopas (blue for Iggy, green for Morton, yellow for Lemmy and Ludwig, blue for Roy, red for Wendy, and green for Larry), and none of the Koopalings match their artwork coloration except Larry (who uses the green color sprite). Additionally, the game's cast roll uses alternate color palettes for three of the Koopalings: Morton gets a teal palette, the same one applied to the Buzzy Beetles' in-game sprites; Ludwig gets a pinkish-purple palette more appropriate for the shells of Roy and Wendy; and Roy gets a grey palette that would fit Morton's shell. Iggy also uses Larry's hairstyle during battle, despite the correct style being used during the game's cast roll.
New Super Mario Bros. Wii
The Koopalings made a surprise return in New Super Mario Bros. Wii, serving as bosses in seven of the game's worlds. They also make an appearance in the game's opening sequence, hiding in a cake as cake toppings that the Koopalings presented Princess Peach with. Bowser Jr. also appears alongside the Koopalings. The seven Koopalings all sport what seems to be replicas of the magic wands from their first appearance, while Bowser Jr.'s Junior Clown Car is introduced. In the first seven worlds, Mario and his friends would have to ascend a Tower in the middle of the world, at the top of which the Koopaling of that world waited. When defeated in battle, the Koopaling then jumps away after their defeat, much like Bowser Jr. in the original New Super Mario Bros., setting up a rematch at the Castle at the end of the world. Upon catching up with the Koopaling again, Kamek appears and adds a new element to the battle, such as replacing the floor of Larry's room with one that shifts up and down, giving Lemmy an even larger Wonder Ball or even flooding Wendy's room. The Koopalings have also been given unique voices in this game; Roy, Morton and Ludwig in particular have noticeably deeper voices than they had in the cartoon series.
After the credits, they are shown helping Bowser get back up (with the exception of Larry, who is shown just arriving, exhausted, and passing out before being gestured by Bowser Jr. to get up). When he does, however, Bowser's castle falls on top of them. When the screen cuts to black at the moment of impact, Bowser can be heard moaning in pain afterwards.
In New Super Mario Bros. Wii, Larry is in World 1, Roy is in World 2, Lemmy is in World 3, Wendy is in World 4, Iggy is in World 5, Morton is in World 6, and Ludwig is in World 7.
While in Super Mario Bros. 3 Morton was the boss of a desert world, Roy was the boss of a sky world, and Ludwig was the boss of a pipe world, these have all been slightly switched. Roy is the boss of a desert world, Ludwig is the boss of a sky world, and Morton is the boss of a mountain world (replacing the pipe world). Also, Iggy's giant world is replaced with a jungle world. Larry, Lemmy, and Wendy each retain their world themes (grass, ice, and water, respectively).
New Super Mario Bros. 2
The seven Koopalings reappear in the game, New Super Mario Bros. 2, as the main antagonists. Five of them (Roy, Iggy, Wendy, Morton, and Ludwig) serve as the castle bosses of the first five main worlds, while the two others (Larry and Lemmy) are the castle bosses in the two special worlds.
They use the Koopa Clown Car to kidnap Princess Peach, as seen in the intro, where Mario and Luigi fly around for coins while the Koopalings capture the Princess. After Mario and Luigi safely landed, the Koopalings crash onto the floor, making the Mario Bros. lose their Super Leaves. They show them Princess Peach and fly away, with Mario and Luigi closely behind them.
One of the Koopalings is seen at the beginning of each world, where they run to the Tower with Princess Peach. After defeating the Reznors in the Tower, the Koopaling of this world comes down with a chain, laughing or taunting Mario and then disappearing again, running to their castle. After the castle fight, the next Koopaling awaits with Princess Peach, only to run away to the next world. They are also seen with the Koopa Clown Car to turn Mario into stone in the final castle by blasting a bright light. After Bowser's initial defeat, the Koopalings attempt to aid Bowser by magically making him grow bigger, although this only resulted in them being knocked down by a giant Bowser. During the credits, they are seen trying to carry the defeated Bowser with the vehicle, but his weight pulls them down, scattering them all on the ground and trees.
In this game, Roy is in World 1, Iggy is in World 2, Wendy is in World 3, Morton is in World 4, Ludwig is in World 5, Larry is in World Mushroom, and Lemmy is in World Flower. On a side note, when all Koopalings are in the Koopa Clown Car, the five Koopalings that are required to be fought (Roy, Iggy, Wendy, Morton and Ludwig) are within the car, while the two optional Koopalings (Larry and Lemmy) are holding onto the outside of the car. The New Super Mario Bros. 2 guide mistakenly gives the name Larry Koopa to Iggy Koopa.
New Super Mario Bros. U
The Koopalings return, along with Bowser Jr., and Kamek, in the Wii U title New Super Mario Bros. U. The Koopalings aid Bowser in seizing Peach's castle and also travel to the neighboring regions in order to ensure that the Mario Bros. don't return to the castle. Like in Super Mario Bros. 3, each Koopaling has a personal airship, which have now been stylized with decorations of their heads representing the bow and their colored shells on the top. They are bosses in castle levels once again, but are fought in their airships, which are accessed via a cannon within the castles. While Larry, Iggy and Ludwig retain their magic wands, Lemmy, Morton, Wendy and Roy don't have them this time around, and instead use various weaponry (e.g. Roy uses a handheld Bill Blaster during his battle) much like in Super Mario World. In addition, Larry, Morton, Wendy, Iggy, and Lemmy fight Mario in the cabin area of their airships, while Roy and Ludwig fight Mario on the crows nest of their airships.
Lemmy is the Acorn Plains boss and thus the first Koopaling to fight, followed by Morton who is the boss of Layer Cake Desert, (which is his first time as a desert boss since Super Mario Bros. 3), Wendy as the Frosted Glacier boss, Larry as the Sparkling Waters boss, Iggy to be the boss of Soda Jungle, much like how he was the boss of World 5 in New Super Mario Bros. Wii and Roy as the boss of Rock-Candy Mines, leaving Ludwig as the final Koopaling to fight, like in the previous New Super Mario Bros games, as the boss of Meringue Clouds.
After Bowser is defeated, the Koopalings attempt to get Bowser to jump to safety on his own beat-up airship. However, Bowser inadvertently destroyed the ship while attempting to board it, with the Koopalings clinging to Bowser's tail, while Bowser himself holds on to Bowser Jr.'s Junior Clown Car.
New Super Luigi U
The Koopalings return in New Super Luigi U. Unlike most other aspects of the game, they act the same way as they do in New Super Mario Bros. U. At the beginning of each castle, a stone face of the Koopaling with glowing eyes will appear on a wall, but is only for decorative purposes.
Amada Anime Series: Super Mario Bros.
The first appearance of the Koopalings outside of video games was in the Japanese-exclusive Super Mario anime series, which was an adaptation of three fairy tales. In the Mario version of Momotarō, they appeared as the minions of Bowser, who was portrayed as the stories' ogre. The Koopalings also appeared as minions of Bowser (now the Wicked Queen) in the adaptation of Snow White ("Shirayukihime").
Super Mario World: Mario to Yoshi no Bōken Land
The Koopalings appear in the interactive anime adaptation of Super Mario World that was exclusive to Japan. Although Iggy and Lemmy are fought in the same worlds that they were fought in the prior games (Yoshi's Island and Vanilla Dome, respectively), Larry, Morton, Ludwig, Roy, and Wendy are fought together at Chocolate Island, whereas in the game, only Wendy was fought there. In addition, the battles with the Koopalings varied slightly from the game: Iggy has a horde of Koopa Troopas, Rexes, and Chargin' Chucks attack the Mario Bros., and later summons Koopa Paratroopas and Monty Moles before Yoshi takes care of them, forcing him to flee; Lemmy had blocked the route to him with a series of switches that operate a bridge, with Mario effortlessly knocking him aside when he solved the puzzle; Wendy produces copies of herself and then attempts to attack Mario while he's confused, but Mario stepped aside and leaves her dangling over the lava pit; and the others ganged up on Mario and Luigi shortly afterward, with Roy and Morton being stomped on and then getting back up, only to be swatted away with the other Koopalings by Mario's Cape Feather.
The Koopalings are fought within the first three volumes of the Super Mario-Kun, but they are rarely seen unless there is a volume based on a game they have appeared in.
In The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3 and Super Mario World produced by Nintendo and DIC Entertainment, the Koopalings (sometimes referred to as the Koopa Kids) were featured as recurring villains, replacing Mouser, Tryclyde, Fryguy and Clawgrip from The Super Mario Bros. Super Show!. They appear in these cartoons under altered names. This is likely due to the show's production preceding the North American release of Super Mario Bros. 3, which provided their individual names. In these cartoons, the relationship between Bowser and the Koopalings was interpreted as more of a powerful father spoiling his bratty children. They did things such as try to get his attention, gain his appreciation, and even plot against him. Cheatsy (Larry) and Kooky (Ludwig) seemed to be Bowser's favorites out of the bunch, which somewhat follows older game material.
The Koopalings are recurring characters in Valiant's Nintendo Comics System imprint. Here, their personalities were somewhat similar to their animated series counterparts, though they retain their names and appearances from the games. While Wendy and Lemmy each had solo appearances (the former in Fins and Roses, and the latter in The Buddy System and The Revenge of Pipe Ooze!), their siblings only appear in the story Bowser Knows Best (where the group abduct Princess Toadstool for Bowser as a Father's Day present) and the short Get Kooped Up With the Nicest People! (where they and Bowser are shown vacationing in a resort called Klub Koopa).
Nintendo Adventure Books
The Koopalings appear throughout the Nintendo Adventure Books, often aiding Bowser in his latest scheme, though they would occasionally strike out on their own, as was the case with Ludwig in Pipe Down! and Iggy in Brain Drain. The only book in which all seven appeared together was Koopa Capers, which has Wendy steal her brothers' wand so she can fuse them with her own to make a super wand that, along with minions loyal only to her, would allow her to usurp her father.
Iggy is featured most commonly in the books, often appearing as the main threat due to whipping up a new invention like the GLOM, Monster Mixer and Synapse Switcher. Larry is utilized least often, his only noteworthy role in the series being ambushing Mario and Yoshi in an entirely skippable sequence in Dinosaur Dilemma.
Mario is Missing!
In Mario is Missing!, the Koopalings aid Bowser in his plan to melt Antarctica, thereby flooding the Earth. Presumably, they also headed each of the "Koopa critters" that were being deployed to steal the artifacts around the world. A Koopaling would guard the corridor of Bowser's fortress and battle Luigi, who was searching for his missing brother.
In the Super Nintendo version of Mario is Missing!, only Ludwig, Roy and Iggy appear, although Larry and Morton are referenced in the manual; in the DOS version of the game, Lemmy and Morton are the only ones not appearing. Cut dialogue in the CD-ROM Deluxe version, however, implied that Lemmy and Morton were considered to be implemented as bosses. Also in the DOS version, instead of stomping the Koopalings a few times, Luigi defeats them with a single blast from a Fire Flower that he gains after locking each door on a floor. Until Mario Kart 8, the DOS version is also the only major appearance of the Koopalings where they speak intelligibly in-game.
In Yoshi's Safari, the Koopalings once again aid Bowser in the conquest of a kingdom, this time Jewelry Land. In this game, the Koopalings attack Mario by using giant mecha weaponry. It would take various shots from Mario's Super Scope to beat a Koopaling, thus forcing it to hold up a white flag of defeat.
Larry, Wendy, and Morton were also given plush toys as part of the Yoshi's Safari plush set (along with Mario, Yoshi, and Bowser).
In Hotel Mario the Koopalings each guard one of seven hotels scattered throughout the Mushroom Kingdom. Mario adventures through each hotel and reaches the Koopalings' rooms to battle them. Their hotels are passed in this order:
Mario & Luigi series
Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga
After several years absence, the Koopalings make a return appearance in Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga. During the game, the witch Cackletta who had previously stolen Bowser's body takes control of Bowser's Castle and uses the fortress to attack Beanbean Castle Town. The Koopalings serve "Bowletta" and work to impede the Mario Bros.' progress.
After getting into Bowser's Castle, Mario and Luigi fight the Koopalings in their respective rooms, usually needing to complete some sort of challenge in order to battle them. Additionally, the last three (Roy, Wendy, and Larry) use a special Time Bob-omb in battle. If the Mario Bros. failed to end the battle successfully in nine turns, the Bob-omb's timer would reach zero and it would explode, resulting in an instant Game Over. The Koopalings are encountered in the same order as in Super Mario World (Iggy, Morton, Lemmy, Ludwig, Roy, Wendy, and Larry). After being defeated, each Koopaling leaves a warp point for the Mario Bros. None of them have any lines of dialogue.
They will also appear in the remake Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser's Minions. In the former mode, they presumably are going to have the same role as before. However, in the latter, they are going to act as playable characters and bosses, where they and the other minions of Bowser team up to save him in the BeanBean Kingdom. Roy also implied desires to star in their own game in the opening scene of this mode.
Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam
“"I thought we were operating as a collective trust!"
The Koopalings make an appearance in Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, as the tertiary antagonists. Contrary to Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga, the Koopalings have in-game dialogue. Mario, Luigi and Paper Mario encounter them at specific points throughout the adventure, which is again unlike in Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga, where they were only encountered during the end of the game before the final fights with Fawful and Cackletta. Although paper versions of the Koopalings are not featured, they are alluded to; when Roy asks Wendy why there are no paper counterparts of the Koopalings, she speculates that they are "probably just busy doing important stuff back home."
Mario Kart 8 / Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
The Koopalings make their spin-off debut appearance as unlockable playable characters in Mario Kart 8. This also marks the first appearance overall of the Koopalings as playable characters. Lemmy, Larry, and Wendy are classified as lightweight characters, Iggy and Ludwig are medium weight, and Morton and Roy are heavyweight. The Koopalings get their own emblems similar to Bowser and Bowser Jr.'s in this game.
The parts used by the Koopalings receive extra details, but as with characters such as Metal Mario, Pink Gold Peach, Bowser, Donkey Kong, certain Mii, Yoshi and Shy Guy colors as well as downloadable characters, this mainly consists of unique frames for their Standard Karts, Standard Bikes, Standard ATVs and Super Gliders. In addition to these, all the Koopalings, unlike the other characters, have Pipe Frames with unique colored steering wheels and exhaust pipes as well as Landships which are based on their personal airships from New Super Mario Bros. U.
CPU-controlled Koopalings, as well as Bowser, may use the Landship as their vehicle of choice aside from the Standard bodies and the Pipe Frame.
Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS / Wii U
The Koopalings make their Super Smash Bros. series debut as unlockable (default in the Wii U version) newcomers in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS / Wii U, as seven model swaps of Bowser Jr. They all have their own voices and are acknowledged as separate fighters by the announcer (similar to how Alph is a "separate" fighter from Olimar). Each Koopaling drives a specific-colored Junior Clown Car that have yellow eyes instead of black like Bowser Jr.'s version. They all fight identically, however.
Because each Koopaling is a model swap of Bowser Jr., they all have been resized to match him in height (and, to some extent, their in-game heights from games such as Super Mario Bros. 3 and Super Mario World), and they also use Bowser Jr.'s animations, but some retain their unique properties; for example, Iggy is thinner than the others.
The order Bowser Jr. and the Koopalings are scrolled though (by pressing ) is similar to the order the Koopalings are fought in Super Mario Bros. 3 (except Roy and Morton, which switched spots), starting with Bowser Jr., then Larry, Roy, Wendy, Iggy, Morton, Lemmy, and Ludwig.
Similar to the other fighters, they are also subject to Pit's Smash Taunt, Palutena's Guidance. However, other than their full name when identified by Palutena, all the conversations are the same. They also have their own titles in the Boxing Ring monitor for the Wii U version. It should be noted, however, that them possessing their own titles and attributes is only the case in International versions; in the Japanese version, they actually share the same title as Bowser Jr., which is 「万能のチャリオット」 (or "all-purpose chariot").
Puzzle & Dragons: Super Mario Bros. Edition
The Koopalings return as bosses to fight at the end of each world in Puzzle & Dragons: Super Mario Bros. Edition. Additionally, they reappear during the final battle alongside Bowser and Bowser Jr., riding in the Koopa Clown Car with Bowser. The combination of the Koopalings and Bowser is treated as a single enemy, and is named Bowser and His Minions.
Unlike most other enemies in this game, the Koopalings are one of a kind enemies who can't be recruited by normal means. Instead, the player has to defeat them at their special world airships in order to recruit them. Upon joining the player as allies, the Koopalings stop appearing as enemies, and instead, get replaced by generic enemies for their castles and airships. Also, the player is not able to part ways with any of the Koopalings, nor can they be depowered.
As of version 2.0, each of the Koopalings have received two different transformations, with each one having them be paired with one or more generic enemies. This in return, gives them a sub-attribute, along with altering their Awoken Skill. The transformations can be switched at any time by using the proper transformation items, but once the player has transformed the Koopalings, it is impossible to revert them back to their original forms.
Mario & Sonic at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games
Ludwig, Wendy, Larry and Roy appear as playable characters in Mario & Sonic at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. In the 3DS version, they can only be used in certain events; Larry plays Equestrian, Wendy plays 100m Freestyle, Roy plays Beach Volleyball, and Ludwig plays Table Tennis. In the Wii U version, only Larry and Wendy appear as playable 'guest' characters, and Ludwig and Roy have been cut. Like in the 3DS version, Larry can only be used in Equestrian and Wendy in 100m Freestyle. The Koopalings once again speak in-game (with the exception of Ludwig, who does not appear in the 3DS version's story mode), and again, their voice clips are reused from Mario Kart 8.
Iggy, Lemmy, and Morton do not appear as playable characters, but there are unlockable Mii costumes based on them. There are Mii costumes based on Ludwig, Wendy, Larry and Roy, as well.
Paper Mario: Color Splash
In Paper Mario: Color Splash, the Koopalings appear as bosses. They are fought in order to obtain Big Paint Stars, whose color depends on the magic wand the Koopaling wields. Morton appears in The Crimson Tower to get the red star; Iggy guards the yellow star at The Golden Coliseum; Ludwig guards the blue star at Fort Cobalt; Wendy guards the purple star on Fortune Island; Larry tries to get the orange star at Starlight Cape; Lemmy guards the green star at The Emerald Circus; and Roy, whose wand color is black, has no Big Paint Star to guard, but fights Mario in Black Bowser's Castle. As in Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, the Koopalings have spoken dialogue, but some of them are portrayed differently in this game. After being defeated, the Koopalings appear in the final scene of the game, fleeing from Prism Island on an airship with Bowser taped to the ship, although a stray firework hits the airship, forcing them to crash land off screen. They also appear together during the game's staff credits parade.
The paper versions of the Koopalings follow the designs introduced in New Super Mario Bros. Wii with a bigger size than the one shown in that game. Additionally, the sprites of Ludwig, Wendy, Lemmy and Roy present a pose derived from artwork released during the 30th anniversary of Super Mario Bros. and some of their features, notably the color of the eyebrows, are derived from said artwork as well. Each Koopaling also has a unique sound for their speech bubbles when they talk.
Defeated Koopalings can also be summoned in battle using their Enemy Cards won by beating the Rock Paper Wizard at the Roshambo Temples. Immediately after being summoned, they make enemies flee by running into them. Just like the other enemies summoned through Enemy Cards, they run away when in front of major bosses, however, unlike normal enemies, they run into minor bosses that are forced to escape, only to return soon after.
The Koopalings' likeness can be seen in the DOS and SNES versions of Mario's Time Machine as statues on the first and second floor, and as wall torches in the background of the last floor, with Ludwig, Roy, and Larry or Iggy in particular being seen in the latter. Iggy and Larry appear in Mario's Early Years. Iggy is in the alphabet, and Larry comes out of a pipe if the player chooses the correct answer, saying "I like your choice". Iggy also makes cameo appearances in Super Scope 6 and Super Mario Sunshine. In the former, he is shown riding a missile and chasing a plane piloted by Mario, while in the latter, an image of Mario fighting him in Super Mario World is briefly shown during F.L.U.D.D.'s scan.
The Koopalings were originally going to appear in Super Princess Peach as boss characters in the order of Super Mario World, though they were dropped from the final version of the game for unknown reasons. According to the unused sprites, Roy and Morton's shells were apparently going to be colored green rather than their respective original pink and grey.
The Koopalings are briefly mentioned as Bowser's children in his trophy in Super Smash Bros. Melee, but only Bowser Jr. is mentioned in the Super Smash Bros. Brawl trophy, while Ludwig alone appears as a Sticker.
In Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games and Mario & Sonic at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games, costumes that are based on the Koopalings can be unlocked in that game, and are unlocked in the same order as the Koopalings were fought in New Super Mario Bros. Wii.
The Koopalings make a cameo appearance in Mario Kart Arcade GP DX on banners in the Aerial Road and Sky Arena tracks.
The Koopalings appear in Super Mario Bros. 3 challenges in NES Remix 2. An entire challenge is dedicated to beating all the seven in a row in the order they were fought in Super Mario Bros. 3. In addition, Iggy and Larry have their own challenges. Iggy has to be defeated as Frog Mario, while Larry has to be defeated as Small Mario.
All the Koopalings look relatively similar to Bowser and Bowser Jr., but lack horns on their head. Morton has a unique darker complexion, and three have heads that are not green in coloration (Morton's head is white and Roy's is pink while Wendy's head matches the rest of her body's yellow coloration). Three of them (Larry, Wendy and in part Iggy) have blue eyes much like Bowser in Super Mario Bros. 3 (but while Bowser's eyes were changed to red, the Koopalings' eyes remained blue). Originally, Ludwig, Morton and Lemmy's eyes were merely black dots, however the former two have since been shown to have thin dark grey irises. All of them have pointed claws on their hands. All the Koopalings have various distinguishing features, such as varying numbers of teeth protruding from their snouts and unique hair styles and colors. Oddly, their sprites in Super Mario World gave them all white hair and coloration that did not match their artwork. All of them, like Bowser, have ribbed plated bellies.
While most of the Koopalings originally had green shells, redesigns introduced with New Super Mario Bros. Wii gave them all unique shell colors. Other aspects of their pre-existing designs were also tweaked, such as Iggy's hair being green rather than multicolored, and their heights and builds being more varied, with Morton now the tallest, followed by Iggy, Roy, Ludwig, Wendy, Larry and finally Lemmy, who was the runt of the litter in their original appearances as well. Their tails also became visible in their official artwork starting from New Super Mario Bros. Wii, having not been drawn until then except for some sprite depictions and an artwork which apparently shows Iggy's tail. In their appearances in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS / Wii U, because they are model swaps of Bowser Jr., all of the Koopalings appear roughly the same height as one another, most notably with Roy, Iggy, Morton and Lemmy (although Iggy is still thin).
All the Koopalings' designs were modified in the DIC cartoons, although they were still recognizable.
The Koopalings' individual personalities have not been fleshed out much besides being childlike, their desire to cause mayhem, and their loyalty to Bowser. However, there were some hints in various supplementary materials. Some of the personalities changed between localizations. For example, Roy in the North American localizations was depicted in a manner similar to a bully (which also earned him the name "Bully" in the DIC cartoons), but the Japanese Super Mario Bros. 3 instruction booklet and Super Mario Advance 4 e-Reader cards give him a calm and collected demeanor. The original manual also gave each of the Koopalings several quirks unique to each of them that hinted at their individual personalities with some speeches uttered by them; however, the official English translation toned down several of these quirks or removed them altogether. Although loyal to Bowser, they also did not wish to be on the receiving end of Bowser's rage if they failed a task, as evidenced by Larry's reason for why he and the other Koopalings will not give up the kings' wands easily to Mario, as he stated that the alternative would be to get yelled at by Bowser. Prior to their modern depictions, they were given distinguishing characteristics in The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3 and the Super Mario World cartoon, as well as the Nintendo Comics System and Nintendo Adventure Books. In Mario Kart 8, the Koopalings seem to have better speech capabilities than Bowser, as they can be heard saying their names at several points, and even yelling one or two-liners. In addition to being childlike, a Play Nintendo quiz describes the Koopalings as "zany".
The Koopalings' loyalty to Bowser is strong enough that they are willing to serve him even when "Bowser" is actually not himself and in fact possessed by another figure. This is implied by their servitude to Bowletta in Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga and later confirmed in Paper Mario: Color Splash, where Wendy and Larry specifically mention doing their actions for Bowser and Morton indirectly says that as well despite Bowser being under the influence of black paint.
The Koopalings each have varying abilities, but in general, the Koopalings are capable of using their shell as both a method of defense and a method of offense. In addition, they are all capable of jumping very high, and are all skilled in magic, frequently using magic wands as a weapon. While only Ludwig and, according to the Mario Mania artwork, Iggy and Larry spat fireballs in Super Mario World, Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga revealed that all Koopalings have this ability. Despite that, they are weak to fireballs, though their exact limit has varied between taking multiple fireballs to take down, or being one-hit knocked out by a single fireball. Similar to Bowser, they also have a tendency to survive dangerous hits. This is especially evident with their defeat in Super Mario World, where Larry, Wendy, Iggy, and Lemmy were dunked into lava by the Mario Bros., and each Koopaling later had their castles collapse on them, in New Super Mario Bros. Wii where they, alongside Bowser and Bowser Jr., ended up surviving being crushed by Bowser's falling castle, and in New Super Mario Bros. 2, where all of them were accidentally knocked into the lava twice (once by a gigantic Bowser, and then from a gigantic Dry Bowser).
In terms of talents unique to individual Koopalings, they seem to know their own spells. While most of them simply cast a colorful shot of magic that slowly flies in a straight line, Wendy instead creates glowing rings that ricochet off the surfaces of the room, and Lemmy creates bouncing circus balls that can knock the Mario Bros. into a bottomless pit. In every game appearance outside of Super Mario World, Lemmy is always seen in battle balancing on top of a big yellow circus ball covered with starry patterns. Ludwig could create earthquakes with his descents in Super Mario Bros. 3, an ability that was taken away from him ever since New Super Mario Bros. Wii, but kept by Roy and Morton. Ludwig was given the ability to flutter jump in the New Super Mario Bros. games instead. In Super Mario World, Roy and Morton were able to walk up walls and ceilings and drop down at will.
In their first appearance in Super Mario Bros. 3, the Koopalings were introduced as siblings and Bowser's own children. Most re-releases and remakes of this game as well as republications of the game's story keep this detail intact in Japan, with the Wii Virtual Console manual and Encyclopedia Super Mario Bros. omitting direct references to the Koopalings being Bowser's kids. Translations of Super Mario Bros. 3, its rereleases, remakes, official guides and websites have kept this detail to varying degree, with some calling the Koopalings Bowser's offspring. The cartoon based on the game, The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3, follows this portrayal.
In-game text and the manual of the Japanese version of Super Mario World and its rereleases and remakes don't make any direct statements about the relationship, which is nonetheless mentioned in the English version, the Japanese Nintendo Official Guidebooks and related Japanese materials. In three character books written with the involvement of Nintendo, the Koopalings are considered both Bowser's children and members of the Royal Family (「王 族」), with one even considering them an example of Bowser's lineage (「クッパ系」). The back of the English-language version of Yoshi's Safari box call them Bowser's "offspring" and the French translation of said text uses the same term as well, which is absent in the Japanese manual. The manual for the SNES version of Mario is Missing! vaguely describes the Koopalings as Bowser's "bad boys" (Wendy was not shown to be involved in that game), although in the DOS version's in-game dialogue, the Koopalings refer to Bowser by name rather than with a familial title. In Super Smash Bros. Melee, Bowser's seven children are mentioned in both the original Japanese version as well as its English localization, and the relationship between them and Bowser is mentioned as well in the Super Mario Advance series.
Following the introduction of Bowser Jr., the lack of major appearances from the Koopalings since Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga and Bowser Jr. being treated independently from them, there was confusion about the nature of Bowser's parenthood and raised concerns that Bowser Jr. had replaced the Koopalings as Bowser's sole child. This is first seen in Bowser's trophy Super Smash Bros. Brawl, where Bowser Jr. is referred to as 「ひとり息子」, meaning "one son" or "only son". While both the Koopalings and Bowser Jr. appear together in New Super Mario Bros. Wii, official websites merely refer to the Koopalings as Bowser's minions rather than his children, and comrades rather than siblings. However, the Prima guide refers to them all as Bowser's eight kids (counting Bowser Jr. among their ranks). In a September 2012 interview, Shigeru Miyamoto, speaking with Takashi Tezuka, went on record to say that their "current story is that the seven Koopalings are not Bowser's children", leaving Bowser Jr. as his only child with an unknown mother. This portrayal has been kept in following games where the Koopalings appear, but their guidance conversation in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U lampshades their connection with Bowser and Bowser Jr. by noting the Koopalings' resemblance to Bowser Jr. and calling the relationship between them and Bowser a mystery. There are also hints for Bowser needing to treat them more like his family.
With the release of Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, the Koopalings started having lines of dialogue again, that then appeared in Mario & Sonic at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and in Paper Mario: Color Splash. To reflect their new portrayal, in the Japanese version of said lines of dialogue, the Koopalings always refer to Bowser as Master Bowser (「クッパ様」) and consider each other comrades (「仲間」) without any family relationship. However, at the same time the European localizations were apparently given more freedom in the portrayal of the Koopalings, beside them still being siblings and the return of the Koopalings term since Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam. While said game keeps the Koopalings' relationship to Bowser simply as his minions in English and Japanese versions, in the Italian and German translations, the Koopalings' father is briefly called to and explicitly stated to be Bowser, respectively, and the Italian localization of Paper Mario: Color Splash is devoid of every explicit statement of the Koopalings as Bowser's minions present in the Japanese version.
In Nintendo Power, Larry was stated to be the youngest of the Koopalings (reaffirmed as still true in the North American version of Super Smash Bros. for Wii U), while Ludwig was said to be the oldest. The birth order for the five middle children was not confirmed, although in Super Mario Bros. 3, as Larry is the first Koopaling to be fought and Ludwig is the last, the implication would seem to be that all seven Koopalings are fought in order from youngest to oldest (provided the player doesn't warp); however, Morton is described as "one of the older Koopalings," although this may have been in relation to Larry, the previous boss encountered. The same guide also stated that Ludwig is Bowser's second in command, although this has since been supplanted by characters like Kammy Koopa, Kamek, and Bowser Jr., as well as English versions of Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and the European version of Super Smash Bros. for Wii U stating that Larry leads the Koopalings (though this is possibly due to a mistranslation). The Prima strategy guide for Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros 3 describes Roy as being "a little heavier than his younger family", which might indicate that Roy is one of the older Koopalings. In Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, Larry calls Ludwig "boss", and Ludwig shows that he thinks of himself as a leader, and even a king.
In The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3, Hip and Hop (Lemmy and Iggy) are depicted as twins and are contradictorily believed to be the youngest. Although Kootie Pie (Wendy) celebrated her sixteenth birthday in "Reptiles in the Rose Garden", the specific ages of the others was never confirmed. According to the Writer's Bible included on the Shout! Factory DVD set and brief concept clips of the cartoon, the other Koopalings were all teenagers; Bully was the eldest, followed by Big Mouth, Kooky, Cheatsy, Kootie Pie, and finally Hop and Hip both at six years old. This is seemingly the reference used for the Nintendo Adventure Books, since in Leaping Lizards Morton exclaims “Little brothers are so cowardly!” in regards to Iggy, although this may have been a quip at Luigi's expense (who expressed particular resentment at that remark).
The order the Koopalings are fought differ each game they appear in as bosses:
Although the games themselves initially did not have the Koopalings speak (the DOS version of Mario is Missing! nonwithstanding), the Koopalings did have a variety of voice actors in various Mario media.
In Amada Anime Series: Super Mario Bros., the Koopalings were voiced by Masaharu Sato (Larry and Iggy), Miyako Endo (Morton and Wendy), and Naoki Tatsuta (Roy, Lemmy, and Ludwig).
In the DIC cartoons, the Koopalings were voiced by James Ransken (Cheatsy), Dan Hennessey (Big Mouth), Tabitha St. Germain (Kootie Pie), Tara Charendoff (Hop and Hip), Gordon Masten (Bully), and Michael Stark (Kooky).
The Koopalings appeared in the interactive anime video Super Mario World: Mario to Yoshi no Bōken Land, and there they were given spoken dialogue. Their voice actors were not credited.
In Mario is Missing!, the Koopalings, as noted above, were given dialogue. However, their voice actors in the CD-ROM Deluxe re-release were not credited.
In Super Mario Advance 2: Super Mario World, the Koopalings did have voices, although they just gave dying screeches when defeated by Mario or Luigi. Additionally, they were all similar monster roars and only Iggy, Lemmy, Wendy and Larry used them.
Starting with 2009's New Super Mario Bros. Wii, the Koopalings were given in-game voice acting, although it was largely composed of grunts and roars instead of actual dialogue. Larry, Morton, Wendy and Lemmy are voiced by Lani Minella, Iggy and Ludwig are voiced by Mike Vaughn, and Roy is voiced by Dan Falcone.
In Mario Kart 8, all the Koopalings, except for Roy, are voiced by new voice actors, with Morton, Ludwig, Wendy and Larry being voiced by David Cooke, David J. Goldfarb, Ashley Flannegan and Michelle Hippe respectively. This time, they do say actual words and phrases, besides their "No!" yells when defeated in the former games.
In Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS / Wii U, the Koopalings have reused their voice samples from New Super Mario Bros. Wii.
In Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, the Koopalings have spoken dialogue for the first time since the Mario's Early Years! series. Their voice clips, however, are reused from Mario Kart 8.
In Paper Mario: Color Splash, the Koopalings again have spoken dialogue.
Theme musicThe Koopalings have a distinct theme music composed of several fast-paced beats. This was originally the boss music for Super Mario Bros. 3. However, starting with New Super Mario Bros. Wii, it became more clearly associated with them. In the latter, a rearragement of the original version was played when fighting them at the tower levels. In the castle levels, and their fights from New Super Mario Bros. 2 onward, a different, slower-paced arrangement was played. In Paper Mario: Color Splash, each Koopaling got a unique battle theme for the first time. Larry's theme is composed of jazzy tunes with piano, cello, trumpets and electronic touches. Roy has a fast-paced theme with brass, drums, electric guitar, and modern additions, with the specific pitch, tone, and beat varying depending on which paint he has afflicted Mario with. Wendy's theme has mostly horns, bagpipes, acoustic guitar and deep vocals. Iggy has trumpets, horns, bass drums, and electronic mixes. Lemmy's theme consists of accordion, violin, xylophone, trombone and fast-pacing to replicate his circus boss fight and personality. Morton has electronic themes, violin, and sound effects. Ludwig has electronic themes with piano at the beginning, then electric guitar, trumpets, whistles, drums, xylophone, marimba and rasta-esque percussion to reflect the military and aquatic secret base themes of the battle. Aside from their individual boss themes, they also share an individual intro theme that consists of guitar strings (with the exception of Ludwig and Roy), which had been taken from the Tension theme used for the Royal Sticker bosses' introduction in Paper Mario: Sticker Star.
Sprites and models
Names in other languages