List of Super Mario World pre-release and unused content

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This is a list of pre-release and unused content for the game Super Mario World. For pre-release and unused content pertaining to the remake, Super Mario World: Super Mario Advance 2, see here.

Unused palettes[edit]

  1. Tree 2-7
  2. Grass 2, 3
  3. Cave 0, 3
  4. Castle 0, 1, 5
  5. Ghost House 0, 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7
  6. Rope 0, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

Early builds[edit]

Magazine and TV previews[edit]

Dinosaur Land was drastically different than the final version, possessing a Super Mushroom-like appearance, similar to the various kingdoms of Super Mario Bros. 3. Specifically, it was to feature things such as Toad Houses (which could possibly mean that Toads were once considered to populate Dinosaur Land) and more Super Mario Bros. 3-style Fortresses. In addition to this, the game originally had the subtitle "Super Mario Bros. 4", as it was the next official Super Mario platformer on a console after Super Mario Bros. 3.[1]

Test cartridges[edit]

SNES test cartridges exist which, among other things, include leftover graphics from an early build of Super Mario World. These cartridges reveal that, at one point, Goombas would have been stompable like their older counterparts, and Venus Fire Traps would have made a return from Super Mario Bros. 3. The Super Leaf power-up and Raccoon Mario form were both present, but appear to have been replaced by the similarly-starring Caped Mario in the final game. Lastly, other block types such as Brick Blocks and dungeon tiles would have been directly updated from the previous game.

Unused Super Mario World Sprites.gif
Some of the unused sprites in the SNES Test Program. Notice the Super Leaf, a Super Mario Bros. 3 lookalike Fire Flower, lower-quality versions of both the Banzai Bill and the Big Boo, and the raccoon tail on the top row of Marios.

Sprite documents[edit]

In an interview, the developers of Super Mario World revealed two pictures depicting early sprite tiles for the game. It is also worth noting that Nipper Plants, Chain Chomps, Sledge Brothers, and Hammer Brothers are present on the sheet, the last of which is inconsistently shown with or without shoes between frames, showing that these sprites were not considered complete even before scrapping. Alongside this, green and yellow blob-like creatures were also shown. It is likely that the blobs would have been early versions of Baby Yoshis. Additionally, a full-grown Yoshi is shown with a head similar to the final version's Baby Yoshis, and that Mario was originally going to punch Yoshi's head in order for him to either extend his tongue or breathe fire. A Super Mario Bros. 3-styled Lift is also shown among the early sprites. Other sprites included a black ball-shaped creature with white eyes and two stick-like feet, a red Power Balloon, a more on-model Cheep Cheep, and circular and square variations of the Triangular Block.[2]

Later, in late July of 2020, the source code for many prototypes of Super Nintendo games were dumped online, and includes many concepts and sprites showing various entities in different stages of creation, some of which go entirely unused.[3] These include:

  • An elderly blue Yoshi
  • Early versions of the Koopalings that would have shared a unified attack pattern much like in Super Mario Bros. 3 while being based particularly on Ludwig's battle in the final release
  • An early version of Cape Mario with a red cape and a helmet
  • A shorter Torpedo Ted that would have been the same size as a Bullet Bill
  • A cannon enemy that would have predated the Kaboomba enemies from Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island
  • Earlier iterations of Blargg that included a shark and a water-dwelling dinosaur
  • A gigantic Banzai Bill that would have predated the King Bill enemies from New Super Mario Bros. Wii
  • A crocodilian Koopa Troopa that would been distinguishable from previous enemies similar to the game's Goombas
  • Clearly unfinished Parabeetles
  • Shark enemies that were replaced by the Dolphins (with them bearing a vague resemblance to, and predating, Guppy from Super Mario Galaxy)
  • Clearer versions of the above sprite documents
  • A scrapped Big Buzzy Beetle that would have predated its appearance in Paper Mario: Sticker Star by 22 years
  • A Toad-like flower character that would have predated the Poplins by 33 years
  • Bowser being outside of his Koopa Clown Car
  • A dummy of Peach resembling the dummies in the fights against Lemmy and Wendy
  • An exaggerated sprite of Peach screaming
  • A text balloon meant for the Sumo Bro enemies whenever they stomped
  • An unfinished dinosaur-like enemy
  • A yellow nest-like object that would have been used in the scrapped intro that features the "No Yoshi" sign for Yoshi to rest on
  • Sprites of Lemmy that include one of him using a fan with the pattern of the Japanese flag on it
  • An early design for Larry, a Bonus Block with a 1-Up Mushroom emblazoned on it rather than the final game's star
  • Sprites of Wing Mario predating his appearance in Super Mario 64 by six years
  • Mechakoopas with white hair
  • Pokeys resembling how they looked in Super Mario Bros. 2
  • An early green Wiggler with a relaxed facial expression and spikes on its back as well as a party hat rather than the final game's flower
  • Rocky Wrenches making their return prior to the first Super Mario Maker
  • An early Lakitu with a smaller cloud similar to previous games
  • A creature resembling a Micro Goomba
  • Four Airship-esque vehicles
  • A tube-like cannon that fires Koopa Shells
  • Sprites of the Mario Bros. based on their Super Mario Bros. 3 sprites
  • A background portrait of presumably either Larry or Ludwig meant for Ghost Houses
  • A cut Venus Fire Trap enemy (with one variant having eyes)
  • A bottom part of the Goal Gate that was cut and replaced by graphics for the background bushes
  • A Switch Block-like button that would have functioned similar to the final game's ON/OFF Switches
  • A bird-like creature
  • A scrapped Piranhacus Giganticus whose design would have predated the ones from Mario Kart 64's Mario Raceway
  • Two sets of sprites that replace Mario with Kawasuo-kun from Utsurun Desu, one of which depicts him naked from the neck down
  • Sprites of Luigi Super Mario All-Stars + Super Mario World, with one of them depicting Luigi supposedly giving a thumbs-up being unused

Unused data[edit]

Unused levels[edit]

Among the data on the Super Mario World ROM, there are many levels that did not make it into the released game. The majority of these are not referenced by the game's level pointer table, which means that a standard copy of Super Mario World will not be able to play them, even though their data is present. It also means that most of them do not have names, and those are listed here by their address in the ROM.

Red Switch Palace[edit]

There is an unused Switch Palace to the left of Valley of Bowser 3. Since it leads to an "empty" level, it is probable that it was scrapped early in development. Beating the Secret Exit of Valley of Bowser 3 would cause Mario to walk to this switch palace, except that Valley of Bowser 3 has no secret exit, and there is no path for Mario to walk on. This glitches the game, causing the player to be teleported to level 00 and get trapped in an endless bonus game. If the player finds a way onto the Switch, the level can be entered; it is nearly identical to the well-known TEST level, although it has a garbled background.

Level 0x30200[edit]

Probably the most famous of the unused levels, this is also one of the few referenced in the pointer table. Actually, around half of the references are directed to this level. Due to this, this was one of the first unused levels discovered. The actual level is a short plain with TEST spelled out in turn blocks in the sky. At the end is an arrow pointing into a small hole, and Mario will die if he goes down this hole. Mario will also receive a 1-up if he either walks to the end of the level, or slides down the side of the first T, but he cannot receive both. In the copy that was originally discovered, Yoshi could not enter the level; however, this is specific to that copy - it is not a property of the level as a whole. This level is also most likely a placeholder as once one looks at the ROM they will see there are over 60 copies of the level with no changes.

Level 0x313E5[edit]

This is actually the (used) level Donut Plains 1. However, it appears 3 times in the level pointer table. Once at level number 0x15, the copy used in-game, once at 0x16, a duplicate, and once at 0x17. It is this last one that is most likely to be a remnant of early game builds, as it is paired with a garbled background, and has the name #2 MORTON'S PLAINS. (The garbled background is the same one used in Yoshi's Island 1; switching to its tileset with a level editor fixes the background glitch, but a glitchy palette still remains.) This name is also attached to one of the copies of Level 0x30200.

Level 0x382C3[edit]

This is a test for a special kind of slope that fixes a bug in the code. It is referenced in the pointer table as Level 0x108. Like 0x17, it has a garbled background, but switching to a certain unused tileset (see #Unused level components below) will fix the background.

Level 0x30263[edit]

This is a short level set in the sky. It contains a sprite not found anywhere else in the entire game, which behaves like the platforms from Forest Secret Area, but with no vertical movement. Due to a glitch in the way the level was originally coded, it is rendered unplayable, but fixing this is straightforward. Due to the nature of the glitch involved, it seems this was a very early level design. This, coupled with the fact that it appears before any other level in the ROM save the "TEST" level, suggests that it was the first level created for Super Mario World.

Level 0x302BD[edit]

This level contains the mushroom scales from Butter Bridge 1. However, they are not functioning correctly. It also contains Super Mario Bros. 3 style Piranha Plants. However, they have slightly glitched graphics, which causes them to have an upside-down flopping Cheep Cheep with an incorrect palette instead of a stem.

Level 0x30338[edit]

A long hall with doors leading to each of the game's bosses. They are out of order from their appearance in the game, and that Reznor is not differentiated from the Koopalings. Big Boo is absent.

Level 0x304EB, 0x30464[edit]

A short and quite glitchy underground level. It makes use of a falling layer 2 effect, which is familiar from the end of Chocolate Secret.

Level 0x3059C[edit]

A small room with two stone cubes, two Hotheads, and two Lil Sparkies. Possibly a level to test the Hothead and Lil Sparky enemy data. Despite being a castle-themed level, its background is completely black, like the first room of #4 Ludwig's Castle.

Level 0x305AB, 0x30701[edit]

An early version of #6 Wendy's Castle. It differs little from the final version.

Level 0x3073D[edit]

An area with one pipe and a long stretch of ground. Due to the music, it is likely that it was supposed to become an underwater stage. Note that the pipe is a brownish-gray color.

Level 0x30875[edit]

It is similar to the exit of a Ghost House, but never used in-game.

Level 0x38218[edit]

A totally empty level. This is most likely used to have a blank background on levels with layer 2 activated.

Level 0x38260[edit]

Another unused Ghost House exit. This one has some clouds, but the Giant Gate tape is erroneously placed too far from the base.

Level 0x38281[edit]

A level in which 3 bushes float in a black void.

Level 0x30584[edit]

A castle-themed level in which an enterable pipe lies adjacent to a large hole. For unknown reasons, this level is 5.5 times longer than the accessible portion.

Unused level components[edit]

In some cases, some objects were left in the game's code that were never used in a level.

  1. There are three unused graphics tilesets, two for objects and one for sprites.
    1. The first unused object tileset is labeled "Switch Palace 2", and has no apparent use, as every object that can be used in it appears glitchy.
    2. The second unused object tileset is labeled "Underground 3", and it combines the rocky foreground of the cave and underwater levels (Underground 1 and 2) with a generic background file that makes the trees for Yoshi's Island 2 and much of the Forest of Illusion, the plains background for much of Donut Plains, the sky background, and the mountain background from Yoshi's Island 3, 4, and much of Chocolate Island. This allows for the possibility of rocky levels similar to those of World 6 in New Super Mario Bros. and New Super Mario Bros. Wii. Unused level 0x382C3, mentioned above, will have its glitchy background fixed if it is switched to this tileset; the background is the same one used in Chocolate Island 3 and Mondo.
    3. The unused sprite set is simply labeled "Not Used" and combines two generic graphics files: one with the data for Chargin' Chucks and the Amazing Flyin' Hammer Brother and one that is generally used for foreground graphics, such as pipes, cement blocks, ! Blocks, and Turtle Cannons.
  2. A grassy platform that was used only in a unused level of the game, and can have one of two functions. Normally, it acts much like the flying platforms from Forest Secret Area, but without the vertical movement. However, if a certain property of the level itself is changed, it will act like the floating platforms from Yoshi's Island 3.
  3. The "Swooper Death Bat Ceiling". This is an object that generates a cloud of Swoopers, but with a blue palette, similar to the cloud of Boos from Donut Ghost House. Because they were scrapped early in development, one of their animation frames is incorrect (looks like half a glass block next to half a Spike Top). Additionally, they lack the correct sound effects.
  4. A Golden 1-Up Mushroom with wings that floats along and follows the trajectory of a Power Balloon.
  5. A Red Coin similar to the above, but worth 5 coins, much like in Mario Party DS.
  6. The Piranha Plant from Super Mario Bros. 3. Similarly to the bat object, its stem appears as a jumping Cheep-Cheep frame because its graphics were never finished. Note that when it is used in the game, it causes VRAM errors due to it loading the wrong graphics file.
  7. A flying key, which for unknown reasons can hurt Mario. It can be eaten by Yoshi, however, it acts like when Yoshi eats a normal key. When spat out by Yoshi it turns into a normal key.
  8. Several unused decorative grass objects. Most of them are glitchy.
  9. Doors that can be entered only by Small Mario, but if the door is in midair, Small Mario must be on a Yoshi to enter it. Both normal and P Switch-activated versions exist.
  10. A type of Rotating Block that continuously turns.
  11. A small, glitchy object that has the appearance of a piece of the Midway Gate. Mario cannot interact with it.
  12. Glitchy part of the Giant Gate. It is attached to the Giant Gate itself.
  13. An empty Rotating Block. If Mario hits it, it becomes an Empty Block, but gives no item.
  14. A Prize Block with a Koopa Troopa inside. When it first comes out, it will be trapped in its shell. There are a few glitches with the shell: fireballs will pass through it, and sometimes the graphics do not show up or it will glitch other graphics nearby.
  15. A Rotating Block that acts like the Wood Blocks from Super Mario Bros. 3. They can be hit from the side, and one version of releases a Cape Feather. Its graphics are incorrect: when it is actually hit, a brown P Switch appears for the animation.
  16. A Rotating Block that acts like a cement block.
  17. A "large background area" that has no use, and is glitchy. Depending on the graphics tileset, this can show up as:
    1. A very large, very glitchy bush (grass levels)
    2. A bunch of X's (Switch Palaces and Yoshi's House)
    3. Castle rocks (castles)
    4. Glitchy line guides similar to the ones that elevators, saws, and Fuzzies ride on (athletic levels like Cheese Bridge Area)
    5. Glitchy rocks (underground levels)
    6. Glitchy porthole windows (Ghost Houses)
    7. An unknown glitchy object (unused Switch Palace 2)
    8. A glitchy canvas object (the Castle 2 tileset that was only used in Room #3 of Front Door)
    9. A glitchy cloud/bush-like object (forest and cloud levels like much of the Forest of Illusion)
    10. Glitchy clouds (the Ghost House 2 set that was only used at the entrance to Sunken Ghost Ship)
  18. A cage which would be used on an autoscrolling level. Mario would be held inside, and would have to dodge obstacles.
  19. An invisible object that would initiate a level that had both horizontal and vertical components. This is never seen in the final game, in which all levels must be either horizontal or vertical, but not both.
  20. A different version of the Skull Raft from Vanilla Dome 3. They are much harder to use than the skulls of the final game.
  21. A Blue Coin, acting as the ones from Super Mario Bros. 3. Hitting a P Switch will turn these blue coins into magenta blocks; however, the code that transforms coins into solid blocks is not applied to this type, and it can still be collected as normal.
  22. Through hacking methods, the No Yoshi level intro from castles/fortresses and Ghost Houses can be used in any level with the same effect. However, the castle or Ghost House front would be replaced by a "don't sign" with a Yoshi on it.
  23. Dino-Rhinos may have once been intended to breathe fire like their smaller counterparts. Sprites for breathing can be seen in graphics files in tile editors. The idea would be used in Paper Mario: Color Splash 26 years later.
  24. Glitchy part of the Midway Gate that cannot be interacted with.
  25. Unused levels which play the final battle with Bowser themes.[citation needed]
  26. Koopas without Shells were originally going to stand upright instead of hunching over like in the final game. Upright-standing Koopas without Shells would later appear in Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island.

In addition to the above, it appears that the game was intended to have translucency effects in use on some levels. These can be seen in some early screenshots, and are perfectly safe to use (aside from the fact that all Message Blocks will appear blank due to their text sharing some settings) when accessed by hacking the final game with Super Mario World hacking tools such as Lunar Magic. Otherwise, they are never used.

Unused map screen sprites[edit]

The overworld where three Koopaling-like unused sprites would have appeared.
Overworld where the unused Koopaling sprites appear.

On the Map Screen, there were four sprites that were never used in the final game. All of them are accessible via certain hacking programs.

  1. A Lakitu which circles around Mario's head on the overworld map.
  2. A blue jay which flies around Mario's head like the Lakitu, but will follow him to the submaps, sans Vanilla Dome.
  3. An animated Piranha Plant.
  4. A Koopa that looks quite like Morton. It can force Mario to enter a level, like the Hand Traps of Super Mario Bros. 3. It ambushes Mario on the overworld. Because it was not finished, it corrupts Mario's position on the overworld map, and thus makes the game unplayable except for level 0, which is a never-ending bonus game. Three copies of this sprite were actually used in the game. However, due to the specific setup of the overworld, players will never see them on an unmodified copy of Super Mario World.

Debug functions[edit]

Using the Super Mario World ROM and a hex editor, players may access debug functions that were left in the game.[4] These include:

  1. The ability to cycle through Mario's different forms using +Control Pad up + Select Button.
  2. The ability to place Mario anywhere in a level using L Button + A Button. This can also be performed using a Game Genie code.
  3. The ability to play in slow motion.
  4. The ability to win a level with Start Button + Select Button. If the player holds A Button or B Button while doing this, they will reach the secret exit of the level.
  5. The ability to have infinite star power.
  6. The ability to change Yoshi's colors in the overworld with Select Button.


External links[edit]