Mario is Missing!

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Mario is Missing!
Mario is Missing! DOS box art
For alternate box art, see the game's gallery.
Developer The Software Toolworks
Radical Entertainment
Publisher The Software Toolworks (U.S., DOS/SNES/NES versions)
Mindscape (Europe, SNES/NES version)
Platform(s) MS-DOS, SNES, NES, Mac
Release date MS-DOS:
1992, July 1993[1] (re-release)
June 1993[2]
July 1993[2]
October 1993[1]
Genre Educational
ESRB:ESRB's K-A rating symbol - Kids to Adults
Mode(s) Single-player
Nintendo Entertainment System icon for use in {{media}}. Game Pak
Super NES:
SNES icon for use in templates. Game Pak
Home computer system:
Compact disc icon for use in templates. Optical disc
Super NES:
Home computer system:

Mario is Missing! is an educational game created for MS-DOS, SNES, NES, and Mac. The gameplay was widely panned by critics, although its Super Mario World music remixes have gained recognition. Mario is Missing! was released in floppy disk format for MS-DOS in 1992, with the CD-ROM Deluxe edition and conversions released the following year. A follow-up called Mario's Time Machine was eventually produced. This is the first game where Luigi is the main protagonist with Mario in a supporting role and the second solo adventure for Luigi (the first being Luigi's Hammer Toss) until 2001 when Luigi's Mansion was released on the Nintendo GameCube.


In his latest scheme, Bowser decides to flood the Earth with hairdryers from Hafta Havit Mail-Order to melt Antarctica. In order to buy the hairdryers, Bowser has his Koopas travel all over the world and steal various important landmarks he plans to sell. Mario, Luigi and Yoshi follow Bowser to Antarctica to stop him. However, Mario is captured by Bowser when he continues on his own.

There are many different reasons for this depending on the version of the game being played. In the PC version, Luigi is too frightened to enter the castle, forcing Mario to enter alone. Despite his brother's warnings against taking candy from strangers, Mario accepts and eats candy offered to him by Bowser, disguised as a butler, allowing Mario to be captured in a net.

In the SNES version, Mario arrives last in Antarctica, with Luigi and Yoshi already present - Mario apparently warps to Antarctica by accident while distracted by the incomplete title in Dinosaur Land, with Luigi being eager for them to enter the castle. A pit then opens up beneath him, trapping him.

In the NES version, a Koopa simply throws a bag over Mario as he is fuming about the title, claiming he was missing as he walks through the ice and snow.

With Mario captured, Luigi finds himself faced with the task of returning all the stolen artifacts and saving both his brother and Earth itself. He bravely enters the castle, leaving Yoshi outside.

Story from console instruction booklet[edit]

Bowser's Plot[edit]

Oh no! Bowser and his bad boys are back to a life of crime. This time, it's not Mario World — it's your world! From his Antarctic castle, Bowser hustles his cold-blooded crew of cantankerous Koopas into his powerful Passcode Operated Remote Transport And Larceny System (PORTALS). The twisted turtles transport themselves throughout the globe, where celebrated cities suffer shell-shocking crime waves, as turtles trash landmarks and loot ancient artifacts. With dough from his slimy scales, Bowser hoards hair dryers from the Hafta-Havit Hotline. His plot? Melt Antarctica and flood the planet! Whoa!

Mario's Fate[edit]

Will the brave brothers from Brooklyn permit this abominable snow plan? The boys say "Not!" Mario, Luigi and Yoshi trek across ice and snow to shellac the shelled ones' schemes. But Bowser's slick; in one last trick, he takes the dearest thing of all...Mario is Missing!

Luigi's Mission[edit]

Luigi must stop the Koopas, foil Bowser's plan, and find Mario. Sneaking into each Portal, Luigi is transported to a city in trouble. There, Luigi needs to nab each Koopa, grab its loot, and return the artifact to its proper landmark. Along the way, Luigi explores the city, chats with the locals, reads maps, and solves puzzles. Help him do this before time runs out! Once he figures out where he is on the globe,

Luigi must use the Globulator to call Yoshi. Only after Yoshi scares Pokey away, can Luigi return to Bowser's castle and lock the Portal for that city.


Bowser is de-shelled, as seen in the DOS version of the game.

In the DOS version, Luigi takes Bowser's shell (which covers his tail in this depiction) off, causing Bowser to run off screen, embarrassed about his polka-dot boxers. This is the only time Bowser has been seen in his shell-less form. Luigi shakes the shell to retrieve the key to Mario's cell, and then throws the carapace away. Bowser returns wondering where his shell is, with Luigi then lying to him saying he threw the shell off the balcony; then, when Bowser leans over the railing to look for it, Luigi kicks him off and he lands in the snow. Luigi then opens Mario's cell and the two dance around in joy. They then go outside and shake Yoshi's hand, before walking off into the distance together. Bowser then pokes his head out of the snow, looking in their direction with his shell back on.

In the Macintosh version, Bowser does not run off after his boxers are revealed, and Luigi smacks him off the balcony with his own shell.

In the SNES version of the ending, Luigi pulls a lever to reveal Mario behind a wall. Bowser then jumps down from a distant ledge, but Luigi pulls the same lever, causing Bowser to fall down into a cannon. He is then launched out of the castle and into the snow, where he freezes instantly and then shatters. In the NES version, Luigi and Bowser have a boss battle and "Bowser" turns out to be a normal Koopa in disguise, who turns the key to Mario's cell, freeing him.






In each level, Luigi must retrieve several artifacts which were stolen by several Koopas within the city and return them to their rightful places. Luigi must jump on the Koopas to defeat them and reclaim the artifacts, which he then takes back to the landmarks they were stolen from. He must answer trivia questions about the landmarks before the Curators will take the wares back. In the SNES version, all the information kiosks are manned by women resembling Princess Daisy (complete with crown), although this is an unconfirmed appearance.

The DOS version adds a videophone aspect to gameplay, and Luigi must call the help number provided at the landmarks to get in touch with his friends, answer the questions, return the artifact, and receive a monetary reward. The mayor of the city also phones Luigi when he arrives, asking for his help in stopping the Koopas; he later phones when Luigi secures the city, thanking him and wishing him luck in finding Mario. Mario himself even manages to phone Luigi, giving him advice on his journey as well as updates on his capture and the Koopas' struggle to maintain their plot as planned. This version also has a Taxi feature, in which Luigi collects little Taxi tokens around the city and then exchanges them for rides across town to any point on the map. The SNES version instead uses more Warp Pipes to facilitate speedy travel.

As well as returning the artifacts, Luigi must also deduce what city he is in so that he can use the Globulator and call Yoshi to his aid for double the walking and running speed. Without Yoshi, Luigi cannot finish the level, as the exit pipe is occupied by a Pokey. Yoshi proceeds to gobble the Pokey up in the DOS version, whereas the Pokey is merely scared away by Yoshi's presence in the SNES release.

Once Luigi has secured all the cities whose doors are located on a floor of the castle, Luigi must use a fire flower collected in the cities to defeat them using their only weakness - fire. The console releases remove the fire flower in favor of a small boss battle. However, the bosses cannot hurt Luigi, and must be stomped on a certain number of times to be defeated in the SNES and NES versions. The console versions also differ in that the Koopas are not defeated when they are knocked about and forced to leave in an undignified manner, but rather a sound stomp with destroy them upon impact (including the shell). The SNES version also has them literally fall to pieces, like a collapsing building.

In addition, there was a later enhanced edition for PC known as the CD-ROM Deluxe version. It included full-on voice acting to go along with the dialogue, although not all of the in-game text matched the audio exactly. The voice actors are known (Kathy Fitzgerald, Rob Wallace, Bob Sorenson, Nicholas Glaeser, David Gill), but the game does not specify which of them supplied which voices. There are also some graphical changes, such as loading screens when the screen is black, and icons of Princess Toadstool, Toad and Donkey Kong replace a recurring phone call NPC (although the old dialogue was not changed on-screen). The viewings of every historic spot in particular were originally recreated and shown in garish coloring. The CD-ROM Deluxe version replaces most of these pictures with realistic photographs and even live-action video clips to represent the landmarks, with some exceptions carried over from the floppy disk version.



First Floor
Second Floor
Third Floor
Fourth Floor
  • Amsterdam, Netherlands (Europe) 1st door
  • Bombay, India (Asia) 2nd door
  • Cairo, Egypt (Africa) 3rd door
  • Tokyo, Japan (Asia) 4th door
  • Toronto, Canada (North America) 5th door
Fifth Floor

SNES version[edit]

All countries and cities (yellow ★) that Luigi visits in the three versions of the game
First floor
Second floor
Third floor

NES version[edit]

First room
Second room
Third room
Fourth room
Fifth room
Sixth room
Seventh room;

Mistakes and errors[edit]

This section is under construction. Therefore, please excuse its informal appearance while it is being worked on. We hope to have it completed as soon as possible. This section is currently under construction by Time Turner (talk).

Although Mario is Missing! is intended to teach its players geographical facts, it contains numerous errors in its teaching material.

  • Some information in the game features proper terms that are not well known outside of North America. For example, the pamphlet for the Big Ben calls its subject "England's Capitol Hill"; as Capitol Hill is a metonym for the area surrounding the United States Capitol, this analogy, despite being technically correct, would confuse players who are unfamiliar with the metonymies used in American politics.
  • In the SNES version, there are several buildings whose signs read "ΟΔΑΝΤΟΚΡΕNΑ". This seems to be a misspelling of "ΟΔΟΝΤΟΚΡΕΜΑ", which literally means "toothpaste"; if the signs were supposed to read "dentist", this is spelled "ΟΔΟΝΤΙΑΤΡΟΣ".
  • A scientist says that Athens became the capital of Greece in 1834, when it was actually in 1833.[5]
  • He also says that 3000 years had passed between Athens being founded and becoming Greece's capital. As Athens was founded in 3000 BC,[6] close to 4,800 years had actually passed between the two dates.
  • A policewoman makes a comment about Zorba being here but having "left for the Acropolis". "Zorba" is presumably a reference to the novel and film Zorba the Greek, in which its titular protagonist does not visit the Acropolis at any point.
  • A scientist says that the Caryatids have stood for 2000 years. Considering that they were constructed in 406 BC,[7] they have stood for close to 2,400 years (at the time of the game's release).
  • The Erechtheion Temple's proper name is just the Erechtheion, without the word "temple" being a part of it.
  • Despite what its DOS sprite depicts, the Erechtheion Temple does not have four extremely large Caryatids looming over it.
  • The temple's pamphlet says that the Caryatids are 6 feet and 6 inches tall, when they are actually around 7.48 feet (2.28 meters).[8]
  • The Brass Plaque is nonexistent in reality; the inscriptions of Hadrian's Arch that are supposedly on the plaque are carved directly onto the monument.[9]
  • It is stated that the arch served to divide the separate cities of Athens and Hadrianopolis, but no proof of two divided cities has been found (rather, they are separate districts of the same city).[10]
  • The pamphlet for the arch says that Hadrian commissioned its construction, but it is unknown who actually built it.[11]
  • It also says that it was constructed in 131 AD; the exact year is not known, being either 131 or 132.[11]
  • It also mentions that it looks like the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. Beyond how they are both arches, the structures do not resembles each other, and the Arc de Triomphe was not specifically based on Hadrian's Arch.
  • The two images for the Parthenon Column conflict with each other: its SNES sprite depicts a broken bottom-half, while its DOS sprite depicts it intact.
  • A boy says that the Parthenon is held up by 46 columns, which is not technically accurate when some of them are broken.
  • A reporter says that the columns are 36 feet, when they are really 34 feet.[12]
  • A policewoman says that the Parthenon is "near" the Acropolis, when it is in fact on the hill.
  • Athena is described as being the "goddess" of Athens, when "patron" is the accurate term.
  • The pamphlet for the Parthenon says that Athens gets its name from Athena; though it has been disputed whether the city is named after the goddess or vice-versa, it is generally believed that Athena was named after the city.[13]
  • It also says that the Parthenon was constructed between 447 BC and 438 BC; it was actually between 447/446 BC and 443/442 BC.[14]
  • It also suggests that the statue of Athena's body was solely made out of ivory, when it was a mix of ivory and gold.[15]
  • It also says that the statue of Athena's dress weighed 2,205 pounds; it actually weighed 44 talents (3,300 pounds).[15]
  • A boy describes Scottish kilts and the Foustanellas as being interchangeable, when there are distinct differences between the two garments.[16]
  • Foustanellas use over 30 meters (around 33 yards) of fabric in their construction,[17] and not 25 yards as stated in-game.
  • The evzones featured with the Presidential Palace have bright-orange pompoms on their shoes; although the pompoms are standard, their color is unusual.[18]
  • A boy states that China is the largest country in Asia, even though Russia has the most territory (without even including its territory in Europe).[19]
  • A reporter states that Beijing has been the capital of China for 800 years. However, the timeline does not work out: considering that Beijing was officially made the capital in 1279,[20] just above 700 years would have passed by the time of Mario is Missing!'s release. This also ignores the two gaps in which Beijing was not China's capital: from 1368 to 1420, when Nanjing was made the capital during the Ming dynasty,[21] and from 1928 to 1949, after the 1928 Chinese reunification and numerous other events until the formation of the People's Republic of China.
  • A police officer claims that they are standing on Chang An Avenue. While this makes sense in the SNES version, where every NPC is restricted to one street, the NPCs in the PC versions move around, and the police officer can therefore tell Luigi this on multiple streets.
  • A boy says that the Gate of Heavenly Peace leads to the Emperor's home in the Forbidden City, which is misleading: the Forbidden City itself was the Emperor's home.
  • A scientist says that the gate was created in the fourth century, while the Forbidden City's pamphlet says that it was built in 1651. Both of these are incorrect: the gate was built in 1417,[22] although it was rebuilt in 1651 after being burned down.[23]
  • The scientist also says that the reigning emperor, the Yongle Emperor, was the one who built the gate. While he ordered its construction, it was designed by Kuai Xiang in conjunction with other architects.[24]
  • It is stated on several occasions that only the Emperor could pass through the Gate of Heavenly Peace, when it was actually the Gate of China that had this restriction.[22]
  • It is stated on multiple occasions that the Great Wall of China is the only man-made object that is visible from space, despite this being completely false; other objects are visible from space[25][26] and the wall itself is not even visible.[27][28]
  • The pamphlet states that the Great Wall is one of "the world's seven great wonders", which is misleading: the traditional list of the seven Wonders of the World does not include the Great Wall, but it is typically included in lists about the wonders of the medieval world.[29][30]
  • The pamphlet also says that it took 300,000 men ten years to construct the entire Great Wall. This is incorrect for three reasons: for one, portions of the wall were built across several centuries; secondly, several hundreds of thousands,[31] if not millions,[32] of people were forced to work on the wall; finally, while 300,000 soldiers were conscripted to build one section of the wall, it took them nine years to do so.[33]
  • It also states that the wall was "[b]egun in fifth century BC", despite walls being constructed many centuries prior; they were also only joined together after 221 BC.[34][better source needed]
  • Tian An Men Square is claimed to be the largest public square in the world, despite the existence of other squares like Merdeka Square in Jakarta.
  • The dialogue makes it clear that the stolen Monument to the People's Heroes refers to the obelisk, but its image depicts a statue outside of the Mausoleum of Mao Zedong (this statue is also what is shown in Luigi's photo of Tian An Men Square).
  • It is stated that the monument is made only out of granite, without referencing how it is also made out of marble.[35]
  • The pamphlet for the square says that it was expanded in 1949, when it was expanded several times starting from the 1950s, most prominently in 1959 when it was expanded to 99 acres (and not 98).[36]
  • The building that is stolen from the Temple of Heaven is called the Hall of Good Harvest, the Good Harvest Hall, and the Great Hall in-game, none of which are actually names for it. It is officially the "Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests".[37]
  • One of the questions for returning the hall involves answering what was not used during its construction; though "air conditioning" is a technically valid answer, it is not accepted for the question.
  • The pamphlet for the Berlin Wall claims that the Cold War was a conflict between East Germany and West Germany, and that the wall was built out of a mutual belief that unification was impossible. In actuality, the Cold War was a period of political and military tension between the United States of America and the Soviet Union. Following Nazi Germany's defeat in World War II, the country was partitioned between the two superpowers as parts of their spheres of influence (with America gaining influence over West Germany and the Soviet Union gaining influence over East Germany). The Berlin Wall was then unilaterally built by East Germany specifically to deter residents from defecting to West Berlin.
  • The Mosque of Muhammad Ali is shown on the in-game map as being located on the west side of the Nile River; in actuality, it is located on the east side of the Nile.
  • The pamphlet for the Big Ben states that the distinction of the tower's eponymous nickname goes to its chime bell and not the clock itself. This is both incorrect and a hypocrisy; the bell is technically a part of the clock's mechanism, and the "Big Ben" name is collectively used for both the entire clock mechanism and the Elizabeth Tower (then known as the Clock Tower).[38]
  • The pamphlet for the Tower of London states that one of the main reasons William the Conqueror built the tower was to "oversee shipping" on the River Thames. While it is plausible that the pamphlet is referring to the castle's proximity to the Thames providing a militaristic advantage,[39] there is no evidence that the diplomatic use of the river is attributed to William the Conqueror, nor is there any evidence that he ever regulated commerce on the river.
The Palacio de las Cortes, supposedly
  • A policewoman broadly says that the Spanish "dearly love" the Flamenco dance. However, it originated in and mostly thrives in the southern regions of the country.[40][41]
  • Guernica is stated to be exhibited in the Prado Museum, despite having been moved to the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in 1992.[42]
  • The image of the Prado Museum does not depict the statue of Diego Velázquez[43] at the front of the entrance (although it is visible in the video of the location).
  • The pamphlet for the museum touts Guernica as Picasso's most famous painting, which is a claim that is rather difficult to make especially when the painter has numerous other paintings like Les Demoiselles d'Avignon that are also famed.[44]
  • It is unclear what kind of cape the Matador's Cape actually is: a reporter describes it as "ornate" and a scientist says that the bullfighters wear it (indicating that it is a capote de paseo), while a tourist says that it is waved around during bullfights (indicating that it is a muleta).
  • The scientist also says that bullfighting was used to train soldiers, when it was actually a spectacle reserved for aristocracy in the past.[45]
  • The policewoman suggests that the cape belongs to the Ventas Bullring itself and not an individual bullfighter. This is despite how their entire outfit usually belongs to the bullfighter and how they dress in them outside of the bullring.[46]
  • The Ventas Bullring's proper name is the Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas, or Las Ventas for short; a literal translation would be the Bullring of Las Ventas.
  • The pamphlet for the bullring contends that bullfighting is almost as popular as, if not equal in popularity to, soccer. In reality, soccer is by-and-large the most popular sport throughout the country.[47][better source needed].
  • The image for the Lion's Tail shows the lion's face.
  • A scientist says that the Palacio de las Cortes was built in 1843, when it was actually from 1843 to 1850.[48]
  • The Palacio de las Cortes is repeatedly called the "Spanish Parliament", despite that not being the name of the building and not all of the Cortes Generales convening there.
  • The image for the palace is completely incorrect, as in reality, it does not have any hedges around it.
  • It also says that he died two years before Spain's 1978 constitution was ratified (i.e. in 1976), but he actually died in 1975.[49]
The Dome
  • A reporter says that "Montreal is an island in the St. Lawrence River", which is misleading: the player visits the city of Montreal, which is contained within, but distinct from, the Island of Montreal.
  • A scientist says that Montreal means "royal mount", which is misleading: it actually takes its name from "Mount Royal" which is a mountain located in the center of the island, in the 16th century, "Réal" was a common way of saying "Royal" in French.
  • The image of the Dome looks nothing like the actual dome of Saint Joseph's Oratory (perhaps coincidentally, it resembles the Montreal Biosphère).
  • A reporter suggests that the Dome is only smaller than that of the one on St. Peter's Basilica in Rome; this is very much incorrect.[50]
  • A policeman mentions 158 light bulbs on the mountain, where there are actually 30 (originally 240 before being changed in 1992).[51]
  • A tourist says that the Olympic Stadium seats 70,000 people; its actual max capacity is around 60,000.[52]
  • A reporter says that the Tilted Tower was built for the 1974 Olympics, and not the 1976 Summer Olympics as in reality.
  • While a boy points out GUM's letters in the Cyrillic script, the text misspells Cyrillic as "Cyrlik".
  • The largest lake in Russia is said to be the Caspian Sea. However, the Caspian Sea is not fully enclosed within Russia, but merely connected to it, and even then, the largest lake to be connected to Russia is actually the Black Sea. The largest lake to be fully enclosed within Russia is Lake Baikal.
  • The height of the central structure of St. Basil's Cathedral is stated to be 107 feet; it is officially 47.5 meters tall, around 156 feet.[53]
  • The term "Holy Fool" is said to mean "saint" in Russian. This is incorrect: a holy fool refers to anyone who surrenders themselves to God at the expense of themselves and societal norms, even if they are not a saint, and the concept of Foolishness for Christ appears outside of Russia, even within the Bible itself.
  • The pamphlet for the cathedral says that it was built in 1555, which is misleading when it was constructed from 1555 to 1560.[54]
  • It also says that it was built by "Ivan III", while also calling him Ivan the Terrible. While Ivan the Terrible did order its construction, he was "Ivan IV"; Ivan III was his grandfather.
  • It also says that he ordered the cathedral built to honor Basil the Blessed. It was actually built to commemorate his recent victory in conquest; Basil's name was only attached to the building in the seventeenth century.[55] While St. Basil does have a mausoleum within the cathedral, it was only constructed in 1588.[53]
  • Despite what its image shows, Lenin's Tomb is made out of marble and granite and not a metallic chrome.
  • The image for the Guard's hat pin does not depict a red star behind the hammer and sickle as it should.
  • The third question needed to prove that the Guard's hat pin is genuine claims that, prior to the October Revolution, Russia was led by "the royal family," with "the emperor" being the incorrect option. In actuality, while a royal family did exist, the Emperor of all the Russias was indeed the sole ruler of the nation prior to the revolution.
  • The October Revolution led by Vladimir Lenin is generically called the "Communist revolution" (which is an issue when there exists several communist revolutions).
  • It is claimed that the hammer and sickle was "the" symbol for Communist Russia. Although the hammer and sickle is widely associated with communism, there exist other symbols with a connection to Communist Russia, such as the red star, as depicted on the Flag of the Soviet Union.
  • The names "Bolshoi Ballet" and "Bolshoi Theater" are used interchangeably (for example, it is stated that the Bolshoi Ballet has been closed for visitors). However, the Bolshoi Ballet is a dance troupe, whereas the Bolshoi Theater is an actual building.
  • It is claimed that the Bolshoi Theater "sells out every show." This is despite a period where it struggled to gather an audience,[56] which is to say nothing of canceled shows in the past.[57]
  • Its pamphlet attributes the introduction of realism to ballet with one of the Bolshoi Ballet's directors, Alexander Alexeyevich Gorsky; realism within ballet can actually be traced to the 1830s.[58]
  • It also claims that Gorsky served as the director until 1942, despite him dying in 1924.[56]
  • It also claims that the theater was constructed in 1856; it was actually in 1780, with restorations taking place until 1856 after a fire in 1853.[59]
  • The image for the Moscow Metro M depicts its neon as an unconnected line, although the sign is actually a connected outline of the M.[60]
  • A scientist says that the Moscow Metro was built by Joseph Stalin. Although he gave the project its final approval, it was not his idea, and he had no hand in the project in any way otherwise.[61]
  • The metro's pamphlet claims that the Moscow Metro has "not much competition" when it comes to underground rapid transit, which is odd when there existed over 80 metro systems at the time of the game's release.[62]
  • It is stated that the Moscow Metro had 132 stations, a number it had reached in 1986[63] when in reality it had 149 at the time.[64]
  • A tourist says that the Emperor's Bell weighs 210 tons. Officially, it is about 202 tons.[65]
  • A reporter claims that Ivan III had the bell placed in the Ivan the Great Bell Tower. This tower has 22 bells, none of which are the Emperor's Bell; it has never once been suspended or rung.[66]
  • A policewoman says that the bell has been in the Kremlin since the 17th century. It has actually been there since it was constructed in 1735 (i.e. the 18th century);[66] it was also moved to its current location in 1836.[67]
  • A boy claims that the Tsar Cannon is the largest one ever created. Though it is the largest bombard, there exists both the Little David and the Mallet's Mortar.[68]
  • A scientist says that the cannonballs for the Tsar Cannon were cast alongside it in 1586; in reality, they were cast in the 19th century.[69]
  • The pamphlet for the Kremlin states that the cannon was cast by "Andrey Shchokhov", whose name is actually Andrey Chokhov.
  • Many of the buildings in Nairobi are old and dilapidated, with some even being held up with sticks and straw roofs; this is a far cry from the contemporary city in reality.
  • A tourist said that he had to fight off lions and elephants when traveling from Mombasa to Nairobi, which is odd given that there is a highway that directly connects the two cities.
  • A scientist comments that female Asian elephants cannot grow tusks, which is incorrect. Some of them have smaller tusks, called "tushes", that are notably more brittle than males' tusks, but are still present. The scientist also implies that male Asian elephants always grow tusks, which is also incorrect.[70]
  • The pamphlet for the Nairobi National Park describes the area as "undisturbed", which is incorrect given the proximity of human civilization and how it interferes with the area.[71]
  • The Maasai Headdress, in both its NES and SNES sprites, look nothing like the enkuraru headdresses worn by actual Maasai warriors.[72][73]
  • The pamphlet for the Maasai village says that Africa has "more than 70 tribes", which is a gross understatement: estimates often place more than 3,000 tribes in Africa.[74][75]
  • The pamphlet also says that new warriors are initiated as soon as they turn fifteen, but this process can begin anywhere from the ages of fourteen to eighteen.[76]
  • The National Museum of Kenya's actual name is the Nairobi National Museum.[77]
  • The Human Skull was discovered by Bernard Ngeneo, a member of Richard Leakey's expedition team, and not Leakey himself.[78]
  • Also, unlike what the game claims, the skull depicts a member of the Homo rudolfensis species and not Homo habilis (although initial claims thought the skull to be Homo habilis, it was first classified as a new species in 1986[79]).
  • The revolving restaurant at the top of the Kenyatta International Conference Center shut down in the 1980's,[80] and yet it is still depicted as being operational in-game.
  • A scientist says that construction on the center finished in 1970, when it was actually in 1973.[81]
  • Also, the building is 28 stories tall, and not 27 as the pamphlet says.[81]
  • The center is also describes as being a "United Nations headquarters". Although the fourth United Nations Conference on Trade and Development did take place at the center, this was only for the purposes of the assembly; the building was never used as a headquarters.[82][83]
  • The pamphlet for the center describes Jomo Kenyatta solely as a "freedom fighter". For starters, although he rallied for Kenya to be freed from British rule, he did so through non-violent means and actively opposed others' brutal methods[84] (labelling him as a "freedom fighter" due to his desire for an independent Kenya is a misuse of the term, anyways). Beyond that, he is best known as the first Prime Minister and President of Kenya, and not as a "freedom fighter".
New York City
  • King Kong is stolen from the Empire State Building and must be returned to its supposed rightful place, despite King Kong being entirely fictional, though this is mentioned in the game.
  • An NPC can say, "So nice they named it twice, NY, NY." While this is colloquially acceptable, this technically refers to the borough of Manhattan specifically.
  • The same NPC can say, "Catch a cab, or take the subway, not many private cars in this island city." This implies that it is on a single island when in reality the city is mostly part of an archipelago (with the main exception being the Bronx, located on the mainland). The islands are not represented on the Globulator, though the City Map and artifacts indicate that it is geographically centered around Manhattan.
  • The Tricolor is stolen from the top of the Eiffel Tower, but in real life, it was never there to begin with.
  • A boy mentions that France is the biggest country in Europe after the Soviet Union has broken up, despite that Russia's European portion and Ukraine's land area is larger than France.[85]
  • A tourist misspells "aéroport" as "airport" in L'Airport d'Orly.
  • A business woman mentions obtaining French fries though their origin as a French food has been disputed, with sources citing origins in possibly Belgium or Spain.[86]
  • A tourist uses the name "Latin Manhattan" for Rome. This has never been a nickname for the city; in fact, it is an alcoholic drink.[87] However, the nickname has been associated with Buenos Aires.[88]
  • The Colosseum's pamphlet lists its circumference as 573 yards, and not 544 meters (about 594 yards) as in reality.[89]
  • The Michelangelo's Paintbrush item is touted as if it was his sole painting tool; there is no evidence that Michelangelo used a single paintbrush for the entirety of the Sistine Chapel, nor is there a paintbrush that is particularly famous for being used by him.
  • A scientist says that "Sistine" means six in Latin. Six in Latin is "sex" or "sextus"; "Sistine" refers to any of the Sixtus popes, although "Sixtus" is derived from "sextus".[90]
  • The Sistine Chapel's pamphlet describes Michelangelo painting the Sistine Chapel ceiling's 10,000 square feet. He actually painted around 534 square meters (about 5,747 square feet).[91]
  • It also describes him as having painted while lying down, which is a common misconception. He actually painted while standing up.[92]
  • The Trevi Fountain's pamphlet says that anyone who throws a coin over their shoulder and into the fountain is guaranteed to return to Rome. Although technically correct, this is missing details, as the myth specifies that a person must throw a coin with their right hand over their left shoulder.[93]
  • The Trevi is also said to be the oldest fountain in Rome, which is incorrect due to the Fountain in Piazza Santa Maria in Trastevere.
  • The Pantheon is stated to have eight columns when it actually has sixteen.[94]
  • Its pamphlet also says that it was made out of brick and marble, completely ignoring how the Pantheon was largely constructed with concrete.[95]
  • The pamphlet for the Spanish Steps says that it was paid with "French" money, this is incorrect. The money was left by French diplomat Étienne Gueffier in his will, but it was in scudi, a depreciated Italian coin.[96]
  • It also says that the Spanish embassy that lent its name to the stairs was an embassy for "the Vatican"; it is an embassy to the Holy See, which is distinct from Vatican City.[97]
  • Also, the Spanish Steps only have 135 steps,[98] and not 328 as the game claims.
San Francisco
  • A scientist says that "no one" was interested in San Francisco until the California Gold Rush in 1848, which is a rather flippant statement. Although the gold rush brought droves of new people to the settlement, it still had a sizable population; it was the initially steady influx of immigrants that allowed people to explore the surrounding territory in the years leading up to the gold rush.[99]
  • Despite there being multiple fog horns along the Golden Gate Bridge, only one Fog Horn appears as an item.[100]
  • A boy states that the Bridge is 260 feet above the San Francisco Bay, although it is actually 220 feet above water from bridge itself and 500 feet above land from the top of the tower.[101]
  • It is stated that the Bridge was built in 1937, which is misleading when construction started in 1933 and finished in 1937.[102]
  • The pamphlet for the bridge says that fog covers it on "most days"; fog usually rolls over during the summer.[103]
  • The Coit Tower was purportedly built in 1934; it was actually in 1933.[104]
  • The Tower's pamphlet says that its namesake is "Lillian Hitchcock Coit"; her name is actually Lillie Hitchcock Coit.
  • It also claims that Lillie donated $125,000 specifically to build the tower. Firstly, she donated $118,000 (although this expanded to $125,000 due to additional city funds), and she also donated the money to city for the general purpose of beautification, and not solely for the tower.[105]
  • The game is insistent that the prisoners in Alcatraz wore striped prison uniforms, despite this never being the case.[106][107]
  • The pamphlet for Alcatraz says that it is named after the Spanish word for "pelican". This is misleading, as the word has since become archaic (the contemporary word for "pelican" is "pelicano").
  • Gripmen[108] are consistently called "gripsmen".
  • The pamphlet for the Cable Car says that they weigh six tons, when they actually weight 15,500 pounds (about 7.75 tons).[109]
  • It also says that they move consistently at 9 miles per hour; it is actually 9.5 miles per hour.[110]
  • Despite what the DOS image for the Transamerica Pyramid depicts, it is not slanted from the ground at a 45° angle.
  • The Transamerica Pyramid is on Montgomery Street, and not Columbus Avenue as its pamphlet claims.
  • Its pamphlet only mentions that it is on a concrete base, disregarding the steel that was also used.[111]
  • A woman explains that "I always thought Australia's capital was spelled like "Sid's-Knee"", referring to Sydney, when in reality it is Canberra that is Australia's capital, a fact which is stated by another NPC in the game.


For this subject's image gallery, see Gallery:Mario is Missing!.


For a complete list of media for this subject, see List of Mario is Missing! media.
Audio.svg Main Theme
File infoMedia:MIM SNES Main Theme.oga
Help:MediaHaving trouble playing?


Main article: List of Mario is Missing! quotes

Pre-release and unused content[edit]

It has been requested that this article be rewritten and expanded to include more information. Reason: include information about lots of unused sprites from NES version

Unused data[edit]

Dialogue intended for the ending of the game is in the CD-ROM Deluxe edition of the game: Game ending reconstructed with voices.

It also appears that Lemmy and Morton were going to appear in game, as their unused dialogue was found in the CD-ROM Deluxe version's data (they are the only Koopa Kids who do not appear in at least one version of the game).[113] In the final game, Lemmy is mentioned as having run off to play in the snow while Morton is said to watch the others.[citation needed] Furthermore, the CD-ROM release of the game features Lemmy on the cover despite him not appearing in the game.[114]

The CD-ROM Deluxe edition's files also contain live-action footage featuring landmarks of several cities that are not visited in-game. These include:

There are exactly ten cities that go unused; considering the unused dialogue for Lemmy and Morton and how every other Koopa Kid guards five cities of their own, it is likely that they were meant to guard the unused cities.

There are also unused voice clips that reference locations that are not in-game, including those that do not even have footage. Beyond the previously mentioned landmarks, these include: the Lacqueur Pavilion in Bangkok; the Bogor Botanical Gardens and the National Museum of Indonesia in Jakarta; the Cathedral of Lima in Lima; and the Archway of Ctesiphon near Baghdad. The Notre-Dame Basilica in Montreal is the only landmark to have a video clip and not a corresponding audio clip. Also, the White House and the Supreme Court are the only ones to have unique messages: "We are attempting to achieve world peace and are unable to take your call," and "We are hearing an important case and are unable to take your call," respectively.


Steve Merrett and Robert Whitfield of Nintendo Magazine System both commend the game for succeeding in being both educational and entertaining, unlike most other educational games.[115] They also praise the variety of locations to explore and objects to collect, though they criticize that the core gameplay is a bit repetitive and the city graphics are lack-luster. While they acknowledge that Mario fans and older demographics may not derive much enjoyment from the game, they do recommend the game to those who have an interest in geography or under the age of eleven.

Electronic Gaming Monthly's "Review Crew" gives the game a combined average score of 5.75/10.[116] Steve Harris, Ed Semrad, and Martin Alessi all recommend the game to only young audiences and praise the educational content. However, Alessi criticizes that the game has very little challenging action sections. He points out that even boss fights "offer little to no challenge". Sushi-X, who gives the game the lowest score of 3/10, criticizes that the game plays like a slow Mario game and that the graphics were not lively enough to keep him interested.

Release Reviewer, Publication Score Comment
SNES Nintendo Magazine System 83/100 An 'edutainment' game that actually succeeds in both departments. Because of the nature of it, it is only suitable for certain ages.
SNES Martin Alessi, Electronic Gaming Monthly 6/10 Older, more experienced gamers should not bother with this cart. The idea behind it is cute, and younger kids will identify with Mario better than Carmen Sandiego. This game doesn't promise real action, but is very educational and kids may actually learn something. Even the bosses offer little or no challenge.
SNES Nintendo Power[117] 10.6/20 + For younger players, this is a chance to learn about famous artifacts with some of their favorite characters. Lots of exploring without the chance of being defeated
- If you're looking for an edutainment product, you've found it! If you're looking for a Mario game, you may be left scratching your head.


In an August 1993 press release, Software Toolworks claimed that sales of the console versions of Mario is Missing! exceeded $7,000,000 for the fiscal quarter and that the game boosted the company's revenue during a slow quarter.[118] One employee also claims that the game sold over one million units.[119]


Luigi's sprite in the PC version started the Internet meme "Weegee", as well as Mario being "Malleo" and Yoshi being called "Yushee".

References to other games[edit]

Bowser's sprites.
Bowser's sprites.
Bowser's sprites.
  • Super Mario World - The Mario, Luigi and Yoshi sprites in the NES and SNES versions were taken from this game. Bowser's sprite in the NES version appears to use an edited version of Morton, Ludwig, and Roy's body from this game, along with an edited version of Lemmy's head. As such, he is uncharacteristically short in this game. When retracted into his shell, it uses the normal Koopa Troopa shell sprite from this game, except with all original detail removed and spikes drawn on. Finally, after defeat, he is knocked out of his shell and appears as a Koopa without a Shell, specifically from a Koopa Troopa. In addition, the Curators in the SNES version have their sprites being slightly modified from Princess Toadstool's sprite in Super Mario World. The map included in the Globulator in the SNES version is based on the map for Dinosaur Land from Super Mario World, and some backgrounds in the NES version is derived from similar backgrounds in Super Mario World (this is most especially evident in the opening for the NES version).


Main article: List of Mario is Missing! staff

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
French Mario a disparu ! Mario has disappeared!
German Mario wird vermißt! Mario is missing!


  • According to the MS-DOS release, Mario has a fear of the dark, which he is increasingly worried that Bowser will exploit his fear and haunt him. This is not seen or referenced in other games, except potentially Hotel Mario when he stutters (presumably in fear) before entering the cave hotel without a flashlight.
  • Mario's voice is inconsistent in the CD-ROM Deluxe edition. Sometimes he has an Italian accent, sometimes he has a New York accent with a slight hint of Italian. The game's data includes all of his lines in both accents, so it is likely that the developers accidentally assigned some from both.[120]
    • Luigi, however, has a consistent New York accent.
  • Although some Mario media supply voice acting for the Koopalings, the CD-ROM Deluxe edition is the first game to have them voiced, as well as the only game to actually supply them with dialogue until the release of Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam. Later games starting with New Super Mario Bros. Wii have the Koopalings voiced, although it is limited to roars and grunts.


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