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Monty Moles are enemies that appear in several Mario games, where they dart out of holes in the ground to either quickly pursue the player or throw rocks at them. They also frequently appear in Whac-A-Mole-themed minigames across the franchise. They seem to have initially been based on the Rocky Wrench enemy from Super Mario Bros. 3 (itself described as a mole-like turtle at the time), but became a much more recurring enemy, with Rocky Wrenches eventually being redesigned to look like Monty Moles.
Super Mario series
Super Mario World
Monty Moles debut in Super Mario World in the stage Yoshi's Island 2. They pop out of random spots in the ground to surprise Mario or Luigi and will then chase after him persistently or walk and hop occasionally. The game also features Mega Moles, giant Monty Moles that Mario can actually ride on to get across obstacles, but can still be hit by one. Monty Moles can be defeated by any attack method. In one artwork, they appear to be wearing sunglasses, as well as having a short, gopher-like nose, though in another artwork, they have visible, squinting eyes and long, mole-like noses. This game's graphics seem to depict the latter, though the jumping sprite depicts a slight split in the lip; further games typically used either one of these artworks as a design up until the redesign in Super Mario 64 DS.
Super Mario Bros. 3 / Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3
Although Monty Moles are not present in the original version of Super Mario Bros. 3, in Super Mario All-Stars and Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3, the king of Iced Land is turned into a Monty Mole by Lemmy Koopa. Monty Moles also appear as enemies in a World-e level called Ground Work, with some of them hiding beneath grass patches and being released upon the player plucking them.
Super Mario 64 / Super Mario 64 DS
Monty Moles appear in Hazy Maze Cave and Tall, Tall Mountain in Super Mario 64 and Super Mario 64 DS. In the cave, Monty Moles specifically reside in the toxic maze, though they remain outside of the toxic cloud. Monty Moles in this game act similar to Rocky Wrenches, albeit throwing rocks instead of wrenches before disappearing underground. If Mario can defeat a certain number of Monty Moles in the game, a 1-Up Mushroom appears for him to collect.
In the original game, they use their squinting design from Super Mario World, but with an added pair of pronounced teeth, a black nose, and somewhat larger limbs. In the remake, they receive a redesign, consolidating the two designs from the Super Mario World artworks, with a small amount of influence from the Super Mario 64 and Super Mario Sunshine designs. From the "sunglasses" artwork, they get the smooth, cheek-less head sides, white upper lip, and small nose; from the other Super Mario World artwork, they get the distinct squint; from the Super Mario 64 design, they get the visible teeth, though the number is reduced to one; from the Super Mario Sunshine design, they get the wideness of the upper lip. This design would become the standard design for later games, though there has been variation on the color of the lower lip, with brown appearing most consistently.
Super Mario Sunshine
A Monty Mole, also called Chorobe, appears in Super Mario Sunshine. He appears in Pinna Park and Noki Bay at the helm of large, red, dome-shaped cannons, firing Bullet Bills at Mario in the former, and Glorpedo down the cliffside in the latter. When Mario approaches the mole, he stops firing and tosses Bob-ombs at him. They can be disabled using F.L.U.D.D., and tossing a Bob-omb at the mole three times defeats him. In this game, the Monty Mole has much lankier arms than usual, a more bright orange color, a smaller white patch, and a green hat. The contours of the eyes behind the squint is also visible if examined closely enough.
At Pinna Park, the Monty Mole is found in the episode The Beach Cannon's Secret at the far end of the beach past the Great Sunflower. After Mario defeats him, he is able to jump into the cannon and access a secret course to get the Shine Sprite. A Pianta repairman replaces the Monty Mole from Episode 3 onward. In Noki Bay, the Monty Mole can be fought and defeated which rewards Mario with a Shine Sprite.
The manning of war machinery may be a throwback to Rocky Wrenches, who manned many of the machines in Super Mario Bros 3. Parts of its design also resemble that of classic Rocky Wrenches, such as the long arms and color placement.
New Super Mario Bros.
Although Monty Moles are absent as regular enemies, Monty Tank, depicted as a Monty Mole operating a tank, is the boss of the World 6- in New Super Mario Bros.. The tank fires Bullet Bills and Bob-ombs. Mario or Luigi can defeat it by either stomping the Monty Mole's head three times when he comes out to throw a Bob-omb or by hitting him with fireballs. When jumped on, the tank will spin around and shoot many Bullet Bills and gain another turret.
Monty Moles also appear in a minigame titled "Whack-a-Monty" where the player has to tap as many Monty Moles as they can in a certain amount of time. The player will gain one point for each mole whacked and will lose three if they tap on Luigi.
New Super Mario Bros. Wii
In New Super Mario Bros. Wii, Monty Moles only appear in World 6-4. Here, they retain their attack method from Super Mario World. Once Mario and crew get near a Monty Mole's hiding spot, it will jump out of the wall and will try to charge into them. Magikoopa can also turn platforms into Monty Moles during his fight with Mario in World 8-.
From this game forward, Rocky Wrenches use a variation of the Monty Mole model with added goggles.
Super Mario 3D Land
Monty Moles reappear in Super Mario 3D Land. They only appear in 5-4, a cave level. This is their first appearance in a 3D game where they are found outside the ground and can run. They patrol the area and attack Mario if he gets in their way. They can be defeated with a single stomp. A new larger variant known as Morty Moles appear, appearing in World 5-4 and 7-4, and must be stomped twice to be defeated.
New Super Mario Bros. U
After an absence in New Super Mario Bros. 2, Monty Moles once again appear in New Super Mario Bros. U. They act the same as in previous games. They only appear in the levels Yoshi Hill and Magma-River Cruise. They also appear during Magikoopa's boss battle in Slide Lift Tower. Monty Moles are also featured in the Challenge Mode levels Mole to Goal and Mole to Goal Returns, where the goal is to transport a Monty Mole to the Goal Pole.
Super Mario Maker / Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS
Monty Moles reappear in Super Mario Maker and Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS as enemies. They function the same as previous games. In the Course Maker, they are made by shaking a Rocky Wrench. They can be placed on or inside the ground (the latter of which will make them climb up and pop out if the player gets close). They can be enlarged by a Super Mushroom or given wings (the former will simply enlarge them and the latter will make them jump around while running, similar to a Paragoomba). They can be blocked from coming out of the ground by placing an object like a P Switch on top of where they will emerge. They can be placed in Blocks, Pipes, Bill Blasters, and on tracks.
Super Mario Maker 2
Monty Moles reappear in Super Mario Maker 2 as enemies, sharing the same behavior as in Super Mario Maker. Unlike in Super Mario Maker, Monty Moles are now completely separate from Rocky Wrenches. The course creator Mischievous Mole could possibly be a Monty Mole, as one of his courses has Monty Moles in it.
Super Mario World TV series
In the episode, several Gophers acted as minions of Cheatsy Koopa, aiding him in his plot to steal all the crops grown by the cave-people of Dome City. These Gophers are eventually defeated by Mario, Luigi and Yoshi, who, after tracking Cheatsy down, sneak up on the moles, tie them up, and suspend them from the ceiling. The Gophers are then dropped on top of Cheatsy Koopa, pinning him to the ground. They also sing backup during Cheatsy's Life, a self-praising song; at no other point in the episode do they vocalize at all.
Super Mario World: Mario to Yoshi no Bōken Land
In the interactive OVA Super Mario World: Mario to Yoshi no Bōken Land, after Iggy's horde of Koopa Troopas, Rexes, and Chargin' Chucks is defeated by Mario, Luigi, and Yoshi, he summons a group of Monty Moles and Koopa Paratroopas. They are quickly disposed of when Yoshi swallows a Green Shell and breathes fire on them.
Super Mario Adventures comic
In the Super Mario Adventures comic, several Monty Moles are sent by Bowser to attack Princess Toadstool's palace. These Monty Moles, along with the rest of the monsters sent by Bowser, are defeated by Mario and Luigi.
Later in the comic, a Monty Mole wearing a blue tuxedo is seen among the attendees in Bowser's wedding to a brainwashed Princess Toadstool.
In Hotel Mario, Monty Moles make an appearance in Larry's Chillton Hotel. They dig out of the thin floors, and then start sliding towards Mario. They will hit the wall, get dizzy for a moment, and then proceed with their antics again.
Mario Kart series
Super Mario Kart
Monty Moles (under the name Gopher) are obstacles in Super Mario Kart, in Donut Plains 2 and Donut Plains 3. If a racer runs into one, it will attach itself to the player, which causes them to slow down and drop coins. The player must hop repeatedly in order to knock them away.
Mario Kart 64
Monty Moles (under the name Chubby) appear in Moo Moo Farm of Mario Kart 64 as obstacles, hopping in and out of holes in the ground, causing racers who hit them to spin out. They appear with triangular sunglasses and tan snouts.
Mario Kart DS
In Mario Kart DS, they are referred to by their usual name, and mainly appear in N64 Moo Moo Farm and Peach Gardens.
In Mission 3-6, the player's task is to hit five Monty Moles.
This game has an early depiction of Monty Moles and Rocky Wrenches with similar graphics, though their designs are not as similar as in later games.
Mario Kart Wii
Mario Kart 7
Monty Moles only cameo in Mario Kart 7, where they are among the many species seen cheering in crowds in bleachers.
Mario Kart 8 / Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
SNES Donut Plains 3 and Wii Moo Moo Meadows return in Mario Kart 8 and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, bringing along the Monty Moles with them. They act as stationary obstacles as in most Mario Kart games, but will now dig around for some time before popping up. This changes the gameplay of SNES Donut Plains 3 from the original version in Super Mario Kart where they would attach themselves to drivers who drove into them. In Animal Crossing from the Animal Crossing x Mario Kart 8 DLC Pack, Mr. Resetti replaces Monty Moles to fit with the theme of the course. The trails that the Monty Moles leave can be used to perform tricks.
Mario Kart Tour
Monty Mole makes his official playable debut in the Mario Kart series in Mario Kart Tour available from May 6, 2020 in the Flower Tour. He is classified as a tour-exclusive Super character (the first Super character with this distinction) and his special item is the Mushroom Cannon. Starting with the Wild West Tour, Monty Mole became a regular Super character while also gaining a self-named cup. Monty Moles also appear as obstacles in GBA Sunset Wilds R/T and SNES Donut Plains 2, where they behave the same as in Mario Kart 8 and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, allowing racers to perform a Jump Boost off their trails and holes.
Paper Mario series
During the events of Paper Mario, Monty Moles appear at Mt. Rugged, where they either pop halfway out of the ground and throw rocks at Mario, or pop all the way out and chase him. In battle, they are always found halfway-underground, and attack Mario by throwing rocks at him. In one of the walls of the mountain, there is a Monty Mole-shaped hole, through which an endless stream of moles can pop out. Stronger, green Monty Moles can also be found in Flower Fields. They are also known as "Monty Moles"; however, the Japanese version of the game gave them a different name from the regular Monty Moles.
Paper Mario: The Origami King
Monty Moles reappear in Paper Mario: The Origami King. Unlike in Paper Mario, they act as NPCs rather than enemies, and their modern design is used. One Monty Mole appears on Overlook Mountain running an auction for a Shell Stone, starting with 10,000 coins and can be lowered to 300 coins before the Koopa Troopas attending the auction buy it. Lots of other Monty Moles appear in Breezy Tunnel.
Origami Monty Moles appear in concept art, implying that they would have appeared as enemies, though none appear in the final game.
Mario & Luigi series
Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time
Monty Moles appear in Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time. One is encountered in the Gritzy Desert, and will prevent the four Mario Bros. of past and present from progressing unless they can complete his challenge. Two more are seen in the underground region of the Koopaseum and they both run an Item Shop called the Monty Mart. Additionally, deep in the Gritzy Caves, two more Monty Moles run two more challenges that must be completed.
Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story / Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story + Bowser Jr.'s Journey
A group of five Monty Moles, called the Monty Bros., appear in Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story and its remake, Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story + Bowser Jr.'s Journey, where they utilize a giant drilling machine to fulfill Bowser's orders and dig a tunnel below Toad Town. They don't make much progress however, so Bowser has to finish their duties.
The Monty Bros. later reappear in the Treasure Chamber in Bowser's Castle, betraying Bowser and claim that Fawful bribed them and ordered them to get rid of Bowser. They attack Bowser in a giant train called the Fawful Express, in which Bowser must defeat them in his giant form. If he succeeds, the falling chunks of the debris from the train will defeat the Monty Moles.
Mario & Luigi: Dream Team
Monty Moles also make an enemy appearance in Mario & Luigi: Dream Team. Here, they act as support enemies for Bowser Jr. during his battle at the end of the Battle Ring's Battle Medley, repairing the Junior Clown Car after it explodes.
Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam
Monty Moles reappear in Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam as an enemy. They battle in holes that were dug out of the ground, while also having a similar attack pattern as Mawful Moles in Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story. They are encountered in Sunbeam Plains and later the haunted area of Gloomy Woods.
Mario Golf series
NES Open Tournament Golf
While Monty Moles do not appear within the actual gameplay of NES Open Tournament Golf, what seems to be one appears on the cover. It has round sunglasses, three hairs, and a square tooth similar to modern appearances. It is also atypically small in comparison to Mario.
In Mario Golf for the Nintendo 64, if the player successfully putts the ball into the hole from a long distance and scores under par, a Monty Mole may pop out of the hole. The name "Monty Mole" may also appear on the scoreboard.
Mario Golf: Advance Tour
Mario Golf: World Tour
Monty Moles appear in Mario Golf: World Tour. Many Monty Moles appear in the Castle Club mode as NPC characters. Two very large Monty Moles appear in Hole 7 of Wiggler Park. If the player hits them with the ball, they will burrow into the ground. Their name can also appear on the tournament scoreboard.
Mario Golf: Super Rush
Mario Baseball series
Mario Superstar Baseball
Monty Mole also appears in Mario Superstar Baseball as an unlockable character for the first time. Monty Mole is unlocked by completing challenge mode with Mario's team. It is a member of Mario's team. It has the ball dash ability, which allows it to run extremely fast while in possession of the baseball. He is a Speedy character with fast running, weak batting and pitching and average fielding. While the playable Monty Mole uses the design from Super Mario 64 DS, in the crowd there are Monty Moles with their model from Mario Power Tennis and Mario Party 6.
Mario Super Sluggers
In the sequel Mario Super Sluggers, Monty Mole maintains its position as a member of Mario's team. While its best stat continues to be speed, its other stats are slightly below average. Monty Mole has good chemistry with Shy Guy, Goomba and Paragoomba, and doesn't have any bad chemistry with any other character.
Mario Party series
Mario Party 3
A Monty Mole appears in Woody Woods in Mario Party 3. It switches the direction players can move on certain pathways every turn. This Monty Mole wears sunglasses and can be found in an Army hut-like structure with a flag depicting its face. For 5 coins, it will switch the signs from one direction to another. It will appear out of any of three holes scattered across the board, depending on where it is summoned via speaking to it in its hut or landing on a Happening Space.
Mario Party 5
In Mario Party 5, Monty Moles appear in the minigame Flatiator. They appear out of the ground to obstruct the team players while avoiding the single player. The one player on the ball can simply roll over them. One also appears in Pirate Dream hosting a board event.
Mario Party 6
In Mario Party 6, Monty Moles are in the minigame Mole-it!, where the players earn points by hitting them when they pop out of the pipes. During the day, the pipes are on the ceiling, and at night, they are on the ground. Hitting a normal Monty Mole earn a team one point, and a golden Monty Mole gives the team three.
Mario Party 7
In Mario Party 7, a Monty Mole appears on the board Pyramid Park. It appears when the player lands on the Green Space on the far right of the board, next to three pots. He offers to play a game of Whack-the-snake-and-not-the-mole. In the minigame Sphere Factor, three or four of them pop out of the ground towards the end (before the bridge) and try to prevent the player from rolling the huge ball to the finish line. Monty Moles also appear in the minigame Monty's Revenge, where they are the one whacking the players with hammers. This is the first game in the series where they use their modern design.
Mario Party 8
Monty Moles make another party appearance in Mario Party 8. This time they appear in the minigame Crops 'n' Robbers where one player has to whack Monty Moles that are in the holes, so the players can gain way. The other player has to collect the carrots to win the game. A Monty Mole also appears in the bonus minigame Moped Mayhem.
Mario Party Advance
Mario Party DS
Monty Moles appear again in Mario Party DS as owners of the shops. Once players enter the Warp Pipe, they can buy items from it. Monty Moles also appear in the minigame Mole Thrill. In this minigame, players have to dig with their partner through the dirt, while staying ahead of the mole.
Mario Party 9
In Mario Party 9, Monty Moles appear in the minigame Plunder Ground. They hold and shuffle the treasure chests the players try to earn points from. They also appear out of the holes in the minigame Hole Hogs. In addition, Monty Moles also have a constellation, named "Hello Mole." Monty Moles appear in Magma Mine as props.
Mario Party: Island Tour
Mario Party 10
Super Mario Party
Monty Mole appears as a playable character in Super Mario Party for the first time in the Mario Party series, though it is Monty Mole's fourth time being playable in any Mario game. As shown in the introductory scene, Bowser calls upon Monty Mole, Bowser Jr., Goomba, Boo, Shy Guy, Koopa Troopa, Dry Bones, Hammer Bro, and Pom Pom to participate in the party to be crowned "Super Star." Monty Mole's Dice Block has a +1 coin side instead of a 1; otherwise, it is functionally identical to the normal Dice Block. Fake Monty Moles also appear in the minigame Rhythm and Bruise, where the player's objective is to whack them with hammers to the beat of the music. If the player uses Monty Mole for that minigame, he will start sweating and display a nervous expression.
Mario Power Tennis
In Mario Power Tennis, a few Monty Moles can be seen among the crowd in the opening watching Wario and Waluigi be chased by the police. Monty Moles also appear in the Chain-Chomp Challenge minigame, where they man cannons identical to the ones in Super Mario Sunshine. The moles themselves, however, use the squinting Super Mario World design. They shoot tennis balls and bombs at the players to hit back at the Chain Chomps.
Mario Strikers Charged
Monty Moles are a sidekick in Mario Strikers Charged. They are Power Players, which means they are good at shooting and tackling, but cannot pass very well. Their Skillshot is Dirt Drill, where they go underground with the ball, dig towards the goal, and pop up near the goalie, and shove him aside, shoving the ball into the goal. However, if the move is too close, Kritter will shove his hand into the ground and pull Monty Mole out, thereby blocking the shot. If the move is too far away, Kritter will simply catch the ball. This happens to be their second playable appearance in a sports title. In this game, they have headlights, something that is never seen in any other game they appear in. The prominent tooth also atypically appears as a pair of teeth.
Mario Sports Mix
In Yoshi's Safari, Monty Moles appear during Bowser's conquest of Jewelry Land. Much like in Super Mario World, they attack by popping out of the ground and moving towards the player; they can be defeated by shooting them with the Super Scope.
Yoshi Touch & Go
In Yoshi Touch & Go, Monty Moles appear as somewhat uncommon enemies, attacking Yoshi in a manner similar to their attack pattern from Super Mario World; leaping from the ground or by charging at Yoshi. Here, Monty Moles could be defeated by either jumping on them, throwing an egg at them or by encasing them in a circle with the Nintendo DS's stylus.
Yoshi's Woolly World / Poochy & Yoshi's Woolly World
Monty Moles appear as an enemy in Yoshi's Woolly World and Poochy & Yoshi's Woolly World. They either burrow around underground (usually under carpets) or they can pop out of the wall, Yoshi can defeat them with a Yarn Ball, stomping on them, or eating them. If eaten, they turn into orange yarn balls. There is also a boss called Big Montgomery, which is a bigger Monty Mole that appears as the mid-boss of Worlds 1, 3, and 5. Monty Mole Patches are also found, and are crocheted Monty Moles that, when unraveled, will start chasing the player like a normal mole. In the Scrapbook Theater, a normal Monty Mole pops out of a scarf roll and runs around the stage.
Yoshi's Crafted World
Monty Moles reappear in Yoshi's Crafted World as enemies. They act the same as in previous games, and even appear in a level where Yoshi must defeat a lot of them for the highest amount of Smiley Flowers: Monty-Mole-B-Gone. Their larger counterparts also make their debut in the Yoshi series.
Monty Moles were going to appear in Super Paper Mario, but were taken out. Similar to their behavior in the overworld of the first Paper Mario, they would have attacked Mario by popping out of holes in the wall (like in Super Mario World) and throwing rocks (like in Super Mario 64). The graphics use a higher-resolution version of their Paper Mario design.
A crowned purple Monty Mole boss was intended to appear in Paper Mario: Sticker Star, but was taken out of the final game. Monty Moles themselves were going to be fightable, but were also cut from the game.
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