Muncher

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This article is about species derived from Piranha Plant. For the enemy in Donkey Kong Country Returns, see Muncher (Donkey Kong Country Returns). For the sample level in Super Mario Maker, see Muncher (level).
Muncher
NSMBU Muncher Artwork.png
Artwork of three Munchers from New Super Mario Bros. U
First appearance Super Mario Bros. 3 (1988)
Latest appearance Nintendo World Championships: NES Edition (2024)
Variant of Piranha Plant
Variants
Relatives
Comparable

Munchers are a near-invincible species of Piranha Plant. They resemble Nipper Plants in appearance, but are usually colored black and are immobile. They often appear in groups covering part of the ground, acting like spikes. Occasionally, they spring from thin pipes. Touching a Muncher damages the player, but Yoshis (except in the New Super Mario Bros. games) and the Goomba's Shoe can walk on them without harm. Invincible Mario can also walk on Munchers unharmed, but unlike with most other enemies, this does not harm the Munchers. There are few ways to defeat Munchers: only a Switch Block (in Super Mario Bros. 3), a POW Block, a Spiny Shell, or a big Goomba's Stiletto (all in the Super Mario Maker games) can defeat a Muncher.

History[edit]

Super Mario series[edit]

Super Mario Bros. 3[edit]

Munchers 2.png
Munchers from the Super Mario All-Stars version of Super Mario Bros. 3 (top) and from Super Mario World (bottom).
Artwork of three Munchers for Super Mario Bros. 3
Artwork of Munchers from Super Mario Bros. 3.

Munchers first appear in Super Mario Bros. 3 and are first encountered in World 5-3 where they appear in large numbers. World 6-10 features frozen Munchers, which can be identified by the outline and reflection of the Ice Block in which they are encased. As Princess Toadstool warns to Mario in her letter leading into the world, they are harmless when frozen and act like platforms, but if the player uses a fireball, the Muncher will become active again. If Mario or Luigi hits a Switch Block, all regular Munchers will briefly turn into coins; if Mario or Luigi tail whips one, the Muncher will become an Empty Block (except in the GBA version, where they are unaffected). If the player has Goomba's Shoe, they can walk along them without taking damage.

Muncher
A blue Muncher

In this game, Munchers are damage-causing foreground tiles rather than sprites, due to a limit of eight sprites per scanline on the NES. In their official art, they are black with orange leaves, but in the game itself, they can come in other colors depending on the level, sometimes having blue leaves, due to the inconsistencies between the limited four palettes available for foreground tiles on the NES in different levels. In Super Mario All-Stars and Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3, they have green leaves with heads that are either dull orange or indigo depending on the location.

Munchers that pop out of small pipes also appear in the first and second World 7-Piranha Plant stages of Pipe Land. Additionally, in any version of the game, Munchers remain animated even when the game is paused, as they are tiles on the foreground layer comparable to Jelectros.

Super Mario World[edit]

Munchers appear again in Super Mario World, where they behave just like they did previously, including acting like objects. However, Caped Mario cannot turn them into blocks as Raccoon and Tanooki Mario could. As before, being Invincible Mario can allow the player to walk on the Munchers without being harmed; also, Yoshi can walk on them safely. Touching a Muncher from the side or bottom while riding on Yoshi, however, damages Mario directly without causing Yoshi to run away, removing Mario's power-up if he has one or causing him to lose a life if he does not. This unique behavior is only seen in Vanilla Dome 3, as there are a few Munchers that can be touched from the sides.

In this game, they have a slightly different appearance: their eyes are absent, their stem is yellow instead of orange, and their head is oval-shaped instead of round.

Gray P Switches can turn Munchers into coins; however, this behavior goes unused since no levels in the game have both.

New Super Mario Bros. Wii[edit]

Normal and frozen Munchers in New Super Mario Bros. Wii.

In New Super Mario Bros. Wii, Munchers only appear in World 9-7, and even then, they only appear in ice blocks. However, they cover most of the floor, and the level is filled with Venus Fire Traps, whose fireballs can burn the ice the Munchers are in, exposing them to the players. The players can also melt them if they have a Fire Flower. Once they are thawed out, they cannot be frozen again, even if they are hit with an iceball from an Ice Flower.

Hacking the game reveals that unlike in Super Mario World, Yoshi can no longer safely walk on Munchers or Spike Traps in this game.[1] This behavior is unused in the game proper since no level has both of them.

New Super Mario Bros. U / New Super Luigi U / New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe[edit]

Munchers, no longer in ice blocks, appear in New Super Mario Bros. U, New Super Luigi U, and their Nintendo Switch port. Munchers retain their appearance from New Super Mario Bros. Wii and behave the same way as they do in other games. In New Super Mario Bros. U, Munchers are found in Spinning-Star Sky and Thrilling Spine Coaster. In New Super Luigi U, Munchers appear in the levels Lemmy's Lights-Out Castle, Cooligan Shrooms, and Wiggler Rodeo.

Super Mario Maker / Super Mario Maker for Nintendo 3DS / Super Mario Maker 2[edit]

Munchers reappear in Super Mario Maker, its Nintendo 3DS version, and Super Mario Maker 2. They can be placed in courses normally, but they can also be made huge by dragging a Super Mushroom onto them, or be made to spawn from Lakitus, Warp Pipes, ? Blocks, Brick Blocks, or Bill Blasters.

Munchers in these games are treated as sprites instead of objects, acting the same as Piranha Plants but smaller and harder to defeat. Shaking them has no apparent effect other than producing a purple-black cloud of smoke, but shaking them repeatedly will produce flies, which the player can swat to initiate the Gnat Attack minigame. In 1.20 onwards, shaking it after the flies have emerged will cause King Watinga to pop out, and swatting him will trigger a harder version of Gnat Attack.

In this game, Munchers are damaging to the touch on every side, unless Mario is wearing a Goomba's Shoe, during which only hitting a Muncher with Mario's head will damage him. Mario can also use Buzzy Shells to bounce them up from below. Munchers can be defeated by a POW Block, a fast fly down while Cape Mario, a ground pound with a giant Goomba's Shoe, and the Spiny Shell from below. Yoshi can once again walk safely across Munchers, even in the New Super Mario Bros. U style. Munchers are heavy enough to press a P Switch without needing to be enlarged with a Super Mushroom, and also defeat any enemy (including Bowser) should they fall over it.

Also, as Munchers are absent from Super Mario Bros., new sprites are made for this style. In the Super Mario World style, an altered version of the original sprite was used: they have yellow lips or teeth, and have a blue shading.

The Munchers in this game are affected by gravity, and fall down if they are not on top of any ground. They can also operate like solid blocks in that they take out most enemies just by falling onto them.

Super Mario Run[edit]

Munchers appear again in Super Mario Run, acting as they do in other games. Yoshi can walk freely on Munchers whereas the other characters cannot.

Super Mario Bros. Wonder[edit]

Munchers appear in Super Mario Bros. Wonder, primarily in the stage Muncher Fields, lining most of the floor, walls, and ceilings while functioning the same as in other games. Yoshi can once again walk safely across Munchers. They can be defeated by throwing a Red POW Block at them.

Nintendo Adventures Books[edit]

Munchers appear as scenery in Double Trouble, where it's mentioned Roy Koopa has parked the Doomship above a patch of them in the Mushroom Kingdom. In Leaping Lizards, some Munchers are a part of the first International Mushroom Games event, the obstacle course. If Roy's flying carpet is sabotaged by a Rocky Wrench, he will fall into a patch of the plants, though the Munchers leave him alone due to deeming his tough hide unappetizing.

In Pipe Down!, if Mario and Luigi follow Princess Toadstool out of her castle and to the Koopahari Desert, they have to zig-zag through patches of Munchers. The plants make a similar cameo in Dinosaur Dilemma, where they can be spotted prowling the Valley of the Koopas by Mario and Yoshi.

In Flown the Koopa, a patch of Munchers can be found in the desert surrounding a tree inhabited by Cheep Cheeps, and will swarm Luigi if he tries to get his and his friends lost International Dino-Flying Derby tickets out of the tree; more of the plants can be found by the Mario Bros. in the swamp containing Magikoopa's Fortress.

Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3[edit]

Muncher

Munchers also appear in Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3. They retain their original black coloration and are found early in the game. There is no distinction between how they inflict damage on Wario and how they inflicted damage on other heroes in past Super Mario games. Munchers are stationary and populate the ground in long arrays of specimens. They cannot be knocked out in any way.

Mario Kart 8 / Mario Kart 8 Deluxe[edit]

Although Munchers do not directly appear in Mario Kart 8 or Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, several appear along the bottom adverts in some courses for Green Service.

Mario Tennis Aces[edit]

Three Munchers and a Nipper Plant in the shadows at the Ancient Altar
Several Munchers at the Ancient Altar in Mario Tennis Aces

Munchers appear in Mario Tennis Aces, where they are found in the background of the Ancient Altar while the player battles Petey Piranha.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate[edit]

In Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Munchers are mentioned briefly by Viridi during Palutena's Guidance dialogue for Piranha Plant.

Profiles and statistics[edit]

Perfect Ban Mario Character Daijiten[edit]

ブラックパックン (JP) / Muncher (EN)
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Original text (Japanese) Translation
出身しゅっしん フラワーぞく Place of origin Flower clan
性格せいかく いやしんぼう Disposition Greedy
登場とうじょうゲーム 3、ワールド Game appearances 3, World
ちるのをちかまえてる

くぼみなどでマリオをちかまえている、無敵むてきのパックン。攻撃こうげきはしてこないが、無敵むてきマリオでもたおすことはできない。くぼみにちないように慎重しんちょうにジャンプしよう。[2]

Waiting for something to fall

The invincible Piranha waits for Mario in pits and other places. They do not attack, but even Invincible Mario cannot defeat them. Jump carefully to avoid falling into the pits.

Gallery[edit]

For this subject's image gallery, see Gallery:Muncher.

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese ブラックパックン[3]
Burakku Pakkun
Black Piranha

Chinese 黑吞食花
Hēi Tūnshí Huā
Black Piranha Plant

Dutch Muncher
-
French (NOA) Miamiam
Contracted form of "miam-miam" (onomatopoeic term meaning "yum-yum")
French (NOE) Scrounch
Onomatopoeia for crunching
German Mampfer
Muncher
Italian Sgranocchio
First-person present conjugation of sgranocchiare ("to munch")
Korean 블랙뻐끔
Beullaek Peokkeum
Black Piranha

Portuguese (NOE) Trincas
Second-person present conjugation of trincar ("to chomp")
Russian Жевалка
Zhevalka
Masculine past conjugation of жевать (zhevat, "to munch"), combined with the diminutive suffix -ка (-ka)

Spanish (NOA) Tulipán Piraña
Piranha Tulip
Spanish (NOE) Mordiscador
Nibbler

References[edit]

  1. ^ ProsafiaGaming (February 4, 2018). New Super Mario Bros Wii - All Castles with Yoshi (06:21). YouTube (English). Retrieved May 18, 2024.
  2. ^ 1994. 「パーフェクト版 マリオキャラクター大事典」 (Perfect Ban Mario Character Daijiten). Shogakukan. Page 191.
  3. ^ Nintendo (1988). スーパーマリオブラザーズ3 (Sūpā Mario Burazāzu Surī) instruction booklet. Nintendo (Japanese). Page 41.