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Artwork from Super Mario Advance.
First Appearance Super Mario Bros. 2 (1988)
(Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic)
Latest Appearance Mario Kart 7 (cameo) (2011)
Phanto differences.

Phantos are large, seemingly-living masks that can often be found guarding various treasures, most often keys. Its name appears to be a shortened form of the word "phantom", another word for ghost or spectre. Phantos appear as semi-common enemies in Super Mario Bros. 2, often in caves or in vases. Phantos simply remain immobile unless the key they are guarding moves. Once this happens, a Phanto will ceaselessly chase whoever stole its key. Phantos cannot be avoided and can only be escaped by using the key it was guarding to unlock a door. If the player simply drops the key while a Phanto is chasing them, the creature will fly away and leave them alone, at least until the key is picked up again. Phanto can follow the player through different screens and rooms, even into Subspace. Phantos can only be defeated with a combination of a Stop Watch and a Super Star; having only a Super Star will not affect it. After destroying a Phanto, however, a new one will replace it if the player enters another room while still carrying the key. A number of Phantos are also shown in various rooms, like the keys' rooms and Wart's room, though they do not do anything.

Phanto is depicted in two ways; originally, Phanto sported a very solemn demeanor in Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic, while in Super Mario Bros. 2, it is given an evil grin. The former representation is often used in character art. In the NES version of Super Mario Bros. 2, Phantos are red and white, but in the SNES version and other subsequent remakes, they are golden.

Two Phantos made appearances on The Super Mario Bros. Super Show! The first one appeared in the episode "The Ten Koopmandments". This Phanto lived in a pyramid that Koop Tut had trapped Mario, Luigi, Princess Toadstool and Toad inside. Upon discovering the four heroes, it proceeded to chase them until they managed to escape from the pyramid. Another Phanto made a brief cameo appearance in the episode "Escape from Koopatraz", as a member of Judge Koopa's jury.

Sprites of Phantos, taken from Super Mario Bros. 2, are sewed on the carpets decorating the racecourse of Shy Guy Bazaar from Mario Kart 7.


Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese カメーン[1]
From kamen, "mask".
Italian Spettrino From the word spettro ("spectre")
Chinese 面具[2]


  • Phanto's appearance was unaltered in the Super Mario Bros. 2 instruction booklet.
  • In Chapter 6-3 of Super Paper Mario, the Sammer Guy of the 63rd gate is named "Phanto Grin".
  • In Kirby Super Star Ultra, the Phanto Mask appears as a treasure in The Great Cave Offensive sub-game in place of the Zebra Mask from the original Kirby Super Star.


  1. ^ Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic instruction booklet, page 32.
  2. ^ From the ending scenes of Super Mario Advance as localized by iQue. Reference: 无敌阿尔宙斯 (August 28, 2013). 神游 超级马力欧2敌人官译. Baidu Tieba. Retrieved February 2, 2017.