Proto Piranha

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"Gatekeeper" redirects here. For information about the variant of Pi'illos, see Deco Pi'illo.
Proto Piranha
A Gatekeeper in Super Mario Sunshine.
A Gatekeeper in Super Mario Sunshine
First appearance Super Mario Sunshine (2002)
Latest appearance Super Mario 3D All-Stars (2020)
Variant of Piranha Plant

A Proto Piranha, originally known as a Gatekeeper[1][2] and also known as a Proto Piranha Plant,[3] is a large species of Piranha Plant composed entirely of goop. Proto Piranhas appear as enemies in Super Mario Sunshine, Mario Power Tennis, and Mario Golf: Advance Tour.


Super Mario Sunshine[edit]

In Super Mario Sunshine, Gatekeepers appear out of Generators in several areas towards the beginning of the game. To get a Gatekeeper to come out of its base, Mario has to spray it with FLUDD until it comes out. In order to defeat one, Mario must use FLUDD to shoot water into its open mouth repeatedly. If Mario sprays one while its mouth is closed, it merely shrugs the attack off. Once defeated, Gatekeepers dissolve into goop, after which their base disappears; Mario cannot wash away a goop base as he can with normal goop. Aside from periodically spawning Swoopin' Stus, a Gatekeeper does nothing to attack, and it actually retreats back into its base if Mario does not defeat it in time.

There are three types of Gatekeepers in the game:

  • Pink, yellow, orange, and white Gatekeepers are the most basic variant, needing to be sprayed three times to be defeated. Only one appears at the Delfino Airstrip at the beginning of the game.
  • The brown-and-white variants are found in Bianco Square and during the first episode of Bianco Hills, Road to the Big Windmill. Like the above variant, it requires three sprays to be defeated. The one in Bianco Square sends out Swoopin' Stus if left alone, and the one in Bianco Hills sends out Piranhabons rolling down the hill.
  • The black variants are found only in Delfino Plaza, covering the boathouse to Ricco Harbor when the player has three Shine Sprites, and the lighthouse to Gelato Beach when the player has five Shine Sprites. These require six sprays to defeat, and they send out Swoopin' Stus. The one guarding the lighthouse additionally sends out a wave of Swoopin' Stus in every direction after the third spray. Additionally, they can replenish goop sprayed away from directly around their bases. However, despite blocking access to new levels, they do not have to be fought as they vanish upon Mario obtaining a Shine Sprite.

The brown Gatekeeper in Bianco Hills is the only one that can be fought multiple times, due to it being the only one in a replayable episode, while the rest are fought in Delfino Plaza or on the Delfino Airstrip to unlock portals to other areas.

Mario Golf series[edit]

Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour[edit]

In Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour, the name "Proto Piranha" appears on the leaderboard.

Mario Golf: Advance Tour[edit]

In Mario Golf: Advance Tour, Proto Piranhas appear in the Mushroom Course along with many regular Piranha Plants. They are found outside of the course itself.

Mario Power Tennis[edit]

In Mario Power Tennis, Petey Piranha's Defensive Power Shot, Piranha Swingback, involves him creating a Proto Piranha to hit an unreachable tennis ball for him.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate[edit]

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


Additional names[edit]

Internal names[edit]

Game File Name Meaning

Super Mario Sunshine gatekeeper/gene_pakkun_model1[4] Gatekeeper / Gene Pakkun Gatekeeper / Generator Piranha

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name Meaning
Japanese ドロドロパックン
Dorodoro Pakkun
ドロパックン (Mario Power Tennis)
Doro Pakkun
Goop Piranha

Mud Piranha
Dutch Proto Piranha -
French Tiranha
Plante Piranha Polluée[5]

Polluted Piranha Plant
German Schleim-Piranha Slime Piranha
Italian Fangopiranha
Pianta Piranha di fiume[6] (translation error)
River Piranha Plant
Russian протопиранья
Spanish (NOA) Piraña sucia Filthy piranha
Spanish (NOE) Piraña Lodo Mud Piranha


  1. ^ Loe, Casey. Super Mario Sunshine Perfect Guide. Page 14.
  2. ^ Bogenn, Tim, and Doug Walsh. Super Mario Sunshine BradyGames Official Strategy Guide. Page 19.
  3. ^ Downloadable PDF featuring bingo cards themed after Super Mario 3D All-Stars. Play Nintendo. Retrieved October 27, 2020. (Archived November 5, 2020, 02:38:20 UTC via Wayback Machine.)
  4. ^ Super Mario Sunshine, internal filename root/data/scene/airport0.szs/scene/gatekeeper/gene_pakkun_model1.bmd
  5. ^ Super Mario Encyclopedia, pag. 100
  6. ^ Super Mario Bros. Enciclopedia. Page 100.